Entrepreneurs embrace new opportunities during pandemic

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San Joaquin County has seen more than a few online businesses open up to survive during the pandemic.

Since March, more people have decided to also become new entrepreneurs. Make-up, clothing boutiques, and “monster” upgraded comfort-food stands have taken over the internet by becoming the new normal on people’s feeds.

“Because my job was shut[down] due to Covid-19 and unemployment wasn’t dependable, I had to think of another way I could support myself and my kids…I came up with the idea of a small business,” said Brittany Ortega, who uses the internet handles of Jandbrat_butique and Bodybybritannii. “Quarantine helped with running my business because I was able to focus on growing…and [use] different ways of marketing and reaching new clients.”

Ortega sells multiple-styled sunglasses, headwraps, and body jewelry.

According to California’s updated COVID-19 website, local businesses can open with a certain amount of capacity per the six feet rule. The number is small in comparison to how many local businesses are shutting down. Loans and grants are used up. Savings are gone. Lives have been turned completely upside.

The Employment’s Development Department (EDD) doled out an extra $600 a week for unemployment thanks to money from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act that has since ended.

Other aid is being given this month for a total of $900 for certain unemployed people who are receiving over $100 in claims, according to EDD’s online news release. This news was seen as scrambled up and all-of-a-sudden. Hence, unemployment’s been unreliable.

“Health regulations and safety guidelines actually helped with online shopping as well as pickup or drop-offs,” said Ortega. “I was able to use either PayPal or Zelle to invoice customers.”

Opening up an online business has become versatile for a new entrepreneur. Though businesses have been online for years doing the same thing as now, but now it’s a lot more variety and constant consistency and communication. One can still be able to work as an essential worker, and also open up his or her own business as a side hustle.

Online has more to offer in terms of accessibility, because people are already on the internet! Everything has become virtual! Even thrift stores have consistent updated internet profiles and money transferring applications to help attract customers.

The virtual experiences that were made overnight has made interactions between owner and customer much more attractive. The shutdowns pushed the majority of local business online, which led to potential customers having more time to explore online local businesses.

Online businesses have found a way to help businesses start-up and for some local owners- successfully stay open longer. The shutdowns have pushed entrepreneurs to make a decision to either go broke or put his or her self out there into the digital world.