Many businesses closed due to low revenues after the authorities implemented restrictions at the start of the pandemic. While some businesses continued to operate, they had to postpone their expansion plans until the situation improved.
Over a year after the pandemic started, the economy began to recover. And with this, many businesses started thinking about increasing their reach into the market. While the health crisis had a significant effect on the situation, companies can implement their pre-pandemic expansion plans with some changes.
Here are the things you should do if you want to expand your business in the middle of a pandemic.
Work on the Supply Chain
The pandemic disrupted the supply chain after manufacturers stopped their operations to slow down the spread of the virus. International travel also stopped as countries closed their borders to travelers coming from other places. Due to this, many retailers had to look for other suppliers that could provide them with the products they were offering in the market.
To avoid this situation in the future, you should work on your supply chain to ensure you have a steady supply of the products you are offering in the market. You should work to implement a real-time monitoring system so that you'll know if your inventory is low. Using innovative technologies can facilitate this for you.
It's also advisable to have a secondary supplier that can provide you with the products you need. But you should make sure that the product has the same quality as the one offered by your primary supplier. If the secondary supplier has a higher price, you should include this added cost in the price of your products.
Focus on Digitalization
With consumers going online for their needs, you should follow them. Aside from connecting with them online, you should also start digitizing your business by uploading images of the products on your website. You should also focus on digital marketing since it's more cost-effective than using traditional advertising channels.
Even though you can continue offering your products in your physical store, you should invest in technology that puts your inventory in sync. This will facilitate the monitoring of sales on your physical and online stores. You should also offer no-contact payment methods to keep your employees and customers safe.
Additionally, you should build your online presence to increase your reach in the market. To do this, you should optimize your website, open an account on social media platforms, and implement an email marketing strategy to reach out to potential customers.
Work on the Local and National Markets
When the pandemic started, businesses with an online presence survived since it was easier to connect with their customers. Aside from connecting with existing customers, they also expanded their reach into the market and connected with customers living in other parts of the country.
If you want to grow your business, you should also work on your e-commerce presence to allow you to reach customers in different parts of the country. You should remember that once you go online, you are already visible to customers across the country. While you can use your local appeal to promote your products in the national market, you should also consider how customers from other places will react to your brand.
To reduce the risk, you should work with companies offering business marketing consulting services. These companies allow you to look at your situation from a different point of view. The consultant will identify obstacles to the expansion plans of your business. He can also provide ideas on opportunities that you can consider when you want to expand the reach of your business.
Offer Pandemic-proof Products and Services
The pandemic had a considerable effect on the demand for specific products and services in the market. For instance, the travel restrictions resulted in low demand for car rental services. It also forced many high-end clothing brands to close after people focused on buying their necessities.
But businesses that made adjustments stayed afloat. Real estate companies started offering virtual property tours, and perfume manufacturers started selling hand sanitizers. These adjustments allowed these businesses to survive the pandemic even as many others had to close.
You need to offer pandemic-proof products and services to help you expand in the market. Pandemic proofing will require you to provide products that you do not usually offer. You will also have to make adjustments to the services to ensure you stay relevant in the market, even in the middle of a crisis.
With the situation better compared to over a year ago, businesses can start working on their expansion plans and reach out to new customers in the market.