Covid-19 - 26 May 2020
Covid-19 is Prompting Digital Transformations
The COVID-19 virus has spread throughout the world and left no industry unaffected. Countries are locked down and companies are facing many challenges to continuing their businesses and looking for ways to survive the pandemic successfully. To combat this challenge efficiently, offline retail stores, clinics, financial services, and many other businesses are jumping into the online business arena.
In almost all sectors, the fundamentals for both offline and online businesses are the same, but the way they engage with customers varies. Where an offline business engages with people in person, an online business gets involved with people virtually. However, the ultimate goal of both is to make a sale. Because of the fear of the virus and the temporary closure of many physical business locations, people now look for online products and services, more so than usual. For this reason, many offline sellers and service providers have gone online to connect with their target audience, in the hopes of continuing to make sales and keep their businesses alive.
This is easier said than done. On their way to digitalization, an offline business that did not already have an established, professional online presence has to make several preparations, depending on their products, services, and size:
• They must create an engaging, responsive, and user-friendly website through which they can sell their products and services.
• They must promote their website through various channels, such as search engines and social media platforms to reach their target audience.
• For physical goods, they must create proper procedures for effective product delivery, including packaging and shipping.
Some businesses are making this easier by using established ecommerce platforms to sell their products and services.
However, simply going online and reaching their customers through online channels is not all that is needed for a business to cope with this pandemic period. Simultaneously, they may have to make major changes in the way they do business. Here are three major digital transformations that a business can make to face the challenges successfully:
With many business premises closed, business owners and managers cannot meet with their teams in person for discussions, but collaboration and meetings cannot be abandoned, because they are necessary for ensuring proper business operations. However, with the many technological options for team collaboration, including project management software, as well as video conferencing apps such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams, teams can effectively work together without meeting in person.
Streamline Processes with AI Technology
When potential customers connect with a business through online channels, such as a website contact form or shopping cart, it is vitally important to nurture every lead to maximize business opportunities. Qualifying leads with AI software can save a business time and ensure that valuable leads do not slip away. Well organized data mining and lead nurturing can increase business conversion rates and lead to an increase in sales.
Most visitors do not just visit a website and immediately buy. They need follow-up with enticements, additional information, and repeat contact to get them to commit to a purchase. AI can make this follow up more consistent and easier to execute.
A Strong Business Continuity Plan
Companies should consider building an effective business continuity plan to ensure everything is running as it should. There should be clearly defined procedures and a proper system to ensure that remote staff knows what is expected and to track business targets. Software programs are very helpful for this purpose.
For companies that have not adopted these solutions yet, it is not too late to start and take control of their businesses, to find new ways of reaching and serving their customers. To make the transition easier, they can reach out to an expert digital marketing company to take their business online and reach their target audience. With user-friendly software and apps to enable collaboration, tracking, and lead nurturing, they can get successfully get through this time of uncertainty and remain viable and relevant for the future.