No one was strategically prepared for what 2020 had to offer. Many heavyweights in the B2B and B2C world had outlined business plans. Everyone was thinking about thumping the competition. 2020 had something sinister waiting for us all; Coronavirus. Which led to unexpected winners and losers in the business world.
Did you feel that little shiver down your spine? Businesses did, and most of them in a bad way. The pandemic struck hard on global economies. As soon as the lockdowns began businesses took a nosedive and consumer spending significantly reduced.
The effects on our economy and ways of life were drastic, many of which are permanent. There are many emerging trends that will definitely tip the scales for some businesses.
In this article, we look at 2020’s business winners and losers. As we now focus on a post-COVID-19 world, who made the most progress? Who made noticeable losses?
Working From Home Is the New Normal
Due to the pandemic, a significant number of businesses closed their physical offices, which resulted in remote working. While this trend was increasing already COVID supercharged this change.
Before, remote jobs were often contracted to virtual assistants and freelancers. Nowadays, most businesses have continued this professional experiment. It is now a success story.
In July, Google announced that they will continue to encourage this employees to work from home for the forceable.
Working from home comes with several perks for employers. This is an opportunity to opt for smaller office spaces as employees main workspace is now their “home office”. This is going to lead to massive savings for business owners who spend large amounts of money on expensive rent, but there are downsides.
What consequences does this present?
With most businesses now relying on employees working from home, they cannot ignore the increased cybersecurity risk. Daily business is now conducted over many WiFi locations rather than a singular office, with unscrupulous elements lurking.
There has been a global increase in cybersecurity attacks due to lack of training and overwhelmed IT departments. Without the proper protocols every individual working from home is now more likely to have sensitive information leaked or stolen.
Companies will be investing in better cybersecurity measures going forward.
More Virtual Meetings and Appointments on the Go
The need to book and show up for physical meetings and appointments has become redundant.
Why? Employers can hold virtual board meetings and get feedback from every department present, which was practiced during quarantine season. And from all indications, this is a trend that will not fade in the foreseeable future.
Impact on Real Estate
Commercial real estate is going to take a huge hit from recent developments. Large businesses will fail to sign long-term lease contracts to save operation costs. Other businesses will renegotiate existing leases.
Some of these businesses might be considering smaller office spaces. This will plummet the prices of larger spaces. This is also a problem for the office deli, downtown coffeeshop and other longtime businesses because of the dependence on high levels of foot traffic from those who have traveled into the city.
Most people working from home will ditch the idea of staying in overcrowded cities with ridiculously-high rent. They will opt to move to areas with lower taxes and better climates without having to consider commuting.
Impact on Transportation and Business Travels
With everything starting to look normal, there is a noticeable decrease in need for transportation.
With more and more people working from home, air travel and cab-hailing services have been negatively effected. Fewer people are going to work and large gathering locations such as bars. Thus, fewer cars or taxis fill the highways, and fewer aircraft hovering in the skies. The number of scheduled flights was recently reported to be down by 46%.
On a positive note, this development has fostered cleaner cities, with less noise and air pollution.
Impact on Small Businesses
Startups and small businesses will be heavily affected on a mass and permanent scale. More people will depend on household names for consumables and products.
As lockdowns continued, do-it-yourself trends ranged from making bread, to trying new forms of coffee, among many others. The corner coffee shop that relies on foot traffic and repeat customers will see decreased sales. This trend may reverse as we look for ‘normalcy’ but as more and more ‘mom and pop’ locations close across the country we have yet to see this resurgence.
Increase in Electronic Sales
As more people work remotely, it would make sense to refurbish their workplace with the best equipment. More people will be investing in computers, smartphones, internet connections, and even upholstery to achieve comfort while collaborating with others online.
Thus, wholesalers and retailers in these industries will make a huge profit post-COVID-19.
A Hyper-Focus on Pharmaceuticals
With everything that has happened this year, the need to be healthy and safety-conscious is no longer ignored. More than ever before, health will play a central role in everyone’s lives. More people will frequent pharmaceuticals or place orders for drugs to stay healthy and infection-free.
The healthcare and pharmaceutical industries will experience a huge profit margin going forward.
The business world has likely changed forever. Many expenses that were once needed or unavoidable may can now be easily reduced or completely eliminated. Reach out if you would like to know more about our spend analysis reduction to see how we can be of help to you and your business.
Published by Marc Freedman
Marc currently serves as our Chief Cost Evaluator, expertly advising our client management team on how to help you successfully achieve your business and financial growth goals. A respected mentor to all he consults with, he is an avid collaborator and contributor to the spend consultant community, guiding thought leaders to formulate, design, and install the best operational solutions available to their clients.