Just because we’re social distancing doesn’t mean we cannot support local, small businesses. During the COVID-19 pandemic, we advise social distancing and have educated our team members on practicing safety during this situation. While not everyone knows someone who has contracted the virus, most people’s daily lives have been altered in some way. Retail workers, school personnel and our local government have all felt the effects, and small businesses are no different.

Most small businesses are operated by every day, working people who have families to feed and financial obligations to meet, just like the rest of us. But there are ways to help alleviate the strain on their lives while still enjoying your everyday comforts.

Below are a few ways you can support small businesses during social distancing.

Check out your social media accounts for local specials.

Most towns and cities have official accounts where they post specials and information on small businesses. Restaurants have expanded their delivery options, offering curbside pickup and drive-thru service with minimal contact. Most have modified menus to include a wider range of family meals and deals as well.

You can continue to buy merchandise online.

Many small businesses are joining forces to collaboratively sell t-shirts, bags and other branded accessories for low costs. Many businesses that already had a merchandising platform on their websites are still offering delivery, many times with free delivery to customers.

Gift cards never go out of style.

Birthdays, anniversaries and other milestones are going to continue in our lives even with COVID-19. What better way to not only support a loved one’s favorite store, but also give a gift that allows them to freely shop in their favorite stores once retailers are able to open their doors to the public again? Gift cards are also a great surprise to send someone as a pick me up or thinking of you.

Continue to support the extracurricular activities of your children.

Even though kids can’t attend dance, tutoring or other activities, if you have the means, still offer to pay your monthly fees in exchange for future sessions in the fall or later this year. There are plenty of activities out there to keep them busy.

While many of the big brand grocery stores are offering contact-free delivery, so are smaller specialty shops.

Be sure to do your research, visit their websites and discover what deals they, too, have for delivery and shopping for your household essentials.

Don’t automatically assume your favorite spots are closed.

Call your favorite local spots or check their websites to see if they’re still open. Many places are offering to accept payment by phone or online, and then bring your orders out to your car for you. As long as you stay responsible, this is a great way to support delis, bakeries and other specialty shops.

Donate to a GoFundMe account.

While we know the government is providing money to assist small businesses during the crisis, they aren’t able to get funds to everyone at the same time. On top of that, it might not be enough to support the costs of keeping their employees from being laid off or furloughed. Consider giving to places you frequent and trust if you see them soliciting support from the local community. Looking to do your part? Check out these fundraisers – Help Small Businesses Affected by Coronavirus.

We understand the effects of COVID-19 have become a reality for many. However, small businesses are bearing a unique financial burden. You can help keep these companies alive as they pivot and survive. Not only does it help them, but it also allows you to continue a sense of normalcy in your life.