The COVID-19 pandemic sent small businesses into a period of hardships that they are still trying to recover from. Loss of profits, downscaled workforce, and even closure – these are only some of the most unfortunate situations that many small and medium enterprises (SMEs), as well as large corporations, experienced at the height of the health crisis. A year after the pandemic struck, numerous businesses remained on a cliff edge.
Fortunately, with the cooperation of various societal sectors, things are starting to regain a sense of normalcy. For the entrepreneurial world, recovering from the aftermath of the health crisis means new business trends emerge to help businesses become better prepared for the following global challenges. Let us share some of the most critical trends in small businesses that entrepreneurs should expect and prepare for this coming 2022.
1. Increased Use of Digital and Cloud Technologies
The digital space and cloud computing have been gaining steady popularity since the mid-2000s. When the so-called “Big 3” emerged – Google Cloud Platform, Microsoft Azure, and Amazon Web Services (AWS) – a significant number of businesses began increasing their digital presence and shifting to the cloud. However, the digital presence of small businesses had not been as strong as that of large companies.
When the pandemic arrived, a lot of SMEs began realising the enormous advantages of utilising digital and cloud technologies, particularly when it comes to facilitating flexibility of work practices and ensuring business continuity. Because of such realisation, many experts believe that business success in the next ten years will be primarily driven by a company’s ability to use and leverage the digital and cloud technologies available today.
2. More Investment in Digital Marketing
As things become increasingly digitalised, businesses have found new ways to reach a wider audience and increase their revenues. Gone are the days when companies used to print, broadcast, telemarket, or direct mail for their promotional campaigns. Today, digital marketing has already become the new standard of marketing, and small business owners should accept that it is here to stay.
The coming of the pandemic notably facilitated the continued growth of digital marketing as a replacement for in-person profile building. Businesses are now continuously realising just how cost- and time-efficient digital marketing methods are compared to the traditional methods. Suppose you do not want your small business to get left behind by the changing times. In that case, you should definitely start harnessing the benefits of digital marketing.
3. Adoption of Cashless Payment Methods
As technology advances, more and more cashless payment options are becoming available. When the global health crisis struck, both businesses and consumers shifted to credit and debit cards, mobile wallets, and payment apps to pay their bills more safely and conveniently. Even after the coronavirus pandemic ends, many believe that cashless payment will continue to dominate industries.
Even when it comes to paying taxes, the preference is now on cashless payment. As early as 2019, the Inland Revenue of Singapore (IRAS) has already started taking some digital tax payouts and collections initiatives. Both large corporations and SMEs are being encouraged to get rid of payouts via cheques and cash. If you want to keep up with the times and satisfy your customers, you have no choice but to go digital.
Using digital forms of payment is not as complicated as it seems. But if you do not think that you can handle the change just yet, then you can always seek the assistance of a professional. At Ackenting Group, our mission is to help businesses, both big and small, streamline their operations with the help of our reliable and affordable tax services, GST services, financial reporting services, accounting and bookkeeping services, and many more.
We mainly take pride in offering one of Singapore’s most trusted SME accounting services. Whatever assistance you need to get your finances in order, we can indeed provide it.
4. Preference for Hybrid Workplaces
Hybrid workplaces mean that employees have the freedom to choose their optimal schedule and to decide whether to be remote or in-person. At the height of the pandemic, many businesses around the world were forced to adopt hybrid forms of doing business due to lockdowns and travel restrictions. Remote work became particularly preferred by both employees and employers.
As businesses have seen the numerous benefits of having a work-from-home set up over the last two years, it is expected that a significant number of companies will be convinced to adopt hybrid work arrangements in the next coming years. Hybrid workplaces will be the new trend in both big and small businesses, as security and insecurity become balanced with a healthy home and work environment.
5. Development of People-First Workplace Values
Over the last year, many people have reevaluated what they value in life. This reevaluation has led to the so-called “people-first movement.” More and more employees now realise that their family and own well-being are more important than money and career. This means that there is already a need to create a people-first workplace for business owners. Otherwise, they will risk losing their best team members.
The world has always been fast-changing. The coming of the COVID-19 pandemic made a lot of entrepreneurs realise the importance of being flexible when it comes to doing business. In particular, small business owners need to become aware of the changes and trends driving businesses in a post-pandemic world to better facilitate their recovery. If you are an entrepreneur, the trends we have shared are the ones you should be preparing for in the coming year.
If you require any assistance on accounting services, feel free to drop us an email at [email protected] or contact us at +65-66358767. At Ackenting Group, we offer a complimentary 30 minutes online consultation for us to better understand your business requirements.