With the business environment radically changing since the outbreak of the novel coronavirus, the majority of stories we have been seeing concern businesses that are losing revenues, laying off their employees, and closing down. Things are no longer the same. Before the pandemic hit, most of us took things for granted and never expected such disruptions to happen so fast.
But in the midst of all this madness, something quite interesting is happening, and only a few people have noticed it. While restaurants, hotels, bars, movie theatres, educational services, and a wide range of other small businesses that largely depend on foot traffic and in-person interactions have suffered, some other businesses have actually thrived.
Business success with COVID is being attributed to the ability of these enterprises to evolve and adjust their operations successfully to account for shifting customer demand. There is no doubt that COVID-19 has brought success to some people.
For instance, the liquor delivery business saw their orders skyrocket during lockdowns while clothing retailers who started producing face masks after the outbreak also reaped big.
Generally, businesses that help individuals to social distance from others, health services, and retailers that enable people to eat and drink at home are good examples of business success with COVID.
Here is a quick overview of some of the small business types that are experiencing a strong demand during the pandemic period.
1. Delivery Services
With a lot of people afraid to leave their homes during this period, professional delivery companies have stepped up to ensure goods are delivered to businesses and homes promptly.
Nationwide food packaging and delivery services have been the biggest beneficiaries, although delivery services in other smaller towns are also seeing an increase in demand for their services.
While companies are laying off their workers, delivery service companies are hiring more drivers to meet the rising demand.
2. Cleaning Services
With the spread of COVID-19 across the country and world, it is no surprise that professional cleaning services that clean and sanitize offices, restaurants, bars, and homes are in high demand. Today, everyone is striving to keep their homes and workplaces clean and sanitized to stop the spread of the virus.
The government has even issued new sanitization guidelines for businesses in the wake of the pandemic, which are expected to remain in place even after the virus is defeated.
As the economy continues to open up and businesses resume normal operations, the market for deep cleaning and professional sanitization services continues to grow.
3. Liquor and wine stores
With many bars closed around Canada due to COVID-19, local liquor and wine stores have dramatically increased their sales.
Liquor store managers in major cities such as Montreal admit that it has been quite difficult to keep up with the demand for beer in the past few months with a lot of people wanting to stock up at their homes.
Financial experts have observed that most individuals are actually buying in mass hysteria. At the start of the pandemic, when the panic levels were at 100%, a lot of people rushed to buy alcohol to make their own hand sanitizers while others were stocking up out of fear of getting locked in.
Either way, this has helped liquor, and wine stores generate more sales than ever before.
4. Utility Companies
The utility industry hasn’t missed anything during the pandemic, and it is for a good reason: These are essential services that individuals need to pay for, no matter the situation. The utility industry features businesses that provide a wide range of services such as natural gas, electrical power, and sewage removal.
Anything that deals with the generation, transmission, treatment, and distribution of these services falls in this category. In fact, the unemployment rate in the utility industry has been lowest during the pandemic period.
Research shows that the unemployment rate during September in the industry stood at just 2.2%. Compare that to arts, recreation, and entertainment industry which recorded a 26% unemployment rate, and you will understand what we are talking about here.
Generally, utility companies have registered little to no impact at all from the pandemic.
5. Meal Prep Delivery Services
Many of the top brands in the meal prep industry are recording high sales due to individuals spending more and more time in their homes and less time at eat out joints. Taking full advantage of this trend, most enterprises that offer meal prep services are seeing a sudden increase in demand for their services.
The surge in new orders is coming from both new and returning clients. Some of them have reported an increase of up to 50% in their orders, and the figures continue to rise.
Basically, a lot of people still want to enjoy externally prepared meals but can’t walk into a restaurant because most of them still remain closed.
6. IT Services and Online Support Technology
Just after the outbreak of COVID-19, there was a general increase in digital adoption. Research shows that we actually vaulted five years forward in consumer and business digital adoption in the first few weeks of the pandemic.
Since the outbreak of the virus, there has been an increase in demand for digital services that support remote working and learning environments as well as telemedicine.
More and more people are becoming digital to cope up with the new norm. They depend on a wide range of information technology services, including cybersecurity, tech support, website design, and software development.
The virtual services and the tools needed to run them are expected to remain around even after the end of COVID-19.
What Are These Businesses Doing Differently?
So, why are some people experiencing business success with COVID while others are suffering? Well, businesses that seem to be doing well during the pandemic are taking a second look at how they are positioning themselves in the market and how their day-to-day operations can be improved to suit the changing environment.
They are doing everything possible to ensure the safety of their customers, employees and anyone else who may come into contact with their products or services. These businesses understand that in times of uncertainty, people’s routines and purchasing behavior tend to change drastically.
Therefore, there is a need to identify and invest in new technologies to adapt to the changing business environment. Many of these businesses haven’t stopped investing in their employees and technology. Instead, they are taking precautions and ensuring they stay one step ahead of their competitors.
Now, more than ever before, businesses must understand the environment we are living in and adapt to it accordingly to remain competitive. Such companies will not only survive during the COVID 19, but they will also get ahead of their competition.