The Future of Small Business: How This Year Will Transform Small Businesses As We Know Them

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Boost Team
The Future of Small Business: How This Year Will Transform Small Businesses As We Know Them

A whopping 80% of small businesses admitted that COVID-19 hurt them. 

And that’s last year’s stats. We’re almost a year in and still going strong with no definitive end in sight for this pandemic 😢

Sorry, we know it sucks to start things out like this, but good news is we do see a silver lining ☁️

And that is... 👉🏽 There are grand opportunities to be had if you’re savvy enough to see them.

Like it or not, the future of small business as we know it is changing, and this year will definitely transform small businesses as we know them.

The question is… Will you take #bizlyfe by the horns and adapt? 

There’s only one way to tell 👇🏽

Up-&-Coming Trends That Will Transform Small Businesses As We Know Them (And Some Young Entrepreneurs Who Are Already Way Ahead Of The Game)

We admit that a lot of the trends we’re about to share with you aren’t new 🤭

People started picking up on them at the beginning of ‘rona - or even earlier. And well, with time we’re seeing they’re here to stay. 

So, dive into our list of six trends to watch out for in 2021, and get to know some young entrepreneurs who are already killin’ it below:

Businesses are moving towards e-commerce 

COVID-19 accelerated e-commerce growth four to six years.


The digital world that was once perceived as mainly for the tech savvy is now inundated with new fangled and old fashioned businesses worldwide.

Because whether by want or necessity, businesses had to move to selling online in swarms 🐝

For us young people who practically grew up with the internet, the online migration was no biggie. 

But for those who aren’t so “lucky” (like Baby Boomers and older), talk about a rude awakening 🥴

But actually, this is exactly how some Gen Z and millennial business owners have let their creativity shine, fully embracing this digital transformation to help others out.

Take 24-year-old Jorge Richardson for example. He’s one of the co-founders of TogetherCard.

🏬 It’s a site where users can look up businesses by their zip code and go directly to the  company’s gift card page. 

🤝 Everything earned went directly to the business, helping local shops from permanently closing their doors because of ‘rona. 

♥️ Big minds, big hearts.

Remote first will transform how people work

Almost half of people (46%, to be exact) who have never worked remotely before now plan to do so more often in the future.

Talk about a shock to the traditional 9-to-5 life, amirite? 😂

No matter the industry, companies are seeing that a lot of what they do can be done online. 

And in addition to increased productivity or decreased expenses, there are other reasons WFH is here to stay as the future of work post-COVID-19, like:

  • 👩🏽‍🦱 There are more candidates for hire outside of one’s local community.
  • 🧾 Contractors can replace some full-time positions.
  • 🕒 Employees can have more flexibility and remote-first benefits. 

Sounds like a recipe for better work-life balance to me 😎

There will be new consumer behaviors

Aside from remote working, new shopping behaviors are arising because of the ‘rona. The three bigs ones are:

  • 🥗 Health-focused. Simply put, consumers want to live healthier lifestyles. So, they’re investing more in wholesome foods and products. 
  • ♻️ Conscious consumption. Also, people are paying more attention to what they’re buying, trying to limit food waste, and buying more sustainable options.
  • 🧺 Locally sourced. There is more of a desire to support community stores and shop local/ artisanal options. 

In the same way, buying behaviors are also changing as consumers are prioritizing their most basic needs first, like hygiene and cleaning products.

(Dunno ‘about you, but we think the 🧻 shortage will make its way into the history books.)

Younger kids will create more accessible options for their peers

For years, millennials have long been tapping into their passions and launching new businesses 🚀

So, when COVID-19 reared its ugly head, that didn’t stop them from becoming serial entrepreneurs

If anything, it gave millennials more reason to up the ante and get creative with solutions that not only generate serious cash 💰, but also align with their values and those of their peers ⭐️

This was the case with the millennial-founded company Soul Sanity, an online mental health gym with live sessions.

Founder Holly Novick opened the mental health gym in the thick of the pandemic after realizing there were none like it on the market 💪🏽🧠

And in all honesty, Soul Sanity couldn’t have come at a better time.

During the pandemic, within just the U.S., every 4 out of 10 adults are suffering from anxiety and/or depressive disorder.

So, a little reprieve on the mind will do wonders for the masses. 

Platforms are rising up to help businesses

The Creator Economy (more on this in the next section!) is taking over.

Platforms like YouTube, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitch, Substack, TikTok, Substack, Patreon, and OnlyFans look more attractive with each post-COVID-19 day 🤩

With their help, people are finally realizing they can quit their 💩 day jobs and achieve financial freedom doing what they enjoy on THEIR time.

🎮 Take Twitch for example, where successful streamers can earn $3,000 to 5,000 a month. (The best earn substantially more.)

🤳 Or even IG microinfluencers, who can make upwards of $40,000 a year

(Don’t get discouraged if you start small, like these young microinfluencers who spilled the dirt about how much they make to HuffPost.) 

