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Tensions mounting for entrepreneurs across the UK, USA and Spain amidst virus outbreak

Guillermina Correa
by Guillermina Correa
Published on 18 March, 2020

UENI’s study provides a look at small businesses across some of the nations threatened by COVID-19 this March.

Guy cycles past closed shop amidst coronavirus outbreak

As bars, cafes, theatres and shops across the globe close their doors for the foreseeable future, many business owners have been left wondering what the future holds for their companies. 

With the outbreak of COVID-19 looking unlikely to slow down in the coming months, industries have called for action to be taken to protect firms and their workers from potential economic fallout. 

UENI, a relatively small business ourselves, has been closely monitoring the situation and considering the possible economic and personal ramifications for entrepreneurs in the various markets it operates in. 

The following report is based on findings from 419 business owners surveyed across the UK, USA and Spain in the past week.

The global mood 

Answers to the survey’s first question, “How worried are you about the spread of coronavirus impacting your business?”, point to an increasingly tense climate for business owners. 

In total, 61% of respondents across the UK, USA and Spain responded that they felt some level of worry about coronavirus impacting their business. 

In addition to this, 22.76% of those surveyed reported that they are ‘actively worried’, with coronavirus ‘already impacting’ their sales.   

Feeling cornered 

Looking at the three nations polled, UENI’s data suggests businesses in the USA are by far the most concerned about the potential impact of the virus. 

According to this latest survey, 83% of American small businesses are worried about the toll coronavirus will take on their company.

By comparison, this figure dropped to 78% of Spanish business owners and 50% of those in the UK. 

This is particularly interesting in light of the fact that 39.02% of Spanish businesses included in the study reported that the virus is ‘already impacting sales’, compared to 16% of businesses in the USA. 

Key industries where concern over the impact of coronavirus is highest include the clothing and accessory sector, where 63.64% reported feeling worried, as well construction services (58.33%) and events (35.71%)

Cause for worry?

Data from the survey’s second question, “What are your biggest concerns about the coronavirus”, offers a look at the specific challenges facing small businesses during this global pandemic. 

The standout worry for business owners across the UK, USA and Spain was about the impact of long-term closure.

28.39% of participants reported that their biggest concern is that their business “wouldn’t survive a long period of quarantine”. 

As a secondary concern, 18.93% of those polled stated that “not being able to sell my products/services online” was their biggest concern. 

Finally, 14.07% of business owners across these countries are worried about “not having adequate/any business insurance in case of loss of income”.

Supporting small businesses

Stemming from these findings, UENI is announcing fresh plans to step up its support of businesses threatened by the outbreak.

As of the 19th of March, all users will have free access to the Paypal Buttons feature on their site, enabling businesses to accept card payments and sell products/services online free of charge.

If you’re a small business looking to begin selling online given the current climate, we want to help you get through these difficult times.

Please click below to receive a fully functional site with payment option, in just 3 days.

Guillermina Correa
Guillermina Correa
Born in Argentina, raised in Yorkshire, Guillermina Correa is a PR and marketing assistant intrigued by how technology can help small businesses rise to the next level.

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