COVID-19 Survival Guide For Retail, F&B, And Service Industry: Bring Your Business Online Team Team

Last updated 30 September, 2020

COVID-19 Survival Guide For Malaysian Retail, F&B, and Service Industry: Learn How To Bring Your Business Online.

Since the breakout of the Covid-19 pandemic, many businesses have suffered, especially in the Retail Sector with businesses ranging from Food and Beverage (F&B) to the Services industry.

According to Retail Group Malaysia, the Malaysian retail industry is expected to reach a negative growth of 3.9% during the first quarter of 2020. In a joint statement, members of Malaysian retail associations have reported as much as a 50% drop in sales, with some expecting revenue to dip further too, as Malaysians continue to shy away from outdoor shopping activities.

While the traditional retail sector plunges, Ipsos Malaysia reports that almost half (48%) of Malaysians say they have increased online purchases during the pandemic, especially for food and grocery deliveries. Malaysians are particularly  buying personal care items, groceries, and clothes online, and this trend is likely to prolong even after the MCO is lifted.

With e-Commerce on the rise, here is a 5 Step Guide to help retail SMEs to survive and come out of this pandemic stronger.

Step 1: Setting Up A Crisis Management Taskforce & Managing Stakeholder Communications

SME retailers must plan and build a flexible crisis management team in order to steer and manage any response from all fronts. This will provide ample visibility for better decision-making and command-control throughout the business. The team should also craft the right message with constant updates to reassure their customers and suppliers on their next business action plans and more.

Step 2: Minimum-To-Survive Scenario Planning

SME retailers should consider scenario planning and resource projection for the first 1-2 months, 3 months, 6 months, and 12 months. These projections should factor in market demand, staff shortages, supply constraints, and cost management. Responding to the complex environment during the pandemic with the right and agile decision will increase the chance of the firm’s minimum survival.

Step 3: Adapt & Evolve Your Retail Store

SME retailers should assess each of their retail stores for local customer demands and competitors’ offerings. Adapt and evolve each storefront, from providing partial- to full-service, turning it into a back-end operation-only centre, setting up delivery or pick-up branch, and more. This will help maximise the use or resources to generate enough revenue for survival while trimming off cost-inefficient activities.

Step 4: Learn How SMEs Can Setup Their Own Online Webstore For FREE

CIMB Bank has teamed up with Shopmatic (an international E-commerce provider) to assist SMEs to bring their businesses online. The partnership seeks to assist the digitalisation of the business by bringing all the relevant pieces involved in setting up an E-commerce ecosystem into a single platform.

In a nutshell, this means that building the Website, Shopping Cart, Payment Gateway, Logistics Enablement, Digital Marketing, Email and Social Media Support are all integrated into one system. Therefore, this reduces the tediousness of setting up individual components. As a bonus, customers stand to gain from CIMB Bank’s expertise and regional networks, as this will come in handy whether it is a start-up or scaling-up of a business.

Since there has been an overwhelming interest to sell products and services online, the organizers have decided to provide a hands-on webinar to build an online Webstore. Participants will get expert advice on how to design a Webstore using the Shopmatic platform, enabling the features of the platform, and update your business and offering catalogues easily to generate more traffic and sales.

To further enhance, integrate, and manage your digital business, CIMB Bank and HReasily has launched (a cloud-based all-in-one payroll and HR platform) which allows you to manage:

  1. Payroll – Integrate your payroll transactions seamlessly
  2. Leave Management – Online application & approval
  3. Mobile App – Manage your processes, anytime and anywhere
  4. Smart Check-In – Digital records of working hours, facial recognition, geolocation tagging
  5. Claims – Integration of expense claims with payroll reimbursement

Step 5: FREE (Shopmatic x BusinessHR.Asia Go Digital) Webinar to Help Boost Your New Online Webstore

  • 1st October 2020 (10.30AM – 12.00PM) click here to register
  • 8th October 2020 (10.30AM – 12.00PM) click here to register
  • 15th October 2020 (10.30AM – 12.00PM) click here to register
  • 29th October 2020 (10.30AM – 12.00PM) click here to register
  • 5th November 2020 (10.30AM – 12.00PM) click here to register
  • 12th November 2020 (10.30AM – 12.00PM) click here to register
  • 19th November 2020 (10.30AM – 12.00PM) click here to register
  • 26th November 2020 (10.30AM – 12.00PM) click here to register


The free webinar is for a limited time only (available for existing business owners and also CIMB Current Account users).



The team is comprised of many talented individuals, sharing their knowledge, experiences and research to help others make better financial decisions.


Use a personal loan to consolidate your outstanding debt at a lower interest rate!

Subscribe to our newsletter to stay up-to-date with exclusive money-saving tips & great deals