You keep hearing about digital transformation. Sometimes too much so. In this article, let’s start from the beginning and raise the simple question of why you should embark on the digital transformation of your company.
All businesses are – or will be sooner or later – impacted by this great change – even in La Reunion! So we give you 9 good reasons to start the digital transformation of your business and to (finally) take the plunge.
Because your customers are now digital
593,000 internet users in Reunion Island (Médiamétrie) are the latest known figures. The internet penetration rate is catching up with “ti lamp “* in mainland France. Whether you like it or not, the first reason to start the complete digitalization of your activity is simply that your customers have changed and have themselves become digitalized.
The issue is the customer!
These last years have been marked by a deep evolution of their uses, the adoption of new technologies and new media (smartphones, tablets), the offers available, and the practices inherent to these changes.
According to Ifop, 80% of consumers and 93% of executives get information online before buying and 61% of the decision is made online before contacting any salesperson (Source Hubspot)
Note: a Facebook company page or an updated website does not make you a digital company
*Reunionese Creole expression meaning “little by little” (Editor’s note).
Because your business model is running out of steam
Kodak, Nokia, Blackberry but also Paruvendu have suffered from it. This does not only happen to others. All sectors are concerned and not only travel agencies or spare parts sellers.
Digital transformation is redesigning your business model. Why is this? Because with the arrival of e-commerce behemoths (Aliexpress, Wish…) or online tourism (Booking, Airbnb…) some companies will find themselves in difficulty. And don’t think that the people of Reunion don’t buy on the internet. Today, they have the choice. This is the next point.
Because your competitors are not only local anymore
“1 million Wish packages blocked in customs” headlined Le Journal de l’île de la Réunion (JIR) in November 2016. A few days ago, we learned, again in the JIR, that half of the 10,000 international packages that entered Reunion every day came from this Chinese site.
A good number of metropolitan sites but also Asian, European, and American deliver to Reunion Island. And if they do not deliver, parcel forwarders are present to ensure the relay.
In the advertising market, for example, Google and Facebook share the cake in the digital market. In the hotel business, Booking generates about 35% of the island’s hotel business. Airbnb is not to be outdone with an estimated impact of €78 million, as the JIR recalled this month.
Finally, it is important to remember that each company had an average of 6 competitors in 2014 and that it has 22 in 2018 (Source Hubspot).
Why not offer online services yourself? That’s the point below.
Because you want to capture customers online
They are more than 500,000 on Facebook and ¾ of the Reunionese have a profile on at least one social network (all the figures in this infographic).
So we can safely say that your prospects and customers are online. To capture them, you need not only an efficient website, and marketing automation tools but also a real digital strategy.
In this sense, e-commerce represents more opportunities than risks and offers great growth prospects. But don’t think that only companies adapted to e-commerce are concerned. Even a small business that sells agricultural machinery or swimming pools can capture customers on the Internet.
Because it can bring you growth
Yes, the digital transformation is undoubtedly a growth relay for your business. It will allow you among other things too:
- Reduce your investments in traditional advertising in favor of a more profitable acquisition of leads (prospects) and customers.
- Find customers outside your catchment area
- Increase your turnover
- Shorten your sales cycles
- Drastically reduce your customer acquisition cost (CAC)
- Sell new products to new targets and new markets
- Position your company on the podium of search engines including Google
- Know your customers better (see point 7)
Because you want to increase the value of your company
Admit that in a few years, you will want to hand over your business. And when it comes to valuing your business, many key elements will come into play, as we mentioned in this article.
The degree of digitalization and the tools and methods put in place will be audited during the valuation phase of your company.
A company that has already started its digital transformation and shows technological innovation is much more attractive on the market than another one that has not yet started its transformation.
Because you want to improve customer relations
The aspects of customer relationship take into account all the points of contact of a customer with the brand or the company. It’s about the overall experience of a person using a product or service. In the age of social networks and multi-channel conversations, customer relations are becoming a major issue. Today’s tools allow you to enchant this relationship and build loyalty among your increasingly volatile customers.
Because you want to change your tools and methods
Do you work the way your parents (and sometimes grandparents) or your former bosses did? Well, you’re going to have to dust off all that.
If consumers have become digital, your services and offers must also be digital.
Going digital is an incredible opportunity to change the way things are done.
And remember, a tool without a method is doomed to failure. Also, the best method without an ad hoc tool will have very limited efficiency.
The SOMOCLO approach or “social, mobile, cloud” is the new triptych of tools to implement. Beware, digital transformation is not only a question of tools. Thinking that would be the best way to miss your digitalization. To go further, a complete article on the essential tools can be found here.
Because you want to propose a company project to your employees
Yes, starting your digital transformation is also an opportunity to redefine your strategic vision, your company’s objectives, and its mission.
Raising awareness among your employees is an essential but not sufficient step. You need to offer them a project that makes sense and unite them around it.
We hope that through this article, we have been able to enlighten you on the why of digital transformation. Note that this global process integrates all the technological innovations (CRM, Information System performance….) that the company needs to maximize, evolve or transform its value chain and its business model. But not only that. It also implies a change in mentality, a strong awareness, and support of employees as well as an acceptance of the break with past models.