It used to be said that cash is king, but as we begin to plan for a post-Covid world, I say it’s time for a re-think.
Of the measures that businesses have put in place as social distancing came into play, the one that will endure will be contactless payment.
Tap-and-go has been around for a while now, but more than ever it has become an essential way of doing business.
We’ve already seen in the past six weeks that the PIN-less limit for tap-and-go has increased from $100 to $200, and I believe that could increase further to $500 or $1000 in the next six months as we move towards a cashless society.
That’s my number one tip if you are going to be going back into business: rely on the fact that tap-and-go is here to stay.
We have also seen numbers from the Australian Retail Association and Australia Post that show people are far more comfortable with online shopping and using click and collect to purchase their goods, than they were previously.
Whether it’s general shopping, hardware, clothing - people are very comfortable having their retail demands being met via their computer, and this is what small businesses must adapt to. Those businesses that add to or enhance their online presence when business returns will be well set up to succeed.
Another interesting change in spending has also occurred while we’ve been in social isolation, with figures from the Reserve Bank showing the lowest number of applications for credit cards and the lowest credit card use in a decade.
That to me, shows a change in attitudes on how we spend and what we spend on, which businesses will need to be aware of in coming years. Disposable income will not be a common part of the new market. There will be a need to be flexible when restarting your business, and being aware that your customers have come through a tough time themselves.
If that means looking at things like payment plans or a repayment holiday for example, while your customers get back on their feet, that will be something for businesses to consider going forward.
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