The Company You Keep

Spend With Us

Between drought, bushfires and COVID-19, 2020 has been a rough year for so many Australians. In this final episode of The Company You Keep: Season 2 we turn our attention to a business where the approach has been to give back during these difficult times. 

Spend With Us is an online marketplace designed to keep rural and regional businesses across the country operating during down time. We talk to founder, Sarah Britz, about her selfless motivation, rallying community support and having the courage and conviction to just go for it.

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Spend With Us on giving back in a crisis

Sarah Britz, digital designer and founder of Spend With Us is one of the most generous souls among us. Her growing online enterprise supports businesses, particularly in regional and rural areas, who have been hit hard by drought, bush fires and most recently COVID-19. In this episode, we'll get an insight into ways to reposition your offerings online, how to grow a market for your product, and how consumer trends and habits change in a time of crisis.

"Spend With Us is an online shopping marketplace for rural and regional small businesses across Australia. I started it during the bushfire crisis, so it was aimed at helping the small businesses that were affected and impacted by tourists not coming into their towns. And we've now expanded it to cover the whole of rural and regional Australia due to COVID," explains Sarah.

"It's quick and easy for a business to sign up, and they can create their own website store and instantly start receiving orders and online payments or donations. And it provides sellers with a complete eCommerce platform, which they can track and sell their products. If they have no website, they can create a website store and start selling and accepting payments instantly."

When asked why she set up Spend With Us, Sarah said: "The whole reason behind it was I realised that there was a vital need for these small businesses that didn't have any website presences to be able to instantly accept payments somehow when their brick and mortar stores were closed.

"And it's given a lot of these businesses income during this difficult time, when they had no other form of making money."

Sarah has seen a huge increase in interest from consumers wanting to spend their money locally and buy Australian goods, saying: "I think people are looking more closely at where their products are coming from, trying to buy domestic rather than international. People are probably not being as wasteful as they were previously as well, having gone through these last few weeks of lockdown we've kind of seen that we can do with a lot less than we had previously.

"So people are, I think, making a conscious effort to minimise their spending on things that they don't really need, but to help and support and shop with local businesses as much as possible when they can."

Disclaimer: Our guests are real business owners and their experiences are their true stories. The guests express views and opinions that are from their own learnings and insights.

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