Trying to keep your retail business afloat and maintain relevance during the COVID-19 pandemic? Here is a Survival Toolkit for entrepreneurs
Are you struggling to settle into the new normal of social distancing and working remotely? We provide some tips to help your business to not only survive, but hopefully thrive throughout these challenging times. To state the obvious: Retail business as we know it has never gone through an event like this, at least not at this scale or magnitude. Due to this the game rules are being written on the fly.
In your store you should ensure physical distancing of 1.5m to reduce in-person contact between your employees and your customers. Your counter queues should be orderly and properly spaced out. A key thing is to maintain high standards of hygiene at your store. Provide the appropriate materials to your staff and customers such as hand sanitizers or running water and soap to ensure that they constantly clean their surfaces and surroundings.
In case you haven’t already, set up new buying options for your customers such as home delivery or click & collect. One way we are adding value to our merchants during this time is by listing them in our directory where customers can buy directly from their website so as to promote online sales. Re-orientate your staff to implement simple processes from taking, picking and preparing orders.
Now is definitely not the time to run down supply in your store. Whenever your customers come to buy and they find that you are running out of stock it will begin to cause panic and they might choose to look for an alternative. You should consider stocking more of certain items such as edibles because they are increasing in demand.
Following the directives given by the government to ensure that both consumers and business people are protected, cashless payments are a good way of reducing in person contact at your store. Using a point of sale solution will enable you to accept both card payments and mobile money at your store. The Pesapal Sabi terminal is a great way to start, you can order for the machine online and have it delivered at your store by one of our sales executives.
Keeping an open line of communication with your customers is a great way of reminding them that you are still open for business. It is important to inform them about the measures that you have kept in place as a business to ensure that they are safe even as they interact with your products such as maintaining social distancing and washing their hands anytime they walk in.
In business it is important to keep in mind that the more that people see you the more that they remember you. One of the ways of marketing your business during this time is by creating valuable content that will educate, enrich as well entertain your customers. You can hold online workshops and events where you put together a workshop kit that can contain value addition ways in which they can use the materials in your shop. Such things will help you stay relevant during such times.