The I-85 Bridge Outage and Atlanta Businesses: How to Prevent Revenue Loss

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Beginning with the collapse of an overpass on I-85 in late March, the Atlanta area has seen multiple roadway disruptions. While road crews work to repair damage, major streets in the area are closed until repairs are complete. For businesses that rely on downtown traffic, the closures could mean a decline in revenue due to decreased traffic and rerouting traffic around the downtown area.

Tourists may stay away from the area, hurting the attractions and restaurants that rely on their patronage. Employees may choose to work from home, reducing spending at restaurants, dry cleaners, shops, and other businesses in the downtown area.

If your business fears road closures or recounting may impact your earnings, here are a few options to consider.

Go Where the Customers Are

If customers can’t get to you, go to them.

  • Consider increasing online promotion and advertising for e-commerce offerings.
  • Explore local trade shows, festivals, craft fairs and similar events that can help you showcase your products to customers who wouldn’t see them otherwise.
  • Expand restaurant offerings such as mobile food trucks and delivery.
  • If you’re a service-based business, consider a sweepstakes promotion to reach local customers.

Use Technology

When foot traffic is low, the internet can be your best friend. If you don’t have an existing online presence, consider an online marketplace like Amazon or Shopify to get started. Use social media to get the word out about your unique products.

Let Employees Work Remotely

This may be a good time to rethink your telecommuting policy. Instead of sitting in traffic, arriving late or trying to leave early to beat the rush, employees can put those extra hours each day toward work. If you have workers who don’t need to be in the office 40 hours a week, consider allowing them to work from home part of the time.

Reach Out to Locals

For businesses that rely on foot traffic, the workers and residents within your immediate vicinity won’t want to leave the area any more than customers want to battle traffic to get to your location. Reach out to local residents with special offers. If you sell food or other consumables, take samples to local businesses or offer free delivery for orders above a certain amount. If you still see foot traffic during peak hours of the day, station someone outside with samples to lure people in.

Temporary road closures can create gridlock, especially during peak travel times. By doing your best to accommodate workers and coming up with ways to reach customers, you can combat potential dips in revenue. You may even find you’ve added new, loyal customers.

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