Published on July 5th, 2017 | by Guest1
Top technologies that are making small businesses grow
The contemporary business environment is highly demanding and even more so for small businesses that must keep up with their industry and compete with larger businesses at the same time. The Small Business Administration (SBA) stated that 78% of small business startups survive their first year while 50% percent of them survive about five years and 33% survive for ten years or more. These do not seem to be bad numbers, but small businesses that do survive require a lot of planning and effort and need to be highly efficient and productive.
A few decades ago, small businesses had to rely solely upon their limited human resources and their restricted expertise to succeed but now technology has made several processes much simpler and easier to manage. This has propelled the growth of small business and has led to high efficacy and productivity levels. For example, previously, small businesses could only afford to advertise through print ads, but now they can use multiple marketing options and hence access a much larger, more segmented customer base.
Technology has unarguably revolutionized several business areas which include customer services, marketing, productivity, and communication amongst others.
Let’s explore some of the top technologies that are making small businesses grow.
Marketing automation software
Marketing automation technology is truly a lifesaver as it takes over a lot of the repetitive and mundane tasks involved in marketing for small businesses.
Small businesses usually can’t afford to hire several marketing representatives to perform tasks such as sending emails, customer profiling, social media marketing, and pay-per-click advertising, to name a few. However, these tasks are important for drawing in and retaining customers and can now be performed easily through marketing automation software.
While helping create campaigns and targeting customers, marketing automation software also detects leads and nurtures them into becoming loyal and repeat customers. This saves a lot of the employees’ time and allows them to focus their energy on more important things.
Some marketing automation software options are free initially while others are priced affordably. However, premium packages are also available for businesses that would like to use advanced features. Some marketing automation packages include Yodle, LeadSiuis, SalesAutoPilot and others. Here is an example of what LeadSuis offers.
Customer relationship management software
Being on good terms with your customer is now more important than ever and businesses must pay particular attention to it.
To maintain a good relationship with their customers, businesses must know who the customer is, his likes and dislikes, his requirements and how much he is willing to pay for its services, etc. Moreover, a business must attend to each of its customers on a personal basis so that the customer knows that he is valued and the business is giving him exclusive attention. It is definitely difficult to remember such details about all of your customers, especially if you have an extensive customer base, yet it must be done.
Customer relationship management software conveniently does the job for you and provides you with assistance in managing orders and catering to customers. The software usually includes a marketing automation platform, a sales tracking system, and a communication management system which includes customer service and technical support.
CRM software is highly beneficial in increasing return on investment and according to a study conducted by Nucleaus Research, CRM software returns approximately $5.60 for every $1 spent. However, the results vary from business to business.
Cloud technology providers provide a number of managed IT services and allows small businesses to use a variety of functions from anywhere in the world by simply logging into the Cloud. All a company requires is a good internet connection and a web browser to choose services that they may need and pay for them on a monthly basis.
This way they can save major costs that they would otherwise incur when creating an in-house IT department. Businesses can now opt for different types of services, whether it is data backup or the use of a combination of software and programs. This means that they do not have to overburden their computers with heavy programs and can simply access all of their data over the cloud regardless of their location.
Moreover, cloud-based software enables better collaboration between remote employees and teams, and prevents the inefficiency associated with constantly sharing documents. As long as all employees are connected to the Cloud, they can easily collaborate through web conferencing, instant messaging, and other such communication tools.
Additionally, cloud technology helps you react immediately to business needs and that too with a low budget. Also, you do not have to purchase the software permanently but can subscribe to different services when and where needed. Hence, small businesses can compete with their more resourceful and larger competitors as they become more responsive and continue to manage growth at a steady pace.
Some cloud computing services are free of cost which include social networking sites, Google’s Gmail, and YouTube. Others can be used for a nominal subscription fee such as Microsoft SkyDrive and Amazon S3. Here is an advertisement by Amazon S3 explaining what it can do for its users.
Not all small businesses are involved in blogging but it can work like a charm when it comes to growing your small business. Providing consumers with ample information regarding your business and keeping your rankings high on search engines is definitely beneficial as consumers tend to ignore businesses that are not listed in the first three pages of their search.
Hence, blogging keeps your customers updated and informed about your products and services and encourage them to continue to visit your website in hopes of reading new, interesting content. Moreover, search engines are constantly grading your website and when you have a blog, it significantly helps you up your search engine ranking. However, not all small businesses have the time and energy to dedicate to regular blogging and keeping up with SEO requirements.
If you do not have the time to do it yourself, outsource the task to a blogging service and spend your valuable time on other tasks that require your immediate attention.
These technologies are changing the whole outlook of how small businesses operate and are doing so at a rapid pace. If you have a small business and you would like to make use of the mentioned technologies, then do so now and begin to experience business growth like never before.
Alycia Gordan is a freelance writer. She loves to read and write article related to health and lifestyle, sometime on health-tech as well. Currently, she is associated with Airg Team. You can find her on Twitter: @meetalycia