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How Some Businesses Are Adapting Their Product Offerings

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 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.

Stackt Market in Toronto started selling gift cards online, and customers jumped at the opportunity to support their local business. To find businesses in your area that are selling gift cards, use Square’s Give and Get Local gift card directory.

Takeout 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 only offering their food for 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. Some restaurants are offering delivery directly from their restaurant, or takeout only, so if that is your preferred route, 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

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. Atelier Crenn, a very well-known Michelin-starred restaurant in the United States, has started selling “Crenn Kits” that you can reserve a pickup time for. Chef Dominique Crenn has become well known for her farm-to-table restaurant experiences and her Crenn Kits allow customers to enjoy a farm-fresh, multicourse menu in their homes.

From restaurant to market

Vancouver-based JOEY Restaurant Group has pivoted its restaurant model into JOEY Markets. Instead of closing its doors temporarily they saw a unique opportunity to pivot away from serving food but still utilize its established supply chain. The Restaurant Group recognized that customers were struggling to get everything they needed from scarce grocery store shelves and decided to use their spaces as a market as well.

Anything from JOEY’s brioche buns to bake-at-home apple pies to all-purpose flour are available for delivery or pickup, and they offer a number of meal kits, too.

Business collaborations

Businesses are reaching out to their fellow business owners to collaborate on unique offerings for customers. Recently two popular U.S. restaurants, Lord Stanley and Mister Jiu’s, teamed up to create Lord Jiu’s, a five-course meal experience that you can order online.

Both chefs are well known in their industry for creating delicious restaurant experiences, and they put their heads together to create something unique for customers to enjoy at home.

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 kits have been around for a while, but today some restaurants are creating kits of their own. Customers can either order kits for delivery or pick them up, and do the rest at home.

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. 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 to provide service, food 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.