You can’t keep a good community down. Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, Lewis County business owners channel their energy and creativity to find ways to continue to support their community and employees.
A recent Goldman Sachs survey of 1500 small business owners revealed 50% of them expressed they would not be able to stay afloat for more than three months with the current state of restrictions.
Undoubtedly, this pandemic is crushing commerce in ways few were ready to handle. But while sales are plummeting in many industry verticals, many business owners are moving their commerce to an online landscape. It’s a necessary change to weather this storm, keep their business afloat and support the livelihood of their families and employees.
Sisters Quilt Shop in downtown Chehalis is a prime example of a business refusing to throw in the towel. Instead, they are taking a proactive approach by moving their commerce online. Owned by Morgan and Tanner Moon, Sisters Quilt Shop has been in business for nearly 40 years.
The Moons created a user-friendly website a couple of years ago for business information and to house some of their products. Now they have moved everything online to reach a broader audience and also to be able to continue to serve their community with their storefront closed.
Sisters Quilt Shop offers curbside pickup and shipping available while taking every precaution possible to ensure the health and safety of their employees and the community.
With so many people taking refuge at home and needing fun projects to work on, Sisters Quilt Shop is seeing a spike in online sales
Was it an easy transition to an online commerce landscape? Not exactly, but because they were ahead of the curve and have taken a proactive approach from the get-go, the Moons were able to make it work and consequently, they can continue supporting themselves and their employees.
“Shifting everything online was a little bit difficult, but thankfully we started all of this a couple of months ago and were able to get a lot of the leg work done beforehand,” says Morgan. “It’s definitely a huge process to get everything online. We are measuring all of the fabric we have and getting it into the system and we have about 10,000 bolts of fabric.”
As difficult as this has been, there are words of encouragement for other business owners. It can be done and getting creative to find ways to stay afloat is a must.
Morgan explained one of the best strategies business owners can take right now is tapping into the power of social media.
“For other business owners facing similar circumstances, I would say to keep up on your social media and really try to get your word out about your business, as much as possible,” she says. “So many people are at home and online and so really just keeping your information and message in front of the online community is so big right now.”
Business owners need to utilize this time to set themselves up for better success for when the dust settles. “Most importantly, we all need to remember that this is just a phase that’s going to pass and we are going to make it through,” says Morgan.
Lewis County is a strong community that comes together when times get tough. Morgan and Tanner Moon are hopeful examples of how a little creativity and perseverance can mean the difference between a business surviving the pandemic and one having to shut their doors for good.