Over the last two years, as the corporate community across the globe embraced a “new normal”, small businesses have had to adapt to survive in a post-pandemic world. Thousands of businesses have changed their business models, introducing new products or diversifying with new channels to better reach their customers.
Now, as we move into 2022 and beyond, we see new trends emerging among small businesses. Below, we have identified three major trends that are redefining the way these businesses operate, whether it is online, offline, or somewhere in-between.
An emphasis on creativity
One thing the pandemic forced many businesses to do is to re-examine their previously held assumptions, such as the need for certain business activities to be conducted in-person. As a result, we saw a collective outpouring of business creativity, and exciting ideas were born.
Many entrepreneurs turned their passion into a living, taking to social media to reach their target audience. Now, you can see new Instagram business pages springing into existence every single day, ranging from homemade food, clothing, cosmetics, homeware, furniture… you name it! In 2022, we can expect businesses that have found a home online to experiment even further, by combining the power of creativity with digital insights to keep their customers engaged.
A new era of customer communications
In this digital era, about three quarters of adults globally say that they want to communicate with businesses via messaging, the same way they do with friends and family. This allows for greater personalization in customer communications.
We are seeing this happen even now; many local businesses now communicate with their customers via social media and social messaging apps such as Viber or Whatsapp. In a country where the majority of consumers utilize such platforms on a daily basis, this makes the customer experience much more convenient. It allows small businesses to help answer queries faster, provide better customer service and truly connect person-to-person.
Bridging the gap between physical and digital
The pandemic has accelerated our advancement into the digital age, with more and more small businesses pivoting online to bridge their physical offerings with a new virtual experience. Many small businesses are now operating in a hybrid model – which means that they are maintaining a physical distance by selling via e-commerce platforms.
By figuring out how to balance both in-person engagement and an online presence, businesses can maximize their reach to the largest possible consumer base, without the hindrance of geographical immobility.