27 Aug Small Business Trends for the rest of 2021
Small businesses have had to undergo a lot of challenges and changes this last year. If you had thought about moving towards digital transformation, we are sure this was implemented pretty fast if you had the means. Unfortunately, there are businesses that didn’t survive, and if you were one of those businesses that had taken on the digital revolution and had implemented the transformation, we are sure you have managed to come out the other side intact.
If your small business has managed to come out of the barrel that threatened to envelop it, some small business trends have emerged that affect both business processes and business outcomes. If you take the time to understand the latest trends, this will help you to efficiently navigate any more challenges that your business might face for the remainder of the year.
NO MORE CASH! It’s about Cashless payments.
Yes, this is not a new invention; however, with the COVID-19 pandemic has further popularised these more modern options and quickly moved their progression forward.
We love cashless payments because of numerous reasons; the ease of it all just makes sense, it is also socially-distant and completely safe and secure, as well as removing the steps that include having to withdraw cash. Yes, we are well acquainted with EFT, but now arises the likes of SnapScan, Zapper and Tap to Pay, which have become everyday payment options that our consumers expect to see and use.
You might have heard about it and thought lovingly about how nice it sounds, and now, it has become your reality – Remote working! This has affected us all at some point during Covid-19 and again during the unrest in KZN mid July. Work-life as we know it has forever changed. Furthermore, as mentioned above, this is all about advanced technologies and digital transformation that can help small businesses run smoothly and maintain the same level of productivity remotely as in an office setting.
Don’t put all your eggs in one basket – Diversify.
Single focus businesses are a thing of the past. Diversification of your products or services is not just an up-sell nowadays but a survival technique. Take some time with your team, sit down and strategise. What can you do to diversify your offering? What can you include that makes sense to your business and is consistent with your brand? This way, you’re not only giving your customers more variety, but you are also increasing your profit margins.
A digital marketing strategy is vital.
Yes, it’s true; organic content is still highly relevant and every now and again, boosting this content is key to getting it seen. Small businesses don’t need to invest in all advertising platforms available, we know there are too many to count, and some might not be relevant to your industry or the message of your brand voice.
- Google search advertising
- Display advertising
- Social media advertising: Facebook, Instagram, YouTube
You need to create a sense of Loyalty.
In this day and age, with so many options, building and maintaining customer relationships is not only vitally important; it might just be one the most essential aspects of your business. If you have never implemented loyalty programmes in the form of memberships, subscriptions or loyalty cards of sorts, then best get on it. Customers are seeking the ultimate value for money from their trusted brands, and they will happily swap brands if another can provide more value for their money, and if you have a great loyalty scheme, you have a sure way of convincing them to come back.
There are numerous loyalty programmes you can implement, choose one that suits your business best.
- membership discounts
- Refer-a-friend benefits
- Discounts for bulk or long-term purchases
- Loyalty Points
While the ever-lingering pandemic is trying to slow us down, if you adapt, shift, change and embrace change and these trends, this will stand you in good stead and allow your business to not only survive but thrive in the current climate.