In response to the immediate and essential need for small businesses to establish an online retail presence, the Sierra SBDC is excited to support the launch of Ready Set Pivot: Bringing Nevada County Small Businesses Online. This course is primarily geared toward local brick-and-mortar retailers who understand that adding online sales is critical to business operations going forward.
In partnership with many organizations and led by Robert Trent, Sierra SBDC advisor and executive director of Sierra Commons, the course is a five-part, one-week series to get your business online and making sales by June 1st.
The declared COVID-19 disaster and subsequent shelter in place orders in California have created a significant need for businesses to react and pivot. We have seen our small retailers and restaurants swiftly adjust business models, dig deep for cash reserves, make difficult decisions regarding staffing, apply for disaster-related loans, negotiate with vendors and landlords, and make big changes in order to survive. Although our counties are working towards reopening, the small business landscape is going to be impacted for months to come.
In light of the changes ahead, it is critical for small businesses, especially retailers and storefronts, to make e-commerce accessible to their clients. With curbside pickup, possible limitations on in-store shopping, and events delayed, now more than ever it is imperative that small businesses are able to showcase their goods online, keep inventory updated, and implement online sales.
Sierra SBDC is proud to support the efforts of Rebound Nevada County and the Ready Set Pivot workshops. Classes are online and start May 18th, and registration is required! The ambitious goal of the project is to help 50 Nevada County businesses launch revenue-generating online stores by June 1.
Rebound Nevada County is a collaborative group including the Sierra Small Business Development Center (SBDC), Nevada City and Grass Valley Chambers, the cities of Nevada and Grass Valley, Sierra Commons, Grass Valley Downtown Association, Nevada City Film Festival, Bear Yuba Land Trust, Miners Foundry Cultural Center, Nevada County Arts Council, Nevada County Economic Resource Council (ERC), and Sierra Business Council.
I have seen a tremendous amount of innovation, support, and capacity across all cities and counties as each one responds to the COVID pandemic and prioritizes broadband connectivity and affordability on behalf of their residents, businesses, and anchor institutions. There are several opportunities in 2021 to keep an eye on as we work together to bridge the digital divide. Here’s what’s going on at the county, regional, state, and federal levels.
I know I am not the only one glad to leave 2020 in the dust. At Sierra Business Council we talk a lot about turning challenges into opportunities, about implementing actionable steps that don’t just temporarily solve one-off problems but offer alternative ways of doing business, interacting with the environment, and existing in the Sierra to eradicate what causes those problems in the first place. As an organization, we’re proactive rather than reactive, and our goal is to build a region that is as well.
No one saw 2020 coming, though. Over the course of the last year, everyone has been asked to react to the unexpected, the unimaginable.
As we gear up for the holidays, we’ve been hearing a familiar refrain: Shop Local. The value of supporting local businesses is well established: money spent locally supports a friend or neighbor’s job, charities and youth activities, and thriving downtown districts. The same is true for supporting local non-profits; your investment will be returned directly to the community. But this year, shopping local — let’s call it spending local — means even more.
September is fast approaching, and with it, the six-month mark since the global pandemic brought closures, shelter-in-place orders, and other devastating economic consequences to our Sierra communities and small-business based economies. These are unprecedented times and immense challenges are still to come for small businesses that have already weathered so much uncertainty.
In October of 2018, Sierra Business Council was awarded the role of program administrator for the Martis Fund’s Homebuyer Down Payment Assistance Program (DPAP). This program provides down payment assistance for median income Tahoe/Truckee locals hoping to purchase a home in the region.