Colorado small businesses are resilient through economic challenges

The COVID-19 pandemic was, and continues to be, a struggle for small businesses around the nation. Business leaders have learned to adapt to ever changing health conditions and government mandates that had previously contributed to the 43% of businesses that temporarily closed in 2020.

And even after the initial blow of forced business closures during the first wave of the pandemic, the financial burdens continue in the form of record high inflation, supply chain issues, labor shortages, and more. But even through these challenges, we’ve come a long way since the start of the pandemic – and conditions have improved with the availability and effectiveness of the vaccine and a return to a sense of normalcy.

After two long years, Colorado’s small businesses have proven to be resilient even in the face of changing economic conditions. Though it continues to be a struggle to find solid footing in a time of such uncertainty, the business community is leading the recovery. It was reported that Colorado’s labor participation rate was at 68.3% in December, the highest in the state’s history, and the state’s GDP had increased 5.5%, ranking 10th in the nation.

However, the effect of increased gas prices has slowed the path to recovery – impacting businesses of all sizes, but particularly small businesses.

The restaurant and food industries in Colorado have especially struggled throughout the pandemic, and this has caused even more concern for increasing food prices and what the customer fallout could be. Since the start of COVID, food prices have increased about 40-50%, forcing restaurants and food businesses to pass prices onto consumers.

Small businesses are the backbone of our local communities and need our support now more than ever. Learn more about how you can support and celebrate small businesses for National Small Business Week here.