Whether or not your business is centered on the tech industry itself, there’s no denying the fact that tech rules the world—no matter what kind of business you run. But it’s not all hoverboards and human-like robots. There’s a whole world of tech products and services out there to help you do your job better and to make your customers happier. We’re discussing the latest trends and most useful tech tools out there, designed specifically for small businesses.
A better storage system
Gone are the days of storage rooms filled to the brim with file cabinets and folders—and I think this is a change we can all get behind, right? Not only is it easier than ever to access your archives of customer information, but you can also release the burden of holding onto all of that physical paperwork—phew!
Enter cloud-based storage solutions, the ruler of the digital age. If you’re like 77% of Americans, you’re probably familiar with some sort of cloud storage associated with your smartphone. But when we’re talking about small business cloud storage, there are a few categories to consider when shopping for a storage system that’s right for you:
- Public cloud server: A public server is shared between multiple parties that don’t need to store a lot of data.
- Private cloud server: A private cloud server is usually designed to house only one organization’s data. Businesses that hold especially sensitive information like medical or legal records will generally opt for a private server with its own firewall.
- Hybrid cloud server: A hybrid cloud system gives you the best of both worlds—storing some sensitive data on the private server and other non-sensitive data on a public server. Pro Tip: This can be a more cost-effective solution for small businesses!
When choosing a cloud-based storage solution for your small business, consider what information you need to store, how much space you need, and what cost you can afford.
Even if your small business is only five people strong, communication is key! And it doesn’t just have to happen via email. If you want to minimize your overflowing email inbox while still maintaining a solid stream of communication, you might want to invest in an internal chat app for your business. Internal messaging platforms make sure that the information and updates keep flowing, while keeping lengthy email threads to a minimum.
More robust security (on and offline)
Whether or not your business is dealing with sensitive customer information, odds are your own important information is somewhere stored on your computer—from your business’ legal files to business credit card and checking account information. Make sure you’re doing what you can to protect your small business from every angle with an online security system.
But don’t stop there! Protecting your business online is one thing, but your office space and/or storefront also holds a lot of value to your business’ longevity. Consider investing in an on-site security system that allows you to check in on your office or shop from wherever you are.
Improved employee management
As a small business owner, you’re hands are already tied up with customer service and management operations — not to mention making sure your employees get paid each pay period! If this sounds like you, think about incorporating an HR management software system to help you manage payroll, time-off, and employee benefits. Not only will this free up time on your end, but it will also make it easy for your staff to get onboarded, receive tax information, and, better yet—sign up for direct deposit!
Simplified marketing solutions
If managing your small business isn’t already a full-time job, add marketing in the mix and you’re doing the work of at least two job descriptions. But if you want to grow your customer base and maximize your profits, marketing has to be a part of your business plan. The good news? There are plenty of marketing technologies for small businesses that can help you reach new customers and still have time to come home and kick back for some much needed R&R.
Who knows, a Big Brother world might be coming our way soon. But for now, let’s just enjoy how these tools help us run our small businesses more efficiently, agreed?