It is a well-known fact that COVID-19 will change the world like never before. Businesses have spent most of the last year struggling to adjust to unusual circumstances. Although the battle against the COVID-19 pandemic has not yet been fought, with the vaccine in sight, there is at least a faint light at the end of the tunnel—along with the expectation that another train is not coming our way.
The year 2021 will be the year of transformation. In the absence of any unforeseen disasters, people, industries, and culture will begin to look forward to shaping their future rather than just running through the moment. The next normal thing is going to be different. It’s not going to be going back to the terms that existed in 2019. In fact, just as the words “prewar” and “postwar” are widely used to define the 20th century, generations to come are expected to address the pre-COVID-19 and post-COVID-19 periods.
With 2020 closing by, small businesses are hopeful that 2021 will be a brighter year. While the pandemic has been front and centre since the beginning of last year, there are other developments on the horizon for entrepreneurs to watch as well.
2021 brings in a few business trends for small business entrepreneurs that you can try. Below is the list of some business trends that will bloom in 2021.
- COVID Credit-Card Rate Cuts
In the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, consumers are paying a steep financial toll, and the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC) is setting itself apart with its financial assistance for hard-hit clients. The bank launched the ‘CIBC Pace It’ initiative, which provides no fees and low interest on credit card transactions over $100, with installment plans now available. Multiple installment plans can be set up and handled, with payment periods ranging from six to 24 months and interest rates ranging from 5.99 percent to 7.99 percent a year.
- Pandemic Relief Banking Tools
Starling Bank, a British fintech firm, recently launched a new digital banking Toolkit as well as a US dollar account. The new tools were created in an attempt to assist British small and medium-sized business owners in managing their finances as the economy slowly recovers.
The new account allows business owners to spend directly in pounds and dollars with a single debit card, create, send and track invoices, automate expenses, record VAT, and connect with HMRC to submit VAT returns. Moreover, the account enables customers to upload bills and schedule payments to manage cash flow.
Starling Bank revealed that Toolkit will be free for the first three months for customers who sign up before July 31, 2020, to assist companies with their post-COVID recovery.
- Employer Health Testing Programs
In the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, the grocer’s healthcare division has unveiled the Kroger Health COVIDCare Plus initiative to assist companies and brands in returning to normal business operations.
The COVID-19 Home Collection Kit, which allows an individual to conduct a self-administered test and communicate directly with a licensed healthcare professional for supervision, is at the core of the employer-focused program. The program seeks to improve a company’s ability to have workers tested in order to prevent the spread of disease and provide them with peace of mind.
- Airline Rapid Testing Services
Many health authorities have now approved rapid COVID-19 testing, and companies are now considering offering it as a service to their customers. This makes sense for airlines, particularly because the outbreak has had such a significant effect on the industry.
According to Reuters, German airline Lufthansa has included rapid COVID-19 testing in their passenger kit. The test will be open to first-class and business-class passengers starting in October. This is due to the fact that test availability is limited.
- Meal Delivery Vouchers
Uber for Business recently announced the introduction of a new Uber Eats platform that allows companies to customize meal plans for their employees and consumers. The new vouchers can be used for anything from single lunches to 1,000-person virtual events. The program is managed through a dashboard that allows employers to tailor their employees’ meal spending by setting start and end dates for vouchers, limiting the number of orders, and keeping existing features like ordering times and spending caps in place.
These granular offerings allow companies to easily meet the needs of both their workers and prospects as working from home becomes a future, even as economies slowly reopen.
- eCommerce Analytics Platforms
The ‘Sellerium’ platform seems to be a solution for eCommerce professionals that gives them access to a wide range of analytics that they can use to improve their company. Professionals will have access to tracking statistics for 20,000 vendor groups and more than 10 million items across the app, which will be used to control listening.Sellers can then adjust to the evolving demand to increase sales, or even pivot their current goods to cater to a particular customer need.
The ‘Sellerium’ platform will also provide a listing SEO review, which will look at the bullet points and details while also checking for any inconsistencies or inappropriate language.
- Online Tutoring Resources
Tutor Doctor, a prestigious tutoring company established in 2008 with over 90,000 highly trained tutors, has introduced new e-learning capabilities to assist families through the daunting changes of the “new standard.”
