March 21 Newsletter – News + Resources for Small Businesses During COVID


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Online community and resources are more important than ever right now. So the Gerrard India Bazaar BIA is will continue to bring you relevant updates as things evolve. Part of that will mean keeping you up to date on how COVID-19 is impacting our members and our community. 




News – What’s Happening Now




Today, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced sweeping measures to further support Canadian small businesses.




They are raising the wage subsidy to cover the salaries of employees of small businesses from 10% to 75%. This will be backdated to March 15th. More details to come.

They are launching the Canada Emergency Business Account. With this new measure, banks will soon offer $40,000 loans, which will be guaranteed by the government, to qualifying businesses. The loan will be interest-free for the first year, and if you meet certain conditions, $10,000 will be forgivable.

They will defer GST/HST payments until June, Which is the equivalent of giving $30 billion in interest-free loans to businesses.

Article   Video 

The province has launched a toll-free line, 1-888-444-3659 to provide support to Ontario businesses who have questions about the province’s recent emergency order to close at-risk workplaces following recommendations by Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health.

Liquor sales licensees may now sell liquor for takeout or delivery along with food.





Other Small Business News + Resources




Many people are looking for alternative ways to connect and do business online as we all practice #socialdistancing and #stayhome to #flattenthecurve.

Join CaremongeringTO to ask for or offer support to neighbours during the COVID19 emergency.

Check out this small business starter kit that our friends at Digital Main Street have put together.

Join our business owner forum – Here we will share ideas on how to rise against the challenges we are facing and rally to promote the narrative of shopping local and supporting small business to the public.

🤓 Connect with our local DMS squad member Shasha to find out how she can help you get online and embrace digital marketing practices.

🛍 Shopify is offering 90 days free to all new sign ups + more

This platform allows just announced transaction fee free gift cards for small businesses.

‍ LinkedIn Learning has unlocked 16 learning courses for free, which are geared toward working from home.

🦉 Hootsuite is giving free access to Hootsuite Professional plan tools to small businesses and non-profits until July 1st, 2020

Look for opportunities to share your story online like the #retailvscorona campaign.

Launch or update your google my business listing. New temporary hours? Pick-up or delivery available? Special promos? Menu items that need to be added? Be seen online by potential customers.

‍♂️ Protect yourself from fraud – It’s on the rise amidst financial uncertainty.

‍♂️ Follow crime prevention and community safety guidelines

Watch out for community-sourced lists (like this one) that are popping up- we are too!

Kanopy has free movies for those with a Toronto library account.

🏙City Watch is reporting on community-driven resilience.

Avoid the spread of misinformation by following government announcements and advisories.





Moving Forward Together




ATTN small business owners. Now more than ever is the time to consider launching or enhancing your digital presence.

We are facing times full of uncertainty in the face of this pandemic. Many of us are feeling overwhelmed as things evolve. All this can be very stressful and negatively impact on our mental health.

Our community is working to collect information, resources, and training that you can access from home.





Keep Us in the Loop




Are you offering Take out or delivery?
Have you closed your shop or temporarily changed your hours?
Do you have a promotion you would like is to share with the community?

Please Let Tasneem know – We will be distributing posters.





Digital Strategy in Uncertain Times




Don’t forget to tag GIBBIA social accounts on any outgoing story, promo, and giveaway post, so that we can share widely. Not online? Send us updates via email.

We want to hear from you





Upcoming (Virtual) Events




ECommerce 101
Apr 2nd Online
Join us to learn what eCommerce is, why you should consider it for your business, and how you can easily get started.
Register Now


 Email Marketing Bootcamp
Thu May 7th Online
Learn how to stand out from the crowd by designing an effective email marketing strategy and providing engaging email content that gets delivered, opened, read and acted upon.

Register Now




It’s up to us – We want to encourage you to follow all recommendations and orders of public health officials including, but not limited to, staying at home as much as possible. Together we will #FalttenTheCurve.




Gerrard India Bazaar BIA

1426 Gerrard St. East, Toronto, ON. M4L 1Z6
ph. 437 350 4333
















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