One of the most immediate impacts of the worldwide effort to combat the COVID-19 virus is social distancing. And however effective social distancing is in limiting the ability of the coronavirus to spread, it is equally effective in crushing the revenues of businesses large and small.
To help small businesses in the retail sector cope with this challenge, small business cash flow solution provider Kabbage has partnered with Facebook. Together, the two companies will help merchants continue to generate revenue at a time when their customers – for sound reasons based on public health – are largely staying away.
Via the partnership, small businesses can sign up on a new website sponsored by Kabbage: www.helpsmallbusiness.com. This will enable them to sell online gift certificates through Kabbage’s KabbagePayments portal and automatically list them on Facebook. These offers will be visible to Facebook users through their Facebook mobile app; Facebook users can then purchase gift certificates from the www.helpsmallbusinss.com website.
The integration makes it easy for small businesses to sell online gift certificates and place them where they are most likely to be seen by consumers increasingly resorting to online shopping in lieu of traveling to brick and mortar stores. It’s also a way for consumers to support their favorite retailers.
“Now with the powerful reach of Facebook, small business owners have greater opportunity to share gift certificate offers to the community that rely upon them,” Kabbage CEO Rob Frohwein said. “Small businesses are the most impacted in this crisis and this is one way Kabbage is applying its technology and resources to save them.”
The initiative with Facebook is only a small part of Kabbage’s participation in the effort to help SMEs survive the economic consequences of the coronavirus pandemic. The company is one of many helping facilitate relief funding to SMEs via the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). The PPP provides funding up to 2.5x average monthly payroll, and the SBA forgives the portion of the loan that is used for critical business operations such as payroll, rent, mortgage interest, or utilities if all employees are kept on staff. Kabbage reports that it has received more than 37,000 applications for the PPP, totaling more than $3.5 million.
“The smallest businesses in America are always the hardest hit, the most vulnerable, and the most in need when a crisis strikes, and together with our bank partner, we are working tirelessly to support them,” Frohwein said.
Founded in 2009 and headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, Kabbage has been a Finovate alum since 2010 when the company debuted its Kabbage Loan at FinovateSpring.