As Victoria enters its second lockdown and new community transmission cases are recorded daily in NSW, the battle against COVID-19 is far from over. That’s why for small businesses across Australia still fighting for survival, getting their hands on the right financial support and guidance has never been more essential.
So if you’re pondering where to look for information and assistance, we’ve made your search a little easier. Below we’ve compiled a list of Aussie-based initiatives and resources that have popped up to help your business get back on its feet.
COVID-19 restrictions and concerns around safety have made brick-and-mortar trading more challenging than ever. So with online shopping and contactless payments on the rise, Mastercard has launched its ‘Getting Back to Small Business’ program to help small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) open their digital doors.
“At present, many lack the technical support to take their business online and often don’t have access to the same networks and resources as their larger counterparts,” Mastercard’s division president of Australasia,” Richard Wormald said.
“By removing some of these barriers, Mastercard can help them build new and sustainable revenue streams, setting up local SMEs for success and enabling them to emerge stronger on the other side of the crisis.”
As part of its program, Mastercard is offering access to:
- My Cyber Risk and Cyber Quant Lite, free until the end of 2020. Both platforms perform checks on a business’s cyber health, identifying any potential security risks and recommended actions to take.
- Ethoca Alerts, also free until the end of 2020. This service helps merchants with fraud and chargeback dispute resolution.
- In-house tools including Mastercard Digital Enablement Service (MDES) and Mastercard Identity Check which provide a secure way to store and process customer payment data.
- ShopOpenings.com, an online search tool which now lets Aussie customers see which local businesses are open based on daily payment data.
Find out more: For full details of the program, visit mastercard.com.au/backtobiz.
2. Intuit Quickbooks x Business Australia
There’s also a new partnership in town that’s all about supporting SMEs with a range of educational tools. Intuit Quickbooks and Business Australia have joined forces to provide small businesses with webinars (open to everyone) as well as resources that have been emailed to all their customers and members. These include:
- Business Grant Finder, where you can find in a matter of minutes which government grants you’re eligible for (out of the thousands available).
- Information on Intuit’s cashflow planner tool, which forecasts your business cashflow based on its financial history.
- Mental health tools.
The only catch is that to access some of these resources you need to be registered either with Intuit QuickBooks or with Business Australia. But the good news is, signing up to become a Business Australia member won’t cost you anything, plus there’s a free trial available with Intuit QuickBooks.
Find out more: The next webinar will take place mid-September, while the other resources are being rolled out across Intuit Quickbooks or Business Australia’s websites. Also keep an eye out for updates on their social media.
Wondering what COVID-19 assistance your business could receive from federal and state governments, beyond widely reported initiatives like JobKeeper? Well, you may find the most complete list on the government’s very own website, business.gov.au. This website now hosts an entire resources portal dedicated to answering your questions about government coronavirus support.
Here are a couple of its standout features:
- New chatbot service, designed to assist with your queries as you navigate business.gov.au’s coronavirus hub.
- Grants and programs finder, which lets you search for available government support according to postcode.
- Specific information on restrictions and workplace requirements for Victorian businesses who are currently facing round two of lockdowns.
Find out more: Head over to business.gov.au, then scroll down to access a range of its coronavirus resources.
Right here on Mozo we also have a wealth of resources to help your business save money and stay on top of cashflow.
Over the past few months, our money writers have reported on everything from the latest trends in business banking to the newest support measures brought out to help SMEs in need. We’ve also spoken to experts as well as business owners about how to adapt and manage your finances in tough times. For instance:
- Three small business owners talked about their strategies for beating 2020’s challenges and seizing its opportunities.
- A MYOB finance expert revealed her top tips on boosting cashflow.
- A money transfer specialist shared some savvy ways to kickstart your business move into eCommerce.
Find out more: For answers to all your other big COVID-19 questions, check out our guide to everything you need to know about coronavirus and your finances.
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