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Post-Pandemic Economy and Business Status in the U.K.

03 September 2021

Businesses have had an incredibly challenging year, but it now seems that there is light at the end of the tunnel. Some of the hardest-hit industries, including hospitality and retail, have begun cautiously reopening, and it’s encouraging to see firms re-establishing and our major streets flourishing.

All this time, the narrative focused on what small businesses cannot do; however, the 5.9 million small business community in the United Kingdom will be at the heart of the post-pandemic economic revival.

U.K. Economy Lagged Behind

In the first three months of 2021, the U.K.’s recovery from the pandemic lagged compared to other major economies worldwide. According to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, the economic output was 8.7% lower than pre-pandemic levels at the end of 2019. On the other hand, the G20 group of major economies’ economic output increased, led by India, Turkey, and China.

However, the British economy is no longer performing the worst show in terms of business and economy. After experts studied the figures, the second-quarter growth was revised to reflect an unexpected increase in consumer spending after lifting lockdown restrictions.

Post-Pandemic Economy in the U.K.

Since June 2021, the proportion of firms currently in business has remained stable, reaching 90% in early September of this year. Moreover, compared to normal expectations, the scale of presently operating companies with unsusceptible turnover has steadily increased, reaching a high of 53% in late August 2021.

Here are a few business economic factors that show optimism as the economic cycle defines itself:

  • Throughout August 2021, the proportion of businesses’ workforce obliged to be on full or partial furlough remained roughly unchanged at 6%.
  • Around 6% of businesses that have not ceased operations during the pandemic expect employees to return to their usual place of work within the next month.
  • Approx. 4% of firms do not expect their employees to return to their usual place of work at all (most of these businesses are active in the technological and communication industries).

Looking to a Brighter Future

Businesses have a growing depth of loyalty built up during the pandemic, with 52% of consumers planning to support SMEs more from now on. As a result, the U.K. is entering a tense spending cycle, with £18.5 billion in stored household savings in January alone.

However, businesses must ensure that they have the technology to profit from the post-pandemic spending boom. The global crisis sped up several years of innovation and technological adoption in just a few months.

Digital mechanisms reshape the economic cycle and overall game by enabling firms to facilitate processes, adapt to fluctuating consumer needs, sell and run online, and fixate on developing customer relationships.

Union Finance’s Tips for Better Business and Economy

To help small businesses make the most of the economy reopening, we’ve assembled a few tips:

  • Offer multiple payment methods.

You should ensure that you can accept payments wherever you sell by setting up a quick online checkout link if you want customers to order directly on social media or via text message. Alternatively, suppose you want customers to call in orders for in-store pickup. In that case, you must know how to accept credit card payments over the phone or have the tools to receive invoices remotely.

  • Make it simple for them to buy ahead of time.

Begin by predicting customer demand for certain products and how purchasers intend to pay for those products. You can do this by analysing online purchasing trends and creating a practical plan for your online business to save time.

  • Utilise digital tools and apps.

Apps have proven to be a lifesaver for most businesses. Businesses that used apps to help manage their operations before the pandemic experienced a 12% lower revenue decline than those that did not.

  • Build on loyalty.

Almost half of the consumers feel more loyal to local businesses than to corporations. This allows small businesses to connect with customers in ways that bigger companies cannot. Because customers love tailor-made experiences, face-to-face interaction, and areas such as sustainability and community, focus on these areas to build on renewed loyalty.

Union Finance Can Help Revive Your Business

The COVID-19 pandemic has altered the way the world operates, making future planning critical, especially for companies. If your firm needs financing to get out of the nightmare the pandemic threw it, contact Union Finance for more information. We offer finance leases, business loans, hire purchase, and re-finance services, so call us today to put your firm on its feet again.

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