· Direct and indirect national aid
For all traders, artisans and professionals in the administratively closed hotel and restaurant industry who wish to acquire a distance selling solution, the state offers 500 euros of help. The measure was announced in early November by the Minister of the Economy, Finance and Recovery, Bruno Le Maire. Payments will be made from January 2021 to the accounts of professionals, upon presentation of their invoice. “The support will be retroactive, until the first day of the second confinement”, says Sandrine Wehrli, Deputy CEO of CCI France. It is not yet known whether this aid will be cumulative with regional aid.
Specifically for independent booksellers – VSEs and SMEs whose main activity is the sale of new books -, the State took charge of the cost of sending books until the end of confinement. They must provide invoices for orders registered since November 5 to the Services and Payment Agency.
The jewelry stores benefit from a helping hand from their Francéclat professional committee. The aid is in the amount of 1,000 euros for a minimum investment of 2,000 euros for the purchase of digital tools.
Companies with less than 50 employees benefit from assistance, this time indirect: the bank guarantee of public initiative France Num. It will allow banks to offer loans to small businesses of at least three years and which have a digital transformation project with intangible investment. The marketing of this loan in banking networks is imminent.
The regions are on the front line to help businesses in their territory. According to CCI France, Nouvelle-Aquitaine, Ile-de-France, Hauts-de-France, Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes, Normandy, Pays de la Loire, Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur , the Grand Est, Réunion, Martinique and Guadeloupe all offer a “digital check” or equivalent. The eligibility conditions vary by region. In Hauts-de-France, for example, the aid represents between 1,200 and 12,000 euros, and concerns businesses with less than 20 employees. In Pays de la Loire, only companies with fewer than 50 employees created for more than two years are eligible.
Some metropolises have also decided to local aid plans. Rennes Métropole thus offers a grant of a maximum amount of 7,500 euros, in particular for investments linked to the commercial and digital strategy. In Lyon, the Métropole financially supports the acceleration of the digital transformation of 150 merchants.
At the municipal level, aid is often more material, in particular the provision of free e-commerce platforms or with reduced commission rates to merchants.
Preferential platform offers
Click & collect tools, website creation software, online commerce platforms… “solidarity” offers are multiplying to support merchants. These are either a free offer, but limited in time, or a preferential rate. To find the preferential offer adapted to your needs, go to the government site Clique-mon-commerce.gouv.fr where several of these services are listed.
Facebook, in partnership with the Mapstr application, will promote local shops thanks to the sharing of online maps on which it will be possible to indicate your favorite stores. With the CPME, the digital giant also offers a digital diagnostic tool for companies that are members of the employers’ organization.
Students from nine schools in the Network of Specialized Grandes Ecoles launched a call for projects aimed at Parisian companies in early November. Objective: their create an e-commerce site or develop their online sales via social networks.
In Saint-Brieuc, BTS students launched an online sales site in early November for traders in their city.