How to support local businesses amid coronavirus pandemic?

In the current context, it’s hard to find the words, to know what’s the right thing to do. Rand Fishkin said it better than I ever could in his latest blog post Read the Room:

“The world—the whole world—is experiencing this crisis all together. When you send a tweet, write an email, publish a blog post, run a webinar, broadcast or amplify anything right now, you’re sending that message within the context of the Coronavirus outbreak.”  

All around the world, individuals, communities, and businesses, are rising to the challenge to combat the impact of COVID-19.

For the upcoming editions, I’m transitioning the content of my newsletter.

I’ll record a series of interviews with people starting digital initiatives that can have a positive impact during this crisis. I’ll ask them how they got their idea off the ground, the tools they’re using to run these projects, and how they’re raising awareness.

I prefer to warn you, the quality of the audio/video won’t be perfect, the production non-existent, and I’m certainly not as entertaining as Joe Rogan, but hopefully, some of these stories will inspire you (or someone you know) to support or start a project.

My first guest is Nino Subotic. Together with some friends in Malmö, he launched a non-profit gift card platform aiming to support local businesses during the outbreak. Their initiative has already helped hundreds of small businesses in Sweden and received international attention in the press in just a matter of days.

“We gave them a tool, actually, we gave them hope, a tool that they can invest in for the future they want to live in. And that was a super-powerful insight, something they can do despite all these negative news, something they can do right now.”

Watch our full conversation on YouTube:

5 ways to support this project

  1. As a contributor: add your favorite restaurant, café or bar
  2. As a customer: buy a digital gift card from one of the listed spots
  3. As a partner: you can contact Nino and his team at
  4. As a maker: you can request access to the open-source code here
  5. As a supporter: share this project or follow along on social media