Technology can help small business owners to increase sales in a smarter, more cost-efficient way. In some cases, using technology provides greater efficiency and functionality. In others, you may need to make some adjustments to reap the benefits of technology-friendly alternatives.
The good news is that benefits of technology outweigh the short-term challenges of transitioning from the old system to a new one. So, let’s study some areas that can be explored to increase the use of technology in your small business.
1. Increase Productivity
You can increase business productivity by using modern tools such as softwares that can record employee attendance, or map their daily tasks.
Such tool is useful to improve accountability, process improvement, and productivity.
2. Streamline Your Work Processes
Traditional companies usually require documents to be signed and then sent back by post. This can be very inefficient as it incurs cost, energy and time.
Streamline every possible process digitally. Send documents via email, use digital signatures, and save documents as softcopy to save paper.
3. Create a Digital Filing System
The budget for printing and paper can be reduced without the need to have printed documents.It also provides convenience in sorting, storing, sharing, and finding documents.
4. Build an efficient Email Management
Develop a more efficient email management process by making it easier and faster to reply and disseminate information.
5. Improve Your Financial Management
Use online invoicing services to reduce the cost of collecting payments from customers. You can also submit taxes more efficiently online.
If you want to be more revolutionary, you can try selling your products online. Accounting and HR teams can be more efficient by using comprehensive accounting software to streamline your business finances.
Lastly, share digital files with the accounting team to improve the current bookkeeping processes. You can take advantage of open source applications which are cheaper or even free, if your budget is limited.
6. Improve Marketing Tools
The digital technology wave has transformed conventional marketing to have more emphasis on online marketing strategy. Use social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, YouTube, etc, to promote your business, products and services.
Start a blog that is related to your business and target audience. Insert pictures, photos or videos on topics that are relevant to your products or services.
Then, promote your business with a website and/ or online advertising.
7. Collaboration and Learning
First, you can do teleconference calls to ensure team members outside of your office or in different locations are on the same page. This is far more effective than having them to come to the office and get stuck in traffic.
Take advantage of quality webinars or web conferences to keep everyone connected with flexible face-to-face time.
You can also share data using cloud server technology to easily access them anytime and anywhere.
8. Improve Customer Service
Set up online help desk and ticketing system to handle customer issues 24/7.
If clients want to meet, you can allow them to schedule appointments online at their convenience.
9. Use Social Media
Everyone is on social media now. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn have more than 3 billion users. Your potential customers are likely to be on these platforms and the only way to reach them is to bring your business to them.
Social media platforms provide easy and inexpensive way to target new customers. In addition, you should keep on updating your product information on social media so that customers are always updated. Your task is to create social media accounts for your business on the top four social media platforms.
10. Open 24/7 with websites
No one will consider your business as “professional” nowadays, if you do not have a good website. Creating a website is the only way to have your business open all the time.
With a website, customers can always get the information they need about your business and they can easily contact you. Include information about your brand and phone number that customers can call.
11. Utilize a Smartphone and Tablet
Customers are very happy when they can easily contact you. Fortunately, this is made possible with a smartphone or tablet.
You can always use this tool to see what is happening on social media pages and your website. This technology also ensures that your staff and potential customers can always contact you.
12. Increase Productivity With Automation
There are many tasks that you can do automatically to increase productivity, save costs, and increase profits. Look at your business and look for repetitive assignments such as sending emails or billing customers.
When you find such task, search the internet for technologies that you can use to automate. By automating tasks, you can finish more in a shorter time. You can also increase customer satisfaction with automation.
13. Simplify Invoicing With Online System
Today, you do not need to write elaborate manual invoices and send them via posts. There are many applications that make it very easy to bill your customers with just one click.
Online invoicing application can do this for you. The best thing about such application is that it is usually very easy to use. It helps to ensure you do not lose customers because of a complicated invoicing system.
14. Track Your Finances With Cloud Technology
A business with poor financial management is like being on the edge of a cliff. A good business owner must know how much money is coming in and how much is flowing out.
Unfortunately, you may not have enough capital to hire a full-time accountant to oversee your finances. However, cloud technology that can do this work. With this technology, you can always manage your finances wherever and whenever you are.
15. Great Customer Service
Customers are the lifeblood of any business. Without them, chances are that your company will go out of business soon so you definitely need to prioritize customers. How? One of the ways is by making sure they can contact you and get support at any time.
The only way you can do this is through technology. There are millions of applications designed for customer management to make customers happy, satisfied and loyal to your business.