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The Best Ways to Increase Your Restaurant Sale 

The Digital Evolution of Our Local Business

Small businesses around the world have all been pushed into a rapid state of evolution over the course of the past twelve months – one marked by a high demand for creativity and innovation in the face of extreme challenges, both in terms of logistics and emotional strain.

It does, however, stand as a testament to the staying power of small business owners across the globe that they have, en masse, managed to devise and implement an incredible array of new methods and practices that ensure the continuity of their business, as well as the safety of their staff and customers.

This adaptability should, for many years to come, be considered awe-inspiring for any budding entrepreneur. To evolve so quickly – and, in the overwhelming majority of cases, so successfully – is a result of a combined desire to preserve our local businesses, and ensure an improved playing field for independent businesspersons.

Of course, the story would have been unrecognizable had the internet not been there to ensure a versatile platform for enterprises of all shapes and forms. Read more about the digital evolution of the small, local business, below.

Restaurants: A Move to Online Ordering

Just twelve months ago, it would have been difficult to imagine how a local restaurant could have handled a disruption of these proportions. While independent delivery services facilitated remote orders to an extent, small businesses are far more sensitive to the commissioning fees charged by these services than, say, a multinational chain.

As such, businesses needed to be able to set themselves up for online orders and, after that, keep on top of them – but this is, of course, much easier said than done without a considerable investment into site development.

Fortunately, platforms that enable you to build your website without the expertise of industry professionals (or the budget for one) are able to facilitate the creation of an online ordering system that is ready to support the daily demands of serving customers partially, or exclusively, within the digital realm. Alongside the fortitude of restaurant owners, it is this ability to expedite the process of moving to online orders and to design digital platforms that work for individual businesses, that enabled independent restaurants to adapt so quickly to a new world.

Fitness and Virtualised Services

It is clear from just one or two examples, then, that even those businesses that seemed to depend on the ‘real world’ transactions in order to thrive have managed to find their place online. While it may be restrictive, it is also transformative, and many businesses will likely continue to embrace certain aspects of digital commerce and services even after we have progressed past this stage of the pandemic.

One example of an industry able to facilitate a move into remote services is the fitness industry, and independent, locally-based instructors and personal trainers who, prior to 2020, conducted the entirety of their business through person-to-person contact with fitness enthusiasts.

By rewriting the ‘rulebook’ for virtual conferencing software, such as Zoom and Skype, personal trainers and fitness instructors have been able to continue conducting classes online, without posing any risk to their clients, or themselves.

Just a few short years ago, these same professionals and small business owners would have encountered tremendous restrictions in their ability to continue providing clients with their services on a reliable and regular basis.

Digital Spaces for Creatives

While the internet lends itself on e-commerce, it remains limited in terms of the scope it can offer to those whose operations center around a particular space, such as local theatres, recording studios, galleries, and museums. Location-based businesses vary in type and nature, but those that are inherently linked with their brick and mortar presence were the most vulnerable to the impact of social distancing and locally enforced lockdowns.

Still, in the spirit of the digital age, creative minds uncovered a wide variety of ways to ensure that even the most location-centric businesses were able to continue to persevere throughout 2020.

Museums and city-tours created a virtual reality for themselves, while creative destinations as diverse as recording studios and locally held live music events have transformed themselves within the digital realm.

As the winter months rolled in, long-held traditions under direct threat from social distancing initiatives were reinvented – for instance, Santa’s virtualized visits to children.

Once again, this offers an exemplar of the power small business owners have not only to embrace existing technologies and systems but to forge new paths and create new digital trends that work in their favor, even in times of significant adversity.

The trials of the past year cannot ever be overstated, and yet what may once have seemed insurmountable to small business owners has, for the most part, been traversed. Navigating a new, digitally-focused world is the work of creatives from across the globe, and ensures that we can continue to support our local, small businesses in new ways, for many years to come.

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About the author: Access Publishing

Scott Brennan is the publisher of this newspaper and founder of Access Publishing. Connect with him on Paso Robles Daily News on Google, Twitter, LinkedIn, or follow his blog.