Following the easing of COVID restrictions, more than half (57%) of small businesses are now fully reopened.
This welcoming news was uncovered by Kabbage, an American Express Company, in its Small Business Recovery report. The report tracks the recovery of small businesses in the US throughout 2021, as they rebound from the crisis.
The first instalment of the report polled more than 550 small business leaders. The research tracked numerous pointers, including profit, total revenue, headcount, future outlooks, and online strategies.
57% of Small Business Fully Reopened Post-COVID
It found that reopening rates were significantly aided by shifting operations online. One-third of the participants said they either sell exclusively online or offer a hybrid model of selling. This compares to pre-pandemic days when the average monthly online sales of respondents represented 37% of total revenue.
The findings of the report offer important insight into how small businesses are recovering as lockdown restrictions are eased and markets start to open up. It reiterates the importance of adopting an online presence and selling either exclusively online or through a hybrid model.
Tools to Support Recovery and Growth
The report also highlights the need for small businesses to have the right tools and facilities in place to help nurture and sustain growth.
Rob Frohwein, co-founder of Kabbage, says, “As our economy recovers it’s imperative all small businesses, especially those most marginalized and vulnerable, have equitable access to financial tools, systems and stimulus programs to ensure we all rebound from the crisis together.”
The small business leaders were asked which milestones would best indicate that their business has recovered from the pandemic. 50% of respondent said paying employees their full wages without concern was their leading recovery milestone.
47% of business leaders said paying themselves their pre-pandemic salary was the most significant indicator of recovery. The same number believe attaining the levels of gross revenue and total daily transactions as before the pandemic were their primary recovery milestones.
39% said reaching greater levels of customer demand and new inbound business were their principal indicators of recovery.
Importance of Vaccinations
Vaccinations are also at the top of the priority list among small businesses in the drive to recovery. At the time the survey was carried out, 12% of the small business leaders had received a COVID vaccination. Many cited having greater access to vaccinations was required in order to fully reopen.
Most of the milestones listed by small businesses are related to revenue and profit. However, they also show how important small businesses hold the wellbeing of their employees, something that all small businesses should take note of and act upon.