If making money doing what you do best sounds attractive, but you’re not sure where to even begin, here are some ways creators make bank:

  • 📸 Sponsored content as influencers (TikTok, IG, Twitch, YouTube)
  • ✍🏽 Paid subscriptions (Patreon, OnlyFans, Substack)
  • 💲 Tipping on sites (Buy Me A Coffee, Ko-fi)
  • 🎤 Live and virtual events
  • 📝 Digital content sales
  • 👚 Merchandise 
  • 🗣 Shout-outs

Essentially, what you need to do is decide which type of content you want to monetize, and find the best platform to get your brand noticed. 

We’ve given you some examples above, but this Creator Economy market map can help you figure out the rest.

💡 And if you’re spinning your wheels brainstorming in general, we wrote an exhaustive blog on 21 Ideas for Your New Freelance Business in 2021.

You can thank us later 😉

The Creator Economy will continue thriving

As hinted at in the previous section, the Creator Economy is here to stay 🙌🏽

50 million have joined the Creator Economy thanks to platforms like OnlyFans, YouTube, Etsy, and Twitch.

🤔 What is the Creator Economy? You might ask.

Used synonymously alongside the Passion Economy, the Creator Economy allows creators, curators, and community builders to make and sell online content.  

We’re talking social media influencers, vloggers, bloggers, videographers, streamers, you name it.

Pretty much anyone who creates content that’s then sold in the digital world.

With the “normal” job economy still in trouble, the Creator Economy will only continue rising 📈

How To Navigate These Changes for Heightened Success

We’ve given you the trends that will transform small businesses as we know them. Now, it’s up to you to integrate them into your biz for maximum returns 🤑

Aside from embracing e-commerce, a remote-first work life, new consumer behaviors, up-and-coming platforms, and the Creator Economy, here are a few more suggestions to help your small biz 🌞

Find out how your customers’ needs have changed

The world was thrown into an unsolicited and noisy digital world.

So, you can bet your fanny that people’s needs and lifestyles have changed. 

Like it or not 🤷🏽‍♀️

Long story short, if you want to keep up with the Jones, you need to do some research.

Yupp, it’s not sexy, but it’s totes necessary.

(Psst - We just gave you three new shopping behaviors up above. Use them if you can!)

Your buyer persona - that is, the person you’re trying to sell to - will have new challenges, pain points, and priorities they would never have even imagined just a year ago.

😰 Some people will be scared of getting the virus for years to come, not wanting to ever leave their houses and ordering literally everything online.

💃🏻 Others will want to finally enjoy themselves and get together with friends once regulations have let up.

👉🏽 Either way, it’s up to you to find out what they’re thinking, and market yourself as the best solution for them at this point in their life.

This is all if you want to continue making money 🤑

Completely up to you.

Do realistic (not wishful) planning

Back in April 2020, only a third of small businesses surveyed by the Harvard Business Review thought that work disruptions due to the pandemic would last beyond August.

Only a THIRD.

And here we are, almost through Q1 of 2021, and there’s still no end in sight. 

Truth be told, no one knows when this pandemic will really end - even with the vax rolling out worldwide.

What does this mean for you? 

Pretty simple… Be realistic with your planning.

To put this into context even more, let’s use an example. 

🧁 Imagine you own a small bakery of three years now.

💵 In previous years, you collaborated with microinfluencers on a quarterly basis, making an additional $200 each month.

📉 Well, in our current ‘rona times, that $200 a month may drop to $100, or even $50, just because there’s more competition, consumers aren’t buying your food-dye colored muffins, etc. 

So, what would realistic planning look like in this situation?

🤓 You’d need to adjust your budget accordingly to account for this drop in income.  

… That’s it.

Don’t make things difficult. Just be smart. 

Before making drastic decisions, think about the well-being of your team (if you have one)

They say when things go bad is when people’s true colors shine.

Well, what we say in our “business as usual” economy last year wasn’t too pretty 🙈

While many big names laid off loyal employees, others did everything they could to keep their team working.

And even more laid off thousands only to profit from it later 🤐

No matter which side of the fence people found themselves on in 2020, there’s one thing in common: these companies’ actions will be remembered.

So, ask yourself: How do you want to be remembered as a small biz owner?

💚As compassionate and understanding? Doing everything in your power to keep your team working?

😈 Or, will you bail when the going (inevitably) gets tough again, looking to save yourself a few bucks in exchange for their livelihood? 

Our advice? Choose the first.

Because karma’s a b****, and sooner or later, it’ll come back to you (especially if you didn’t need to lay people off but did so because of other ulterior motives).

Final Thoughts

So, what will you do to prepare your biz for the coming changes?

Will you sit back and roll with the punches, or fully embrace what’s happening and take control of your future?

We hope it’s the latter.

👉🏽 And to help you get there, we have just the solution for you. It’s called Boost, and you can get early access to it.

It’s the only work platform that offers the support and resources you need to help your biz grow quicker, allowing you to stand out from the crowds and make your brand heard ✊🏽

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