No doubt small businesses are being hurt by this coronavirus crisis. The first two stimulus packages will help as well as the ones that follow. Seek them out either yourself or get in contact with your bookkeeper or tax accountant.
One of the great resources for small businesses is Opportunity Stanislaus and SBA. They are already taking applications for no or low-interest small business loans. The website specifically for COVID-19 relief is https://www.cabizrelief.org/. Fill out the form. If you need assistance, they will get back to you with a phone call in a couple of hours. The federal loosening of the credit guidelines will be of benefit for anyone who is needing a loan during this time.
There is also an EAP program. That is the Employer Assistance Program for employers for two or more full-time employers. This will come in handy with getting help for your employees. Remember if you are a corporation and you have one employee that includes you. If you are not already a participant in the program now may be the time to reach out and get started. The contact is the Stanislaus Business Alliance and their main number is 209-422-6420. Encourage your employees that you cannot provide work to file for unemployment or workers' compensation. Workers' compensation can be used for workers that are having to stay home to care for people that cannot be exposed or have the coronavirus.
Some other items that might help your business are get started with internet ideas to help your business. Grubhub is offering enticing programs to get started in this market. The added benefit is no money or cards are exchanged it is all done on the app on your phone or on the computer. Most places have delivery available. Zoom or Google hang out is a great place to start for virtual meetings. If this is too much for you, we still have conference calling. All of these will remind people that you care about them. Social media can also be used. Do not add to the panic by posting doom and gloom posts. Market your business by offering solutions to your clients or potential clients. There are also bulk email services that are either free or minimal cost. An excellent one is Mailchimp. Setup bill paying online either for your clients or for yourself. If you are unsure how to accomplish this hire a virtual bookkeeping service. Get your banking online. Call your bank and ask for online banking services. Tri-Counties, US Bank and Wells Fargo are local ones that offer secure online services.
So bottom line keep in contact with your employees, customers and service partners like Opportunity Stanislaus, your vendors, and your tax professional. However, do this securely. If you are having a computer, make sure your spyware and virus ware is up to date. McAfee and Norton are reputable ones that can be downloaded. Clean out your emails of any unwanted or privacy items. We will have a further article on the stimulus packages that will involve taxpayers themselves however this was not finalized on the day this was written.
Last but not least! The government will not call, email, or come by to offer services that you have not asked for. The IRS will not call you and ask for your social security number. They already have it along with your address and bank routing numbers.
Be safe and diligent at this time. Get plenty of rest and ready for the rebound of the economy because it will rebound.