If you’re like me, you are ready to kick 2020 to the curb! It’s been a year when we’ve all experienced a wide range of emotions: anxiety, loneliness, fear, anger, stress, sadness, and frustration. But as this tumultuous year comes to a close, it seems like a worthwhile exercise to take a look back at where we were in January and where we are now — it’s definitely been a one-of-a-kind journey in 2020!

As part of this retrospective, it’s interesting to examine the Vertical IQ Industry Profiles that received the most traction this year.

Here are the top 25 Industry Profiles for 2020, based on number of views:

1. Dental practices 14. Electrical contractors
2. Restaurants 15. Residential building contractors
3. Trucking companies 16. Lessors of residential buildings
4. Law firms 17. Management consulting services
5. Physician practices 18. Engineering services
6. HVAC/plumbing contractors 19. Comm. brokers/property mgrs.
7. CPA practices 20. Childcare centers
8. Auto repair shops 21. Marketing consulting services
9. Residential brokers/property mgrs. 22. Janitorial services
10. Veterinary practices 23. Churches and religious orgs.
11. Commercial building contractors 24. Home healthcare services
12. Landscaping services 25. Hair care services
13. Insurance agencies brokerages

Potential reasons for popularity

  • Dental practices and physician practices, for example, have all been heavily impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, having to put in place the highest level of safety measures to prevent viral spread among employees and patients. In addition, many patients have put off routine care or elective procedures, leading to a sharp decline in revenue for these practices.
  • Restaurants have been among the hardest hit by shutdown mandates. Sales decreased 19.3% in value year over year for the first 10 months of 2020. Yelp found that 53% of the restaurants noted as “closed” on its site had marked their closures as “permanent.”
  • Residential brokers (realtors) have had a surprisingly busy year. Sales of previously owned homes rose 26.6% year over year and 4.3% month over month in October, according to the National Association of Realtors.
  • Commercial property managers have had serious challenges as a result of rent deferrals and skyrocketing evictions. The office market could see vacancy rates rise to 21.4% by the end of 2021, higher than their peak in the recession.
  • Lessors of residential buildings have faced similar challenges. The Trump administration halted evictions through the end of the year for rental properties that receive federal subsidies or other government financial backing, but Americans may collectively owe $70 billion in rent by January, when the current federal eviction moratorium is set to expire.
  • Commercial and residential building contractors, along with HVAC/plumbing contractors, electrical contractors, and landscapers, have actually had better-than-average quarters on the whole, once lockdowns were eased. They have had to put in place safety measures to keep both employees and customers safe, however
  • Childcare centers have faced unique challenges in dealing with cleaning and social distancing recommendations in addition to revenue. The percentage of children with an unemployed parent has reached historic highs since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, according to medical journal The Lancet. As a result, about 336,000 child-care workers, a third of the entire industry, lost their jobs between March and April, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.
  • Janitorial services companies had a good year financially, though it was not without challenges. Most janitorial services firms are inundated with commercial cleaning jobs as a result of the coronavirus outbreak. However, residential cleaning firms have had to work to reassure customers that cleaning practices and equipment are safe to bring into their homes.
  • Churches and other religious organizations have suffered amid the pandemic, experiencing declines in attendance and collections due to closures related to the coronavirus. Social distancing has forced these organizations to invest in technology to bring worship services, member resources, and tithing online.
  • Hair care services had a difficult year as well because of lockdowns and safety restrictions. Reopening safely increased salon and barber shop costs as they invested in automated trash receptacles, equipment sterilizing equipment, additional soap and hand sanitizer dispensers, and thermometers. Adhering to new distancing guidelines can decrease salon capacity. Time-consuming sanitizing efforts between clients can also reduce the potential volume of business.

Looking ahead

So many people and businesses have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, suffering financially and/or health-wise. With two vaccines now approved by the FDA for emergency use, I think we are all optimistic that we are approaching a turning point in the trajectory of the pandemic — and hopefully there will be a positive ripple effect for our nation’s businesses.

From all of us here at Vertical IQ — we wish you a happy and healthy 2021!


Photo credit: Damir Mijailovic, Pexels