Updated: Sep 30, 2021
Businesses all over the world have had to undergo many changes in the past year, causing them to either stay afloat or drown.
The pandemic didn’t pick and choose, and whether you were a small business or large enterprise, you had no choice but to improvise, adapt and overcome to survive.
The most essential survival tactic for businesses was promoting and enhancing their digital transformation strategies to begin and/or continue reaching consumers across the globe.
Adopting the use of technology during a worldwide crisis was ultimately the only way to get by, and many South African companies took advantage of that.
Now that the times have somewhat settled and resilient companies are getting back on their feet, a handful of new business trends have emerged that affect both business processes and outcomes.
South African Business Trends
Every entrepreneur should embrace the latest business trends in South Africa to efficiently handle any challenges your consumers and businesses may face in the future.
The Transformed Consumer
South African consumers are shifting their attention to the companies that offer them the most convenient shopping experience.
It’s all about a seamless interaction that promotes personalized services and relevant communications.
Consumers don’t want to receive 100 emails per day about uninteresting products that they have no intention of buying.
Instead, they want a company to intuitively understand their needs and wants.
Thanks to technology, this is all possible.
COVID-19 has popularized many developing trends in South Africa, cashless payments being one of them.
Cash is not only inconvenient to carry around and store, but it’s ridden with germs and bacteria, the last thing we need during a viral plague.
Now, payments have gone mobile with the progression of the internet and cell phones.
New payment options are also developing in the agricultural industry like payments for produce, subsidies, loan repayments, and B2B supplier payments. Governmental services are also adopting this tactic through tax collection, license payments, bonds, pension payments, social security, and subsidies.
More Business Funding Options
The pandemic has put a financial strain on most businesses where extra funding and support are vital for growth.
However, unless your business is registered, and even if it is, getting a business loan in South Africa could be challenging.
Alternative funding options are on the rise where many businesses are applying for grants, entering competitions, or seeking funding from local and/or foreign investors.
Brand Loyalty is Important to Consumers
While consumers want to feel like they’re a part of your brand, they’re also concentrating on getting the most value for their buck.
Loyalty programs and subscriptions are favorable ways for businesses to retain their customers by offering discounts while instilling a sense of brand loyalty.
Loyalty programs vary in shapes and sizes but here are some popular ones:
● Points programs,
● Bulk or long-term purchase discounts,
● Tiered membership discounts,
● Referral benefits.
More Product Diversification
Businesses that emerged with a single focus are now shifting their efforts to diversify their products/services.
While product diversification has become a survival tactic, it’s also an up-sell technique that South African businesses are taking advantage of to acquire more profits.
A great example of this is the Australian footwear company, UGG. They started off by selling all-weather sheepskin boots but as time went on, they slowly shifted their focus by offering consumers other sheepskin products which, today, include a home and apparel collection.
Paid Digital Marketing Pays Off
Businesses are improving upon their digital marketing practices and boosting their organic content through paid advertising platforms such as Google search advertising, display advertising, and social media advertising (Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, etc.).
Promoting your business through paid ads is relevant and necessary anywhere, but especially in a country where e-commerce is flourishing, and consumers are heckled with advertisements all day long.
South African Business Practices
Establishing a business anywhere is challenging and requires more than just time, money, effort, and resources.
Countless businesses plummeted during the pandemic while others molded their practices to survive.
The times are slowly returning to ‘normal, but they’ve brought along some trends that are far from departure.
By adapting your practices towards these trends, you’ll set yourself up to be a successful business in South Africa that’s ready to take on anything in the future.
For more information on the latest business trends in South Africa, contact us on our website.
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