6 Ways to Overcome COVID-19 Impact on eCommerce Businesses


April 20, 2020
6 MIN READ
Vinculum
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Vinculum
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With the technological advancements and breakthrough innovations disrupting the industrial landscape constantly, fast-paced life has become a norm.

Nothing did seem unachievable with new tools and technologies being introduced to the mix on a rather regular basis.

Yet, the entire world has come to an abrupt halt, lately. And, this can be attributed to the Coronavirus outbreak or otherwise known as COVID-19. Soon, this outbreak is taking the entire globe by a storm and assuming the role of a pandemic with no end to be seen.

COVID-19 impact on eCommerce businesses

COVID-19 has presented an array of challenges in terms of health, and welfare of the citizens of close to 30 Nations. The worst part is that no known treatment or cure has been identified yet and only prevention seems to be the best course of action, lately.

As a preventive measure, citizens are asked to stay home, if necessary, under quarantine and urged to maintain social distancing. While the health and welfare scenario look grimmer each passing day with the number of positive cases amplifying exponentially, the adverse impacts don’t stop just at it.

The economic downturn is emerging as one of the glaring downsides of the corona outbreak. Most businesses are forced to restrict their operations and experiencing a substantial decline in terms of sales, and revenue. eCommerce businesses are no exception.

In this article, we would like to walk you through all you need to know about COVID-19’s impact on eCommerce businesses and the ultimate combat strategies. Let’s have a look at 2 major negative impacts of COVID-19 on eCommerce businesses.

1. Discontinuation in the production chains

Most factories, production houses are being shut at the outset of preventive measures to combat the exponential spread of Coronavirus. This eventually impacts the production and distribution chain.

While large enterprises might have alternate inventory options or may seek alternative suppliers, small and medium businesses are bound to get the brunt of the disrupted supply chain.

2. Declining consumer activity

The lack of enough inventory or stocks are going to have a direct impact on the shipping domain as well. Anticipating this, even the consumer activities across the globe are also on a declining trend.

Consumers are hesitating to make online purchases in the current scenario, and this is sure to slow down the eCommerce sales and revenue.

6 ways to tackle the impact of COVID-19

Here are 6 fail-proof strategies for eCommerce business owners to stay put in the trying times of COVID-19.

1. Stay connected with the manufacturer base

With the corona outbreak, staying indoors has become the norm. And, many might struggle with the feeling of isolation and detachment from the outer world. At this juncture, communication is the key. It is of utmost importance for the eCommerce owners as well.

eCommerce businesses must plan to strengthen their supplier relations despite the rapidly growing crisis. They must reach out to their major suppliers or manufacturers and understand the ground reality. It will help them gauge the situation efficiently and make the right move to avoid the supply shortage crisis.

2. Look out for alternate supplier sources

While staying connected and strengthening relationships with existing suppliers is crucial, it is always pragmatic and logical to have a backup plan. With COVID-19 presenting real-time challenges rapidly, suppliers may encounter unavoidable contingencies.

eCommerce businesses must look for alternate suppliers and forge positive interactions. While they are looking to expand their supplier network, it’s also advised to look at countries like India and other developing countries where the corona outbreak is still contained.

3. Get back to what you do the best

From a positive perspective, the Coronavirus outbreak may have something good in store for many eCommerce businesses.

Since the fast-paced business operations have come to a halt, eCommerce owners may utilize this time to stop and reflect. It is a good time to analyze their product portfolio, revisit their policies, and practices and identify loopholes, glaring or subtle.

Leaders have always considered crises as opportunities. And, eCommerce businesses should take to this. They can try and strengthen their core activities and top-selling product portfolio to balance out the decline in revenue from the disruption of usual sales.

4. Boost customer relationships

Customer satisfaction has been a prominent business objective and will continue to stay significant. Maintaining a healthy customer relationship is even more essential in times of crisis. And, simple, honest and personalized communication is key, here.

Customers are already aware of the supply shortages and eventual delays in deliveries. However, by communicating the same in real-time will do wonders in keeping their brand perception positive. To garner unwavering customer trust and loyalty, eCommerce owners must leverage all of their communication channels such as websites, email, and even social media presence to stay connected with their customers.

5. Adopt an alternative strategy

The corona outbreak might have an array of adverse impacts on the eCommerce sector in terms of disoriented supply chains, customer service concerns and decline in sales. While most customers are refraining from ordering lifestyle products online, there is still a huge demand for groceries, medicines, and other healthcare products such as masks, sanitizers, etc.

eCommerce businesses stand a chance to make a mark by exploring this avenue. By offering the on-demand products on time to customers, they can boost customer goodwill. With social media and digital word-of-mouth marketing playing a substantial role in the current time, eCommerce businesses may obtain a new customer base.

6. Reflect, revisit and rehash

While most of the above strategies focus on the external variables, let’s not forget the crucial role the eCommerce workforce has to play in these trying times. eCommerce owners are advised to embrace the work-from-home strategy, if not dome already. By strengthening the internal workforce, they can attain the external success.

eCommerce owners must make the most of this new-age work culture with a set of action plans. They must

  • Set concise, and crisp expectations for their internal workforce
  • Enable their staff with the requisite infrastructure to operate seamlessly from their homes
  • Communicate with the staff on a regular basis to strengthen employee goodwill and morale

For more queries, do reach out to the experts at Vinculum, today!

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