Currently, we see two types of businesses. Some freeze all their investments and wait for better times. Others use these opportunities to invest, buy other companies, and aim to build a competitive advantage.
The biggest issue right now in eCommerce is logistics. For example, grocery stores require days if not weeks to process an order. Courier services are in high demand with consumers ordering goods on an unprecedented scale. Basically, people are buying quite a lot online right now, but these are mainly low-cost items. Premium fashion brands, jewelry and watches all have seen a drop in sales.
At this time, it is important for e-commerce businesses to give special offers. We see brands that:
Extend return windows to 30 days
Add free shipping to all orders
Provide detailed information about packaging to showcase the safety of the process
Present information that “it is business as usual”, not to worry clients about the delivery times
Many fashion brands offer huge promotions, just to keep working
As for future preparations, I can recommend some specific actions. We see that the Covid-19 situation is a great means to pinpoint ineffectiveness. It allowed us to optimize many processes. I suggest organizing a retrospective with the team and utilizing what worked well.
Start by asking all the managers of different sections about their feedback, then discuss the inefficiencies they have noticed during this time. Create a Kanban board where all the ideas for improvements are visible, collaborate, and vote on the ones with most business impact. Next, discuss and review the options together with the team. Choose and agree on next steps, and of course start implementing the selected improvements.
Once you sort out what is holding you back, then you can focus on the preparations to gain a competitive advantage – discover areas which can be improved, plan new features, optimize performance, and create new project concepts. Now is the time to create the future.