Weekly Digest – 25 August 2021

Welcome back to our Weekly Digest. Read on for the latest updates and some ideas to help us all move forward.

NZ Extends Lockdown

The government announced on Monday that it will extend a strict nationwide lockdown until at least Friday to prevent the coronavirus outbreak from growing.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said the lockdown will continue until at least the end of the month in Auckland, where most of the cases have been found.

Australia Closes One-Way Travel Bubble from NZ

Australia has paused “green zone” flights from New Zealand that allow Kiwis to travel to the country without going into quarantine. All passengers on flights originating in New Zealand up until 11.59pm (AEST) on 23 August 2021 will need to go into 14 days of supervised hotel quarantine. The pause is set to last until 24 August, but will be reviewed on Friday.

New Zealand has already suspended quarantine-free flights from Australia because of the NSW outbreak, which means the bubble is now completely closed.

The recent outbreak in Auckland means it’s not yet safe to open travel to the Pacific, according to Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio. The minister also said that it’s highly unlikely further travel bubbles with the Pacific would open up this year.

Retail Sales Rise 3.3% in Q2

The total volume of retail sales in New Zealand was up a seasonally adjusted 3.3% in the second quarter of 2021 from 2.8% in the previous quarter, according to Statistics New Zealand.

The total value of retail sales rose 4% in the quarter ($1.1 billion). Large movements were seen in electrical and electronic goods retailing (up 6.9%), food and beverage services (up 5.6%), motor vehicle and parts retailing (up 3.1%), pharmaceutical and other store-based retailing (up 7.5%), and accommodation (up 11.4%).

COVID Support for Businesses Amid Level 4 Lockdown

Businesses impacted financially by this Level 4 lockdown are being offered a range of support measures.

Eligible businesses can claim both a resurgence support payment and the wage subsidy, as well as other payments for workers taking COVID tests or in self-isolation. The resurgence support payment is worth up to $1500 plus $400 per full-time equivalent employee for businesses with up to 50 full-time employees.

Meanwhile, the wage subsidy is now worth $600 per week per full-time equivalent employee, and $359 per week per part-time employee. Other support includes the leave support payment for workers who must self-isolate and can’t work from home. This involves a two-week lump sum payment of either $585.80 per week for full-time workers, or $350 per week for part-time workers.

Finally, there’s the short-term absence payment, which is a one-off payment of $350 for workers who must miss work due to a COVID-19 test and can’t work from home.

COVID-19 Short-term Absence Payment

This is available for businesses, including self-employed people, to help pay employees who cannot work from home while they wait at home for a COVID-19 test result. This is a one-off payment of $350. You can find the details here.

COVID-19 Leave Support Scheme

The Leave Support Scheme is available for businesses, including self-employed people, to help pay their workers who can’t work from home and meet certain health criteria, eg they have COVID-19 or are a ‘close contact’ who has been told to self-isolate for 14 days.

The Leave Support Scheme is paid as a 2-week lump sum per eligible employee.

The Leave Support Scheme is paid at a flat rate of:

  • $585.80 a week for full-time workers who were working 20 hours or more a week
  • $350 a week for part-time workers who were working less than 20 hours a week.

Find out more about the Leave Support Scheme here.

Small Business Cashflow Scheme Extended Until 2023

The Small Business Cashflow (loan) Scheme has been extended until 31 December 2023.

Organisations and small to medium businesses, including sole traders and the self-employed, may be eligible for a one-off loan with a term of 5 years if they have been adversely affected by COVID-19.

The maximum amount loaned is $10,000 plus $1,800 per full-time-equivalent employee. The annual interest rate will be 3% beginning from the date of the loan being provided. Interest will not be charged if the loan is fully paid back within 2 years.

You can find out more here, or simply get in touch with us so we can provide our professional assistance.

Kiwi Business Boost Tool

The Government has funded specialist consultancy support services to provide advice to businesses who need it. You can use the Kiwi Business Boost Tool to find out what services are available in your region.

The Treasury website’s COVID-19 Economic Response Measures can also provide more information on the range of supports available to businesses.

Training Incentive Allowance

The Training Incentive Allowance can help with tuition fees, books, childcare, equipment, transport and any additional caring costs while studying. It’s available for courses at levels 1-7 of the NZ Qualifications Framework. Visit the Work and Income website to find out who’s eligible, how much you can get and who can apply.

Three Sales Strategies to Help You Grow Your Business

Marketing is essential in growing a business. Without customers coming your way, you can’t increase sales.

Businesses can boost their sales by implementing visibility strategies that can get their products or services in front of more customers. However, aside from great marketing, you would also need the right sales systems in place.

This Forbes article shares three sales systems that can help small businesses increase their revenue. Below is a rundown of these strategies:

  1. Create a sales funnel that adds value and nurtures prospects. A sales funnel is a step-by-step process that leads consumers into making a purchase. The best way to develop a solid sales funnel is by adding value for customers, followed by offering content that solves their pain points.
  2. Have better discovery conversations, and disqualify the wrong fits. Your goal should be to onboard customers who make sense for your business and would benefit from your services.
  3. Show up in all the mediums and methods your ideal consumers use. Show up where your customers are– you can use blogs, videos, podcasts, or other formats to reach your ideal customers.

Do you need more tailored business advice? Get in touch with us today and let’s work out a plan together!

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