Experts predict that the recovery from the COVID-19 lockdown might last a good 4-6 years. Many small-business owners in the United States need to make extreme changes to survive: adjusting to the new health and safety regulations, optimizing and lowering the operational costs, and working hard to raise the margins – that’s already at risk. These changes will come with a price: in resources, expenses, and labor-time.
In this economic climate, small businesses are having small-room to invest in new income sources or build a strong client-base, which is critical to their survival. To learn from the larger players in the market, local business owners should go online, digitize, and automate parts of their work, to better handle the challenging times ahead.
To further maintain physical distance, many local businesses experiment with new payment methods and apps. Retailers are rapidly uploading products to their e-commerce websites – others offering free delivery and extending return policies.
An area many local business owners neglect to include in their online-migration is customer loyalty. To many, this is a natural trait of the business. People indeed become loyal to your business over time, and they do so because they love what you have and the way you take care of their needs. But loyalty is something that needs to be maintained and nurtured.
A recently published research by the global strategy firm McKinsey points that the online disruption in the US marketplace leads 15 to 20 percent of consumers to switch stores, but about half of those who switched, report that they are planning to continue using their new choice.
Small businesses should therefore rapidly establish a loyalty-program as a new income source, by enabling customers to order or book through mobile apps and manage their ongoing experience, especially when they’re away from your shop or business – keeping them coming back as regulars.
In the post-COVID-19 economy, many local business owners lack the capital, people, and technology access that their larger counterparts enjoy. Online tools and platforms such as Shopify, Etsy, and Instagram make it relatively simple to promote, reach, and sell to customers online. Business owners need similar affordable and automatic tools for managing their customer’s experience and loyalty program, as a central part of their recovery.
To sum up, here’re 3 tips to help you recover faster with online solutions:
- A new online service (marketing, online-purchasing, or loyalty management) should be accessible, easy to use, and cost-effective.
- Pick the solutions that take away tasks from you, saving you time and not piling more on your already busy schedule.
- Give higher priority to services that will help you in the long-term. Recovery will take time, and you need the right partners for that.
You have a lot on your mind. Let Glue run your loyalty strategy- start now.