With most business transactions taking place online amid the ongoing pandemic, online businesses are expected to survive, and small entrepreneurs are trying to adapt to the “new normal.”
Food businesses, from restaurants and delis that had to temporarily close to dine-in customers, supermarkets, and fresh produce shops, are able to continue operations. They’re helping people under lockdown or limited movement acquire everyday staples.
Experts predict that this isn’t likely to be temporary. Of course, there are services that cannot be delivered online, such as those offered by a commercial cleaning services franchise, for instance. But under the new normal, social distancing will still be critical, and consumers will turn to e-commerce to get their supplies. More startups will learn to adapt quickly, and online competition will rise.
As an online business owner, how will you adapt to the possible increase in orders while keeping customers engaged? A quick tip: stick to what you’re doing right, and always think of your customers first.
Serve, don’t sell
One thing you can expect from customers is that they’ll be looking for more authenticity in the products and services they get. Of course, your bottom line is to sell. But connecting with buyers and prioritizing their needs will secure return customers and brand loyalty.
Identify their needs or problems and see how your product can truly help solve them. Highlight the benefits over the features and how your business can make their lives a little better. Speak to them like a friend, and be honest if you think that a certain product may not be what they need at that time. You’ll be surprised how your honesty will be remembered and result in trust from your customers.
Optimize your web assets
This is also a good time to review your website. Check the content and see if it is informative and effectively highlights the benefits of doing business with you. Do a little research and find out what your buyers are asking about your product. Is your website copy answering those questions? The more useful information you provide, the easier for your customers to decide and buy from you.
Mirror your offers on your social media. Engage with customers and immediately address their concerns. Communication and extra TLC are the name of the game these days.
Know your competition
Find out what your competitors are doing and see if you can adopt their strategies to improve yours. Do they offer shorter delivery time? How about a customer chat support? It’s also the best way to find out where you’re ahead of your competition and then leverage on that.
Leverage on available tools
There are a lot of tools and free apps that you can incorporate into your online business, such as communication tools, invoicing tools, social media management. Learning about and taking advantage of these apps will help improve your service and your sales.
Do some outsourcing
You want to shorten delivery time, you have enough inventory for high orders, or you just need help communicating with buyers. Consider outsourcing some work so as not to overstretch yourself. It’s hard enough promoting and maintaining the cash flow; everything else seeks help.
You can serve your customers better if you are organized. Now is a good time to review your online business practices and identify areas for improvement so that you can strongly stay in the game.