When the pandemic swept the world, many businesses dependent on face-to-face interactions stopped operations permanently because their clients and buyers stopped coming. People now avoid going out except for essential trips.
Retailers were among the businesses hit hardest by the pandemic. Large retail companies filed for bankruptcy. E-commerce sales, however, increased by 44% in 2020 against figures in 2019.
The pandemic is changing the mode of doing business. Consumers and clients across demographics are now online. As they experience the convenience of online shopping, they also seek other online solutions to their needs. To survive in the new normal, businesses must then also move online and address their target audience through digital marketing. This is true even for businesses that are not in the field of retail.
Build an Interactive Website
In pre-pandemic days, many businesses had static websites that served only as banners announcing their existence online. This is now a huge mistake and a missed opportunity.
The website must now take the place of a business storefront and office. It is where the business must interact with clients and customers to close a deal immediately. There must be a way for visitors to purchase goods or services right away. Including online payment seals the transaction.
This means a business must invest in a professional website that has all the necessary technology. It must hire a competent website building service that will also provide maintenance around the clock.
The website must load fast. All links must be working. The service must address any glitches immediately. The website must not be offline at any time as much as possible. Clients and customers can be online at any time of the day or night.
The website building service must optimize the company website for use on mobile phones. Many people use their mobile phones more than their laptops or desktop computers these days.
The website can have a chatbot that can provide immediate answers to inquiries. It is much better to have a website manned by staff who will attend to visitors, though. People respond better to live chats. The website can include a messaging app where staff can provide immediate assistance and support.
For businesses that involve professional consultations, the website can be a platform on which clients can schedule an appointment for an online meeting.
A website must have well-written content. A business website can also include a blog with articles related to the company’s goods or services. These articles can attract potential clients and customers.
Depending on the type of business a company has, virtual reality can be a useful tool. A real estate company, for instance, can provide potential buyers with virtual tours of available properties. Galleries are now doing the same for their art shows.
Attract Targeted Traffic
Even if the company website has all the bells and whistles, a business will not gain much from it if it does not attract the attention of its target market. Hiring an effective lead generation service will drive targeted traffic to the website. These people are interested in what the business is offering and are most likely to become clients or customers.
A company must ensure that it has the best possible placement on Google listings and other search platforms. People do not use only traditional search these days. There is also an increase in the use of voice search and image search. A business must be in the optimum position in all these searches. Professional services can ensure this.
Another valuable means to drive traffic to the website is through social media. People are spending a lot of time across many social media platforms during the pandemic. A business must have a social media expert to create and manage its social media marketing campaign. This involves a short-term and long-term plan, regular posts that are attractive to the brand’s target audience, timely response to queries and comments, and positive engagement with visitors.
Social media influencers are the new brand ambassadors, and they can further widen the reach and increase credibility for a brand. A business must identify an influencer whose image and message are consistent with that of the brand.
Thriving in the New Normal
Even as Covid-19 vaccines are being rolled out, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is still undertaking assessments to determine their effectiveness.
Meanwhile, new Covid-19 variants are appearing. This means that people will still be taking precautions and will continue to stay home most of the time.
This is the new normal, and businesses must operate under these conditions. By migrating online and exploring the use of new technologies, businesses can continue to survive and even thrive.