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Many people welcome the end of 2020. It has been a year like no other. However, with the government talking about more of the same for a good portion of 2021, small business owners need to find solutions so they can remain solvent. Thankfully, there are things you can do to promote financial success.
Know Your Customers
For the small business owner, trends and customer search histories can provide value to future sales. Companies that specialize in master data management will help you access, organize, and process data to achieve financial benefits. It can also reduce costs by increasing inventory efficiency to lessen waste.
Reducing Business Expenses
Business financing is difficult during good economic years. With the lockdown and reduced hours of operation and capacities, business owners need to account for every cent. Reducing overhead costs is necessary to offset lost revenue. Allowing employees to work remotely from home will reduce the cost of utilities, paper, and machinery. Many banks are providing bill deferments and suspended payments and property owners are offering temporary payment deferments to avoid having their otherwise good tenants receive a notice of eviction. Some suppliers are also stepping up and providing limited-time discounts to allow business owners to remain operational.
Marketing for the New Normal
In the past, many business owners created aggressive marketing campaigns to entice potential customers to their places of business. However, for the foreseeable future, this strategy doesn’t have the effect it was designed to produce. A good percentage of the population remains unwilling to risk their health or that of another to shop inside a brick and mortar store. To offset these numbers, many small companies are expanding their presence on social media through a series of ads that pop up when their target audience is most likely using the platform. Email offers another effective tool wherein business owners can reach thousands of people living within a localized area. A combination of the two will help you maintain a presence with no face-to-face contact.
Revamping Your Website
Without customers entering your business offices, you need to sell services or products through your website. A stellar website is easy to navigate and gives information regarding the company’s history and goals for the future. It also accepts many types of payments to avoid losing a sale due to payment restrictions. With more people shopping for services and products online, a revamp of your website is critical.
Staying Connected to Existing Customers
It takes years for a small business to establish a loyal following of customers. Unfortunately, it only takes a few months to undo your hard work. Thankfully, there are several things you can do to keep your customers loyal during the pandemic. First, maintain contact through email. A monthly newsletter will keep your company in mind. Second, offering incentives such as discounts for future services, an exclusive notice of new products, and gift cards for referring new customers. Your positive presence will enhance customer loyalty and improve sales.
Dedication to Customer Service
Cutbacks on customer service staff can leave the consumer unsatisfied. Now more than ever, you must provide excellent customer service. People want to resolve a problem they didn’t create quickly. They don’t want to leave a number and hope for a callback or press several numbers only to have an automated voice respond on cue to questions. They want a live body at the other end of the line to correct the situation. Patience and empathy are two traits necessary during troublesome times.
The year 2020 will leave a mark on many small businesses across the land. For some, picking up the pieces will be easy. For others, closing is their only option. Keeping your business in the black is possible by adapting to the current environment.