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Thursday, January 6, 2022 - 11:50am

From travel to technology, 2022 is shaping up to be an interesting year. DECA Direct reports that there are 10 key business trends that will influence companies during the upcoming year. The following is adapted from their article.

1. Customer Service Focused on Loyal Customers vs New Customers: Call them your golden geese. Recurring customers are more valuable than new customers. Studies show it costs 5 times as much to attract a new customer than to retain loyal customers. Businesses need to demonstrate extraordinary customer service focused on keeping loyal customers happy.

2. Less Is More: Too many marketing options—both digital and traditional—have resulted in businesses being spread too thin. As a result, they fail to make a significant impact on any media channel (including social media). Marketers should instead focus on exceeding goals on fewer objectives. Think quality over quantity; it's essential for businesses to excel in a few marketing goals rather than doing a poor job on too many.

3. Remote Work Now the Norm: The pandemic has resulted in many businesses being forced to offer remote work. One benefit is that it demonstrated that employees are capable of quality work outside of the traditional workspace. There has also been another shift to co-working spaces.This year, hybrid or employee-choice will continue to be an option, and one employees are going to want and expect.

4. Employee Recruitment and Retention: It's an employees' market. Employers are still encountering challenges in recruiting and retaining employees. Not only are companies using signing and retention bonuses as incentives, but also unique job perks and flexible scheduling. Companies marketing their ethics, values and culture will become a greater trend in 2022 as this has proven to be an important decision-making factor in prospects choosing employment opportunities.

5. Shift to Off-Premise Dining Continues: Restaurants in 2021 evolved their business models. They had to shift from on-premise to off-premise dining. Focus shifted to curbside and delivery options made from mobile apps, online-only ordering, websites and third-party delivery companies. Many restaurants rushed to make these needed changes. Now, restaurants have time to polish their off-premise dining operations to ensure best practices are in place. Trends show that off-premise dining options are still favored by customers and will continue.

6. Solo Travel: Individuals will be traveling for pleasure. Leisure travel historically tends to focus on couples and families; however, solo trips have become increasingly  popular. Travel industries are aware of this shift and are starting to offer more services for this unique demographic with mixed needs. Some solo travelers prefer to engage in social activities to meet new people while other solo travelers prefer relaxation and solitude without distractions.

7. SEO More Integrated. Search engine algorithms have become smarter and more contextual. This means marketers should focus more on excellent user experience rather than Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Look for meaningful user experiences in 2022.

Source: https://www.decadirect.org/articles/ten-business-trends-to-watch-for-in-2022

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Funded in part through a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration and a Grant with the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development. All opinions, conclusions, and/or recommendations expressed herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the SBA or the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development. Reasonable accommodations for persons with disabilities will be made if requested at least two weeks in advance. Contact the California SBDC closest to you.