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Supporting local businesses

We have been living with COVID for quite some time. As a consequence of this tsunami, new habits, needs, and patterns have emerged in these months. Among the recent trends or habits, a massive switch to online shopping has occurred in every geography and sector. E-commerce has become the main purchasing channel during the dark days of the lockdown, turning into an effective, efficient, and extremely convenient habit afterward. In parallel and a consequence of the restrictions in movements and social distancing, supporting local businesses, primarily local enterprises serving a limited community, has been preached as a top imperative by governments and trade associations. This behavior manifests itself spontaneously due to extensive imposed and spontaneous working from home policies at the detriment of city centers, many still ghost towns these days (e.g., Central London, City of London, and Canary Wharf). People working from home (WFH) refill their daily caffeine supplies at the local coffee shops. At the same time, sandwiches and lunch bags are provided by local stores, producing a shift in spending patterns from once high foot traffic downtown locations towards residential areas. Google has identified six ways to support local businesses.

As part of this trend of embracing and supporting local businesses, I decided it was time to follow the path and transfer several of my online assets to a local player rather than a large, multinational organization.  Romans used to say gutta cavat lapidem (or softest water will eventually wear away the hardest stone), something that might translate into a small contribution can have an impact if replicated multiple times. Being Dubai my residence, I chose, a registrar active in the region for quite some time. I transferred a handful of domains bought over the years, plus my WordPress platform for this blog. The process has been handled with outstanding professionalism and care, and in a matter of minutes, I found myself in a much more comfortable hosting position thanks to lower prices and better service. To be entirely transparent, I was blown away by the price gap and the consequent savings, besides the genuine desire to do business more locally.

While this move worked for me, that doesn’t necessarily mean everyone should do the same. That said, I encourage people to take advantage of these unusual days and start revisiting decisions taken years ago and possibly gone unchallenged for quite some time. This very modest blog now looks faster, an essential ingredient to please regular and accidental visitors. So far, I have made the right choice and feel good about it.

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