COVID19 has been a shock to everyone and whilst we've been quiet on our own social media since March, that doesn't mean we've not been working. We've been helping a number of local businesses ensure their online presence is optimised to help them through this thoroughly difficult period.
Businesses with a strong online presence and good digital processes are able to be more agile in a situation like this.
How many business continuity plans included this type of situation? Ours certainly didn't.
We're very lucky to run mostly cloud based systems from our PCs and lap tops allowing us to work anywhere.
We've also taken the time to simplify our website and focus more on showcasing how we HAVE been able to help people rather than what we CAN do. We can find a way to help with most things digital or if not find someone we can, so being able to demonstrate what we've done resonates much better with demonstrating how we can help future clients.
Over the last 3 months we've worked with a number of businesses to ensure that their online presence is the best it can be:
- We've helped a pet shop, who'd been working on their Shopify site for a little while, to make the final functional changes and optimisations to put it live.
- We've helped a client implement a subscription offering enabling them to create an online recurring revenue stream.
- We've redesigned & rebuilt a website for a client who was struggling to stand out in the market
- We've helped a Cornish visitor attraction put together a marketing strategy to generate awareness and ultimately footfall.
- We've advised a client on using a CRM and which to use
- We've provided training on Facebook Ads
- We've managed the social media strategy & campaign for a regional home care provider
This work demonstrates that having a strong digital and online offering really is important at this time because all these businesses are seeing growth.
Using digital tools for both your internal processes and external marketing efforts, may now become a factor in whether or not a business can see out this difficult time.
From the B2B point of view, a report by Mckinsey & Company(1) states that B2B companies see digital interactions as two or three times more important to their customers than traditional sales interactions with almost 90% of sales having moved to a video conference/phone/web model.
Being online is imperative to help you stay resilient during this time. If you are online, ensure your presence:
- Is consistent with your brand
- Is well presented & modern
- Works properly on all devices
- Is easy to use & understand
- Engages with your audience
From the B2C point of view, everyone can see how online sales have exploded as people physically couldn't peruse the shops as before. Moving forward over the next few months, caution may be shown in spending while people take stock of how they've been affected and what their future income looks like, but online spending will continue to be popular.
Statistics from Econsultancy(2) state 90% of back-to-school shoppers in the UK were making their purchase online whilst Amazon saw a 40% increase in net sales in Q2.
As well as having a great online presences, ensuring your business is supported by key digital solutions will also enable your business to improve productivity as well as resilience to both work efficiently and meet the demands of your customers.
90% of SMEs say lockdown has increased the priority of digital transformation for their business(3), so getting you and your business up to date on all things digital has never really been more important.
We already use a number of digital tools to support our business (if you're interested here's a link to some more information about what we use for our Small Business Digital Solutions) but we are continually reviewing them to use they are both making us more productive as well as being cost efficient.
Before making that all important decision on new solutions, make sure you:
- Understand what your current process is
- Understand the outcome your process needs to achieve
- Understand your budget
- Establish a variety of options in the market place
- Evaluate and compare the available options
There's an abundance of great free tool as well as free trials out there, that can really help when going through this process so you can truly understand what you are getting before you commit.
In summary, if you were doubtful about getting online, or resistant to implementing more digital solutions for your business, its time to put your fears and worries aside as its now the most important way for your business to stand out and be resilient.
If you are looking for some support with your online offering and digital solutions, we'd be more than happy to help. Download our Digital Laggard PDF to find out more.