In 2021 most businesses are looking for ways to rebound from the disastrous year that was 2020. As well as dealing with the ongoing Covid-19 crisis, there are many new variables affecting business such as how products and services are offered and delivered which will have an impact well into 2021 and beyond. There are also other market forces to consider including the impact of big-box stores and being able to offer a fast delivery service that customers now expect.
According to "Go-Daddy" half of the businesses that they surveyed had a website or active social media account before the pandemic hit. The number has now almost doubled but businesses who want to maintain their market share in 2021 will have to go further and adopt platforms that do everything in one place, sales, email communication and marketing. When businesses improve their digital systems and at the same time continue to offer top class customer service they are more likely to survive. This could include using the Canadian platform Shopify so customers can order and pay online, and then offering them the bonus of fast local delivery. For those businesses who are behind in creating a digital presence they should be thinking seriously about investing in online in 2021.
For those businesses who are wondering how they can compete with the fast delivery service offered by Amazon, or the prices offered by the big box stores the answer is don't. It is better to work on offering what the big retailers don't - excellent customer service and the personal touch. Once you have an online platform to offer customers a fast and easy ordering service, expand on that by offering free local deliveries, discounts for in-store pick up, curb-side pick-up, and personalized invitations on key dates such as birthdays and anniversaries.
To make your customer's experience at your store memorable think about offering little extras such as a hand written thank you note attached to the bag, or a small free gift in the bag such as a chocolate, pen, bookmark, fridge magnet etc.
When you are building your brand it is important to work on earning customer loyalty, not only do you need them to return to your store for more of your products or services but also to recommend you to their friends, relatives and colleagues. You need to tap into what is important to your clients. If they like to support their local stores provide them with a branded reusable shopping bag. Remembering their names and the names of their children will make them feel special. Encourage repeat customers by offering VIP offers or discounts. Positive interaction with your clients goes a long way to advertise your business and good service is always appreciated even from a distance.
From an article by iCapital
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