How businesses have had to change their online presence due to COVID-19

30th July 2020

When we were considering what 2020 was going to look like and the ways in which we could support our customers, we certainly did not anticipate that a global pandemic would change the world seemingly overnight.

As countries went into lockdown, businesses across the globe had to make quick decisions to adapt to the situation.

For instance businesses had to figure out how to facilitate entire workforces working from home.

In addition, finding new innovative ways to connect with customers and still be able to provide your products and services.

It has certainly been a wake-up call to many about how they had managed their online presence prior to COVID-19.

Here, we’re going to take a look at the ways businesses have had to change in the wake of coronavirus.

1. eCommerce solutions

Many businesses traditionally rely on having physical stores for customers to visit. As the ability to trade in this way ceased, it became essential for retailers to provide customers with an online alternative in order to stay afloat. For many, this meant a complete overhaul of their online presence.

A great example of this is a long-standing customer of ours. Lola’s Cupcakes is a bakery with stores located around London, and they found themselves having to pivot in order to survive. This meant an overhaul of their website to allow customers around the UK to continue ordering cakes and groceries. Additionally a change that helped them handle four times the number of orders they would normally receive through their eCommerce platform.

For other businesses, Coronavirus may have simply meant a website refresh. This is likely something that had been on the radar for a while, and was accelerated by COVID-19 and a sudden boost in web traffic. This shifted the priority to ensuring your website looks good and offers a positive customer experience. This is a crucial and worthwhile long-term investment that will generate more sales for your business.

2. Creativity and community

Some businesses have had to get a bit creative to stay in touch with their customers during lockdown. Another customer of ours, a Martial Arts foundation, is now offering Krav Maga classes online. Restaurants have pivoted from serving customers to selling ingredients and hosting cookalongs online. Many companies have demonstrated interesting and innovative ways to keep on serving their customers and engage with their community online.

The same can be said for companies developing initiatives to keep their staff informed and engaged. Friday night drinks became Friday night online pub quizzes. Monthly incentives became home-based scavenger hunts. Companies brought in motivational speakers, yoga teachers, and comedians to host via Zoom, in the aim of boosting morale and promoting wellness and health during lockdown. Alongside this, many companies created resources, videos and webinars to support their staff, utilising technology to do this.

3. Apps

Another way that companies have made the most of technology during lockdown is through developing apps. The ultimate goal is to make access to their products and services even easier for customers and clients alike. From apps that enable users to browse and purchase products, to those that provide access to resources and systems. Many businesses used lockdown to ensure they were able to make the most of the spike in mobile use caused by COVID-19.

4. Social media

Social media has also been a fantastic tool for businesses during the pandemic. Businesses that were lackadaisical with their social media output prior to lockdown have had to up their game in order to reach their customers and remain competitive. Creating content, videos, vouchers, discounts to communicate with clients have proven beneficial to businesses that had to work hard to survive while doors had to remain shut.

The need to very quickly adapt to a new normal has meant some drastic changes for businesses over the course of lockdown. The need to adapt to survive has meant that companies have had to dive into digital in a big way, and that can’t be a bad thing! We predict that for many, these changes are here to stay.

If you’re looking to boost your online presence, be that a new website, full eCommerce site or iOS/Android app, we can help. Our team builds sites that are lean, fast and search engine optimised and we grow businesses by building great websites that drive traffic and generate more leads.

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