MANILA, Philippines — With the online marketplace competition heating up in 2015, Toons Canoy knew he had to keep up for his business to prosper. The entrepreneur and owner of C’est Ça Gifts decided to bring the business online and create a virtual store that can easily reach his target customers. Just like other SMEs within this niche sector, the shop adopted a multimodal way of selling their products wherein a digital and traditional approach was implemented.
Despite bringing the business online, the pandemic greatly affected the business. Being stuck to the confines of their homes gave people a few reasons to celebrate. Similar to other businesses that are not considered as an essential need, the three-decade-old gift shop struggled with staying viable for the people during the strict lockdown.
“Losing two months of business alone has been very difficult. We struggled to keep everything together due to the big blow to our sales,” said Toons, who also mentioned that corporate events used to draw in huge sales for the business. “In order to continue supporting ourselves and our employees, we knew that we had to do whatever it takes for the business to move forward and survive.”
Due to the conditions brought about by the pandemic, C’est Ça had to quickly adapt a more holistic approach in digitizing the whole business procedure. The business had to pivot and digitally transform the process of finances, marketing, logistics and the like.
“The pandemic pushed my brother and I to make necessary changes. We had to double down with our web developer to improve our website and social media assets in order to push for ads across various online platforms. We aspire to ensure that the journey of our customer with our business would be as seamless as possible,” Toons shared.
C’est Ça took every opportunity to improve its online business, from customizing the most creative gift packages to providing more options for delivery. While doing so, they had to choose the best broadband connection.
“Our experience with Converge has been great for us. Their fiber technology has made us feel even more connected in this pandemic and it has helped us get back on our feet. We’re very grateful to Converge for giving us the best experience as they continue to support other small businesses as well,” Toons said.
With C’est Ça’s enhanced online presence and new marketing strategies, they have opened new doors of possibilities for the shop.
“It was a completely different market with completely different purchasing behaviours. We were fortunate enough to gain a new following online wherein people continued to refer us to family and friends. The promotions our customers shared on social media allowed the business to stay afloat even during the pandemic,” he added.
Converge offers small and medium enterprises affordable broadband plans through FlexiBiz Daytime which gives an option to double the speeds at either during peak hours of the business’ operations.. These plans offer speeds up to 300 Mbps
“We recognize the struggle of SMEs to stay afloat during the pandemic. As they comprise 99% of all Philippine businesses, we believe it’s our duty to lend them a helping hand at this time, through economical and cost-effective broadband solutions, for them to still be able to reach their customers,” said Chief Operations Officer Jesus C. Romero.