5 Paths For Businesses Through Tough Times

The ongoing effects of the Covid-19 pandemic have caused difficulties for a lot of businesses, both big and small. There have been closures. There have been near closures. And yet, some businesses have been able to find the ‘secret sauce’ that allows them to not only survive but thrive.

It hasn’t been easy to make it this far - nine months into a crisis such as this one, with ‘back to normal’ still an unclear distance away, there are still a great many struggles for business owners, but there is certainly hope. Here are some strategies which might benefit you, if you’re not doing them already:

Increase Your Online Presence

This is an excellent time for that website redesign; Web traffic has increased by 60% this year due to more people staying at home. Researching what your prospects are looking for and finding a clear and attractive way to present it to them is a strategy which will give you an advantage over your competitors and put you in a strong position long after the current crisis is in the rear-view mirror.

Similarly, brand interaction and engagement on social media has increased sharply. While some major brands such as Wendy’s are well known for their witty online presence, the phenomenon of increased B2C engagement is apparent across businesses of all sizes, in every sector. Determining where your online customers live and meeting them there isn’t just a good idea during a pandemic - it’s a 21st century business essential.

Build Relationships

In addition to the social media suggestion above, this can be a time for building and strengthening relationships with customers, vendors, partners and neighboring businesses. For all of our technological achievements and media brilliance, word-of-mouth advertising has a power unlike any other, one founded on an interpersonal trust which cannot be bought with any amount of money.

Give Reassurance

Many people have begun to experience ‘pandemic fatigue’. We’re tired of staying home and social distancing and wearing masks. We want our lives back the way they were a year ago. Unfortunately, the very act of loosening our restrictions is prolonging the crisis, and continuing to endanger the health of us all.

Businesses, especially brick-and-mortar ones, would be well advised to not only continue their own safety efforts, but ensure that customers are aware of what is being done to protect them when they enter a store. Reassurance and confidence come from diligence and transparency.

Rediscover The Spark

History has shown time and again that the businesses which emerge most successfully from a crisis are the ones that saw the opportunity amid the despair, the ones that were able to look past the declining numbers and the dismal projections and see a fresh spark to be fanned into a new fire.

Maybe there is a way to move part of your business online in ways your competitors don’t. Maybe there is an opportunity to diversify your business, to look back at that unconventional one-off transaction you had a few years ago and develop that as a parallel strategy. Maybe there is an untapped market which you had meant to get around to penetrating, but had been too busy to address.

Just like the mythological Pandora’s box, what has been unleashed may be terrifying, but there is also a glimmer of hope at the bottom of the box which, if nurtured and utilized, can overcome all of the challenges we are facing.

Last But Not Least, Is It Time To Sell?

In the last few months, we have very much seen a seller’s market in the world of business brokerage. It is an advantageous time to sell, so if you have been considering that as an option already, speaking with a business broker and getting a valuation of your business will arm you with the information you need to make that decision. Perhaps an entirely new chapter awaits you.