The arrival of COVID-19 has made all the predictions regarding 2020 go astray. All the businesses that were expecting growth and profit during 2020 have to come up with new survival strategies since COVID-19 has changed many things for most of the industries. You will be surprised to know that about 60% of the businesses from all over the world have been closed because of COVID-19 and this number is going to keep on increasing.
Although each and every type of industry has been affected because of COVID-19, the one particular sector that has been affected the most because of the arrival of the virus is the retail sector or what people call as brick and mortar retailers. If you are running a similar kind of store and finding it difficult to keep your business alive then it’s high time to come up with new strategies in order to improve revenues.
The year 2020 might have turned out to be a big opportunity for online businesses but the same year has turned out to be a nightmare for brick and mortar retailers. But in order to make things easy for you, in this blog post, we will not only discuss possible solutions for retail stores to improve their revenue but also go through the current situations and look at the most common issues.
The effects of COVID-19 on the retail sector
When the dust will settle and COVID-19 will be gone completely, a new normal will arrive in the market and this new normal will include drastically changed human behavior and habits. One such change in human behavior and habit will be a shift from impulse buying to planned purchase. Window shopping will keep on decreasing and this will lead to reduced sales in retail shops.
Another trend that you will see on the rise is crisis spending where customers will be restricted to purchase only essential products because of the economic slowdown. The crisis spending will continue to be a part of the consumer habit even after the end of the virus.
Another change that we are currently encountering is focused on individualism. For example, you will see that there is a sudden decrease in the demand for group items since gathering is being completely avoided.
Tips for improving revenue amidst COVID-19
Just because the current situation is tough and you will have to go through many changes, this doesn’t mean that you should also belong to the 60% of the business mentioned at the outset of the article. There are many retail shops out there that are still surviving and making improvements to their overall revenue.
Here are some of the tips that you can use in order to improve revenue amidst COVID-19
Increase customer engagement via various mediums
If you are running a retail store then you must be aware of the fact that only 20% of your customers produce 80% of your revenue. Since these customers will always remain important for the survival and growth of your business, it is crucial for you to pay special attention to these customers, especially during the current situation. The loyalty of these customers will keep your retail store alive during the pandemic and this is why you can’t ignore them.
Whether it is emails, blogs, articles, or newsletters, you will have to use all the mediums possible in order to stay connected with these customers as they should be your main focus, especially when you are struggling to survive. If you succeed in illustrating that you are there for your loyal customers during a tough time, you will be able to nurture your loyal customers. Identify your loyal customers and start making changes to your current strategy.
You can follow down on the path of focusing your investment towards marketing efforts and build a presence online. This will help your customers connect with you more easily and you will be able to boost engagement. It will also help you target new customers who are looking for viable options. Localizing your digital marketing strategies will enhance the chances of people finding you and it will eventually bring in business.
Leveraging social media
Social media engagement has increased multifold over this past year. If you own a brick and mortar retail business, it becomes essential for you to garner an audience for yourself. You can also leverage the platforms in educating the masses about latest trends that you follow or the sanitization process you use to keep you customers safe and whatnot. If you are having trouble bringing in business, do not get disheartened and work towards building a brand. You need to think long-term and set up a digital base for yourself. No matter how local your brand is, you would need to establish a presence digitally to survive what this pandemic has brought on you.
This might look like a marketing tip from the 90s but you should know that it works really well even during the current situation. Gift cards provide all the different types of retailers with an immediate injection of cash and in addition to this, it also improves repeat purchases among customers as well. You should know that gift cards are an amazing way to stay in front of the audience and it can also be helpful in acquiring new customers as well. Even during the current situation, you can easily send digital gift cards to all your customers and make them feel special. But your digital gift cards shouldn’t be limited to your customers only as you can use them even for your prospects.
Enhance your digital presence by structuring your messages
The importance of messaging has increased by many folds just because of the current situation. All the firms out there now need to be more sensitive when it comes down to customer’s needs and this can only be done when firms will start reworking their marketing and advertising strategies.
If you were running a campaign that included the gathering of people, you will need to make some changes to those campaigns as you will need to show the reality of the current situation through your marketing campaigns. You can’t keep using the same marketing campaign if it doesn’t fit according to the current situation.
But this doesn’t mean that you will have to completely change your core branding message as all that you will need to do is to make sure that your campaigns fit like a glove in the current situation. Instead of being opportunistic, you will have to stay authentic during these tough times. Common and regular mistakes in your marketing campaign will mean that customers are less likely to interact with your company. This would be the best time to invest in making your marketing efforts more aligned. You can even get your digital marketing outsourced to save up on the extra expenditure.
Working on shipping cost
If you are planning for any type of cost-cutting then you should consider your shipping department for such a purpose. If possible, you should start looking for fulfilling your orders manually and you should never forget including local shipping features.
If the customers that you are serving are close to your firm then you can offer them a local delivery option in which the local rates will be applied to selected zones. You will have to align the shipping cost according to the current situation.
The NEED to move online
You should know that because of the shift in consumer behavior during the lockdown, most of the consumers have moved online to purchase goods. There are many countries out there that are still going in for a lockdown because of the second wave of the coronavirus and this will further fuel the growth of online usage.
Even people who restricted digital platforms in the past are now moving to it because they have no other options. When the dust settles, people will get into the new normal, the usage of the online platform will keep on increasing.
Because of this you will have to shift to the online platform and it doesn’t mean complete closure of your brick and mortar shop, it just means having another platform for the consumers to buy your goods.
You can simply start by choosing a website developing company and get your website built in a professional manner. There are maximum chances that the website developing company may provide SEO services through which you will be able to rank up in the search results and this will further boost your digital presence. Soon after the shift to the digital platform, you will witness a robust growth in your revenue.
Get ready for the new normal because even after the end of the pandemic as consumer behavior and habit will continue to evolve. Now, if you are ready to step ahead and evolve with them, connect with Saffron Edge now!