IF THERE is one thing the COVID-19 pandemic has taught businesses over the past year or so, it’s that they need to explore ways to adapt and diversify if they want to remain afloat.
The importance of ‘pivoting’ and understanding how customers and clients are spending their money was discussed in depth at the Hervey Bay Chamber of Commerce’s Business Breakfast yesterday.
Embracing online shopping and incorporating it into your business strategy was one way both ANZ Economist Adelaide Timbrell and Fraser Coast Regional Council Economic Development Manager Mark Lourigan said people could keep up with the trends reflected by credit card data.
Mr Lourigan said credit card transactions on the Fraser Coast were no different to the national trends.
He said there was a massive increase in online shopping in the region.
“If you’re a local business, you must analyse this and understand what it means. Maybe you can get a slice of that online spend,” Mr Lourigan said.
When communities were first thrust into lockdowns last year there was an obvious spike in online shopping.
People were not able to go out as often and had to turn to the Internet to make non-essential purchases.
Ms Timbrell said credit card data reflected a spike in online shopping but when restrictions were lifted and people could leave their homes again, online spending did not return to its pre-pandemic levels.
Instead, online shopping levels remained higher than before the hard lockdowns, suggesting the trend had caught on.