With Covid19 came a swift and dramatic change in everyday life, work and business. Stuck at home, everyone became an amateur baker, as sourdough photos flooded Instagram. Streets normally jammed with traffic were empty, and the daily commute of the average office worker became the distance from their bed to the nearest desk or kitchen table.
Even the landscape of our social media changed overnight. All of a sudden there were no photos of brunch with the friends, instead Instagram was flooded with everyone’s best attempts at staying busy with some new project or their newfound love of home cooking.
And for those who do not consider themselves amateur Instagram chefs, there was always takeout. In fact, UberEats saw a 30% increase in downloads of their food delivery website app. With a rise in takeout, there has also been a renewed interest in local businesses.
And with that renewed interest, there has been an increase in website applications, but also of new website designs to accommodate so many businesses having to operate online to comply with Covid19 safety regulations.
Even as restrictions were lifted, and people are allowed to go back into stores, there is still an emphasis on buying local, either out of a sense of duty to their local economy or out of necessity, as people try to avoid crowds, or avoid traveling too far from home. In fact, many people are still choosing to shop online, and looking for businesses with user friendly website designs.
As some people search for alternatives to their usual big box department and grocery stores, it has actually created opportunities for smaller, local businesses to fill that void, and with those opportunities, new website designs have been popping up all over the internet.
On the municipal level, governments have started their own local campaign to support local business, and cities like Toronto, and Mississauga, Ottawa and Kingston have new website designs, new website apps and new hashtags to support their cause.
And on the provincial level, Quebec’s premier François Legault is encouraging their constituents to shop local and support their provincial economy, and in the province of Saskatchewan, the government launched a 1 million dollar campaign back in May, encouraging their constituents to buy local. Even on the national level, Prime Minister Trudeau is encouraging Canadians to buy Canadian food and produce.
And although no one can completely predict the future, some are theorizing that the pandemic is possibly creating a permanent shift in consumer habits that will remain after government regulations and social isolation orders have been lifted. It stands to reason that all these new websites designed to support local business could very well become a staple of Canadian commerce and consumption patterns.
In the long run, supporting local businesses has an even greater benefit to the economy. The website design BCBuyLocal.com explains how buying local recirculates $63 out of every $100 back into the economy, and that local businesses have 4.6 times more impact. Using BC as an example, if consumers were to only shift 10% of their consumption away from multinationals and towards local businesses instead, it could create over 14,000 jobs and $4.3 billion into the economy.
Local businesses in Mississauga should find solace knowing that website designs and municipally run campaigns, like #MississaugaMade (a joint effort of Tourism Mississauga and the Economic Development Office) encourages customers to keep supporting their favourite local shops and restaurants.
It can also be an opportunity to gain new clients as more customers than ever are looking for local businesses online. There has never been a better time to invest in a customer friendly website to capture all these new opportunities and new clients who are looking for you online, so why not team up with another local business, 6ix Developers, to help build a professional website design?