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BRA Covid-19 Retailer Resource Guide (strategies, webinars, loans and more) – published on March 23, 2020 / last updated with links to recently updated resources on May 14, 2021

BRA Covid-19 Retailer Resource Guide (strategies, webinars, loans and more) – published on March 23, 2020 / last updated with links to recently updated resources on May 14, 2021

Welcome to the BRA COVID-19 Resource Guide. Below you will find resources for the benefit of all board specialty retailers (BRA Retail Members and non-members alike) during this challenging period. The Board Retailers Association is actively aggregating resources to assist you in navigating these uncharted waters. We update this page with additional resources regularly. If you are interested in contributing relevant information or helpful resources that will benefit other board specialty retailers, please email our Executive Director at doug@boardretailers.org


Relevant and trustworthy online resources providing facts related to transmission of Covid-19 (Corona Virus) and strategies to battle the spread #spreadthestokenotthevirus

Center for Disease Control (CDC) – Official Website

Flatten The Curve – Everything you and your customers need to know to battle COVID-19 is on this website

World Health Organization – Mental health and psychosocial considerations during the COVID-19 outbreak

This epic and relevant drawing was created by Reddit User Darth Voter

Relevant educational webinars (on-demand)

> Crystal Media – 3 Tips To Get Started With Social Selling Today and Staying Top-of-Mind and Connected to Customers During a Pandemic

> Management One – 1) “The Retailer’s Guide to the Economic Stimulus Package & Financial Options to Address COVID-19” – The CARES Act is a complex mix of government aid and bank loans each with their own timelines and requirements. The parameters and regulations for these loans is changing hourly! 2) With rent being one of the highest monthly expenses for brick and mortar retail businesses, it’s a good idea to approach the subject of temporarily altering the structure of your agreement – The Art of Landlord Negotiation to Ease the Highest Monthly Expense In Retail 3) Retailer Roundtable on Recovery 4) How To Right Size Your Business For Recovery 5) Internal Store Processes That Are Working 6) Purchasing Strategy Reimagined 6) 2021 PPP, ERC and Beyond

> Outdoor Industry – Economic Impact of Coronavirus and What Happens Next and SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan Information for Small Businesses and Understanding What Is In The Economic Stimulus Package plus COVID-19 WEBINAR: FAMILIES FIRST CORONAVIRUS RESPONSE ACT (FFCRA): WHAT ARE YOUR OBLIGATIONS FOR PAID AND UNPAID LEAVE? as well as Thriving In Chaotic Times: The Neuroscience Behind Our Distress and Insurance Coverage For Outdoor Retailers AND Manufacturing Companies and Conversation With Buck Rowlee Sales Rep (NC) plus Real Estate Rights And Strategies For Business Owners and Small Business Support To Boost Economic Recovery plus INGENUITY & REDISCOVERY: THE CONSUMER RESPONSE TO COVID-19 and Transitioning Retail Experiences To Keep Shoppers Safe and How Specialty Retailers Are Reopening, Repositioning and Reinventing After Pandemic

> Outdoor Retailer Weekly Chat – Bob Phibbs, The Retail Doctor – This webinar will goes over how to bring your crew back from furlough, how to make your customers feel safe again and how to manage the overall optics of your store. 

> Outside Looks Retail – Retail-Vendor Relationships (During A Pandemic)

> Procopio’s Labor & Employee Team – Answers to the Questions Employers should be asking regarding COVID-19 plus how business insurance can help cover losses related to Covid-19

> Retail Dive – Open For Business: A 360 Look At The People, Processes and Data Of Reopening Retail In 2020 and Navigating the New Landscape of Contactless Operations plus Keeping Up with COVID-19 Signage to Improve the Customer Experience

> Retail Smart Guys – Reopening Your Store – The Things That You Are Not Thinking About (Getting Through The Covid-19 Nightmare) plus access to the Retail Recovery Playbook

> Retail Toolkit Webinar Series – Campfire Series – tackles the challenges facing every store owner, with practical, actionable advice from industry leaders, expert consultants, and independent specialty retailers like you

> Retail Wire Webinars – The New Real Time Reality Of Inventory and Empowering Retail Workers (Technology Advancements And Handheld Devices

