The space between consumers' preferences and the online experience that most small business owners offer when it comes to e-commerce represents a chasm filled with missed opportunities and lost sales. And while many a small business laments the impact of giants like Amazon, a lack of ecommerce strategy can become a factor that affects every small business owners’ bottom line. When Americans are free to “move about the country’ this difference is less apparent. But, with more than 300 million Americans under stay-at-home orders in March and April, and 150 million remaining under orders through May, e-commerce buying options may be a driving factor that will determine if many small businesses stay afloat or ‘take on water’ in what’s projected to be a 3 – 24 month national crisis.
But, in my eyes, in the US, we’ve been blessed to operate our business and manage our families in an environment where infectious disease is manageable. If I’ve learned nothing else, I’ve learned that our businesses are not invincible, and good health, even for a community or nation, is not guaranteed. All scientific predictions indicate the expectation of a “second wave” of infection sometime in mid-to-late 2020. And at the risk of being a rain cloud on cloudy day, we have no idea if this will resurface in years to come. Integrating a strategy as a small business owner that takes into account the possibility that your customers and clients might not be able to gather, or may have decreased desire to huddle in small spaces or crowd into a conference room, allow you to touch their face to delivery elective services, or even shake hands is something that we’re all thinking about at this very moment– me included.