The company caters to students of all ages, from elementary school to university, and helps them succeed in their studies.
Students are matched with a tutor based on their needs and given a “tailored learning plan suited just for them” by the new online tutoring resource, which provides the same attention and commitment as an in-person tutor.
Tutor Doctor is available in 16 countries, including the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Ireland, Ecuador, Australia, Mexico, Chile, Costa Rica, Peru, Panama, Guatemala,Nigeria, Tunisia, South Africa, and Columbia.
- AI Development Bots
The ‘Maya’ AI business bot is a virtual solution for entrepreneurs that will assist them in automating some of their workflow in order to save time on unique tasks. The artificial intelligence (AI)-powered solution works by assisting with operations and R&D, allowing the entrepreneur to concentrate on the overall growth of the company. This could help them cut down on the amount of hours they spend coping with day-to-day activities, allowing them to concentrate their energy on more important tasks.
The ‘Maya’ AI business bot is one of an increasing number of AI-powered business solutions that help entrepreneurs spend less time on tasks that are necessary but not relevant.
- Delivery-Only Restaurant Chain Ventures
With the spread of COVID-19 keeping many people from eating out, the ghost kitchen would allow restaurant to serve customers in the area without having to invest in a costly physical venue. Customers can order from the ghost kitchen by going to their preferred participating app and selecting the things they want delivered.
In the United States, Red Lobster is expanding its menu to include a new ghost kitchen in Chicago, where customers will be able to order their favorite Red Lobster dishes from third-party delivery services such as UberEats, GrubHub, and Postmates, as well as DoorDash.
“Red Lobster places a high value on off-premise dining. In the two years leading up to COVID-19, we tripled our off-premise revenue, and we’ve tripled them again in the last eight months. The next logical step in growing our off-premise company is to open a ghost kitchen. It will allow us to reach out to new customers who are looking for great seafood and a hassle-free off-premise experience.” CEO Kim Lopdrup said of the company.
- Omnichannel Customer Service
In this pandemic era, people are beginning to keep their relationship with customers close and smooth. Applying good quality customer service seems to be a priority in some cases. But for those who are having a hard time keeping those relationships with their customers because the high flow of the message coming to the company is too much, there is a solution.
The omnichannel messaging platform is all the hots for 2021. Omnichannel can integrate multiple messaging channels and put them on a Single Dashboard so you can see all the messages from all your messaging platforms.
This will be useful for business because you can also monitor your customer service agent when they work. But this all will be possible with a trusted omnichannel brand, OneTalk by TapTalk.io.
OneTalk offers a good deal for you in turn of so many amazing features that could help your business. Starting from Real-Time Agent Activity Tracker that could track you agent performance, Disposition that can see the analytics of your interaction with customers, and you can even use WhatsApp Business API services without a hassle of the registration.
- WhatsApp Based OTP
With people trying to cut cost to all unnecessary spendings, using WhatsApp as a platform to send One-Time Password will be better in all accounts.There are a lot of proofs that said WhatsApp based OTP is more secure than that SMS-based OTP.
Many experts admit that sending an OTP code via WhatsApp is safer than using an SMS-based OTP. SendTalk offers more consistent delivery. A more conventional way of sending notifications via SMS or Call relies on a cellular signal. You can get faster delivery times via WhatsApp. No more problems with mobile providers.
With a lower cost compared to the SMS type OTP, SendTalk will be more profitable than the SMS-based OTP service. With SendTalk, imagine how much money you could save, instead of using an SMS-based OTP which costs from Rp350,00 to Rp500,00. The rates offered by SendTalk are certainly more affordable than SMS-based OTP.
The COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc on the economy and on people’s lives, and it’s far from finished. However, with the launch of vaccines, it’s possible to be cautiously hopeful that the new standard will emerge this year or next.
And we agree that normal could be better in certain ways. The changes we described—in efficiency, green development, medical innovation, and resiliency—could provide an enduring framework for the long term with good leadership from both businesses and governments.
**For more information about OneTalk and SendTalk, do not hesitate to contact the team by WhatsApp or email!