Updated: Apr 20
Although small businesses face some of their biggest challenges in recent times, many are also learning how to re-engage with their customers and adapt to new market demands.
As a result, business owners are beginning to explore several of the industry's trends to help them plan for the future and create new opportunities, from creating a website that better meets customer needs, to taking ecological and social responsibility.
With this in mind, we have put together a list of eight new small business trends to see in 2022 to understand where customers' interests lie, and stay ahead.
8 top small business trends in 2022
Switching to e-commerce
Uses mobile marketing
Rolls out your app
Personalization of customer service
The emergence of teleworking
Develop an online community
Promote data transparency
Be environmentally friendly and socially responsible
01. Switching to e-commerce
In recent years, there has been a steady shift in brick and mortar stores that take their businesses and services online and launch successful e-commerce websites. Under the current climate, most small businesses are looking at e-commerce to create new opportunities by selling their goods online, either as a main source of income or in line with additional practices.
If you are a business owner and want to bring your traditional line of work online, you may find that opening an e-commerce store can actually improve your business in ways you never thought possible.
Let's say you have a brick and mortar store and are ready to expand your brand beyond what you produce yourself. You can do this by adding dropshipping to your online store, which helps you sell items without paying for inventory. Using print-on-demand, goods are created on site only after they have been ordered.
Take New Jersey founder and Wix user RanD Pitt's personal testimony as one of several success stories of the transition to e-commerce. "I went from selling to my city to selling nationwide in a week," he said of his men's fashion store, Evolve, which saw a significant increase in sales after the move.
If you start an online store with Wix, you will discover many great e-commerce tools that help you set up a variety of specialized services. Its many advanced features include dropshipping, managing orders and payments, using data-driven insights to monitor performance and more.
02. Using mobile marketing
Mobile marketing is one of the biggest small business trends taking over the global scene with no indication of slowing down. This means marketing your business to your mobile user audience by reaching them via their smartphones or tablets. After all, as smartphone ownership continues to grow rapidly around the world - with an estimated five billion people carrying mobile devices - the most direct channel to your audience is very likely through their phone.
In addition to using small business apps to manage your business, you can also use an app to connect with customers and meet users on the go. For example, you can keep your customers up to date by sending text messages about your latest campaign with consent.
You can also use geo-targeting to reach potential customers in your area by using Google ads, which allow advertisers to target mobile users in specific geographic locations.
03. Roll-out of your app
More people are using their mobile devices to perform daily transactions than ever before, from shopping for groceries to ordering exercise classes. As a result, it may be time to connect your small business website with your very own mobile app.
With the Wix Owner app, you can manage your business within reach. You can also improve your marketing strategy by sending mobile push notifications from your app.
On top of that, you can invite customers to download the Spaces by Wix app so they can connect to your business on mobile. This allows them to order services, buy products and stay in touch via chat, groups and forums.
Create a mobile community with your app, and invite customers to join to better engage with your business and stay up to date with your latest offers.
04. Personalization of customer service
In 2022, it is more important than ever to clearly define your target audience. By understanding customer behavior, you will be better equipped to market your business or brand directly to them. Personal customer service is about adapting services to the specific needs and desires of each of your customers.
People today do not want to be bombarded with too many options and prefer a personal touch instead, expecting more companies to know exactly what they want. By taking a few simple steps, your company can offer personal service, and thus strengthen your customer engagement. We know that fully engaged customers are 23% more likely than average customers to spend on your business, which can also help increase your long-term profits.
One way to learn more about your customers is to develop a buyer persona to collect invaluable data about who your customers are. Explore web analytics tools like Google Analytics to gather insights about visitors, including the number of people to your site, how they got there (ie search engine, social media or other), which products are best sellers and what drives users' purchasing decisions.
Use the knowledge you have gathered, track strategic points as your customer navigates your site and tailor their personal experience by automating marketing tasks and customizing them better for your customers. For example, you can set up automated email marketing campaigns with a welcome email for each new subscriber, or with a custom coupon based on their purchase history or interests.
Finally, by learning more about customers' past buying behavior, you will then be able to recommend other goods or services that they may like, such as sending an email marketing campaign for your products or customized coupons.
You can also take it up a notch and create a membership area, where you will offer a dedicated space to your most loyal customers. Here, visitors to the site can log in to their personal account to manage order status or appointments, chat with other members and access other types of fenced, exclusive content.
05. The emergence of teleworking
Another important small business trend is the increase in teleworking and freelancing. Although these offer unique benefits such as flexible planning and refraining from a long journey, many who operate outside a traditional office space may face additional challenges, such as maintaining a work-life balance.
If you are a small business that depends on freelancers and external workers, there are several ways to keep the work environment professional while your employees feel that they receive support from afar. Remember that you can still promote a strong sense of team motivation without sharing a physical space. Be sure to check in your employees regularly using communication platforms such as Slack, Zoom or Google Meets.
Other ways to support employees while working remotely include taking the time to socialize virtually with your team, preserve your unique corporate culture, and express your gratitude for their hard work with meaningful gestures or benefits.
06. Develop an online community
Creating an online community of like-minded people can foster valuable connections around your brand. By sharing quality content about your field, from webinars to blogs, you will be able to establish yourself as an authority in your industry and gain the trust of the public.
Webinars are professional classes, workshops or presentations delivered online, while continuously engaging a larger audience. Other forms of video content you can create together include live streaming, a live Q&A or an online course.
Another great way to support your community and keep it growing is by providing a forum where people can share and exchange ideas around your site. Creating a blog can also help strengthen your voice in your business area and continually connect with your audience.
Sometimes your online community needs extra support. Do not leave them behind. Let site visitors reach you instantly by adding a Live Chat app to your site and helping them guide them through any questions they may have.
07. Promoting data transparency
By creating a privacy statement, you meet a legal requirement to protect your client's privacy, while maintaining good business practice. Make sure you are clear with your customers about what kind of information you collect and how you use it.
08. Be environmentally friendly and socially responsible
Consumers, especially younger ones, demand that companies go up to the plate and tackle in one form or another or create social and environmental problems such as climate change, species extinction and more. Whether you are just learning how to start a business or want to adapt to the latest trends, you should know that social responsibility is a critical part of business management.
Companies are taking action in a number of ways, such as improving the work culture, donating to causes, supporting them on social media and becoming more sustainable within their own business. If you choose to take steps such as cutting down on packaging waste or diversifying your workforce, be sure to alert your customers through everything from a social media post to a bold goal.
There are also some practical benefits to going green. In the United States, there are tax deductions and incentives at the state level for companies that use solar energy and renewable energy. As a result, American companies are already jumping on board and receiving a warm welcome from their green practices in their communities.
Companies of all stripes and sizes are beginning to perceive that business as usual is not the only option, and have in turn begun to embrace change. Multiple purposes around the world are able to raise awareness and make a difference with strong non-profit sites, signature sites and other forms to support their cause, both online and offline.