Growing a small business is not an easy task. But there are many ways to make the most of your efforts.
The below essential technologies for small business owners are not the only things you will need to grow a business,
but are management tools for not getting in over your head and in growing your business.
1. Increased Cloud Backup and Recovery
It’s a great idea and money saving venture to begin moving your on-site software to the cloud. It can reduce the amount of technology and space you need. One important thing to remember about moving to the cloud is factoring in how fast your cloud provider can deliver your data when a recovery is necessary. Knowing what the length of time that your business can afford to be down in a crisis is the most important factor in deciding between a cloud backup solution (more than 24 hours) and a cloud disaster recovery solution (less than 24 hours).
Always keep the most recent backup on site, but you no longer need to bother keeping every single backup on site. You can rely on either of these cloud recovery options for that.
2. Mobile Business Applications
As those entering the workforce are more reliant on mobile technology than ever, it is important to keep your business applications mobile and up to date. Not being able to use different mediums or programs on a mobile phone is damaging to the increasingly younger crowd.
A big problem is also not knowing exactly what is being used on mobile and what is not. Being able to analyze what is being used is important for making sure the applications are being built in the most useful ways. Such as with a a shopping cart, if only 20% of the items being added to the cart are actually bought, there is potentially too many steps or something is not working correctly that makes users feel uncomfortable in the buying process. Targeting the specific usage on mobile versus desktop can help guide developers to making the applications more useful.
3. Automated Marketing Tools
Some small businesses fail within the first 2 years of business due to not spending enough money or time working on their marketing strategies. Finding affordable automated marketing was too expensive and they did not have enough to spend personally. There is no excuse now when automated marketing tools are available in all price ranges. All you need to do is find the right automated marketing tool that will fit all of the solutions you need and make sure that they are integrated into the other solutions your business is currently using.
The types of things automation can do is sending white papers after sign up, automated emails within your website after certain clicks, send sales sheets after an email has been opened, capture leads based on coming to your website, analytics tools, email services, call tracking based on your recent pay per click ad, etc.
4. Customer Relationship Marketing Tools
Learning to connect with customers at all levels of the buying process is becoming more important for small business. Tracking customer data across all interactions is one of the first steps in getting started. Knowing how your marketing efforts are aligning with your sales efforts is one of the best ways to organize and reorganize based on how well you did and what you need to change.
Integration with popular email clients is one of this most requested functionalities. AND one of the most useful. The ability to keep all calendars [like Outlook, Gmail, Google calendar and iCloud], professional and personal synchronized can help employees and management stay on top of follow up reminders, tasks and meetings regardless of which email platform they are using.
Marketing to find new customers will always be important, but never forget to get the most bang for your buck, focusing on building a relationship with your current or “good” customers can be cheaper and more of a ROI than luring in the new ones.
5. Increased Security Awareness
While the cloud and and mobile technology is the way to go for new/better functionality and lower costs, it can potentially open you up to new forms of cyber threats. Taking the time to train each of your employees on the various scams that can give away access to hackers such as link clinking or opening unknown documents that may look safe or familiar. Just because you have given a list of all these rules to your staff it is important to have routine training meetings to make sure everyone understands the type of threats there are. Also, just like companies have fake fire drills, you could have fake emails to see how many of your employees click on it. After a training education a few weeks later, send out a fake attack. Hopefully you will see that most won’t open it, but if there are a few you can see why regular training is necessary.
To get your business started with the essential technologies for small business owners such as TracSoft’s IT solutions,
data disaster recovery, security and automated software and marketing tools, contact us for a free quote!