Businesses big and small are feeling the financial burden brought on by COVID-19. With an unexpected pandemic that left many non-essential businesses closed to the public, the future of businesses is unknown for many.
To stay afloat, business owners are getting creative — that means thinking outside the box and adjusting the way they do business during this time of uncertainty.
So, what can you do to protect your business during a pandemic?
Protecting employees is top priority and says a lot about a company. Businesses that are considered essential and are remaining open should do what they can to keep employees safe. This means providing masks and gloves for employees to wear, adding barriers between employees and customers, and keeping them home when they are sick.
While it’s not possible for all businesses, those that normally work in an office setting may be able to continue working from home. It’s important for business owners to train their employees on how to access the company servers from home, should there be an emergency situation such as a pandemic, which would allow them to work remotely. By having a backup plan, business can continue and employees can get their paychecks.
Host virtual meetings and events
Zoom meetings have become popular among the quarantined workforce. It is a great way for business owners to keep their scheduled meetings and events. Whether it be getting team members together for a brainstorming session, hosting a monthly board meeting, or even replacing a cancelled physical event with a virtual one, Zoom has made it easy to stay in touch with employees and customers alike.
Offer curbside pickup & delivery
More businesses are offering curbside pickup and delivery options for customers who are interested in purchasing their products and services. Business owners can fill orders behind the scenes, servicing customers with no contact.
Promote gift cards
For business owners who cannot be open during the pandemic, offering gift cards is a great way to keep revenue coming in until things are back to normal. Many customers want to continue to support their favorite local businesses and offering gift cards allows them to do just that.
Despite being quarantined, customers still want and, in many cases, need to shop. That’s great news for retailers who have been forced to close their doors, as they can utilize their website and social media pages to sell their products online. Think about it: aside from the many customers who need groceries and don’t want to risk going out in public, there are children learning from home who need school supplies, and people who need new clothing, after they’ve outgrown last season’s. Even if a business website does not have the functionality for a storefront, business owners can get creative and post their items on a Facebook album where customers can buy directly.
Share on social media
Now, more than ever, it’s time to improve your social media marketing. Due to people being home on quarantine, social media engagement is at an all-time high. Instagram engagement is up 76% and time spent on Facebook is up to 70%. It’s a great time to communicate with customers, ask for their feedback, and offer them support. Keep them engaged with video and eye-catching imagery.
Give back to the community
Businesses throughout the nation are using their resources to help their communities by making masks, producing soap and hand sanitizer, and donating meals to medical professionals. Working together to support one another is essential in this time of need.
By being creative and thinking about business a little differently, you will survive the storm.
Murtaza Jaffer is the co-owner of EBC Printing of Trexlertown. He can be reached at email@example.com