Starting a small Rural Business after Coronavirus

Four in five small businesses are worried that the coronavirus crisis will force them to shutter. While starting a business isn’t what most people have in mind during an economic downturn, others see opportunities in the massive economic shift that includes increased spending on products like fast-moving consumer goods and home entertainment. Here are a few ways for new businesses to accommodate people after coronavirus, while also planning for the future.

Build an online storefront

Even without lockdown or shelter-at-home orders keeping people out of public places, many aren’t eager to return to stores or offices. Less than 10% of people say they’ll immediately start shopping at stores again when the government rules or recommendation allow it. More than half of people say they won’t be back “for some time” or “for a long time” after the crisis is over.

An online storefront – like a website or social media presence – can make it easier to start a business when foot traffic is low. An online store can help your retail business reach socially distancing locals, as well as customers in other areas, while an online menu can help people discover and order takeout from your new restaurant without leaving their homes.

A strong internet connection is key to keeping your online storefront running, especially if you accept online orders. If you don’t have access to cable internet at your business location, fixed 5G or 4G LTE internet is a reliable option for rural areas. Fixed wireless internet uses a wireless router to convert mobile data into Wi-Fi. It’s like a mobile hotspot, but stronger and faster.

Offer deliveries and curbside pickups

Because people plan to return to stores slowly, deliveries and curbside pickups can help boost sales in the months following the coronavirus crisis. Many people tried these services for the first time during the crisis, and some even prefer shopping this way – four in ten people believe that coronavirus fundamentally changed the way they make purchases.

If possible, offer both delivery and curbside pickup. Many people prefer the convenience of delivery, but those who like the “leisure” aspect of making a purchase (getting out of the house, driving to the store, seeing the items before paying for them), choose pickups over delivery.

Launch your business online

While hosting an opening event at your store or office probably isn’t a good idea right after the coronavirus crisis, you can still celebrate your new business online. Take to social media to launch your business with an online event like a livestream. People are more receptive to online events than ever before. So why not use this creative medium to make a splash?

To make sure your livestream is a success, use an internet connection with an upload speed of at least 5 Mbps. Keep your setup simple to avoid as many technical difficulties as possible, and test the audio beforehand if you can. Audio is often more problematic than video, since it’s easier for you to see what your audience sees than hear what your audience hears.

Stephen Kota

About Stephen Kota

Founder & Primary Author

Stephen enjoys photography, boating and gardening. He cares for pet Kois in his water garden.

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