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Challenges Small Businesses Face a Year After the Pandemic

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It has been more than a year since the pandemic started. Even if economies are slowly opening and more businesses are slowly gaining momentum, not all managed to cope and thrive during the new normal. Many small businesses are still struggling due to how quickly our ways of life changed.

All these getting accustomed to, along with the new demands and expectations of consumers, made it hard for small business entrepreneurs to keep up with the new normal. There are new rules, and regulations brands have to stay compliant with. Don’t forget about the many distractions and issues that came along with the pandemic.

Many small brands are already struggling even before the COVID-19 crisis arrived. The pandemic only exacerbated issues and brought about new challenges hunting entrepreneurs until now, like the following.

Financial Challenges

Small business entrepreneurs are already fighting to keep their businesses afloat even before the COVID-19 crisis started. Cash flow shortages make it quite difficult to run a business. Not to mention the additional financial costs brought about by the new health and safety rules and regulations advised by health experts and the government.

Some entrepreneurs are looking forward to investing in brand-new types of machinery to make their operations more seamless. Bakeries, cosmetics, and food and beverage businesses needing to expand operations require accurate equipment like liquid filling machines. But without the extra funding, all these investments won’t become a possibility.

Those who used to run brick-and-mortar businesses had to take their brand online. Since many consumers already migrated to online shopping, they were left with no choice but to start investing in online marketing. While this can boost a brand’s online conversations, we cannot deny it requires consistent investment, adding to one’s expenses.

Entrepreneur’s Stress and Anxiety

Everyone’s anxiety and stress levels surged mid-pandemic. It does not help that entrepreneurship is already stressful as it is. When the crisis came, many businesses struggled, with some even having to close their companies.

Those who managed to stay open or return to business are consistently bombarded with stress and anxiety. Not knowing when the pandemic will end and if they will ever make it another year continues to plague their mind. Not to mention the current issues they are facing that make them even more anxious and stressed.

With their family and employee’s health at stake, entrepreneurs need to show excellent leadership skills in the middle of the crisis. They need to make sure everything is working as efficiently as possible despite the many threats of the crisis. Basic self-care strategies for entrepreneurs may no longer be enough if your stress and anxiety levels are sky-high.

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Reopening Blues

Small business entrepreneurs who put their business on hold and are planning to start again fear that their grand reopening won’t be as successful as they want. For one, it has been a while since they were able to cater to their old customers. They fear that their clients may no longer want their business, as many other similar companies emerged during the crisis.

Some have also relocated their business elsewhere. Since they were out of options during the crisis, they had no choice but to move their business to a new and often secluded location. This can be in their own home, near their residence, or even another business location far from their old one.

They fear their old customers not knowing they are already back in business. The marketing tactics they relied on before may no longer work as many people are still sheltering in place. Opening a business on a smaller scale to make way for social distancing rules only adds pressure to the already stressed-out entrepreneur.

Convincing Customers They Are Safe in Your Business Premise

Even with the efforts of small businesses in reducing the risk of the spread of the virus, many customers are still afraid of dining in restaurants, shopping in physical stores, and spending more time inside business establishments. For brick-and-mortar businesses, this leads to less foot traffic and a decrease in revenue.

Entrepreneurs work so hard to boost customer confidence. They invested in numerous solutions to remind consumers what they do to keep everyone safe within the business premises. Many are even investing in marketing campaigns showing all their safety efforts.

Some businesses are even refusing to serve other customers who fail to follow simple health and safety protocols. Others opted to publish content on their websites and social media to tell customers what they can expect when visiting their business. Entrepreneurs are exhausting every effort they can squeeze in to show bring back their customer’s trust.

Running a business in the middle of a crisis will challenge your entrepreneurial skills. Even your brand’s ability to cope with the new normal will be put to the challenge. Know that for every challenge, there are ways you can tackle each one. It takes solid planning and your willingness to solve these issues to help your brand stay resilient despite what the crisis throws at you.

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