June 1, 2020
By: Caity Witucki
Contributing Editor, Main Street Monday
Main Street Monday – Main Street America Compiles Reopening Guidelines
Main Street America recently conducted a follow-up to its survey on the impact of COVID-19 on small businesses to better understand the continued challenges businesses face as the health crisis evolves. The hundreds of responses Main Street America received from business owners across the country indicate that small businesses remain severely challenged by reduced revenues and are struggling to adapt to new consumer behaviors.
The initial survey was conducted in April and a follow-up survey was conducted a month later. Main Street America’s follow-up survey made the following observations:
- Businesses who had received PPP or EIDL funds estimated their business could survive another 12 weeks and 6 days, which is about 30 days longer than the average estimated life expectancy of businesses who did not receive federal relief.
- More than a third of small businesses earned no revenue last month and laid off or furloughed their entire staff. Personal care businesses were hit especially hard with 73% not earning revenue.
- Of the 728 small business respondents, 40% said that they had received assistance from their local Main Street organization (2.25 times higher than the number of respondents who received support from any other source).
- 79% of the survey’s respondents had not received safety guidelines for running their businesses or reopening.
The follow-up survey shows that the needs of small businesses are evolving quickly as the nation moves toward recovery. As more small businesses across the country reopen, the need for safety guidelines increases, especially for higher-risk businesses like personal care businesses.
To address the growing need for safety guidelines, Main Street America has compiled industry guidelines and state reopening plans in an online publication called Main Street Forward. Main Street Forward currently contains guidelines for food service, retail, hospitality, professional services, fitness centers, farmers’ markets, and personal care services.