“Your visit supports us. In this difficult time for small businesses like ours, your grain of sand helps much more. So we offer special combos for you to buy today and withdraw when we get back to work. ” Messages like this can be found these days in the social network accounts of the most diverse shops in Córdoba and different parts of the country, as a novel alternative to face the paralyzing effects that total quarantine causes on economic activity.
The link of the businesses that adopted this type of sale with low blinds is the hashtag #comprasfuturasparaayudaralaspymes, which circulates especially on Instagram and Twitter.
From hairdressing salons to bars, from clothing stores to bookstores and mechanical workshops, the quarantine reached a wide range of items that today found commonplace in the networks to go through a bad trance.
The idea of future purchases is based on the use of payment systems on-line. At least the coronavirus crisis came when societies have as their allies the new technologies developed from the Internet, a fact that today may be the lifeline of many commercial ventures that, due to their characteristics, hitherto worked preferably with expensive traditional sales. to face.
The future purchasing system began to expand in the last days. A santafesina bookstore, for example, offers on Facebook the possibility of a future purchase for 200 pesos in photocopies and prints or 200 pesos in bookstore items. The client must scan the QR code generated through the payment system on-line (Paid market) and, at the end of the quarantine, you can go through the premises with the receipt to search for your item.
In Córdoba, a well-known Cerro de las Rosas hairdresser offers future haircuts, with special promotions for clients who agree to wait until the end of the quarantine to accommodate their hair and wear new hairstyles. A Buenos Aires brewery goes out on the networks to offer future purchases under the slogan “Tomorrow is better.”
At this point it is difficult to determine the paternity of the idea that begins to prevail as the days of lethargy pass.
The Argentine Chamber of Medium-Sized Enterprises (CAME) reports on Twitter that “a 100 percent free platform was created to mitigate the economic effects of the quarantine with the slogan ‘buy now, take later.'” In addition to discounts, shops offer vouchers 2 for 1 purchase.
The platform referred to by CAME is comprafutura.com, which offers its service completely free of charge to businesses affected by the coronavirus crisis. In their presentation, the people in charge of the site explain that they are a group of digital entrepreneurs who decided to act upon seeing what is happening with small companies.
The alternative offered by comprafutura.com are “vouchers digital purchasing ”so they can be managed by any small business owner.
You can already find an endless list of attached businesses (few still from Córdoba), with a curiosity: there are also attached businesses from Colombia and Mexico.
Another of the future purchase initiatives with its own seal, although always with the same modality, was launched among businesses in Concepción del Uruguay, in this case under the tutelage of the Production Directorate of the municipality of that city and with the advice of economists. Victoria Giarrizzo and Eduardo Levi Yeyati. The name adopted by this experience is “coupon Concepción”.
In most cases it is business with no more than two or three employees. Faced with the difficulty of subsisting without being able to function or obtain liquidity through banks, the system works as a sort of zero-rate credit from consumers to businesses.
Similar initiatives have also been launched in other parts of the world.
In the United States, the founder of Instagram, Myke Krieger, launched SaveOurFaves two weeks ago, a directory of restaurants that offer “gift cards”, or cards that are loaded with money to use in the future.
As the gastronomic sector turns out to be the most affected in all quarantined countries, in this area future purchases with the slogan “save your favorite bar or restaurant” take on special relevance. In Mexico, for example, this commercial sector launched the “gastronomic bonuses”, worth between 500 and 1,000 pesos.
Due to the coronavirus, the future seems to have “arrived” at the capitalist system. It remains to be seen if, once the quarantine is over, this novel system created by necessity manages to survive. Or if it is useful for businesses that dare to apply it to survive the health crisis.
* Journalist and political scientist