15 Ways to Use Technology in Small Businesses
Small businesses usually grapple with leveraging limited resources to steer their goals and realize value. This is a struggle that technology can intervene to help occasion efficiency. It can help improve resource utilization, capital leveraging and minimize production and operational costs. The advantage is that some do not need a business structure and processes overhaul to be integrated. For others, only minor adjustments may need to be made. This article proposes the following technological ways that can integrate in small business settings.
- Small businesses can install and operationalize time tracking software. This is to monitor production-processes and detect slags based on the distribution of time as it gets spent at every stage of production. This is vital for achieving a self-checking productivity process that can report on problems in the production process. This can reduce reliance on supervisors who can focus on other productivity functions.
- There are task management tools that can help in managing duties, scheduling and reminding. These tools are helpful, timely and handy as opposed to relying on assistant and office secretaries. They also help in ensuring that all processes and tasks are in the picture as some can get lost upon managers. With these, you stay on top of work, appointments, orders, and production
- There are digital record-keeping and filing systems. These help in making sorting easy, facilitating back-up and ensure that sorting is more organized. The process of going through drawers to find files and perusing through stacks of files to find a particular document can become a thing of the past with this technology.
- Online invoicing is another easy technological resource for small businesses. When it comes to payment collection from customers, the costs can be cut. It also makes the process faster and, hence achieving more efficiency.
- Explore online retailing platforms that suit your business. This for purposes of expanding marked by reaching out to new customers. It also expands the income stream for the business.
- Utilize digital marketing platforms. This is to grow brand awareness in the market. Social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook can be good for advertisement and promoting your business.
- You should open a website and start a blog. This is a way of reaching out to your targeted audience with content that keeps them informed about your business. It explains your business goals, keeps your audience updated and even entertained. This can grow your business fan-base.
- Utilize instant correspondence and communication technologies. Teleconference calls can enable meetings without requiring physical presence and hence minimizing the movement of employees from workstations. You confirm the status of teams and ensure they are on the page with task instructions, timelines and can express their doubts.
- File-sharing can be beefed up with the installation of Intranet. Employees will not require physically delivering files to them or summoning them. You post them and they can access and work
- Online business training can reduce the costs of organizing employee training. This is particularly for new employees or refresher courses that update skillsets and competencies. Instead of organizing training, paying for trainers and reducing energies on productive tasks, online trainings continually update employees by filling competence and skill gaps.
- Beef up your customer service by conducting Online Surveys. These can be vital for purposes of collecting feedback that can inform the betterment of service delivery and add dynamism in the business.
- Using an analytics tool for customer online behaviour. One has to track the search, shopping and consumer patterns using available analytic tools. Such data can determine the alignment of marketing strategies with customer preferences. It helps in evolving the business by having relevant promotion and sales practices. You can use google analytics and host of others that suit the particular business set up.
- Automation of budget and accounting functions. This is beneficial since small businesses have leaner budgets and have to limit any wastages. As high as possible levels of accuracy are necessary, and automation can come in handy when it comes to this. Accounting Software's come in their numbers and they streamline numerous functions, including payrolls, keeping tax obligations up-to-date and aid invoicing as well. A cash flow management system can also work well in tracking revenues, expenditures and as well keeping an inventory of assets.
- Wi-Fi connectivity for internet needs. That may sound obvious but small businesses may skip this need in the interest of reducing costs or trivializing its importance. However, small businesses are the ones that need the internet and online presence the most. Most of the other technological integrations mentioned in this article will require stable connectivity to the internet. Communication that is seamless and regular research among other essential business functions in this day requires the internet.
- Security solutions are vital to small businesses. Technology itself is a security threat that, paradoxically, can be solved by technology. Hacking and copyright infringements can compromise the credibility of small business. Consumer information and business data are sensitive and have to be protected using security solutions that are hack-tight.
The good thing is that technologies have become cheaper. They are not capital intensive and a business has the advantage of choosing from among options to find the most cost-effective ones. Technologies can also be tailored to meet the needs of a business. There are a host of advantages that are good for business and which can be reaped.