A guide for small and medium businesses

What should you do with your business during COVID-19?

Haven’t you changed business tactics yet? You’re risking starting from scratch after the pandemic is over.

  1. Business owners whose business hasn’t seen changes in ages.
  2. Those who think that we will be back to the behavior patterns that we are all used to.
  3. Small business owners who are about to give up.

If the small and medium businesses could afford to neglect online presence before, now a website becomes the only place to get in touch.

Our reality today is shaped by the virus spread: we see the crisis in areas affected by COVID-19 and the gradual rehabilitation in the areas where the pandemic is stated to be conquered.

Source: Coronavirus online map https://www.google.com/covid19-map/

Outcome 1: pay attention to the recovering regions. They are ready to rise from the ashes. Pay attention to the regions that are going through the pandemic peak — they need quick solutions to maintain an acceptable quality of life.

What is our new normal now?

The new niche has emerged very quickly — serving people locked in their houses. They still need to work (those who can do it online), they still want to stay fit, entertained, eat tasty and healthy and even send and get gifts. Amazingly, people still want to buy new clothes even if they can’t go outside.

We didn’t put the life on pause to reset it after the Big Quarantine. The life, the death, the love still happen there inside apartment walls. It happens online.

There are two types of businesses now.

Outcome 2: your customers have shifted to the Internet. They order food from a website that works faster than others, they watch series on a website that can cope with high load, they buy sweatpants from a website that has advanced recommendations features. Nobody tolerates poor web experience anymore.

Let’s refer to recent statistics.

Users prefer online communication

According to the YouScan investigation, 60% of users prefer communicating with brands online. 78% of users already use social media for that purpose.

The European websites traffic made a huge leap up

Comscore, a proven leader in measuring digital and TV audiences and advertising at scale, provides weekly reports on how the digital behavior patterns change these days.

Source: https://www.comscore.com/Insights/Blog/Coronavirus-pandemic-and-online-behavioural-shifts-March-30-update
Source: https://www.comscore.com/Insights/Blog/Coronavirus-pandemic-and-online-behavioural-shifts-March-30-update
Source: https://www.comscore.com/Insights/Blog/Coronavirus-pandemic-and-online-behavioural-shifts-March-30-update
Source: https://www.comscore.com/Insights/Blog/Coronavirus-pandemic-and-online-behavioural-shifts-March-30-update

Retail is killing it

Comscore notices: “Earlier this week, we looked at an aggregate of total digital visits to Amazon, Walmart and Target’s sites and saw a steady upward climb. This week, we’ve added Costco and Best Buy to the mix as well. In looking at all five retailers — March 16–22 was the highest week of retail visits in 2020 so far. We saw 3% growth since the prior week (March 9–15) and 11% growth since Feb. 17–23.”

What products are trending now

I’ll show you one more direction to think about. These are the statistics from the G2 rating. This is the platform for product reviews, and recently they have seen the growth of traffic for the following products and services. Do you see something that you do for a living?

Source: https://learn.g2.com/b2b-software-marketing-playbook-for-covid-19

Outcome 3: offline income isn’t stable anymore. Rely on the money you can earn from web products and applications and the processes that serve these apps.

How do businesses adapt?

Okay, we understand that users went online. How could you as a small business owner do the same? Or how can you stay in touch with your customers during quarantine?

How to remind customers about your offline business

According to Comscore, “visits to airline sites/apps have dropped 38% March 16–22 to 82 million visits (the fewest visits of any week so far in 2020).”

Outcome 4: examine your business — what process can be handled online? Draw your user’s journey map: both online and offline businesses can move, at least, the awareness stage to the Internet. The same goes for promotion and loyalty programs.

There are plenty of means to succeed. Learn how to promote your business online from the examples above. Google how to promote a business on Instagram — one of the most viral social media right now. While I was collecting the content for this article, I came across a very interesting Instagram account “Save Brooklyn Small Businesses”. There account owners promote small businesses from Brooklyn and raise social awareness.

How governments and financial institutions support small business

Additionally, I want to review some of the loans and grants you might be eligible for.

Suggested action plan

Let’s sum up what we suggest you do the following days. You can trust us as we’re helping our clients succeed online for almost 13 years now.

If your business isn’t represented in the Internet

  1. Put off all your plans, seriously. Create a landing page at least. You can do it with services like Tilda, Google websites, you can do it with free Drupal profiles (it’s ready-made website templates). You will be able to do a simple website yourself.

Outcome 5: the 2020’s motto could be “no website — no business”.

If you have a website

  1. Make sure your website has contact forms and contact information.
    It is a pretty obvious observation but sometimes we see that contact forms don’t work or business owners simply don’t answer incoming emails!
  2. Conduct a full website audit and find weaknesses: audit content, design and UX, SEO, lead generation process, social media presence.
    More people will be visiting your website from now on (according to statistics and our guesses), can your website cope with high load at all?
  3. Create a roadmap for improvements and pay special attention to contact forms, the possibility to call you right away, and be sure you provide value to your clients.
    People want to see something that can make their lives easier, happier. They don’t want to see you bragging about how cool you are.

Outcome 6: it’s not enough to have a website. You’re now competing with all the deliveries, cafes to-go, apparel online stores available for people in your region.

Instead of conclusion

This pandemic will teach people to prioritize and choose. As the physical contacts and communication have exposed us to danger and even death, we will think twice before attending any event offline or visiting a local supermarket. It’s safe to stay online and you should follow your customers there.

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We help businesses thrive online and get to the market faster than their competitors. https://www.adcisolutions.com/