Do you remember the telephone directory? Perhaps I’m showing my age (or that I grew up in America—did they have them in Europe, too?) but the telephone directory was actually very useful (in addition to doubling as a booster seat for a child). It was a large, thick book delivered annually to your door, listing every local business in the area alphabetically and divided by category, making it easy to locate a service provider when you needed one. Got a clogged drain? Just look under “P” for plumbers and make a few calls.

Naturally, with the digital age, these became obsolete. With Google and its equivalents there is no need to waste the resources. But the idea behind it—having local resources all in one place—is still good. So, what if we combined the two?

Ask and you shall receive.

Officially launched on the 4th of March, 2021, Help’n’Trade is an online marketplace for local goods and services, connecting customers with local businesses. Founder Stefan Kuruc and his team are passionate about creating an easy, user-friendly experience, as well as supporting local businesses, creating a tighter-knit community, and contributing to the environment.

By using the platform, you not only find the qualified service providers and local products you need when you need them, but your community benefits as well. For instance, according to The Local Good:

  • Local Economic Stimulus.When you purchase at locally owned businesses rather than nationally owned, more money is kept in the community because locally-owned businesses often purchase from other local businesses, service providers and farms. Purchasing local helps grow other businesses as well as the local tax base.
  • Local Business Owners Invest In Community.Local businesses are owned by people who live in thatcommunity, are less likely to leave, and are more invested in the community’s welfare and future.
  • Unique Businesses Create Character & Prosperity. The unique character of your local community is defined in large part by the businesses that reside there, and that plays a big factor in your overall satisfaction with where you live and the value of your home and property.

Time to Tea – a local teeshop on Help’n’trade.

It gets even better—in addition to all those fabulous reasons, did you know you’re also helping the planet? And you don’t even have to try! By using a local provider, this generally means contributing to less urban sprawl, traffic congestion, habitat loss and pollution. In fact, Help’n’Trade’s vision is to show just how acting locally contributes to the local economy, community and environment by measuring impact.

For customers, Help’n’Trade aims to make it super easy. Don’t speak German? Kein Problem. French? Mais non! It’s a multi-lingual platform, therefore it’s especially useful for expats and people new to Basel. And it’s free!

As for businesses, since they are new and building up their list of providers, it is currently FREE for businesses, too! So, if you’re in the market for more customers, take advantage of this ‘early adopter’ offer. In the near future, businesses will have a choice between a monthly subscription or a risk-free percentage from sale via Help’n’Trade. (For customers, it will always be free to use the platform.)

Hydropure is a local business offering their cleaning services on Help’n’trade.

So, friends, if you’re in need of some sort of service–window cleaners, electricians, personal trainers and life coaches, film and production companies, web designers, and the list goes on—Help’n’Trade makes it easy and convenient to find legitimate, verified businesses. And if you’re looking for a homemade Greek pie, tasty tea, artisan bagels or a gift for your loved one, Help’n’Trade makes it easy to find and purchase products from right around the corner. Can’t find a business on their platform? Have a suggestion on how to improve? Just let them know…Stefan and the team are always open to feedback.

Together, we can support this local entrepreneur, as well as help other local businesses, build a tighter community, and bring more sustainability into our own lives. It’s a win-win all around.

by Carrie Aikman

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