Guiding brick-and-mortar through accelerated digital transformation
As one of the biggest global players in AI-enabled e-commerce chat solutions, Heyday has long been an ambassador for the importance of a thoughtful, human-centric digital presence and shopping experience. But since the rise of COVID-19, the Heyday team doesn’t have to make much of a case for e-commerce anymore; traditional brick-and-more stores are being confronted daily with the urgent necessity to go digital to survive. So instead of preaching to the choir, they turned their attention to becoming the ultimate digital ally in order to make the transition as quick, accessible and painless as possible.
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Companies typically have a three to five-year transformation plan, now all of a sudden, it’s three to five weeks.
Though Heyday’s technology may give the company an extra buffer from the impacts of the crisis, founder Etienne Mérineau understood the potential ripple effects of a long-term retail shut-down right away.
"It’s a domino effect, right? If the retail industry collapses, we technically have the technology we’d need to pivot, but this is our market. We felt like we had to get some skin in the game – to walk the talk, so to say."
So they quickly got to work launching their retail relief program, a three-month initiative offering small to medium businesses free access to chat solutions designed to help them translate their unique, personalized offline experiences into their e-commerce interactions.
Though the Heyday team was quick to roll out a first iteration of their free support services, they’re constantly reassessing their approach to find ways of making even their premium services available to a broader range of customers in need.
Until then, they’ve made a point of remembering the importance of little human touches – those same little details that can make or break a company’s e-commerce experience. “We’ve called all of our customers, just to ask how they’re doing. The fact that you care and you show it makes the world of a difference.
If navigating all of this uncertainty and change can feel isolating and overwhelming for a business owner taking the digital leap, Etienne believes there’s power in opening up and reaching out for help. His advice? When possible, share the burden with your community – be it other entrepreneurs or your staff – as having a multiplicity of opinions and ideas around the table is one of the best ways to keep you thinking on your feet.
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