Why They Saw Success And How They May Keep Growing
Amidst the chaos of COVID-19 and the blows dealt to economies around the world, there were many industries that actually thrived during the pandemic. Over the last several months we’ve been exploring how the landscape has changed for companies of all sizes. We’ve researched and shared solutions for businesses that may be struggling and provided suggestions that we hoped would help any business owner who is having a tough fiscal year.
In this series, we are exploring the opposite end of the spectrum. We’ll look at businesses that were well-positioned to thrive through this period and we’ll share several ways that they could continue growing into the future.
In Part 1, we’ll visit 5 businesses that actually experienced growth during the lockdown and share why they were in the position to grow. In Part 2, we’ll explore ways that these businesses and others like them could continue to thrive as things slowly return to our new normal.
The COVID Conundrum
Creating a successful business is no easy task. Quite the opposite. It’s actually one of the most challenging feats that exist in the modern economy. It takes vision, planning, organization, and consistent, long-term execution in an always changing environment of customer trends, expectations, and new technologies. And no matter how successful a company becomes, there is always a start-up of scrappy innovators working day and night to knock that business out of the top position.
Enter COVID-19. This pandemic has been one of the most diabolical enemies of the business that this world has ever seen. If we thought it was tough to create a successful, sustainable business before, well…we all know just how hard it has recently become with this invisible foe wreaking havoc on spending trends and people’s daily lives.
But, with every challenge comes opportunity. And there are long lists of businesses that have put their creative foot forward and charged into the darkness with bold, new ideas. There are also plenty of traditional companies that we’re perfectly positioned to assist people when this pandemic hit. Businesses that help people retrieve their sense of normalcy while social distancing has seen massive growth. Companies that let people enjoy comforts and necessities while staying home have been invaluable to our economy.
So who are we talking about when we mention businesses that have done well during these trying times? Well, here’s a shortlist to get you started and you may not be surprised to learn that the businesses we talk about here have to do with the home. We’re sure you’ll be able to think of many more as you read this series.
Home Improvement Companies
Stores like Home Depot saw surges in sales and customer engagement as waves of people turned to DIY projects that had been putting off for months (and sometimes years!) Home Depot saw revenue rise a whopping 7.1% in the quarter when quarantines were ordered. That rise had a direct correlation to do-it-yourself projects, the company said, as people faced stay-at-home orders during the pandemic.
Chief Executive Craig Menear was quoted saying, “Clearly, the customer is reengaged with DIY.”
Companies that offered replacement and remodeling services saw upticks and often skyrocketed sales growth during the toughest times of COVID-19. Stimulus packages hitting people’s accounts. And people were stuck inside for months looking at those “darn windows that we painted shut 10 years ago!” or that “front door that might as well be open as much air as it lets in!” Naturally, many families made the decision to invest in improving their living experience.
Landscaping and Yard Care
As with most projects that have to do with the home, one leads to another and another, and the snowball effect continues until you reach the yard. And with the COVID factor, homeowners simply had much more time to pay attention to their lawns and their gardens. This helped many landscaping and yard care companies experience amazing growth in business. Many companies that offer landscaping materials and equipment have reported near-constant demands for their supplies.
Let’s stay in the yard for a while. As our last paragraph may have had more to do with the front yard, this paragraph is primarily happening in the backyard. As we know, people were home when the weather warmed up in America. The DIY bug was in full swing. People were flat out scared to visit the grocery store. And many wanted to take control of their own food security. So home gardening became one of the hottest hobbies on the market (let’s not get into sourdough right now). People decided to try their hand at growing flowers, vegetables, fruits, and an array of different plants and fauna. Gardening business and seed suppliers exploded!
With more people spending time at home seemingly than ever due to COVD-19, furniture sales have increased to help people make living rooms, patios, and home offices more comfortable. Laura Sproul, owner of Sproul’s Furniture in Newcastle, Maine, reopened her store for in-person business at the end of May and told the Lincoln County News that sales have increased substantially. “They spent enough time in their house and decided they should buy something new,” Sproul said. “If they’re going to be home, they might as well have their home look good.”
While folks were at it revamping the interiors and exteriors of their homes, many of them decided that it was a good time to keep things clean. And of course, we were all panicked and completely confused as to how the coronavirus spread. So it shouldn’t be surprising at all that cleaning services offering disinfection and best practices for sanitization were in extremely high demand. More substantial than the residential sector was the commercial and medical industries. None of us had ever experienced anything of this magnitude before and nearly everyone on the planet had one priority – keep things disinfected. Businesses and medical facilities were expected to go above and beyond to ensure the safety of customers, employees, and all forms of other staff and patronage that may visit.
Surely you have thought of many other great examples for businesses that thrived during COVID. The bigger part of this anomaly we will explore in our next article is why these companies were able to thrive and how they can keep their momentum moving forward. Most of the ideas we’ll be exploring could help any business that is looking to succeed. So you’ll definitely want to read Part 2 of the series as we more deeply explore business success during the pandemic.