It's 2 am and I am awake wondering how the economy is going to pull through in the wake of covidー19. Wondering how businesses will cope and recover. The losses by the minute are real. Will business continuity plans come through in such unforeseen circumstances? How many businesses even have these in place? It's obvious that spending will now be limited to essentials only - groceries, toiletries, food and medication.
One way that businesses can TRY and stay afloat in the midst of the impending crisis is to make use of their online channels. Hoping you had this set up already and if you hadn't, NOW not tomorrow is the time to get started. I preach hoarse to businesses on the importance of having an online strategy. If you weren't sold yet, now is a good time to pay some attention and act. #GetOnlineAlready!
Here are some ways that you can try keep the sales going:
1. Arrange for home deliveries for your clients. Make use of your client database (hope you were keeping one). Here is where bulk text messages come in handy. Reach out and let your clients know you can deliver their supplies to their homes.
2. Make use of your social media pages. Activate the 'shop' feature on your facebook business page and upload your products. Again, offer to deliver or get the orders online and prepare the items in advance for quick pick up by the clients. This will go a long way in minimizing contact.
3. If you have your e-commerce website up and running, now is the time to direct your customers there. Communicate to them and let them know they have this option. Make use of digital advertisements. If you don't have an e-commerce store, use this time to set up one. There are a few quick wins like Shopify and wix that can get you started almost immediately.
4. Use existing online marketplaces e.g sky garden, Jumia, uber eats, my dawa etc. I hope you were already selling on these marketplaces and if not, now is a good time to start. Sign up, upload your products and make use of their already existing structure and networks. Share your marketplace shop links through your other social media channels to direct traffic there.
5. Remember, customer experience is still king. How you handle your customers especially in crisis moments such as now will earn you the loyalty stamp. Go the extra mile.
6. This is a bonus. PRAY that the second part of Sylvia Browne's 'prediction' comes to pass and that Covid-19 vanishes as quickly as it appeared.
Meanwhile, we Stay positive, Wash hands, Keep safe distance (at least 1 meter), Drink lots of water, Eat lots of fruit and vegetables to keep the immunity up and hope for better days ahead.
If you'd like help with your online strategy, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and my team and I will be in touch.
CEO & Co-founder
AMARI CONSULTING LTD
This article was published on March 16th 2020