If we learned anything this past year, it’s that things are ALWAYS changing. As an entrepreneur, it can be incredibly consuming to keep up with it all and to figure out what you should be implementing, marketing, and doing as a business owner when things shift on the daily. Not to mention– there isn’t much extra time to give! Between working with clients, taking care of yourself, and spending time with loved ones…who has time to research the trends and predictions for 2023?
That’s where this podcast episode comes in. In Episode 148, I did the research for you and am sharing the biggest trends we are going to see with business' next year.
TREND #1: CONSCIOUS CONSUMING
The world is increasingly waking up to the fact that climate disasters will pose a much bigger challenge than anything we’ve ever experienced in recent decades. Consumers (especially those in their teens, twenties, and thirties) are looking for their product-based businesses to have the right social and environmental credentials, and buying trends are increasingly being driven by conscious consumers – those among us who prioritize factors such as ecological impact and sustainability when choosing who to buy from or do business with.
Learning how to create an environmentally sustainable small business shows your commitment to environmentally friendly products and services, and may help set your business apart from its competitors. Here are a few questions to ponder: What are you already doing in your business that you could share with your community? Are there any changes you can make in 2023 to align more with this? Are you only getting your inventory from wholesalers who have sustainable business practices?
Even if you're not ready to make a change, open up this conversation to your community!
TREND #2: PERSONALIZED CUSTOMER SERVICE
In 2023, customers crave experience above all else. Over the past few years, customer needs have evolved. With new stresses and hardships being faced by most consumers, they’ve grown tired of automated phone trees and generic interactions. What people are really craving is empathy and feeling like they’re speaking with a human. This is another way you can set your small business apart from the competition. Making an effort to personalize your customer interactions–in person, on the phone, and online – will help strengthen your brand and potentially keep customers coming back.
Point blank– people want PEOPLE on the other side of their consumption. The more you can give them access to you and all your expertise, the better you will be for 2023. I challenge you to take a look at your customer journey and brainstorm how you can add more personalized customer service to the experience.
TREND #3: INSTALMENTS OR PAYMENT PLANS
Retro is in! Layaway has been brought into the 21st century with the increasingly popular option to buy now and pay later getting more and more popular. Today many retailers have started partnering with apps like Sezzle, Affirm, and Afterpay to offer micro-loans to consumers, allowing them to pay for a purchase in installments.
Having the option to pay in installments also may encourage your customers to build their shopping baskets more than they normally would. If they’re on the fence about purchasing a big-ticket item, knowing that they won’t be required to pay in full on the spot could be the deciding factor. So, how could you offer this in your business? You can partner with one of those apps or do this within your own payment processor. If you are adding payment plans and installments, I want you to make sure this is clearly defined in your contract including the dates, late fees when a payment on autopay is declined, or what happens for missed auto payments. That way you are leaving zero room for interpretation.
TREND #4: INCREASE E-COMMERCE SALES
While e-commerce has been successfully adopted by most major brands and businesses, small businesses have not been as quick to make that leap. Small businesses — unlike larger competitors — may not have the capital and manpower to implement an online sales system with a quick turnaround. But gradually, small businesses are finding ways to bring their customer experience into the modern day. In recent years, online sales have become crucial for retailers as in-store shopping was becoming drastically limited. Small businesses learned that in order to weather lockdowns and public health guidelines and safeguard their business for the future, they needed to adapt.
E-commerce is only becoming more relevant with each passing year and is an important small business trend. Shifting your small business to a model that prioritizes e-commerce sales could help you to maximize your profits and provide a new level of convenience for your customers. So what could this look like in your business? Does it make sense to expand into e-commerce for physical or digital products? If you need more ideas for this, check out my two-part revenue stream series on the podcast.
TREND #5: SHORT-FORM VIDEO MARKETING
The pivot to short-form video is officially here. More than ever, social media is becoming a landscape that prioritizes video. Between TikTok, Instagram, YouTube, and even Facebook, videos are highly visible and shareable. Small businesses should consider using this to their advantage. Research ways to help make your small business get views on TikTok, even if it’s with an extremely small subset of users. If they’re your customers, they’re worth targeting. Social media accounts such as these are free platforms for you to highlight your business and what it offers. Think about making product tutorials or short videos that answer frequently asked questions.
This could not only help bring in a new generation of customers but also showcase your small business’ unique offerings and values. So, ask yourself how can you implement this in your business. What platform makes the most sense? Do you have content that could be repurposed like this? Or how could you start to create content like this to attract more clients?
More From This Episode
Plain and simple, no one wants to be left in the dust while all the other businesses are adapting to what consumers want. Tune into Episode 148 for more details about each of these trends so that you can stay on top of your game plan for 2023.
And remember…as you are looking at how your small business can adopt these trends and others, always make sure you are legally legit!
If you want more helpful business advice as you’ll hear on the podcast, be sure to join The Legal Paige Facebook Community where thousands of entrepreneurs just like you are getting real-time answers about running a professionally and legally legit business.