It’s no secret that 2020 has been a huge year for all businesses thanks to the global pandemic COVID-19. Lockdown was enforced as businesses closed their doors, and working from home has become the new norm.
Even as we open back up again, many businesses remain operating from home to control the spread. Melbourne has been the worst hit, coming out of the first lockdown, only to be thrust into a second one, with many businesses suffering from the devastating blow. If there’s one thing we can say for sure, online has become the new medium for all businesses.
If you aren’t online, you aren’t seen. And the best news, the Victorian Government is stepping up to help those businesses find their new normal in the digital world.
Details of business grants for both Sole Traders and registered Companies are now live from the Business Victoria website.
Finding a COVID Normal
The Victorian Government has recently announced a $3 billion Business Resilience Package that is aimed at helping businesses impacted by the ongoing restrictions and to help them prepare for COVID Normal business. Included in this package is a $20 million voucher program that aims to assist sole traders and small businesses in building their digital capacity through off-the-shelf digital programs, such as Shopify or Square online. It also includes workshops designed to help adapt to online operations.
While the effects of the pandemic have been devastating, it has changed the way businesses operate for the long term. From highlighting the power of the online world to demonstrating the capability of working remotely, the lasting impact on businesses is notable. Moving forward, businesses are presented with a unique opportunity: to adapt to a digital space and future-proof their business.
Power of the Online World
In new research carried out in the latest Digital 2020 report from creative agency We Are Social and Hootsuite, it was discovered that 83% of Australians over the age of 13 are active on social media. These digital behaviours have evolved throughout the lockdown period, with 33% spending more time on the Internet over this period. Some more figures for you to soak up:
- 74% of Australians bought something online in the past month
- 33% of Australians have been spending more time on social media in recent weeks
- 32% of Australians use social media to research brands and products
- 73% of Australians said they bought something online in the last month, and 38% did so via a mobile device
- The annual value of the e-commerce market in Australia is up by 13%
If there has ever been a time for your business to join the online world, it’s now. Social commerce is so important, with many platforms now offering integrated, frictionless shopping features. This is providing brands with an invaluable opportunity to adapt their business into a thriving space. With the latest package announced by the Victorian Government, the funds are now available to help businesses succeed.
Benefits of Operating Online
Not only do you have the potential to reach more customers than ever before, but there are plenty more benefits that come from joining the online world:
- Cheaper advertising: Facebook advertising is one of the cheapest options out there. You have the opportunity to find your ideal customer and target them with the right message at the right time. It is much more cost-effective than traditional methods of advertising getting you the best return on investment possible.
- Open 24/7: your eCommerce store never closes! People can shop all hours of the day and your store is accessible without anyone having to be physically present.
- Low overhead cost: without the need for a physical storefront, costs are kept nice and low.
- Option to expand: looking to expand into new markets? Now is your chance! You can even look at going International thanks to the ease of access to a global audience. The sky is your limit!
There is no doubt this year has been hard, but now is your chance to turn it around and give your business the boost it deserves. The first step is committing to change and being open to pivoting your business. So many businesses have been affected by the pandemic, but now have the opportunity to grow as a result.
Details of the grant went live Friday 18th September so we suggest you subscribe to newsletters from the Business Victoria website for ongoing updates of the grant. We’re here to help you with your digital presence so talk to us today so we can reach for online success, together.