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How Some Businesses are Adapting Their Product Offering & Strategy

Kaitlin Keefer, Editor

Right now, the world is trying to adapt and adjust to a new normal. The same goes for businesses and how customers shop and interact with them.

Business owners are savvy and have adapted very quickly to a no-contact way of conducting business. Some have even pivoted their offerings to better serve their customers during this time.

Here are a few examples of how businesses are adapting their product offerings and business strategy to keep serving and supporting their customers.

Gift cards

Even if some businesses might not have any choice but to temporarily close their doors, they’re still getting creative with how to continue generating revenue and bring customers back in the door once they’re up and running again. Selling gift cards online is easy with Square. You can even customise your gift card to promote your business or lean into special holidays and occasions.

Short Stop, which has locations both in Sydney and Melbourne, is making sure their customers can pass on their love of donuts and coffee with friends and family through Square’s gift card program. To find businesses in your area that are selling gift cards, use Square’s Give and Get Local gift card directory.

Takeaway and delivery only

A more popular change you’ve probably seen is one you might have been partaking in for some time now. A lot of restaurants, especially quick-service restaurants, are limiting their product offerings to only takeout and delivery.

Perhaps you already use delivery apps frequently, but you may be noticing more options as more businesses get up and running with delivery services like Deliveroo, Menulog, and Uber Eats.

Some restaurants are offering delivery directly from their restaurant, or takeaway only, so if that is your preferred business strategy, be sure to let your customers know through your social media account or email that they can order directly from your website. To find businesses near you that are accepting pickup and delivery orders, use Square’s Give and Get Local online ordering map.

Fine-dining takeout

Some cities now have takeaway and delivery options from restaurants where the wait list to get in was longer than the menu. A new trend that’s emerging is fine-dining restaurants partaking in takeout and delivery but getting creative with the way customers can experience their cuisine.

Melbourne restaurant Attica, ranked as one of the World’s 50 Best Restaurants since 2010, has converted their sit-down restaurant into a bake shop and are selling “Attica at Home” which you can pickup or have delivered for a nominal fee. Chef Ben Shewry has become well known for his unique take on traditional Australian cuisine with big flavours and experimental dining nights. Attica encourages you to enjoy their dishes on your “good plates” or straight from the packaging while relaxing on your couch.

Bentley Restaurant and Bar, a multiple award-winning restaurant in Sydney’s CBD, has also started making its product offerings available on delivery apps like HungryHungry. It’s converted its multi-course menu to a more delivery-friendly option. Customers receive 13 different containers to prepare their multi-course meal, instructions on how to plate it, and even a link to a curated Spotify playlist to play in the background.

From restaurant to general store

Instead of closing its doors temporarily, Theodore’s, a family-owned refreshment bar in Brunswick, Victoria, saw a unique business strategy to pivot away from serving food but still use its established supply chain. Theodore’s owner recognised that customers were struggling to get everything they needed from scarce grocery store shelves and decided to use his space as a general store where customers can get the essentials delivered or pick them up at scheduled times.

Millet Road Maker used Square to create an online store and has made its baked goods available for home delivery in the Sunbury and Macedon Ranges region of Victoria, and retail during this time. If your sourdough recipe just isn’t cutting it, or you can’t find the ingredients at your local store, then head to their online store and get everything you need to bake bread at home.

Business collaborations

Businesses are reaching out to their fellow business owners to collaborate on unique product offerings for customers. Recently, famed cocktail bar The Everleigh has teamed up with Bar Margaux and Connie’s Pizza, so you can have everything you need delivered to your home for happy hour, including glassware for those shaken or stirred libations.

Collaborations are a great business strategy to make sure that you can get your customers what they want, without having to change your product offerings.

Salon visits via video

While heading to the salon isn’t possible right now, people still want to look their best for work or friendly video calls. To meet this demand, stylists are getting creative with how they can keep serving their customers.

Many stylists and salon owners have started offering virtual appointments where they walk you through a haircut or easy colouring session — some will even mail you everything you need for as professional a look as possible to get you through your time away from the salon.

Meal kits

At-home meal kit product offerings have been around for a while, but today some restaurants are taking this business strategy in-house by creating kits of their own. Customers can either order kits for delivery or pick them up and do the rest at home.

For example, Chotto Motto, which specialises in gyoza, has begun selling “Cook at Home” gyoza packs complete with cooking instructions and a jar of their crispy oil for an additional charge. These product offerings can be ordered straight from its website or through its delivery partners.

Online or live-stream fitness classes

We know that working out can be very helpful in relieving stress and staying healthy, but most of us are having to do without our favourite gym and boutique fitness classes to break a sweat. Studios don’t want members to miss out completely, though, and many have started offering online classes or planning Instagram or Facebook Live classes.

Bodyworx Personal Training in Colebee, New South Wales, has embraced this business strategy by transitioning its fitness coaching to online and has been teaching weekly classes. Offering classes and lessons online allows students and instructors to keep their regular fitness and class schedules from the comfort of their living rooms.

These are just some of the ways that businesses are getting creative with changing their business strategy and product offerings by delivering services, food, gift cards and, hopefully, a little comfort to their customers right now.

Kaitlin is an editor at Square where she covers everything from how small businesses can start, run, and grow, to how enterprise companies can use tools and data to become industry leaders.