If you own a non-essential small business, no one needs to tell you how challenging the last few months have been. And if you’re reading this, chances are your business has survived. However, that doesn’t mean that your success is guaranteed for tomorrow, much less for the next year or more. That’s why it’s important to reflect on what has made your company work well and what you can do to improve your prospects in the near future as COVID-19 restrictions begin to loosen.
Here are some ideas to get you thinking.
Think of What You Can Offer
When it comes to products and services, think of anything new that could help customers and contribute to the greater good during the pandemic.
- Some small businesses have stepped up to offer new products and services like making hand sanitizer, making face masks, and donating bedsheets to hospitals.
- Selling your products online makes it easy for customers to purchase from you.
- Offering curbside pickup is another way to make the customer experience a safer one.
- As your store begins to reopen, even if at a limited capacity, offering special discounts can help you off-load products while also making your customers happy.
Tweak Your Marketing Strategy
Effective marketing has never been more important for businesses of all kinds.
- First of all, be sure to communicate to your customers that you value them and are making your best efforts to respond appropriately to the pandemic.
- Also, try to humanize your company, and make it clear what changes you are making.
- Email marketing is still an effective method of reaching your customers.
- However, social media is king when it comes to small business marketing in 2020.
Seek Financial Assistance
Fortunately, there are resources for small businesses during this difficult and uncertain time.
- In order to qualify for funding, you’ll need to register your business, if you haven’t already. Most entrepreneurs opt to form a limited liability company, or LLC, because it comes with tax advantages and removes you as being personally responsible for your business’s debt. There are services that will help you register your company online.
- The Small Business Administration (SBA) has several relief options available.
- There are also assistance programs available at the state and local levels.
- Making changes to bank and credit card operations, free financial planning, and stimulus checks are a few other ways that institutions are stepping up to help.
Restrictions are loosening and stores are beginning to reopen gradually. If your business is still afloat, now is the time to put all your energy into figuring out how to thrive in the coming months and years. Start by determining what you can offer customers and the general public, adjusting your marketing efforts, and finding the financial assistance you need. Doing these things can help put your business in a position to flourish in the short-term and long-term.