Sustaining Small Business Success Through Online Sales

Photo By Tim Mossholder on Unsplash

The ability to adapt to new and changing business environments is required for running a small business today.

Take the business owner who has successfully run and managed a small distributorship for gourmet and specialty refrigerated foods for the last 20 years and now fears his business may have to close because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“I’ve never felt the need to expand beyond my area because I’ve lived comfortably on the amount of money brought in by the business, and I’ve invested wisely,” the business owner said in a letter to me. “The coronavirus has completely stopped all sales due to the retail and restaurant shutdowns. My business has always depended on face-to-face sales, and I’m not sure how to adapt to this situation. I never foresaw anything like this happening.”

Even without the pandemic, other events could occur that suddenly require your undivided attention and prevent you from being an active, day-to-day business manager. Many employees and business owners have needed to withdraw from day-to-day job duties due to family illnesses, sometimes leading them into early retirement or extended leaves of absence.

It sounds like this particular business owner has been blessed with a clear path for the last 20 years. However, resilience is a critical skill to learn earlier rather than later.

The workplace is filled with dead-end positions that have motivated employees to create simple sales websites for tangible products and services. With commitment, attention to detail and determination to learn online sales, many have built fiefdoms for themselves, allowing them to quit full-time jobs and live off the profits of online sales.

Since the specialty foods in this case require refrigeration, the owner should consider promoting sales through his own website, if it’s set up for selling and delivery. He could also become a distributor for existing online food stores, or become an Amazon affiliate.

This is an excellent time to learn about online sales. Many instructional webinars and online sales systems are available for do-it-yourself possibilities, so research the top companies to choose what’s best for you.

According to e-commerce statistics, “Amazon is the leading e-retailer in the United States with close to $280.5 billion in 2019 net sales. The majority of the company’s revenues are generated through e-retail sales of electronics and other products, followed by third-party seller revenues.”

Various types of food and beverage sales surged 347.3 percent since March 2020 due to the coronavirus. Such sales trends should continue throughout the presence of the virus and likely beyond, as buying online is convenient, safe and offers people more time for active and entertaining experiences in the future.

As a food supplier, this distributorship can take advantage of the current online buying frenzy to reach heights it has not reached by selling locally.

All that’s needed now is for people to stop passing the virus by maintaining social distances so they can once again spend time on more enjoyable and engaging activities. In the meantime, this online sales trend will help consumers as well as suppliers.