10 Steps to Take NOW to Prepare to Bounce Back…
30th April 2020
What we don’t yet know is when lockdown restrictions will begin to be lifted and how quickly the bounce back will come.
What we do know is that the lockdown will be lifted (probably in stages) and that you’ll need to emerge leaner, stronger, more efficient than ever.
There are 3 stages to bouncing back strongly…
• Survive – things you can do to get through the current peak of the crisis in the best possible shape.
• Reset – things you need to do to bounce back quickly and be ready to take advantage of the opportunities that will come, and new ways that customers will want to engage with you.
• Thrive – good times will return, but the prizes will go to those with the best service, the best technology and the most efficient businesses.
Here are the 10 things you can do right now (in fact now is the perfect time) to Survive, Reset and Thrive so you bounce back strongly…
Bounce Back Stage One – Survive
1. Take Advantage of all Government Help – there’s a lot of support available to UK businesses including cash grants, job retention scheme, business interruption loans, mortgage payment holidays, working capital support, business rates waived and extra time to pay from HMRC.
You can find all the details you need, including how to apply, on the Government website.
2. Talk to Your Customers – text and email your customers on a regular basis, tell them what you offer now, reassure them by explaining what steps you’ve taken to keep them safe and remind them that you’re still open for business.
We can offer our iCabbi customers a free text broadcast service and for email you can use an email service such as NewZapp or MailChimp (both offer free accounts).
3. Talk to Your Drivers – it’s critical that you keep your drivers informed, updated and on your side.
The last thing you need is your drivers feeling like they need to take matters into their own hands to generate income by turning to Uber or Lyft, – see our Blog post – How to Keep Your Drivers Happy and Lock Them In…
Depending on the way they work for you, there may be income support from the Government, get them to read the Government website to find out more.
Bounce Back Stage 2 – Reset
4. Take Advantage of Integrations – industry service providers are doing more than they ever have (and probably ever will) to entice you to take advantage of their technology…
Airpay – offers a seamless in-car payment option for your customers every time they book, allowing them to pay using Apple Pay, GooglePay or Card without the driver being in control.
Karhoo – is a new service that allows customers to request journey quotes online through their preferred apps and websites. When they book it goes straight into your dispatch system.
Qbookr – a chatbot that allows automated journey booking through Facebook Messenger or via a web chat plugin on your desktop or mobile website.
TaxiButler (free trial) – place your TaxiButler devices at your most popular locations (restaurants, bars, hotels and company receptions) and customers can request a taxi from you with just one click. It integrates directly with iCabbi too, so jobs go straight into your system. Right now, you can get a free, no obligation trial for 30 days.
5. Check that You’re Charging VAT Correctly – are you aware of exactly when you should be adding VAT and on what basis? Are you charging some customers too much VAT and increasing your fares unnecessarily?
Our FREE Guide, ‘VAT Facts That Even Your Accountant May Not Know’ will you give you all the answers you need to get it right – request a copy here.
6. Encourage Your Customers to Download Your App – remind your customers to download and use your customer app.
Spell out the benefits – ease and speed of booking, automated services, free text messaging, live tracking, driver chat and so on – so that they understand why they should get it and use you.
7. Switch Dispatch Systems – switching right now actually makes a lot of sense because you have the time to handle it, and there will be less disruption to your staff and your daily operations.
If you’d like to know more about switching, you can download our free buyers guide, or maybe you’d like to discuss how iCabbi works with one of our team.
8. Update Your Telecoms – If you’re currently using an old phone system you’re missing out on lots of helpful features, such as call transferring, three way calling, call recording, management reports and IVR (Interactive Voice Response) system that helps you save on staffing costs by automating a large percentage of your bookings.
You can also make significant savings on calls and maintenance charges.
Find out more about switching to a modern system via our sister company, Target Telecoms.
Bounce Back Stage 3 – Thrive
9. Provide the best service – when things return to whatever the new ‘normal’ is going to be like, you need to provide the best service possible to your customers.
They need to have every reason to use you and not any of your competitors or app-based services such as Uber or Lyft.
The best way to ensure that everyone is happy is to insist on the highest standards of performance from your drivers.
Sure, clean cars, uniformed drivers and a great customer app are vital. But it might be as simple as insisting drivers greet their passengers by name or help them with shopping or luggage (to the door, not just out of the boot!).
10. Make use of the best technology – your dispatch system is the very heart of your business, and as a result it needs to be resilient, reliable and provide you with all the features your customers demand.
In addition, it should help your drivers work efficiently and profitably, as well as reducing manual administration tasks, which help you save money through reduced staffing.
On top of all that it needs to be backed with outstanding support to ensure that issues are resolved quickly ensuring continuity of service and profitability.
You can discover more about how to choose the right dispatch system in our FREE guide, ‘8 Key Questions to Ask Before Investing in a Taxi Dispatch System – and How to Avoid the Costly Mistakes’.
Make the most of now…
Things are challenging right now and there’s no disputing that, but this time also offers an opportunity to come out of this stronger and more resilient than ever before, if you’re prepared to make the right choices for your business.
If you’d like to discuss any of the points here, or you’d like to know more about iCabbi and how it can help your business survive, reset and thrive, please call us on 01623 44 22 11 and we’ll be happy to help.