April 15, 2020
5 min read
Follow these strategies during COVID-19 lock-down to keep running your business
With the news updates flying every minute, the COVID-19 pandemic is spreading rapidly. This is a difficult situation causing financial problems all over the world. Social distancing, while good for public health, on the other hand, is proving dangerous for the business organizations and the economy.
Although everyone’s first priority during this pandemic should be to stay safe and healthy, amidst that, maintaining business health is equally important. Many business owners around the world are worried that the impact of COVID-19 would be much more intense and long-lasting than anticipated.
5 ways to keep your business afloat
SHIFT SALES STRATEGY TO ONLINE
Shifting the sales strategies online to avoid heavy losses may prove out to be a blueprint for weathering this storm. The use of free tools like Google hangouts, Skype, Zoom, etc. to offer services remotely to your customers sitting at home, wishing they could support your business, could keep your business afloat amidst this lockdown.
For example, the cosmetic company Lin Qingxuan in Wuhan closed 40% of its stores, but the brand’s beauty advisors took a digital platform like WeChat to engage its customers virtually. ‘’As a result of which, it’s a sale in Wuhan achieved 200% growth as compared to the previous year’s sales.’’ writes Harvard Business Review.
So, as the storefronts are shutting its doors, find ways to keep your employees earning a paycheck selling on the social media platform and using your video tools to reach new leads.
PLAN FUTURE STEPS
Even though China and other economies have started to recover, coronavirus is still spreading throughout the world creating deeper impacts that will affect us for a long time.
"27% of businesses expect the corona virus to have a moderate impact on their revenue. Another 30% expect the virus to have a moderate to high impact on their supply chain.” reported by the SmallBizTrends.
Business interruption insurance can be a considerable option for you if you have consequential losses as a result of shutting down due to pandemic. Preparing you for the next time your business suffers similar economic losses. Also, in many countries like the USA, the government-funded small business development centers provide funding and resources to the businesses affected deeply by the pandemic.
Furthermore, as per the reports, the dark clouds of economic crisis have already been taken into consideration. But, the business owners have to be pragmatic to save them from the global crisis. And, one example for the same is, they can leverage artificial intelligence or to precisely say; avail machine learning services for their business to utilize data and get predictions to come up with stronger strategies which will save them from drowning.
HOLD AN EVENT ONLINE
In business, one of the most important things is advertising and the best way to do it is through an event. And, because of this lockdown, many events which could have become advantageous for you to gain more investors and customers have now brought nothing but disappointment for your business opportunities. But your situation can be improved if you opt for technological support as the technology now has given you the opportunity to hold an event online. Since most of your customers crave entertainment while being quarantined at home. This is where Instagram and Facebook live can be used. So, if you have an event due, move it to one of the live streaming social media channels. It is a great way to engage your customers, as well as to sell your product and build goodwill. You can offer a special discount to the first 100 viewers to encourage your customers to join your event. Be creative with how you can keep your customers engaged with your content from a distance.
GIVE EMPLOYEES FLEXIBILITY
With the country immediately moving towards the complete lockdown where schools, offices and commercial centers have closed its doors, you will need to be flexible with your employee’s time. More than 30% of the world population is engaged in work from home; henceforth, try to be as comprehensive as possible with your employees and have an emergency plan in case you need to make adjustments as per the scenarios which may pose obstacles to your business.
PROACTIVE COMMUNICATION WITH CUSTOMERS
The situation all around the world is getting worse, no one is quite sure what news each day will bring. Customers can understand and sympathize with the merchants facing a setback, as long as you communicate with them properly. In case you’re not closing your doors, let your customers know about the steps you have been taking care to keep your work environment clean and healthy for your employees as well as for them. And, if you are closing down your stores and market, keep updating your customers via social media, through emails or by posting on your website.
Beyond letting the customers know your basic approach, give them a method/platform to stay connected. With most of the potential customers sitting trapped at their homes, they are still going to shop for the things they need. So, prepare your e-commerce store as well as your business website for more people visiting and setting orders than in the previous months.
Lastly, COVID-19 has brought the whole world’s economy to a grinding halt. The economic recovery to which may cost us months, and potentially even years. These methods may help you in surviving the difficulties caused by the coronavirus, but keeping your employees and customers safe by being as proactive as you can about cleanliness still remains the first priority.
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