Many managers pass the term recession proofing around during upticks in the industry as a method for their businesses to prepare for the expected eventual downturn. Managers will often place a recession plan on the back burner during times of economic growth to focus solely on client acquisition or business expansion.
However, when an economic downturn does occur, the opportunity to recession-proof your business may have passed you by. This can lead to difficult decisions regarding staff, marketing, and business advancement in general.
But what if instead of trying to find a diamond-in-the-rough recession plan, your business worked on identifying recession opportunities?
This approach makes sense considering the last few months, where the world has seen drastic changes in the economic landscape and business-client relationships in general. While technology had already become a pillar for many businesses, the pandemic forced several business technology strategies into overdrive. Virtual meetings, email and telecommunication have all become the only available avenue to run businesses.
Then, of course, there is the issue of commerce. With most front-facing businesses having to close to the public, there is a rush to push to e-commerce. This is an avenue where companies can first push to improve internally.
To help your business capitalize on internal process opportunities, this blog takes a look at e-commerce, CRM (Customer Relationship Management), and business intelligence. By making improvements in each area, you can guide your business through these times of economic uncertainty.
E-commerce refers to the buying and selling of goods as well as the transfer of funds online. Here are some e-commerce questions for your company to consider:
- Was your e-commerce platform in place prior to the current economic state?
- Is your platform running as efficiently as you would like?
- Are there issues that make it difficult for you or your clients to sufficiently use the platform?
- Is your e-commerce platform integrated with your accounting package?
- Is the solution something your company would like to integrate going forward?
All these questions present opportunity areas for your company to save money or time. They also may lead to further opportunities to fix internal processes.
As your business explores new methods of client communications, it is important to focus on how to improve your client relationships. Now more than ever, it is critical to stay connected to key clients and make sure their information is constantly updated and accessible.
As we discuss in the next section, a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) platform could be the perfect solution.
E-commerce can attract new customers and increase sales. But in times of economic downturn, it is of the utmost importance that you also nurture your current customer, donor, and other key stakeholder relationships. This could be the time to invest in an innovative CRM platform that allows you to do all these things while also streamlining new customer acquisition.
A CRM solution delivers a platform that allows for interaction with current and potential customers. Your company also gains access to business analysis that gives you a leg up on the competition by helping with marketing campaigns, contact records, and overall client record-keeping.
By adding CRM, you can centralize your customer contact and purchase information. This prevents your sales teams from missing valuable information because it is stored in several locations. It also streamlines the customer process, saving time for your employees.
Technology advancement for your business does not need to just be customer-facing as is the case with e-commerce and CRM. During a recession, the ability to access internal data and use that data to analyze key performance indicators is also invaluable. The following are a few ways a business intelligence investment can help your company:
- Find new opportunities to increase profits
- Compare data to competitors
- Track internal performance
- Identify market trends
- Spot issues or problems
Business intelligence is not limited to just basic internal reporting; it also includes the ability to mine and query data, run statistical analysis, generate data visualizations, and conduct descriptive analysis. For example, a business could mine data to uncover trends, use that data to find out what happened to cause the trend, and then finally create a visualization in a form that makes the data more easy to consume—all within one platform.
All of this presents opportunities to streamline internal reporting to save time and identify opportunities, and a recession is the perfect time to start using your data in a more meaningful way. Business intelligence gives you this opportunity and sets you up to come out of a recession with valuable data that presents growth opportunities.
E-commerce, a CRM management platform, and business intelligence not only save you time and money by streamlining workflows, they also put your business on track for future growth. All three are among several options you can turn for finding opportunities within a recession. So take advantage of this current recession, and use it to get your business where it truly needs to be.
Do these opportunities fit your business goals? Do you have more questions you would like answered? ATX Advisory would be glad to answer any questions you have and help you travel down the road to internal process improvement. Contact us today!
Author: Trey Binette, ATX Advisory Services