Digital Business Transformation in a Covid-19 world. From remote working to ecommerce, we’ll explain what a business can do to survive the effects of the Coronavirus pandemic.
The business world has been rocked by Covid-19. To survive in this unchartered business landscape of minimal personal contact, most industries are having to rethink all their business processes. From initial consultations to conferences, from deliveries to return policies, from quoting to presenting, it all needs to change, and fast!
Digital business transformation is the quick transformation of old manual processes into clear and simple digital processes.
Digital business transformation is not a new concept; businesses have been developing ecommerce websites and digitising admin processes for years, but now it’s more important than ever. Almost every business in the world has been affected; from airlines to tourism, real estate to recruitment, fashion to jewellery, are all being forced to adapt to a new way of online business.
This situation is forcing us to innovate fast. But where do you start when you have always existed in the bricks and mortar, face to face world? Allow us to share some ideas.
What is digital business transformation and how does it differ from just making a website?
Digital transformation covers many forms, but in its most basic incarnation, it can be as simple as converting a paper-based form to digital and placing it on a website or an iPad, thus saving on paperwork and admin.
Let’s get to the point quickly. Your business may be forced to close if you don’t move fast so here are some quick ways you can adopt today.
1. Save paperwork: take paper forms and put them on your website or on an iPad or use Typeform
2. Offer online consulting or meetings: Use Google Hangouts, Zoom or Facetime.
3. Use online booking forms and calendar managers: embed these in your website.
4. Embrace remote working if possible
5. Send automated newsletters, offers and reminders with Mailchimp and or Campaign Monitor
6. Sell online: get an ecommerce website developed
7. Use Zoom: a great app / tool for large team video conference meetings
8. Organise internal communications: use software like Slack (free) to internally coordinate across projects and service categories.
9. Advertise online: use services such as Adwords or Facebook Ads to drive leads
10. Refine your website design: this will drive new leads and conversion rate optimisation
11. Use a digital document scanning app on your phone to send paper documents such as ‘Office Lens’
What can a digital business transformation do for my business?
In short, it will make your business more efficient and ideally deliver new revenue streams. You can automate a lot of processes and probably save a lot of admin time just to name a few things. Beyond this, you can sell products and services directly online, gather information, deliver products and provide software and systematise manual processes.
What are the risks of digital business transformation?
The main risks in transforming a business is the time required to develop these processes and the initial learning curve required for staff as they transition. Then you have the short term monetary investment required and the need for documenting these new processes.
How can digital business transformation impact customer and user experience?
Generally digital transformation done well will delight a potential customer by making a process more efficient and pleasant. If it’s not easier than the old way, there has not been any transformation. User experience design is a critical component of digital transformation and the website industry, this is the first step of any transformation. A user experience designer and business analyst will analyse everything about your business and all of it’s processes. Then they will translate these findings into business requirements, functions and ultimately tools and applications to be developed online.
For example, if your target customers are seniors or have disabilities, they’ll interact with your business & processes differently than Internet-savvy millennials. You will then need to consider adhering to accessibility standards such as WCAG AA and or have larger text or buttons with your online forms. You may also need to have basic ‘how to’s’ or tooltips when arriving on your web application.
Furthermore, your target customers will probably have distinct design preferences, depending on their demographics and interests. No matter how crowded your field is, getting design right can make the difference between gaining a customer or losing a prospect.
Where to start with digital business transformation?
You may be asking yourself “How do I get my business online?”, “How do you make an online store?”, “How do I communicate with my team online?”, “What is ecommerce and how to set up an ecommerce website?”, allow us to share some ideas:
1. Remote working
At the organizational level, the move to remote working requires decisiveness from all management levels of an organisation. Given the rapidly changing situation with COVID-19, overthinking the trade-offs and short-term costs could literally cost lives. Once a decision has been made, commit fully. Invest in the long-term with best-in-class technology that is reliable, scalable and flexible. Get the foundations in place first. Senior leaders will need to guide staff with clarity and documentation.
2. Digitising & Prioritising Business Processes
Going digital requires decisions to be made by key people, decide quickly who this will be, whether it’s the CEO, the IT department or Admin? Next decide what processes can be digitised, next decide the priority and cost of digitising these processes. Next who will document and train everyone in these new tools? There may need to be new protocol for using software, such as a dress code for video meetings or how to begin a video conference call and how to include everyone with the absence of face to face presence.
Trello is a particularly good list-making, prioritising and project management app. A lot of digital agencies use it for this, it allows you to keep track of everything from the big picture to the small details and keep everyone informed as you go.
Majority of products on shelves can adapt to being sold online. For example, ‘shoes’; this was initially a huge mental leap for consumers to overcome but eventually with the implementation of excellent return policies, sizing charts and customer support, shoe producers have digitised this challenging product. This has also happened for alcohol, jewellery, glasses, food delivery, masonry, electronics and the list goes on.
This can extend to taking deposit payments or donations online for NGO’s, online banking and so many more applications.
4. Forms and processes
5. Advertising online
Advertising online is a proven method of driving quick and targetted traffic to your business for a much smaller cost than traditional advertising. From Adwords, to Bing to Facebook to Instagram, there are a plethora of options to consider and varying starting budgets and options available.
Advantages of digital business transformation
Digital transformation is the first step to business automation and process efficiency, the advantages are numerous:
Reduce staff costs
Decrease travel time to and from meetings
Save on warehouse space
Lower sales team costs
Save money on fitouts
Lower your electricity bill
The list goes on….
It’s time to turn your traditional business into a beautifully efficient digital reality!
So as you can see, Covid-19 does not have to spell disaster for every traditional business, there are many ways to adapt. See how our helpful Bapple digital business transformation and development team can turn your business into a beautiful digital machine. Get in touch or email your brief to [email protected] with us today.
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