In a recent survey, small business owners were asked to share their top three business concerns for 2021. Because we represent a number of business owners, we thought it would be helpful to share this information along with input on how these concerns may be addressed.
Much of US business is or is becoming e-commerce driven. The coronavirus pandemic is a major catalyst driving nearly all business sectors to remote shopping and delivery systems for goods and services. Economic impacts that linger as a result of COVID-19 are of great concern to US small businesses, with 30 percent stating it is their most pressing concern. Another 21 percent in the same Small Biz Trends survey say lower consumer demand and lower sales will be their greatest challenge in 2021. Small business accounts for a huge sector of the American economy. In 2020, according to e-commerce behemoth Oberlo statistics, small businesses accounted for 99.9 percent of US businesses or 31.7 million.
An online presence is invaluable. In 2021, the US consumer base is at home and online shopping for goods and services. Whether a small business is implementing its initial online presence or reinvigorating an existing one, adapting to new business climates and consumer demands is key. Online marketing efforts, including brand and content strategy, scalable technology development and implementation, client acquisition strategy, and lead generation, are the basic building blocks to compete for new clients, contracts, projects, partnerships, and opportunities. The more quickly a small business can pivot to a robust online presence, the greater the likelihood of generating new and keeping existing business in 2021.
A strong online presence must have great communication abilities. Articulating what your business is about online is only the beginning. Content marketing, social media outreach, blogging, search engine optimization, and cross-marketing are all part of a sustainable, flexible, targeted client strategy. Small business owners are acting on this trend, with 45 percent saying they plan to include social media links on their website and 42 percent planning to refresh and update their website language and phrasing. Also, 40 percent of the Small Biz Trend survey participants say they plan to make their website more mobile-friendly, and just under 40 percent plan to redesign their website fully. Mobile-friendly is key to e-commerce as 79 percent of smartphone users have made a purchase on their mobile device in the last six months. Now more than half of all internet traffic shopping is from a mobile device.
Online store and business fronts equal success. In 2021, whether you sell goods or services, the coronavirus pandemic has accelerated the need for not only generating interest and leads online but completing the sale or client acquisition cycle. Online traffic matters most when its presence and communication strategies generate sales or income. The front-end digital presence (client-side) with precise marketing language on multiple platforms needs a strong, reliable back end (server-side) to complete the cycle and monetize the business. Languages and frameworks, web servers, local development environments, database management systems, collaborative services, and website performance testers all contribute to creating a reliable server-side.
Small businesses that thrive in 2021 will implement or refresh their online strategies to meet the latest trends. Generating leads using inbound marketing, blogs, social media, search engine optimization, pay-per-click ads, campaigns, outbound, and cross-marketing contribute to identifying and targeting strong sales through a new customer or client acquisition base. The unprecedented challenges relating to COVID-19 are accelerating small business adaptation to online business and marketing strategies as the primary source of income. Small businesses report seeing a 54 percent boost in web traffic since the beginning of the lockdowns making a strong digital presence indispensable.
We hope you found this article helpful. If you have questions or would like to discuss concerns about your business in a confidential setting, we would be happy to schedule a time that is convenient for you. Please contact us at (513) 916 1600 to schedule a free consultation to discuss your legal matters.