8 Ways to Grow Your Business After Lockdown
COVID19 has been a challenging time for all businesses across the country, and everyone is eager to return to normality. But times of crisis present opportunity, as well as hurdles to be overcome. For some it may not be a time to return to business as usual, but to go beyond. Consumer behaviour has changed drastically over the lockdown period, and many of those changes look here to stay. There have been winners and losers across the board, and regardless of how your business has fared, it is time to look to the future and see how you can have the best chance of growth in an uncertain commercial landscape. We have created this guide to help those looking to do just that.
- Adopting the right mindset: It is inevitable that in the coming months there will be a lot of negativity reported, including job losses and economic turbulence as businesses begin to count the true costs of the lockdown period. However, it is important to understand that the impact will not affect all industries equally, and many will bounce back and flourish quickly. It is vital to not only remain positive, but to believe that opportunity is still out there, and the fundamental laws still apply – hard work and planning will pay off.
- Cut your overheads: The lockdown has been a time of reassessment and reflection for everyone. Businesses will need to make savings and be lean to thrive in the post lockdown environment. Evaluating your overheads is the start of that. One overhead UTP can help with is the cost of your card transactions, get in touch to make sure you aren’t paying more than you should be.
- Look for new audiences: Diversification and broadening your potential customer base are going to be key processes for businesses seeking to grow in the post quarantine world. This could involve looking globally and seeking international markets for your products, especially as the world comes out of lockdown restrictions at different rates. It could also involve looking to sell your product online, or to adapt your current business model by delivering rather than relying on footfall. If you are looking to take your business online check our guide on this.
- Maintain your marketing presence: It is tempting at this time to take the focus away from marketing and return it to the core business, however marketing remains an important tool to reach your customers, but the means of doing so may have changed. It is worth tailoring your content to allay fears customers may have around safety; to show that you are adhering to social distancing and taking reasonable safety precautions; or to highlight that your product is valuable in a period where many have an increased amount of free time. This was successful for many hobbies and crafts businesses.
- Design your products around the ‘new normal’: while the lockdown has been eased, many of the measures and consumer behaviours are here to stay. Long term success may in part come from ensuring your products meet the needs of a changed consumer, this includes offering services that minimize face to face interaction.
- Make savvy use of the financial help at hand: there are numerous grants, loans and other financial packages being offered by the government and private financial institutions to ensure businesses survive and continue to grow even in these tough times. This may be the perfect opportunity to take that capital and look at ways it can be used to supercharge your current operations, whether by buying new stock, or spending it on a new advertising campaign. For a full list of help currently on offer, take a look at our guide to this.
- Upskill your staff: Your employees will be essential to making any expansion plan a success. As the workloads of many employees may be reduced, this is a perfect time to upskill your staff by sending them to relevant online courses.
- Put in the hard work: One thing that has not changed is that any plan to expand is going to require hard work to make it a success.
These are just some of the considerations to keep in mind if you want your business to expand in these unprecedented times. For many businesses at the moment, the priority may be simply to remain trading and that is a valid goal that can also benefit from many of these tips. To those looking to expand however, we repeat the mantra that uncertainty presents opportunity, and for those bold enough to ride out the storm, there may be treasure waiting at the other side.