The COVID crisis has caused the world to change a lot in a short amount of time. Savvy small businesses are adapting and finding innovative ways to continue providing value to their customers. The businesses that are surviving (and even thriving) during the pandemic are the ones that have improved their online presence, cut costs wherever possible, and found new ways to offer what customers are looking for.
Here, we will discuss three ways to keep your business afloat during the COVID-19 crisis:
If your business relied heavily on face-to-face contact in the past there is going to be a bit of a learning curve here. However, the good news is that it’s possible to do a lot of things digitally these days. Meetings, classes, and even conferences can be held virtually, and almost anything can be sold on the internet. Online sales were up 55% year-over-year in July 2020, with consumers spending a whopping $66.3 billion.
Interior designers are holding Zoom consultations, realtors are creating virtual home tours for their listings, and the list goes on. Even weddings and funerals are being streamed online these days. The bottom line is that there are many ways to do business virtually. As long as your business is online, it doesn’t have to stop running.
Think about what your customers want now and adapt
The pandemic has caused the world to change quickly, and people now want different things. It’s important for business owners to anticipate what their customers may want or expect today and find ways to provide it. This could include the following:
- Offering new services or products
- Offering curbside pickup or delivery options
- Updating your storefront or office to keep customers safer
- Offering contactless payments
A good example of adapting to what consumers want today is a bakery that is now selling do-it-yourself cake decorating kits. Pre-COVID, this business generated most of its revenue selling custom birthday and wedding cakes. With weddings, birthdays, and other large celebrations being put on hold indefinitely, this business had to find a way to continue making money. They now sell kits containing cake mix, icing and decorating tools to consumers who are looking for something fun to do at home.
Cut costs wherever possible
We recommend taking a good look at your spending and cutting costs wherever possible. If you don’t need such a large office space, downsize and sell unnecessary equipment. The objective is to run as lean an operation as possible, but to do so without having your cuts impact the quality of service that your customers expect.
If the pandemic has been good to your business and you are seeing lots of new and returning customers, considering outsourcing instead of hiring new employees. To help keep up with an increased call volume, many businesses are outsourcing to live receptionist answering services.
A telephone answering service ensures that current and potential customers won’t slip through the cracks, and that they receive excellent service no matter how busy you are. The best part is that you only pay for the calls that your virtual receptionist handles.