During a recession, small businesses are typically hit the hardest; as they operate on a strictly-controlled cash-flow; which entails very limited adaptability. This is due to the fact that they typically do not have extensive resources available to them. Month to month, as the money comes in, it goes out; and the margins are often tight. Hence a major disruption in cash-flow can put the whole operation in jeopardy.
During this lock-down, customers will tend to delay purchases or payments–either because they’re waiting for their own income to arrive or because they are simply unable to patronize (brick and mortar) businesses in the usual way. By April, approximately 75% of businesses in the U.S. were experiencing severe supply-chain disruptions as a result of the pandemic.
Many supply-chains are inventory-sensitive. Should this happen at a time when a vendor has a large quantity of stock ear-marked for a particular client, it could forego vital income (assuming it is unable to sell the goods to anyone else). This leads to a chain reaction in deferred payments from one vendor to another, which fetters commerce. Some experts propose that AI technology may offer a solution to such problems, as it is able to gather data and perform calculations necessary for optimizing on-line commerce.