Every business whether big or small will have overcome some form of hardship over the duration of the pandemic. As government-issued restrictions and quarantine have become the new “normal”, our average brick and mortar businesses have seen a sharp decrease in traffic. However, those fighting to survive have decided to create a stronger online presence for themselves.
This pandemic has thrust a lot of more traditional and rigid industries into a new and rapidly evolving marketplace where consumers are more reserved and the competition hungrier than ever. Pharmaceutical companies being just one example - typically an industry which relies almost entirely on in-person meetings with doctors, lab trials and other face-to-face engagements. Pharmacies have been forced to look digitally in order to reach and access their customers adopting a much wider range of digital tools from health management apps to utilising online marketing channels to take advantage of a customer base that is essentially isolated.
Not only will this increase their online footprint going forward it also presents advantages by being convenient and cost-effective for both the business and the customer. They can also reach their consumers far more easily through targeted social media ads than any form of legacy advertising such as print.
These services are also applicable to the automotive industry which has seen a steep decline in footfall in retail spaces leading to much lower revenues due to COVID restrictions. This has presented an uncomfortable dilemma to dealerships and brought the effectiveness of the traditional car salesman into question when digital platforms can offer a much more specific and analytical sales process. Some car companies are ahead of the curve on this - such as Tesla. A controversial car manufacturer which since its inception has heavily relied on digital sales- with no ‘dealerships’ in any country but ‘showrooms’ instead that essentially act as spaces where the public can have hands-on time with the vehicle.
Retailers who may have already had a reasonably strong digital presence are also having to rethink their online customer experience. Although 54% of impulse purchases are done online, they are struggling to cope with the decrease of in-store purchases. They have begun personalising the experience by basing it on the individual’s on-site behaviour this is accomplished through extensive user analysis.
It’s no doubt that covid-19 has reshaped many industries worldwide and forced brands to rethink their digital strategy. Many companies who failed to see the vast benefits of e-commerce and online marketing are now catching up with those who were ahead of the curve. Will this new way of conducting business digitally continue after the pandemic is over?