Six Business Trends To Know and Navigate Through 2021
Six Business Trends To Know and Navigate Through 2021
Photo Credit: iStock.com/ Ridofranz
2020 threw a wrench into everyone's plans. Suddenly, our daily routines were completely uprooted, and we had to adjust to the "new normal." Businesses were affected in ways that required even the most seasoned and successful entrepreneurs and professionals to rapidly adapt and respond. We had to adjust to using Zoom for our meetings and find creative ways to conduct business in the age of social distancing. Now that the new year is underway, it is important to be able to look ahead as best you can. No one knows for certain what 2021 will bring, but here are some top business trends and tips to navigate through them in the year ahead.
1. Videoconferencing and “Videobusiness” is Here to Stay
While the creation of COVID-19 vaccines has produced a great deal of hope that things will return to normal in the future, for the time being, we will still be living amidst the pandemic for a great part of the year ahead. As a result, businesses should expect videoconferencing and doing business through virtual platforms like Zoom and Microsoft Teams to continue. As videoconferencing and videobusiness grows, so too will the need to continue to adapt your sales process and business practices. Expertise in delivering your company’s message “in front of the camera” will become more essential for you and your team. Many providers of software provide expert training in this area at no cost, so be sure to exhaust those training and support options before spending scarce dollars unnecessarily. Remember, if your “work from home” space isn’t conducive to an undisturbed and professional setting, private office solutions with office hours packages such as the ones offered by Quest Workspaces may be perfect for your business.
2. Local May Be More Important Than Ever
There are several reasons for businesses to consider their balance of local and international sourcing and production right now. International trade tensions, particularly between the United States and China, have forced American companies to think of their businesses at a more local rather than global level. COVID has added to considerations of where companies source resources and inputs for their business. Travel restrictions have also made international trade more difficult. These issues combined, have made businesses reevaluate the importance of local business production and sales, and this trend will likely continue into 2021. Be sure to be in touch with your local chambers of commerce, as well as other trade associations locally and nationally to stay aware of options that could help your business decisions regarding sourcing and production.
3. Social Media's Role In Marketing
2020 forced us all to rethink how we conduct every facet of our businesses, and this was particularly true for marketing and communications. With tighter budgets due to the sudden financial insecurity, conventional forms of marketing may not be as accessible and effective as they once were. Meanwhile, the need to reach out to customers is more necessary than ever before. One significant trend is the increased role of social media in marketing and communications. While businesses often devote a large amount of their marketing budgets on professional agencies to outsource social media, a less expensive form of marketing can be done in-house, or by reaching out to colleges and universities to engage interns with great expertise and understanding of social media. Before you embark on more expense than you may need to incur, be sure to explore all of your options with a creative mindset!
4. Time to Learn a New Skill
Businesses were forced to make tough decisions in 2020, and while many of us experienced major hardships, there have also been bright spots. One trend that will carry over into 2021 is the time needed to learn new skills or refresh skills you already have. In the remote world of the pandemic, virtual education has been on the rise, and this has not only been beneficial to students, but also to professionals wanting to cross-skill or upskill. Many programs, like the coding instruction service Codecademy, have gained popularity. These educational tools are often free and allow you to gain skills that may help your business moving forward. Other platforms such as Udemy and Coursera provide extensive education across a range of diverse subject areas.
5. Cybercrime Continues to Be a Threat
On a less optimistic note, cybercrime has been one of the major downsides to an increasingly virtual world, and this will likely continue through 2021. It has been estimated that over $1 trillion in losses was attributed to cybercrime in 2020. This demonstrates the need for increased focus on cybersecurity. Companies are conducting more and more business digitally, and while this opens up possibilities for more business, it also can potentially lead to more vulnerabilities to cybercrimes. Be sure to reach out to your providers of processing and cyber technology to ask for updates and training on cybersecurity. Likewise, encourage your chamber of commerce and other professional associations to host webinars on these topics so you can stay informed without having to spend your valuable business dollars unnecessarily.
6. Curbside Pickup and Contactless Delivery Will Remain Important
As companies developed creative ways to keep their operations going with new social distancing guidelines, curbside pickup and contactless delivery have been two incredibly beneficial solutions. These methods allow businesses to continue to provide their products to customers even if a full physical shop may not be realistic right now. As COVID continues to increase this need, contactless delivery and curbside pickup systems are likely going to grow as an important part of businesses in 2021 and beyond. Your point-of-sale providers should have some great solutions for your business, so call them to brief you on the options that are best for your business.
The outlook for 2021 is one that projects a year of continued change and venturing into new ground. There is no way to know for certain the paths to take throughout the year ahead, but staying in tune with trends, reaching out to resource networks, and adapting your business step-by-step will better enable you to navigate through these times with the support to help you.
Quest Workspaces is here to help and support you with flexible office options and virtual business solutions that provide a professional and productive environment for your business to grow. To learn more about our hospitality-focused private office solutions, virtual services, office hours packages, and enhanced Zoom conference rooms, all with award-winning support staff and flexible terms, please contact us.
We’ll create a solution that will work for you and your business.
Quest Workspaces supports a safe, undisrupted and compliant work environment. Our workspaces focus on private offices with onsite support that enables social distancing, and also offer virtual office packages and remote services to keep your business moving forward from your home or Quest office. Contact Quest today to find a flexible solution that works for you, and discuss how to benefit from our services while also complying with local COVID-19 mandates.
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