Small Business COVID-19 Survival Guide - Part 3: Selling Like A Boss

In the previous COVID-19 survival pieces, we explored effective communication with your small business’s employees, and the many available mostly-free software you can use to streamline your work-from-home efforts during the pandemic. In this piece, we will explore some essential ideas as to increasing your sales efforts during a crisis. 

South Africa’s GDP has taken quite the beating as a result of the drop in business, set off by the country’s lockdown restrictions and shutdown of specific sectors. Let’s take a look at some ideas that small business owners can use to make up the deficit by increasing sales.

How To Increase Sales During The Pandemic:

  1. Offering discount vouchers which can be purchased for now and redeemed later. 

  2. Give your customers the option of free delivery to boost online sales. Why lose the customer, when you can simply drop the delivery fee?

  3. If you have not pivoted to selling online and your business can, we suggest doing so, now. 

  4. Many people have lost their jobs, which means there’s an influx of available talent. Consider employing some people on a commission-only basis if possible.

  5. Social media. Advertise on your social channels more if you have not already. More people are spending time at home than ever before, on their desktops and cellphones. 

  6. Should your business cater exclusively to international visitors, consider dropping your prices and allow our locals to experience your products and services. 

  7. If your business is selling a service, ensure that your website can facilitate online client sign-ups and interactions. 

  8. Make sure that you contact your clients and understand their current needs in this time of crisis. Consider offering new products or services that meet their needs, this is the time to create new opportunities, with your clients in mind first and then your business.

  9. Consider offering your clients a discounted rate for signing up for more extended periods, i.e. 6 to 12 months. 

  10. Use the time you have now, to develop a practical PR approach and become a thought leader in your industry or re-establish your position as one. 


Many of these tips might not align with your business offering; however, the responsibility is on you, the small business owner, to find effective ways of pivoting your business offerings to increase sales. Offering discounts and vouchers apply to almost all sectors, so start there. If your business sits in a particular niche sector, we suggest taking the time to sit down and take to the drawing board, to determine how your business can meet the current needs of your target market. 

By using these tips and the tips outlined in the previous articles, you can better weather the now-extended lockdown restrictions as laid out by president Ramaphosa last week. In the next piece, we'll talk about correct disease management for small business owners. 

  • sales
  • Coronavirus
  • COVID-19
  • Coronavirus Guide
  • sales strategy
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