Despite the rollout of vaccinations and booster shots, Covid-19 ravages the United States. According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the first case of the newest variant, Omicron, was confirmed in the U.S. on December 1. By December 9, it was already in 23 states. Being highly transmissible, it is expected to continue spreading.
Covid-19 Omicron and Delta continue to infect Americans and cause fatalities, with Delta still the dominant variant. In the week of December 10, combined new cases had a seven-day moving average of 118,515. This reflected an increase of 37.3 percent from the previous seven-day moving average. As of December 8, the total confirmed cases in the country already reached almost 49.46 million.
On December 14, CNBC reported that the number of deaths due to Covid-19 had surpassed 800,000, based on an ongoing tally by Johns Hopkins University. Among those, over 200,000 could have been prevented because they occurred after the vaccines became available for free.
The U.S. has the highest Covid-19 fatality rate among all countries globally. While the American population represents only about four percent of the global population, its death count makes up 15 percent of the 5.3 million recorded deaths from Covid-19 worldwide.
It is not surprising that people will continue to shop online in 2022. Not only have they developed the habit from the start of the pandemic, but they will also continue to feel safer doing so. Home-based e-commerce entrepreneurs in the U.S. must see this as a sign to expand their business in the coming year. It is time for you to scale up.
Set Up Shop
If you have been working from the kitchen table, it is time to set up a real home-based shop. Having a space specifically allocated for your e-commerce business will improve your focus at work by eliminating the distractions of home life. You will not be tempted to go back to bed or attend to chores. You will not be disturbed by household noise. More concentration on the business during work hours will increase your productivity. Also, if your business involves having stocks of products on hand, it is time to move these to a dedicated storage space to clear your living space.
Explore your options at home. You can use your basement, attic or add a room above the garage. If you opt for the latter, you can hire a contractor to build it for you. Remind them to ensure that they keep your garage undamaged by their work. For instance, they must use a scissor lift diaper to catch drips and tire socks to prevent skids so as not to mar the garage floor.
Do not worry about the expense because you can claim this as a tax deduction. All the construction or renovation expenses related to your dedicated home office, as well as the cost of furnishings, equipment, and home office supplies, are tax-deductible. You must measure the home office area and compare this to the rest of the house. You can then claim the same percentage as tax deductions for rent or mortgage amortization; mortgage insurance; utilities such as electricity, gas, and water; garbage service fees; homeowners’ association fees; and other similar expenses.
Step Up Your Digital Marketing
Improving your digital marketing initiatives will further widen your reach and consumer engagement, resulting in more sales. Make sure that your website is optimized in terms of Google’s Core Web Vitals. It is important to adhere to these because they are part of how Google ranks websites in search results.
This means your website must load quickly, become interactive quickly, and be stable with no layout shifts. Hire a reliable website management service to ensure this. Also, increase your website’s popularity by hiring a search engine optimization (SEO) and social media marketing service. Monitor how your sales are doing after hiring these teams. If your results are not optimal, consider changing your service providers.
Improve Your Offerings and Services
Of course, the success of your e-commerce business ultimately relies on the quality of the products you are selling. Make sure that these consistently provide the best value for your customers. If you do not produce the products yourself and rely on suppliers, regularly do quality checks. Make sure that the delivery service you are working with delivers all packages on time and undamaged.
Consider expanding your product line. Offering more options and related products to your customers will increase your revenue. Introduce your new products by offering discounted bundles with your current bestsellers. You can also offer free trial packs of the new products for every purchase of your existing products. These strategies will entice customers to try out your new offerings at a low cost. If they like the new products, they will eventually purchase these at full cost.
Besides the products, customer service is also vital to your e-commerce business. Respond to all queries on time. If your business has reached the point where you could not keep up with such queries, hire a virtual assistant to help you.
Flex your virtual muscles in 2022 and boost your e-commerce business. The Year of the Tiger promises to be lucky for businesses.