22 March 2021|Crisis Management, Latest Posts
During times of crisis, it is vital that businesses adapt their offerings and services to meet the ever-changing needs of their clients.
Every industry sector has faced its own unique challenges during the pandemic and, regardless of the product or service you provide, a one-size fits all approach is not going to be the most appropriate action to take when helping your clients through these tough times.
Businesses that are flexible, offer understanding and innovate are most likely to retain customers and continue to push through.
With this in mind, here are some ways you can adapt to your customers’ needs and offer support during times of crisis:
Understand your clients’ needs
Many consumers’ needs and behaviours have changed dramatically because of the pandemic. By keeping an open dialogue with your clients, you can understand exactly how their needs have shifted and the problems they are facing and, armed with this knowledge, you will be better equipped to tailor your approach to offer appropriate support.
By letting your customers know your business is there to help, you are illustrating that you value their custom and are willing to go the extra mile to ensure you offering them the very best service.
If your client does require extra support to adapt to the current climate, you can discuss the issues they are facing in more detail to determine how your business may be able to assist them.
It is also beneficial to keep up to date with developments in your clients’ industry, especially in relation to the pandemic, as this can inform your approach and allow you to tailor your services and products accordingly.
Be innovative in the ways you can help
During times of adversity, people are looking for providers who can develop, re-design or expand current products and services to suit their changing business requirements.
If we take the hospitality sector as an example, an industry that has been subjected to a range of different government restrictions throughout the pandemic, businesses have had to continually adapt to carry on trading in some form. Whether this has been moving to a takeaway menu during the first, second and third lockdown, or enforcing a table-only service when operating under the tier system. These constant changes are something suppliers of the industry have needed to adapt to by offering new and innovative products.
By offering your clients new products and services that allow them to continue operating during the pandemic, you can demonstrate your value and ability to work alongside their business model seamlessly, which will translate post-pandemic and aid customer retention.
As we begin to see some light at the end of the tunnel with the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine, it’s important to look to the future and try to pre-empt how trading may look for your clients.
When businesses can resume steady trade again, they will be looking for the help of their suppliers. By already having ideas in place, you can approach your customers with suggestions, some of which they may not have even considered.
If you think ahead now, you can offer your clients great solutions and products that are ahead of the curve and will suit their needs going forward. Those who consider how the business landscape will look post COVID-19 are the ones who will thrive as we move out of lockdowns and government restrictions.
During a crisis like this, being open-minded and adaptable is essential for business survival. Your customer base, how they communicate, their points of struggle and their accessibility have all changed within a small amount of time, and they are likely to change again. Therefore, it is vital to continually revisit your business model and check if it is still meeting your clients’ needs or if you need a fresh, new approach.
About the Author
Richard Cox is managing director of Langley Business Systems. The business is the West Midlands’ leading provider of integrated EPoS solutions and technical support spanning the retail, hospitality, garden and leisure industries.
Langley Business Systems has recently acquired Compass Computers, a business who specialise in specialises in providing hardware, bespoke software, websites and IT support for schools, care homes, and businesses, to expand Langley’s offering and enable the business to provide additional services for existing customers and expand into new markets.