In the current market, many businesses have had to adapt and diversify to remain competitive, through social distancing measurements, the transition from cash to card payments, online orders and deliveries. With varying restrictions, it begs the question of “what next?” for local businesses. We outline our four top tips...
1) Remain Digital
Some businesses have created websites for online orders and launched social media pages to promote their products and services during lockdown. With more shops and restaurants offering takeaway service and deliveries than ever before, now is not the time to abandon advertising practices. Remaining digital and implementing a multi-channel approach is the key to your long-term success.
Brands now have the opportunity to experiment with social media as a brand-building channel, and for some this has been a very new method. Research shows that businesses who invest in brand building during recessions emerge stronger than before.
2) Adapt to Employees
The world of work has changed. Restrictions have sparked a surge in working from home opportunities, and many businesses that would not have considered remote or flexible working in the past, are now discovering that productivity levels have stayed the same or increased. Other benefits for businesses include retaining excellent staff who may have otherwise left or relocated, and with location becoming less of an issue, the talent pool to recruit from has expanded. Some local businesses have hired marketing and software talent from further afield, discovering that not all roles need to be based in-house.
As we settle into another new year, offering dual working arrangements will soon become the new norm and a requirement that potential candidates will look for. Offering employees more will increase their satisfaction, and a satisfied workforce is associated with a business's ability to deliver better customer service. In particular, industries with close contact between customers and employees, such as restaurants and retail, can see the most impact.
If your industry can function with flexible or remote working arrangements, offer employees the choice. By acknowledging your employees’ work preferences, checking in with them regularly, and providing ongoing support (check out our tips for working remotely), your employees will have greater job satisfaction and be eager to remain part of the team.
3) Work Together
Working together and building brand partnerships has become an integral factor for a business’ future growth and competitive advantage. Research shows that brand partnerships:
- Create value
- Boost revenue growth
- Increase brand awareness
Collaboration can be the answer to many external triggers and provide opportunities for growth, including mutual survival during moments of great change, entrepreneurial impact through using another brand’s resources, continuous learning, robust transition and cultural renewal.
Small businesses account for 99.3% of all private sector businesses, and with these businesses being hit hardest by uncertainty, supporting local is critical. Supporting local businesses is an important message to spread and collaborating with others in a strategic partnership can benefit all parties involved.
4) Contactless Payments and Rewards
You may be wondering which approach is best to attract more customers. For many small businesses, online payments have enabled their survival during challenging times, and with the pandemic accelerating the shift from cash payments to contactless methods, it is essential for businesses to continue providing contact-free payments.
Consumers are increasingly seeing the value of digital payments, which will leave businesses with no choice but to adapt. A new consumer-driven revolution has begun within the banking and finance sector, led by a group of consumers dubbed “NEOs”. NEOs are quick adapters, tech-savvy, demanding, and desire transactions which are frictionless, flexible and hassle-free.
In response, businesses must think of new ways to appeal to customers. To attract repeat custom, loyalty and rewards are fundamental to your business model.
loyalBe, a digital loyalty platform, addresses the needs of businesses and customers alike by eliminating paper loyalty cards with a frictionless app. The app generates customer loyalty through tailored rewards, linking directly to customers’ bank accounts to create a simple, contactless process.
If you are interested in rewarding your customers as they are rewarding you, book a demo with us today!