Local businesses across the country and world are facing many challenges due to the outbreak.
Let me assure you that our team at ReachLocal are here to support local business owners to keep up and adapt these constantly evolving changes. Here are some quick tips that we believe can help your business stay above the surface during the crisis.
1. Communicate Change
A great way to ease anxiety during times of uncertainty is to be open and transparent when communicating with your employees, clients and the community. Most importantly, it is essential to maintain your customer relationships through the most effective communication channels such as emails, website and social media. It is important that you are consistently updating content across all these channels as the situation is changing rapidly.
2. Manage Your Business Listings
If your business or trading hours have changed, make sure this is reflected on your local listings. If you’ve recently introduced takeaways or delivery options, then ensure to add this information to your description and service area.
3. Don’t Forget About Your SEO
As we are practising social distancing, we are likely to be spending more time online and on our phones searching for all our little needs. From watching movies to playing games to ordering pizzas, consumers are going to be more digitally connected. This is a crucial time for businesses to be even more visible on search engines through a robust SEO strategy.
If you already have SEO campaign running, then consider tailoring your keywords or strategy to better suit the people looking for services sitting at home. Here are a few articles on SEO for your guidance.
4. Implement New Business Models
In hindsight, the series of this tragic event can help you think outside the box, so how about offering delivery options? Since we are practising social distancing and with casual employment in jeopardy, you could consider hiring people for delivery.
One of my favourite wine bars in Sydney has introduced two package combo takeaways to keep the experience of eating out enticing, especially for wine lovers. They have also included limited delivery options for those who cannot step out at any cost. Check it out:
Perhaps consider offering special discounts to your regular customers. Why not!
5. Stay Active on Social Media
Since 2019, there are around 3.9 Billion active users on social media, so it’s safe to say that social media is the most powerful media platform. In this situation, the majority of people are spending a huge chunk of their time browsing their social media platforms. This serves as a great opportunity for businesses to communicate with their followers. Make sure to maintain a positive tone when creating a conversation on your social media profile. Instead of forming an opinion, discuss new ideas collectively, and show your support toward your community and other businesses during this difficult phase.
Just today, I came across a local pet shelter urging for more volunteers and donations to keep their shelter running. Here’s how they communicated on their platform:
Here’s the response they got from their local community:
Also, don’t forget the power of video! It’s a great communication tool to discuss changes, new strategies or just to demonstrate how you are measuring safety in your business.
We understand that the future may seem uncertain. It’s okay. Take time to reflect and maximise your efforts within your capacity. We also want you to know that we’re here to support all our local businesses in any way we can.