> Stand Up 4 Retail and Retail X Webinar Series (brought to you by the good people behind Surf Expo and Outdoor Retailer) –

1) 5 Realities Retailers Can Do Now To Help Protect Their Businesses Later 2) 5 Virtual Strategies Brick & Mortar Stores Can Easily Implement Now 3) How Brick & Mortar Stores Can Quickly Implement Other Selling Strategies Into Their Operations Amidst COVID-19 4) Best Practices For Curbside Pick Ups, Local Deliveries, Shipping and More Amidst Covid 19 5) Opening Your Virtual Doors: How To Start Selling Online During Covid 19 6) Safeguard Your Amazon Business: How To Keep People From Stealing Your Sales (Brand Protection) 7) How To Increase Your Webstore Traffic 8) How To Grow Your Amazon Business For Massive Success In A Post-Pandemic World 9) Covid 19 Communications: How To Keep Your Customers Engaged 10) 10 Action Steps To Rebuilding Your Retail Business 11) Re-Imagining the Digital Shopping Experience with Immersive 3D and AR Product Media 12) Retail Innovation in the #NovelEconomy 13) The Big (Digital) Picture: Connecting Channels and Bridging the Customer Experience 14) Brick-and-Mortar in the U.S. Post-COVID-19

> Total Retail Webinars – Covid-19: Driving Permanent Change For Brands And Retailers and Critical Factors to Grow Retail Revenue in a Disruptive Economy plus Covid 19’s Impact On Retail: Best Practices For Personalization and Essential Factors To Consider As Customers Return To Store

> Twilio – The New Normal of Retail: Digital

> Wise Marketer Group – Navigating the Crosswinds: Managing a Loyalty Program in Uncertain Times


Financial Resources and Government Updates

Tap into financial assistance, tax relief and other options

Small Business Relief from the Federal Government

Accounting Institute – Breakdown of Coronavirus Tax Breaks For U.S. Citizens

Chamber of Commerce.org – Coronavirus-Small-Business-Guide

Facebook Small Business Grants: Facebook Boost Grant Program

Federal COVID-19 Relief Bills Overview – Update on government efforts to support individuals and businesses. 

FinIMPACT – Best 8 Financial Tools To Combat Covid 19 and Small Business Grant Opportunities

Free Legal Assistance – 30+ Law Firms Sign Up for New Program to Provide Pro Bono Assistance to Help Small Businesses Survive Economic Impact of COVID-19

Institute for Local Self Reliance – Lobbying Efforts on Behalf of Small Business

IRS Coronavirus Tax Relief – Tax Filing Update from the IRS and Extension On Tax Filing Deadline And Economic Impact Payments

LendEDU Opportunities – How Small Businesses Can Get Help During Coronavirus Outbreak

Management One – Covid 19 Relief Package – U.S. Congress Passes Bill (plus link to downloadable retail tools and Additional EIDL Options-Does your business qualify?

SBA Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) – This comparison chart is very helpful plus link to informative Forbes Article: PPP Loans Part 2—What Small Businesses Need To Know as well as New PPP guidance issued by SBA, Treasury from Journal of Accountancy published January 7, 2021

This helpful video walks you through the paperwork involved in Round 2 of the Federal Paycheck Protection Program

State by State Tax Relief – The American Institute for Certified Public Accountants has created a guide for state tax filing guidance for the coronavirus pandemic 

U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has released a mandatory employee rights poster that should be posted or be distributed to employees electronically (email or online portal). Also be sure to visit their Questions and Answers page

U.S. Chamber of Commerce – Small Business Loan Guide and Checklist and Small Business Resources – The coronavirus is causing financial difficulties for businesses across the U.S. Here are five resources that can help you navigate this difficult situation – plus Small Business Reopen Guide and State By State Business Reopening Guidance

U.S. Small Business Administration – Funding options – The SBA will work directly with state Governors to provide targeted, low-interest loans to small businesses and non-profits that have been severely impacted by the Coronavirus (COVID-19). The SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program provides small businesses with working capital loans of up to $2 million that can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing. According to the SBA, small business owners in all U.S. states and territories are currently eligible for a low interest loan due to the coronavirus.

https://www.sba.gov/funding-programs/loans/coronavirus-relief-options

Contact your local SBA Office – https://www.sba.gov/local-assistance/find/

State Level Small Business Relief

California Sales tax relief, $500 million in grants, and an additional $12.5 million added to the California Rebuilding FundLearn more. In addition, the cities of Los AngelesSacramentoSan Diego and San Francisco, as well as one Los Angeles-based organization, are offering loans, grants and donations designed to help small businesses.

