Whatever industry you’re operating in, you can rely on technology to help you make your business more efficient, more effective and prepared for whatever’s coming in the future. But how do you use technology to keep on top of your business needs? Here are some tips.
Beware of the cheapest tech solutions
Your business will be dependent on various forms of technology to help with tasks relating to timekeeping, accounting, marketing and more. So, you’ll need to invest in the right pieces of software to ensure that business is running smoothly. Unfortunately, it’s often the case that the cheapest tech solutions are the ones that won’t quite do enough for you. This means you’ll need to look for solutions that strike the perfect balance of being affordable and meeting the requirements you have. Obviously, don’t bankrupt yourself in the process of finding the right tech solutions, but remember that cutting corners could result in inefficient processes and problems in the not too distant future.
Find hardware and software that syncs with one another
Also, you’re likely to take many aspects of your admin work online to ensure you have easy-access to everything you need – from invoices, customer details and records of your business accounts. But, just be sure to invest in software that’s able to sync up with the physical paper trails you’re making. Otherwise, you’ll find yourself doubling up on administrative work. For example, some of the deposit slips from QuickBooks can be printed straight from your QuickBooks software package (if you’re using it) using the information you’ve already entered, so you won’t waste time or risk mistakes by making double entries.
Appreciate the importance of your online presence
It’s also a good idea to give some thought to your online presence, as it’s a key component of your marketing strategy – even if your business doesn’t predominantly operate online (i.e. you’re selling face to face services and only use the internet for marketing purposes). Make sure you have a high quality website and a well-maintained social media profile. These two things are the ways in which your customers make their first impression of you, so do give it some attention. However, it’s not just about making it look good. It also needs to function well, so learn how to tick all those tech-related boxes: your website should be mobile friendly, use a responsive design, offer fast loading times, and have SEO-friendly persuasive copy, for example.
Use data to inform your decisions
Tech and data go hand in hand and you should bear in mind that you have the ability to use accurate data to inform your business decisions. For example, you can gather analytics of your website and email campaigns to see – with certainty – what the demographic of your audience is, how they’re interacting with your business offering, and where they’re coming from (and leaving to after they’ve visited your page). Essentially, analytics will help you to become better acquainted with who your audience actually is, and in turn, you can take steps to ensure that your business goes from strength to strength. This article explains more about this if you’d like to learn about harnessing analytics for your business.
Prioritize instant access
A final tip to consider is the need to prioritize having instant access to important files. As your business continues to grow, you’re going to generate a lot of paperwork. So, keep your documents online (remembering to think about security measures), storing them on Dropbox or in G Drive so that you and your team can instantly access them from anywhere in the world, on any device. Also, think about your customers’ need to have instant access to you. If possible, put measures in place to allow 24/7 contact (or close to it) with a live chat service, a customer service phone line and an email response team. It’s important to let your customers know if you won’t be able to respond instantly (as this will help to manage their expectations, and ultimately frustration), but do try to make communication as instant as possible.
These are just a handful tech tips for keeping on top of your business. Start with these and you’ll be well on your way to running your business in a way that’s efficient, effective and future-proof.