Many people praise Mirabel for her business holding steady during the lockdown / social distancing era. They marvel at how easily she adjusted to it all and her business just kept on working smoothly when her colleagues all had to make some tough decisions like halt operations, or drastically reduce output.
To outsiders, it seems that Mirabel’s cosmetic shop was helped by divine intervention. Mirabel is a believer in a higher power, but that was not her ammunition in this case. Her weapon: she was ready.
She ensured that loopholes and areas that threatened her business were efficiently dealt with. Let us tell you how Mirabel safeguarded her business;
- First she clearly communicated to her customers that she was dedicated to ensuring their safety and that of her staff.
She took measures such as acquiring face masks, gloves, hand sanitizers and staff operation on shifts (to ensure appropriate social distancing). This action endeared her to her customers as they admired her commitment to keeping her staff safe, her customers safe and happy and their operation so that they could make ends meet.
- She increased the amount of delivery orders she took exponentially.
She suggested delivery as a way to get items to her customers and she also helped them along by using the services of affordable delivery agencies. She made the delivery option more appealing to her clients by giving them a discount on the next purchase after a delivery sale.
- She made use of online platforms to reach more clients.
Mirabel accepted that the world has changed to depend heavily on online methods of doing things, even business. She signed up to an e-commerce platform and put her products on the site. Because of this, she was able to reach clients who only shopped online, who have never been to her physical shop, who saw her items on social media etc. She was able to make sales and receive payments without them having to come to her shop. She also posted video tutorials of her using her cosmetic products to reach more audiences on social media.
- Cashless is the new trend.
Mirabel knows that Mobile Money is used by the majority of people in the country, she is also aware that many people also prefer to pay for purchases with their bank cards. However, now more than ever, people were more uncomfortable with physically handling cash as it was not a very hygienic process. Mirabel capitalised on this by getting a Mobile Money account with all the available networks (who provided such service), got a POS device to process bank cards, QR Code payments, USSD etc. She also gave small discounts for certain e-cash transactions that were above a certain amount. These made customers very pleased to do business with her.
- Stock was always available at her shop.
Mirabel knew that now was not the time to run out of stock. She keeps a good relationship with her suppliers who would in turn, go the extra lengths to deliver stock to her shop. She made sure that she had adequate quantity of everything in her and that they were of the highest quality. Customers appreciate a dependable business.
- Pamper your customers
Mirabel went on a discount and a promo galore. She knew that if she pampered them enough, the more they would come back and buy from her. As a good business woman she knows that the quantity of purchases would make up for whatever the discounts and promos would cost her. It is more than worth it for a happy customer.
Lastly, but definitely not the least, Mirabel knew to communicate all these great measures and discounts to her staff and customers. She made social media posts, pasted print-outs in her shop, bolding stating the promotional offers and all the fun measures she was taking.
Shockingly, Mirabel is our average business woman who made sure that her business could withstand shifts and changes. As and when they come. So can you.
How to keep your business afloat during social distancing was originally published in KudiGo Inc on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.