The 12th of February will mark the official start of the year of the Ox. Here in Hong Kong, all the shop fronts are filled with red decorations, and everyone is excited to finally say goodbye to a very difficult year. Despite the COVID-19 restrictions that have forced the cancellation of the traditional fireworks display and the traditional night parade in Tsim Sha Tsui, the city is getting ready, the red envelopes are being prepared and everyone is excited.
New year, new habits
The year we leave behind has been full of difficulties and change for everyone, from getting used to wearing masks to doing almost everything without leaving the house. Businesses have been affected by the dramatic decreases in the traffic to physical stores and an overall shift towards online sales.
For the first time, even users that had been skeptical about online shopping have been forced to try it due to COVID-19 restrictions and have discovered its convenience. The adoption of tools like messaging apps and other online forms of communications has also increased and, in a way, we have witnessed a forced digitalization of most human interactions.
In this new year, we hope that the virus will become history and the restrictions will just be a story we tell our kids about. The change they have brought, however, is likely to stick around for longer, especially when it comes to more convenient forms of doing business and acquiring goods.
Welcoming a new reality
Convenience is hard to give up and, in the future, businesses will need to work hard to improve their online and conversational commerce efforts. Consumers will expect companies to be available on messaging platforms and respond quickly to their questions.
Convenience & speedy responses will become key differentiators, continuing a well-established trend that we have often discussed in our articles. Chatbots will certainly play a major role in helping businesses to communicate online in a fast, efficient, and cost-effective manner and our team will continue to help customers all over the world to develop them.
As the new year approaches, we hope that, wherever you are in the world, it will bring you good luck, joy, and happiness. Our teams across the globe are preparing to celebrate at home and wish you a very happy and prosperous new year.