The Coronavirus has shaken up the economy of world. With all of its health concerns, industry experts are also worried about its effects on businesses. How are eCommerce businesses affected by it, and What are the key affected areas and challenges? And how can we overcome them?
Many things are happening. The majority part of the world is under strict lockdowns. The governments are advising everyone to stay inside their homes. The people are afraid of getting out, and the stock markets are crashing. Even brick-and-mortar stores are also facing a difficult time surviving. In short, everyone has been affected adversely due to the crises. An eCommerce business is not an exception.
Ecommerce industry owners must be aware of all the things we discussed in this article. Read all guides until the end. We provided a piece of good information that can help online merchants. Those all parts save your business from these pandemics.
The impact of social distancing
Several governments around the globe have employed the concept of social distancing. As in the effects, several major events around the world got canceled. They were impacting several tech giants, affecting the sales of the largest tech giants, media partners, and several small-scale electronic equipment suppliers. One of the biggest tech events, like the mobile world congress, got canceled due to the Covid-19 outbreaks.
The sports tournaments such as the Tokyo Olympics and Indian Premier League got canceled or postponed. They resulted in the loss of millions for organizers and media partners. And several businesses relying on selling merchandise products and tickets for such events got affected badly.
Social distancing also affected B2B businesses. Canceled several business meetings and traveled due to the pandemic. Meanwhile, the consumption of media and OTT platforms increased dramatically. The number of hours spent on such platforms increased considerably. Hence to draw a wide customer spread, Several of them have even come up with attractive offers and increased their ad spending.
When the pandemic was in its initial stage, the governments were shutting all the brick & mortar stores of all the non-essential items. But as the situation was getting out of control, eCommerce also got hit. The supply chain management was getting out of the hands of merchants. Still, with the government’s support for essential services, several stores are getting their control back. But the industries such as fashion, beauty, luxury goods, and several more are affected.
The supply chain may get disrupted
One of the most crucial parts of eCommerce, i.e., the supply chain, will be significantly affected. The supply chain will be affected dramatically by lockdowns, whether you are an established brand, a mid-sized organization, or a startup. The manufacturing sector is under the effects of lockdowns. The Chinese factories are closed. Established brands may manage their stocks from different sources. They will have the cash reserves to face the consequences. But for small-sized brands, a difficult time is on its way.
And your delivery or shipping chain may also get affected severely. Governments only allow individuals related to supplying or manufacturing essential services on roads. Your delivery service providers may need help delivering products. In short, the whole supply chain and logistics will get disrupted.
Facing the pandemic: What can you do?
The global economy is at risk. You should be aware that not just eCommerce but all businesses worldwide are facing the epidemic’s consequences. Here is a list of things that may help you save your business.
Communicate with your suppliers
Communication is a fundamental tool to retaliate crises such as pandemic events. Have a chat with your suppliers. Please have a good idea of their condition. Rather than bragging about their pending deliveries, be human, and understand the situation’s sensitivity. And ask them to do the needful if they can.
Accept orders only if you can deliver
The countries are under strict lockdowns. Your shipping partner may need more time to deliver your products. And in the end, the consumers directly go to local essential supplies stores. And the local stores are also facing a need for more goods. At such a moment, if you have control over your supply chain, then only accept the orders. Rather than having the inbox filled up with customer complaints, it’s better to understand the situation and shut the doors.
Order goods from wherever you can
The Chinese suppliers are under the storm. If they were your direct suppliers, you must also look for other options. Several other countries can also deliver the same quality goods with some price hikes. You can check in your own country too. Getting goods from the same country will save on transportation costs too.
Keep on nurturing your customers
Due to the current situation, the delivery system will get affected. The delivery partners will not be able to deliver. And every customer may need to be patient like you. Hence rather than getting complaints, inform them in advance about your situation. Ask them to support and be generous about the circumstances. Contact them with emails, text messages, or phone calls before they lose their minds.
Stock up your inventories
The Covid-19 outbreaks do not go in a while. Hence count this order as your last encounter with your supplier. He may only be able to fulfill your orders if the situation goes out of his hands. Hence before the storm arrives, fill up your stocks to fulfill future demands. But also keep checking your delivery system. If you cannot deliver, then there is no point in stocking up your warehouses.
Consumers are only focusing on the essentials
Due to the lockdowns and the risks of infection, consumers avoid going out. It is the question of life surviving. The consumers are spending money only on groceries and medical supplies. And due to the panic, the leading essential store chains need more supplies. The conditions of bulk buying, product shortages, and empty shelves are happening. The consumers are stocking up on the necessities.
In week three of the crisis, the transactions in grocery stores increased by 10.9%. On the other hand, the traffic on premium groceries has decreased to -20.7% after seeing a temporary hike of 4.7%. And health care also has seen a whooping traffic hike of 27% between weeks two and three of the outbreak.
A little list of pros & cons for this crisis
As we all know, the current situation has numerous cons. But there is a bright side to it too. Here is a list of pros & cons that may help you survive the pandemic. Let’s talk about the good aspects (pros) first.
- The consumers prefer to stay inside. Hence this could be a golden opportunity for eCommerce. It is an opportunity to build trust with buyers and help them survive the crises.
- The demands for medical supplies, groceries, and all essential services have increased dramatically. If you are into that business, a golden opportunity awaits you.
- Pollution around the world has reduced considerably. Mother nature rescuing herself. Good for humanity in the long run.
- The world has come together to fight the crises. It is an opportunity to fight back together and prove that team spirit can beat anything.
Now, it’s time to hear the bad news (cons).
- The businesses are getting shut down. The economy & stock markets are crashing.
- The world may face the recession and economic crisis of 2008 once again.
- The people relying on daily wages are going through unimaginable trauma.
- The education of the future generation is getting affected a lot.
- Thousands of saddened deaths due to the Coronavirus will be affecting their families.
The wrap-up (keep the patience, we will pass this too)
The risk of Covid-19 outbreaks is real. But with business excellence and patience, they are manageable. Global trade has been affected badly by these events. But every crisis comes with a solution. The vaccination of the disease will take a while to come into existence. But till then, keep the things mentioned above in mind. Try to get the best out of whatever situation you are in. Stay inside, and stay safe!!