For new Small Business Relief Grant applicants in Round 2, please mark these dates and times on your calendar:

  • Round 2 opens on Tuesday, February 2, 2021 at 8:00 am PST
  • Round 2 closes on Monday, February 8, 2021 at 6:00 pm PST
  • Notification about selection: February 11 – 18, 2021

To help you with the application process, Lendistry has prepared short videos that walk you through each step. To watch these videos, click here.

The Program and Application Guide details the entire application process, step-by-step, and provides tips on how to improve your application experience. It also includes screenshots of the application and Portal to help you familiarize yourself with the process. To view the Program and Application Guide, click here

To apply for a grant, you will need to do so through a partner. You can find a partner by language or by county at www.CAReliefGrant.com. Please apply once and through one partner only.

Colorado — The state of Colorado and the city of Denver have both created programs to help small businesses. The Colorado COVID Relief Fund’s purpose is to raise and allocate funds for community-based organizations including small businesses, with general operating grants of up to $25,000. The Denver Business Assistance Programs provide up to a $7,500 in cash grants.

Florida — The Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program, which has aided businesses since 1992, offers small businesses who have been hurt by COVID-19 with “short-term, interest-free working capital loans are intended to bridge the gap between the time a major catastrophe hits and when a business has secured longer-term recovery resources.”

New Mexico — The governor signed House Bill 1, which provides for (in addition to other individual provisions) $100 million in grants for small businesses in New Mexico. The grant program will be administered by the New Mexico Finance Authority.

New York — New York City created the NYC Small Business Continuity Loan Fund to help small businesses stay afloat during the COVID-19 crisis. The fund targets businesses with fewer than 100 employees who have had sales drop 25% or more, and offers them zero-interest loans up to $75,000.

Washington — Seattle small businesses are receiving aid from both Amazon and the city government of Seattle. Amazon created the Neighborhood Small Business Relief Fund, which is designed to help businesses with fewer than 50 employees or less than $7 million in annual revenue. Seattle’s Small Business Stabilization Fund is designed to help low- and moderate-income business owners and offers grants up to $10,000.

If your state is not listed above, please email our Executive Director and he will respond with links to small business relief programs in your state.

If you are not completely familiar with the Covid 19 related restrictions in your State, you can click on State by State Retail Restrictions to learn more (updated March 30, 2021)


You can email doug@boardretailers.org if you would like us to send you the customizable form letter template as well as some links to relevant articles that will support your position, which you can send along to your Landlord with the letter.

If you are not yet a BRA Regular (no cost) or Distinguished Retail Member, please complete the super simple join form Shortly after it is received, we will email you the template and links as well as the link to access the BRA Office Depot Preferential Pricing Program.


Additional applicable retail related articles and resourceful websites via the following links:

Please note that the articles that are bolded have been added or updated in the past 10 days

PLEASE NOTE:  That although the informational resources and strategies contained in this resource guide were derived from what were deemed as reliable and credible sources, the views and opinions of those sources are not necessarily in line with those of the Board Retailers Association, its Board of Directors, its Chairman or its Executive Director. In addition, we are not legal, tax or financial advisors and highly recommend consulting your lawyer, accountant or financial consulting professional before making significant financial related decisions.

From time to time, BRA will be sending out updates that we consider important to our board specialty retail community. To stay informed and receive special benefits related to Board Retailers Association including the Office Depot Preferential Pricing Program, be sure that you opt in to our email distribution list by joining as a Regular (no cost) or Distinguished Retail Member via this super simple join form.

You can also follow Board Retailers Association on social media via Facebook and Instagram.

Do not hesitate to call, text or email our Executive Director (see contact info below) with any questions or if you need anything that this guide does not cover.

Doug Works

Executive Director

Board Retailers Association

760-500-5716

doug@boardretailers.org