Reaching and serving your customers online and on their mobiles, where it’s safe and convenient, is a long-term success strategy.
The COVID-19 crisis has transformed the way that customers buy products and access services across business sectors. Digital touchpoints such as mobile apps and e-commerce platforms have made it possible for customers to buy the things they need, order dinner, send gifts, manage their finances and much more from the convenience and safety of home.
The OECD reports that in the UK, e-commerce’s share in retail rose sharply during the pandemic. This was already growing steadily, from 17.3% to 20.3% between Q1 2018 and Q1 2020; and then shot up to 31.3% between the Q1 and Q2 of 2020.
Another notable trend in this space has been the increased adoption of digital and low-touch activities by people who had never used these channels before the pandemic. For instance, a study by McKinsey found that first-time users were responsible for more than 50% of the increase in online grocery shopping and curb-side collection from restaurants, among other activities.
By stepping up their reliance on – and confidence in – digital channels in this way, customers have allowed companies to stay in business in spite of shelter-at-home measures and contact restrictions. It is vital, however, not to view the shift to digital as a short-term survival mechanism or stop-gap measure to get your business through the crisis.
In 2021 and beyond, customers are likely to maintain the momentum to digital, as they look for safer and more convenient channels for engaging with businesses and accessing goods and services. Going forward, customers expect to be offered more digital touchpoints from the brands they know and trust, as well as the new brands they’re reaching out to.
What does this mean for your business?
In a nutshell: the shift to digital you perhaps imagined for the future, now needs to become a reality.
If you want to remain relevant and stay in business, let alone build a competitive advantage, you need to offer your customers the choice of virtual shopping and service channels, such as a branded mobile app, an online store and more.
These are safe options during times when people want to avoid travelling to restaurants, grocery stores and other crowded establishments. They are also attractive options for customers who value convenience.
When you think about it, taking advantage of the strong demand for digital channels now will allow you to expand your customer base and boost sales. And if you make your virtual customer experiences exceptional, you’ll be in an excellent position to earn customers’ loyalty and advocacy – so that digital becomes a successful long-term growth strategy for your business.
Building digital touchpoints is easier than you may think
The good news is that, thanks to the proliferation of readily accessible technologies and digital skills available today, developing digital channels such as apps and websites is easier and more affordable than you may think.
If you’re looking to meet your market’s expectations and remain relevant with a branded mobile app or online shop, the team at Webtex Limited offers custom solutions that are built around your needs, timeline, budget and, most importantly, your customers’ expectations.
The pandemic has created an upswing in digital adoption among customers and highlighted the value of offering customers safer, contactless services as a long-term retention and growth strategy. If you’re ready to take advantage of the opportunity – and critical need – to offer your customers user-friendly digital touchpoints today, get in touch to discuss your requirements.
Don’t just see this as a matter of survival, but rather an opportunity to delight customers, build a competitive advantage and future-proof your business.