As a business owner, you already know the importance of customer communication. But with the current social distancing and shelter-in-place mandates in effect, it could be much more difficult for you to rely on face-to-face contact during this time.
Even if your shop or mobile business is closed for the time being, you shouldn’t stop working on other sides of your business. One thing you can keep up with is engaging with your customers regularly. Thankfully, there are plenty of ways to do that even in the current situation.
Yes, we might be physically isolated, but that doesn’t mean we can’t stay connected. Read on to learn how to stay in touch with your auto recon customers during the coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic.
Signage at Your Shop
Your auto recon shop might likely be closed for the time being, but it’s still worth putting out some signage outside. You can post your business response plan, along with a message saying you hope to see your customers soon. You can also share with them ways they can stay in touch with your business – via your website, social media accounts, etc. That way, anyone passing by knows they can come back when you reopen and also how to stay connected to you.
Increase Your Social Media Presence
Social distancing doesn’t mean social media distancing. In fact, now is the time to up your social game. You should be trying to post on your social media platforms at least once per day. Remember, this isn’t about being “salesy”, it’s about making connections with your customers and people who could become customers.
With the situation changing daily, you can post updates about your business, including any changes to your operating hours or closures, your business response plan, or ways your customers can help your business during this time.
You also shouldn’t be afraid to share more personal, relatable, or even funny posts about how you and your loved ones are surviving quarantine. It might not be your typical social media strategy, but these are not ordinary times and your customers will appreciate the peek behind the curtain.
Update Your Website
If you haven’t updated your website in a while, this is your chance. Improving and optimizing your online presence is good practice at any time, but even more important now. Without the face-to-face contact, your website should act as your online storefront.
Your first step should be to publish your business response plan, updating customers on your COVID-19 policy and how you are keeping employees and customers safe. You can also use your website to notify them of any housekeeping information like changes to your hours. If you have not yet written your business response plan, take a look at our guide here.
Keep Customers Informed On Your Google Business Page
One of the main ways customers will find your business online is through Google. It’s important to keep your website updated, so that it’s more likely to come up in a search. But your website is not your only touch point online. Google has been encouraging businesses to update their Google My Business profile on Google My Business on Maps and Search with practical information, like new protocols and hours resulting from the crisis.
Send an Email
Email campaigns are another great way of communicating your business response plan. They can also be used as a more personal point of contact with your customers. Consider sending your customer base an email that lets them know that you’re thinking of them during this tough time, you hope they’re safe, and you look forward to serving them again soon. You can even share any good news stories from within your community—everyone wants to hear some positivity.
Create a Flyer
In addition to the Coronavirus Response Toolkit, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce has developed a customizable flyer, which you can complete with information about your business’ response plan. This can then be saved and published to your website or printed and delivered to people’s doorsteps on your next walk around the neighborhood.
Ask for Reviews and Feedback
Customer communication is not a one-way street, so giving your customers the chance to stay connected with you is important too. With people spending more time in front of their screens, there’s never been a better opportunity to hear what they have to say. And there are lots of ways they can support your business from the safety of their homes. Ask them to rate your business online, write a review, share your social media pages, or give their feedback. Listening to your customers is one of the best ways that you can ensure you are servicing their needs. Plus, you never know what improvements you could make with the feedback.
Help Where You Can
In times of crisis, we rely on each other. And we shouldn’t let the physical isolation stop us from being connected. Find ways that you can help your local community, even if it’s as small as writing one positive review per day of another business in your area.
Any bigger gestures, like delivering groceries to an elderly neighbor, can be shared online. After all, people are looking for little pieces of good news to brighten their days, so share them.
Look to The Future by Offering Gift Cards
With most businesses closed and the majority of people being told to shelter in place, the requirement for auto recon services right now is low. However, that is very likely to change once the economy gets moving again. Give customers the opportunity to support your business now by selling gift cards online for future services.
For more information on how to protect your auto recon business during this time, visit our COVID-19 Resources Page. Please let us know if there’s anything we can do to support you and your business during this time.