Small Business Solutions: 2022 Trends to Use to Your Advantage

Saying that the past few years have been rough for small businesses would be a gross understatement, with 54.6% of small business owners claiming that the impact is not over yet (and 26.1% being unsure about it). It is clear that small businesses are still feeling the heat. With such pressing issues, small businesses are ready to capitalize on every opportunity that comes their way to stay afloat. 

If you are on the lookout for the same, the following are some key trends of 2022 that can help you make a resurgence:

It Pays to Go Cashless

Cash payments are no longer the go-to medium for business transactions. If anything, currency exchange has nearly been killed off, incentivizing cashless transactions. As a result, small businesses must adapt to this change and support the cashless economy by allowing:

  • Credit or debit card payments.
  • Payment apps and platforms.
  • Digital and mobile wallets.
  • Proprietary business apps.

Such a move also rakes in benefits, such as reduced operational expenses, greater security, and improved customer experience. That’s not to say that you stop accepting cash entirely, as you will still have customers preferring cash payments. However, expanding your buffet of options will also increase your client base and earn you more revenue in the process.

Customer-Led Growth

Customers and customer experience continue to remain the key driving force that determines the success of a business. As such, small businesses that focus on making the customer experience memorable – right from the point where they come across your ads on banner stands until when they complete the purchase at checkout – will stand the test of time.

The best way to harness this opportunity is by researching the ongoing trends and customer demands prevailing within your industry and making appropriate changes to your business model to accommodate them. For instance, 72.1% of Internet users prefer websites that are in their native language. Therefore, making your website multilingual can facilitate this demand and improve the customer experience.

Tap Into Online Revenue

Even if your small business is running successful operations from a brick-and-mortar store, going online is instrumental to long-term growth. You may contest that you do not have the budget to create a compelling and trustworthy online store, and that’s a fair argument. However, online marketplaces can be a great starting point to get your foot in the door and funnel enough digital revenue until you can establish a robust online presence.

If you wish to put this measure on your “to-do” list, consider the fact that 39.7% of small business owners are already planning to invest or increase their investment in digital marketing. Against such a backdrop, the failure to take immediate steps will put you miles behind your competitors.

Go Green (or Go Home)

Businesses and consumers have become increasingly aware of the impact of commerce on the environment. As such, businesses are taking actionable steps to make their organization eco-friendly through various measures. Some are resorting to recycling schemes, while others are working on streamlining manufacturing or obtaining natural, renewable, or recycled raw materials.

Given this trend, businesses should also get the word out on such initiatives by advertising the measures. You can install decals across your store, inform buyers through a newsletter, or practically display your commitment to the betterment of the planet by switching to reusable marketing assets like banners, signs, step and repeats, and more.

Hybrid Workforce

The Great Resignation of 2020-2021 has left all businesses struggling to find talent. Small businesses are especially left in the dust, as they cannot meet the offerings of large enterprises to retain talent.  The talent shortage is so intense that 51% of small business owners consider increasing their staff a top priority for 2022. 

Since monetary remuneration is out of the picture, small businesses can leverage remote working options as a differentiator when hiring and retaining talent. Seeing as how 61% of employees are willing to take a pay cut if they can work from home, creating a hybrid workforce could even prove to be a profitable move for small businesses.

Greater Transparency

With businesses turning to malpractices (like Greenwashing) or making promises that they cannot keep, customers have grown to value transparency and honesty over any other business value. Small businesses can harp on this string across all operations – from manufacturing to shipping – to reassure their clientele that they are willing to put their money where their mouth is.

Such trust-building activities will also foster long-term customer relationships, which will play a critical role in sustaining business growth over the years. Given that an increase in customer loyalty by 5% can uplift profits by 25 to 95%, earning customer loyalty is any business’ dream!

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