This holiday season, COVID-19 remains a prevalent force in our world. While this time is usually a period of great opportunity and revenue for small businesses, many small businesses are worried that what is often their most profitable time may not be as fruitful as they need, especially after such a tough year.
But just as small businesses had to adapt quickly to the rapidly shifted market due to COVID-19, they now need to reconsider how they approach this holiday season.
Technology has emerged as the clear winner in helping small businesses survive. It’s proven to be the backbone of every business in this time of crises. Remote working tools, new online storefronts, contactless ordering and shipping – these are just a few tech solutions that many owners of today’s surviving small businesses used to pivot.
- Be comfortable with taking risks – don’t rely on the same holiday season tactics
To succeed in today’s new business environment, small business owners have to be more comfortable with taking risks. Many need to abandon their old, rigid ways of approaching the market. In-store deals and draws won’t be as effective, because customers have shifted preferences and priorities.
Every business owner needs to ask themselves, “If this were my first holiday season, how would I approach it?”
Do you have an infrastructure in place for curbside service? Will your online shopping portal be able to handle the influx of orders? Do you need to adjust your traditional advertising and marketing plan to reach your usual customers? How can you appeal to new customers?
All these questions need to be addressed to ensure your business is equipped to handle a COVID-19 holiday season.
- Invest in the right tools
As we covered, the answer to many of the above questions are rooted in technology solutions. Businesses that have relied heavily on their storefronts in the past need to investigate tools and applications that expand their outreach and serve customers in new ways.
- Mobility and empowering remote workforces and assets – Almost any business that has made it this far has been able to adapt their workforce to adhere to social distancing guidelines. But, for many, the busiest time of the year is yet to come. Small businesses need to ensure they have the right tools in place for remote or distanced employees to perform when business surges. Things to consider are order fulfillment processes and merchant services that extend beyond your storefront doors.
- eCommerce and online orders – Many businesses need to reassess whether their ecommerce platforms can handle what could be their most demanding period yet. An online storefront service can help businesses build a shopping site or help ensure their current one is ready to handle high demand this holiday season.
Align yourself with a local partner
The most important thing for small business owners to remember is that you don’t have to go through this alone. By joining forces with another local business or organization you can pool your collective resources to work towards common goals.