All the businesses that we know are set to change in one or another way during or after the COVID-19 pandemic. The year 2020 is about to change the trajectory of eCommerce, remote work and telemedicine. All the large and small businesses are committing to showing resiliency to get through this crisis alive.
But many small businesses across the world are waking up in fear due to the uncertainty of the terrifying pandemic situation. The widespread of the menacing COVID-19 has already put a dent in the economy of the world. And because of that small business owners are losing balance. And in a situation like this, the emergency plan is necessary to tackle the unbalance. Having such an emergency plan describes what you should do as a business and how you can retain your customers. Many businesses and corporates have a special team for risk management who can prepare the emergency plan while for small business does not have nor such an emergency plan.
Thus to prevent your business from such loses, we have prepared this article that will explain how businesses should survive during this corona pandemic, especially for small & online eCommerce businesses.
Why Planning for a Pandemic is Very Essential for Your Business
Well, planning for anything is a must when it comes to business to achieve the desired goals. The same way planning can save your business in the time of the corona pandemic too. So, if you don’t have a plan to deal with natural calamities & disasters like corona, it might leave you in the middle of the sea with no right tools and resource to recover. And you have already felt that ripple effects of coronavirus for some time even after it’s over, so planning for such future pandemic is very essential whether it is small or large scale business.
So if you don’t have such an emergency plan then And here’s what you can do…
- Explore the options for business insurance
- Find ways to minimize the spread and promote them to community members
- Be honest with yourself how it will impact on your business
- Take care of your worried employees too
We also understand that you have never expected to come across such emergencies/disasters that might arise out of nowhere and escalate in your geographical area. But its the time when you realized it and now your business should have a plan for various disasters like pandemic, earthquake, tornado, hurricane, flood, man-made disasters, etc to prevent business losses in upcoming years.
But now you are not alone, we are all together in the middle of this corona situation. So, the first thing comes first is to create and communicate your business survival plan to your colleagues, employees, and clients you serve across the community.
6 Steps to Protect Your Online Ecommerce Business During Corona Pandemic
Marketing Land Survey conducted on 12th March found that only 20% of eCommerce retailers are ready to take ‘aggressive action’ while 44% are ready to take ‘some action.’
Due to the speedy progression of the COVID-19 around the world, it has put the retailers into a panic mode. Also, most of the governments have announced the closure of unnecessary brick mortar shops since that survey. If they are in panic mode or not, it is a thing of later to discuss but here experts have put their words out to save your small eCommerce business.
- Strategies to Implement Right Away:
Before we go ahead, the first things come in the picture is to measures our business including,
- Monitoring the whole situation from the ground.
- Maintaining relations with suppliers and consumers.
- Update yourself with laws and regulations applied nationally and locally.
- The supply is a big issue, so ramp up your inventory.
- Adjust pricing to have a constant rate of sales that you can handle.
- Have a support team for solving general consumer queries.
- Be transparent over different ways for communication:
During such a pandemic situation, lots of eCommerce businesses take advantage of the costumer’s fear and panic and charge more and try to capitalize on making changes but most of the eCommerce experts are against that. Because it may tank up some revenue for short-time but people don’t forget the way you responded in the time of crisis. That means instead of trying to help them, you were busy taking advantage of such a situation. More than 85% of the people say that being transparent is most expected from the businesses in difficult times like this.
Businesses need to address the common issues faced by their customers during these difficult times. Such as delay in delivery, internal sanitation procedure, out-of-stock product, etc. to maintain transparency over different channels available. Also, be upfront to show that you are not prepared for this and you don’t have an emergency plan either. Show them that you are very concerned about them by providing additional training and explaining measures to end the pandemic. Clear any misleading facts or rumours to make them trust you more.
Communicating is an essential and very important part of the process, so focus only on the vital things and don’t over-communicate. It is as damaging as not saying at all, so try to communicate in a positive and optimistic way.
- Diversify the supply chain for your business:
During this tumultuous time, most of the countries have put the lockdown. It creates issues like supply chain disruption. Alleviating these problems before they get any serious is a vital step to restore and sustain the supply chain.
As per Casey Armstrong, CMO of ShipBob – Diversify and expand both manufacturing and fulfillment units if possible. The manufacturing of goods may take a bit of time because of the creation of the high demand with the uncertainty of today. The fulfillment of demand is achieved faster than manufacturing.
Expanding your business supply base may be a wise decision you can take. Relying on one supplier may make your store’s product go out-of-stock early with the demand of the goods still being high.
- Focus on virtual products:
Get creative by providing valuable content in the form of virtual products. Manufacturing the physical product may not be easy to restore the already disrupted supply chain. This makes it hard to deliver and even more hard to earn some profits out of it.
As Walker says, “There is no limit to be creative and no barriers with virtual products. Offering tutorials, e-books, online classes, etc. other than only gift cards may be more beneficial for your brand.”
- Offer discount and advertise more:
Offering a discount is generally an instrument to promote the store and have a surge in the traffic. Running a discount at this hour of the year means that you acknowledge that there are people employment issues and have little cash spend. Offering discounts even for little time will help your customers manage their expenses, which is ought to benefit your loyalty in the long run.
Running discounts along with display ads will come handy if you are facing declines in your sales. Running ads may bring back the lapsed customer because bringing new customers at this hour will be a more challenging task. If you have an app on which you can display advertising may bring you more sale because the app downloads have seen an almost 40% rise in China alone. Also, people are working, spending, and learning new things on the internet, which has significantly increased the traffic on eCommerce sites.
- Connect with consumers on social channels:
This pandemic has affected the life of every person on the earth in one or another way. The news network is also not helping curb the issue. So, provide reassurance to people on social channels with optimistic messages and making them realize that they are not alone. More than 80% of the Instagram users follow a brand on Instagram, which gives you ample opportunity to connect with your consumers. Also, show and mean that your place of business is taking necessary steps for having a clean ambiance.
What Experts says…
This is a very unfortunate event and it has affected millions of lives across the globe. In the coming weeks, the disaster will frighten the whole population of the world. The worst effects of this pandemic will be on small eCommerce businesses. But there are certain steps and ways to lessen the blow by planning effectively. Be transparent, be optimistic, be positive and mean all those things because when all of this is over people will remember how you responded. Instead of taking advantage of the situation, help them get through this. Because often in these difficult times we realize that we are not alone and its always better to have people you trust.
If your business is facing a situation like this and you are looking for a way to get through this, then consult an eCommerce expert. The experts will advise you on how to handle it better and come alive. In the wake of the situation, the team of Certified Magento Developers is working tirelessly from home to meet deadlines. We are ought to provide you the same quality work even working from home. Once you contact our expert will get in touch with you within 24Hours.
Stay home, Stay Safe!