Small businesses are a critical component of the US commercial sector, employing about half of the US workforce. However, pandemic has struck the world devastating small enterprises. Due to the pandemic's rapid indignation, many small companies were forced to close their doors.
"The small businesses continue to be big contributors to the US economy, while their contribution has grown at a slower rate than that of large businesses, small businesses continue to be at the forefront of driving innovation, jobs and economic growth."
- Acting Chief Counsel for Advocacy Major L. Clark
The coronavirus altered the way businesses work and presented several challenges to small business owners. As a result, they had to shut down their businesses owing to the downturn. However, few stood firm and continued their business operation, adapting to a new norm of business culture.
The pandemic compelled businesses to embrace digital transformation
and digital technologies; everything moved digital, from commerce to education, from medical consultation to work. Covid paved the path for new business trends and operating methodologies that were previously unavailable to small firms. Small enterprises must adapt to new modes of operation and build adaptable business models.
The pandemic is here to stay, and we should be prepared to live alongside it while maintaining a regular existence. Thus, a few adaptations are here to stay, and small businesses must be prepared to coexist with them.
Adaptations To Last Post-Covid
Embracing The Digital Transformation
Throughout COVID-19, numerous small company owners smoothly accepted and implemented digital transformation in their operations. They moved their whole operation online, from promotion to sales. They prioritized data security, offered their products through eCommerce platforms, accepted digital and encrypted payments, incorporated innovative technology into their operations and decision-making, and launched AI-based customer care tools.
The idea of turning digital was challenging for small businesses, but the coronavirus compelled them to accept and act intelligently. Embracing technology was critical to small businesses surviving and remaining anchored during the pandemic crisis. Adapted digital shifts enable small businesses to grow
digitally and strengthen themselves while also expanding their reach. As a result, businesses that are digitally driven are sure to endure longer.
Kevin Johnson, CEO of Starbucks, added 1900 outlets and had a 7% unit increase in a single year. The business achieved the objective by utilizing Deep Brew, an artificial intelligence-based
application. The AI analyzed statistics such as population, traffic, income levels, and the presence of rivals, among other things. The gathering of such data aided the business in forecasting sales, earnings, and other economic performance indicators.
Collaborative And Partnership
The collaboration proved to be a gift in disguise for small firms in the aftermath of the pandemic. Small companies gained access to a much larger audience through partnership, which was critical for survival during the crisis.
The pandemic taught small company owners the value of teamwork and partnership in ensuring the business's stability and survival. Collaboration with influential organizations expands the market and provides exposure to prospective clients. In addition, it contributes to brand reach while enhancing brand credibility.
Collaboration solves financial problems, helps you save money, enables network growth, higher profits.
Hybrid Business Models
Many organizations have transitioned from traditional or linear business models to hybrid business models due to disruptive Fintech players, technological advancements, and changing customer behavior. A hybrid business model combines classic and non-traditional product sales tactics. Additionally, the hybrid business model is referred to as "multichannel commerce," "bricks-and-clicks," or "clicks-and-mortar."
A hybrid company model represents a novel path to success. This model uses software, cloud, artificial intelligence and machine learning, hardware, and a combination of conventional and non-traditional services to operate the business. Extensive preparation and analysis are required to iron out the wrinkles of large-scale implementation of the hybrid business model.
A hybrid business model brings in several advantages such as:
New sources of revenue
New means of communication and collaboration
It contributes to meeting customer requirements and propelling us forward into the digital future. The hybrid company model is optimal since it enables you to make the best of everything and produces the highest quality product.
eCommerce's New Trends
During the pandemic, the eCommerce business was highly active. Everyone went to the internet to provide their services; everything from food to personal necessities was available online. As a result, the already-crowded eCommerce industry expanded by up to 44%.
Several eCommerce trends garnered prominence during the pandemic, including omnichannel strategy, voice search, voice shopping, mobile commerce, green consumerism, drone delivery, leveraging augmented reality to build virtual changing rooms, and artificial intelligence. Additionally, these patterns will persist post-pandemic, owing to the popularity of eCommerce among both consumers and company owners.
eCommerce is one such slow progression that exploded in popularity after the financial crisis and is here to stay.
Frequently Asked Questions:
How has the pandemic affected small businesses?
The pandemic had a profound effect on business, and as a result, many small firms were forced to close their doors permanently. In addition, small company owners were forced to respond to the economic upheaval caused by COVID-19 by adopting new business practices.
How has technology helped small businesses grow?
Technology was critical in helping small businesses weather the recession. Small company entrepreneurs may now communicate with their clients using digital channels such as email, blogs, and social media. The emergence of the internet world and new technology has aided in the growth of several small enterprises.