- Increased sustainability
In a society with many environmental challenges such as catastrophic weather events, oceanic garbage, extinction of species and rising temperatures, small businesses have no option but to participate in initiatives meant to help save the environment and life. Consumers are concerned, and this trend might define the viability of businesses in the coming years. According to a study by the National Retail Foundation (NRF) and IBM, 62% of the respondents noted that they are more likely to apply for a job in environmentally responsible organizations. Among those interviewed, 48% stated that they are willing to accept lower pay in such organizations. From this, it is evident that employers will, from now and in the future, be responsible for implementing meaningful change.
- Ecommerce will remain important
The pandemic changed the setup of businesses in a way that it might not return to what it used to be. It accelerated a shift from brick-and-mortar stores to digital shopping through e-commerce websites. From clothing to groceries and other consumer products, shopping is not done mostly online, with items delivered at home. This gives consumers more say and increases efficiency, convenience and safety. To ensure that businesses remain competitive, they should adopt a hybrid approach to shopping. This approach involves both brick-and-mortar stores, using mobile apps and using websites.
- Customers will continue seeking alternative methods of payment
The pandemic has disrupted the payment of goods and services, so it might not be possible to alter the previous way any time soon. While this disruption has affected operations, it has also hastened the process of moving from traditional payment systems to alternative systems such as mobile pay applications, debit cards and contactless payment options. In 2022 going forward, more contactless payment options will come up, and the existing ones will receive the competition. As such, small business owners should prepare for the demand for applications, mobile wallets and other forms of digital payment. This is critical for the development of any business.
- Customer service will need more empathy and personalization
Customers have, over the years, become increasingly demanding. Additionally, the stresses that most people went through in 2020 and 2021 have made things worse. As such, there is an increasing need for compassion and understanding by businesses towards their customers to help them get over the anxiety caused by the occurrences of the past two years. When it comes to choosing a place to spend their cash, consumers will always prioritize an empathetic organization where the best quality products and services are offered on top of it. Therefore, as we advance, you might need to invest more in training your staff because frustrated staff will affect customers.
- Remote work will keep rising
A few weeks into the pandemic, many services were transformed, and workplaces changed from physical offices to mobile engagements among employees. This enabled businesses to continue operating even with massive assaults by COVID-19 and related disruptions. The pandemic has created a new norm, and employees have expressed interest in continuing to work remotely even after the pandemic. This means that online or remote work is a new trend that small businesses must prepare to accept.