Small businesses should not consider themselves immune to business related trends. Since each business is unique, not all trends will impact them the same way. However, the customers of small businesses are more or less the same as other small businesses or the big ones, and trends do influence the customers. So what are the significant trends that will come into play for small businesses in 2020?
Focus on personalized customer experience
The days of showing every product to everyone are over; today’s people don’t want any noise, any irrelevant options. They will naturally prefer businesses that will offer them personalized customer service. Smart personalization engines will enable businesses to make more profits, retain their customers, and increase the customer base.
Mobile marketing will become big
The usage of mobile devices will increase in 2020 and beyond. Small businesses will gain in quite a few ways like: creating an app for your business, doing mobile payments with the digital payment platforms, using geo-targeting to provide targeted ads to customers, using SMS/text message marketing.
The rise of stories & live stream
Introduced by Snapchat, stories have now become a feature of many other social media. People have increasingly started watching this video content that disappears after 24 hours over the newsfeed posts. Stories are “in the moment” content which is connecting with the audience more.
Live streaming on Facebook, the newly launched Instagram TV (IGTV), YouTube, etc. has become a powerful source for engagement and visibility. Businesses will connect with their audience and provide updates in a more personal and authentic way.
Reviews will become more important than before
Customer reviews have already become an important aspect for fellow customers before making a purchase. In 2020, it will not remain just a trend but grow into something more important. Small businesses will rely on user reviews to drive sales and increase customer trust in them. More businesses will take the help of review managing sites/apps to manage and generate more positive reviews.
Voice search will increase
Google Home and Alexa, such smart speakers have already become common in households. Nearly one-third of all searches will voice-activated in 2020, which is not a surprise since talking is a common habit of humans. Thus, businesses will have to voice optimize their content apart from keyword/search optimization. Since it is relatively new, small businesses have a golden chance to aggressively tap into this resource.
No more ignoring Gen Z
Millennials are still at the top of rising purchase power, but those born in the late 1990s and beyond will come of age as teens and become a bigger target market for businesses than before. Raised in a world of internet, instant information, and social media, marketing to them will be a different ballgame altogether. Gen Z will still have a few years to be as prominent as the millennials, but, ignore them at your own will.
The gig economy has been around for quite a few years now. Working as a freelancer will become an indispensable part of doing business. Small businesses will benefit because they will be able to hire some expert for a brief contract without needing to give full-time benefits. Already 36% of US workers are in the gig economy in some way or the other; it will rise to 43% in 2020 and over 50% by 2023.
One thing is for sure, small businesses will need to pay detailed attention to the preferences and needs of today’s customers. These trends may not gain prominence at the same rate; still, it is necessary to keep an eye on the shifting demographics and styles of the market as a whole, for the smooth running and growth of the small businesses.