In order for any type of small business to truly succeed, there must be a willingness to evolve with the times. One of the most practical ways to stay current and take advantage of all the tools available to companies today is to incorporate technology in your business operations. Although it comes at a price, using the right kind of tech can give your business the boost it needs to thrive in the modern marketplace. If you’re a small business owner, here are five of the most essential tech tips to consider for your company.
Make Sure Your Website Is Up-to-Date
Every business needs a good website. Whether you specialize in goods or services, and whether you run an online or brick-and-mortar business, an attractive and functional website will help keep your company from falling behind in the market. You will likely have a lot of potential customers/clients look you up on the web, and your site is where most of your existing customers will go for information on new products/services.
Having a website also helps you differentiate your company from competitors, and it can help broaden your customer reach and increase your sales — sometimes at dramatic rates. It’s essential, however, that your site is top notch. About 75 percent of customers form an opinion on a company’s credibility simply by the design of their site. Your website should have:
- An eye-catching design
- An easy-to-use layout
- Up-to-date information on your products/services
- Professional photos of products
- Industry-related content, such as videos and blogs
- A simple, effective checkout process
Get a POS system
Another piece of technology to consider for your small business is a point-of-sale (POS) system. POS systems, such as those offered by Square, can do wonders for your online and physical store sales, as they provide the quick checkout process that is so critical for attracting and retaining customers today. Additionally, a good POS system will enable you to securely accept a variety of payments and help you manage your inventory.
Secure Your Data
While more and more tech options are being made available to small businesses, it doesn’t come without its risks. Cybersecurity is a growing concern for companies of all sizes — it’s not just the big corporations and banks experiencing fraud, hacking, data breaches, and other cybercrimes. Take the necessary steps to protect sensitive information. Check out this article for some of the top security solutions today.
Use the Cloud
Simply put, the cloud gives businesses the ability to store various forms of data in a single location online. Once the data is stored, it can be accessed by anyone you choose — through any device and from any place with an internet connection. It’s easy to use, it provides flexibility for you and your employees, and it can save your company from the high costs of storage.
Lastly, chatbots are taking businesses of all types by storm. Chatbots are essentially computer programs that speak with human beings through artificial intelligence. You can probably imagine how this could transform your customer service operations, but chatbots are useful for more than that. For instance, they can give customers shipping information, make relevant product recommendations to customers, streamline the sales process, and increase customer engagement on your company’s social media pages.
Technology is not something to be dreaded if you’re a small business owner; rather, if you embrace it, it can grow your company’s potential and help you achieve your goals. Make sure you have a website that serves your company and customers well, and look into POS systems to improve your checkout process, inventory management, and more. Remember to consider using data security, the cloud, and chatbots to improve your business operations. It may come with some costs up front, but the right kinds of tech can pay itself off in no time.
Photo Credit: Burst