New online tool created to help local restaurants and businesses amid COVID-19
Photo by Brian Hatherly.
WINNIPEG -- Businesses and restaurants now have a new way to reach the community to let them know they are open for business.
Winnipeg's Bold Commerce created a website called buylocal.ly to help local businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic and it allows stores and restaurants to tell Winnipeggers they are open, their hours, pickup and delivery instructions, and location information.
It is a free directory that stores can register to be a part of and customers can search for businesses by either doing a broad city search or by searching for nearby businesses using their postal code.
During a soft launch of the site, over 500 businesses signed up and provided information for delivery and pickup options and also how to place orders during the government's request to stay home and practice social distancing.
“We heard loud and clear from our customers and others in the local community that there was a growing need for a consolidated and go-to resource that would help both businesses and consumers quickly and easily discover restaurants, shops, and services that remain operational amid the pandemic,” said Yvan Boisjoli, CEO and co-founder of Bold Commerce in a news release. “Over this past weekend, while we were still iterating and testing the platform ahead of today’s official launch, we saw thousands of visitors to the website, a clear indication that local residents are indeed looking for ways to continue to shop locally and do their part to help keep businesses going in the community.”
Restaurants and stores in Winnipeg have already said this is helping their business despite the difficult times. One restaurant owner said it is allowing staff to continue to work.
“I’m in awe of the resilience of entrepreneurs that have adapted overnight to the impact this pandemic has had on their business and on the lives of those around them,” said Boisjoli “I’m hoping that this tool will help communities throughout North America come together to support each other during these difficult days.”
Bold Commerce is a Winnipeg company that provides "customizable commerce solutions that empower merchants to grow their business."
The company's headquarters are in Winnipeg and there is another office in Austin, Texas.