Running a small business can be challenging even for seasoned entrepreneurs. However, innovative technologies make it easier to cut costs, store data, process payments, manage your marketing output, deliver high-quality customer service, and much more. In today’s digital world, small business owners make the most of available technologies to optimize operations and secure long-term growth. If you’re a tech rookie and unsure about the types of tools you need, we’ve put together a handy list to make your job easier.
1. A customer relationship management (CRM) platform
Customer relationship management (CRM) tools such as Salesforce and Pipedrive help you manage relationships with existing and potential customers through a centralized, cloud-based platform. All customers should be registered in your CRM database, ensuring you can reach out whenever necessary and enhance your marketing efforts. CRM tools are also great for sales forecasting, workflow automation, tracking employee activity, completing social media tasks, lead management, and much more.
2. A chatbot
Chatbots are perfect for streamlining your customer service provision and reducing workload pressures on your team. Thanks to increasingly sophisticated machine learning technologies, chatbots can respond to a vast range of queries almost instantly, without the need for human intervention. With only 38% of consumers claiming to want to speak with humans when engaging with a brand, investing in a chatbot such as Drift or LivePerson could work wonders for your reputation.
3. A payment processing system
Investing in a payment processing system is vital if you want to ensure all potential customers have access to your goods and services. If customers cannot use their preferred (or only) payment methods, they will likely turn to your competitors. Modern payment processing platforms such as PaySimple and Braintree offer a range of payment options, including PayPal, Venmo, credit and debit cards, and digital wallets like Google Pay and Apple Pay. They also provide benefits, such as flexible payment options, automated billing, and built-in customer management features to optimize your workflows.
4. A project management platform
As a small business owner, you’ll know what it’s like to juggle several responsibilities at once. Even if your brain is super sharp and organized, your team will probably forget to complete an all-important task at some point. Fortunately, there are plenty of project management tools available to prevent this issue. Tools such as Kissflow and Trello will help you delegate tasks, prioritize high-importance jobs, set deadlines, and much more.
5. Cybersecurity solutions
Did you know that 22 billion data records were breached in 2021? Or that 43% of cyberattacks are aimed at small businesses? As cybercriminals develop increasingly shrewd tactics to steal data and extort business owners, you must protect your business with robust cybersecurity solutions. CyberArk, for example, allows small businesses to secure their applications and IT infrastructure in cloud-based or on-premises environments. Rapid7 is another excellent platform that caters to businesses with a diverse range of security needs, offering threat intelligence services, vulnerability audits, cloud security tools, and much more.
6. HR software
HR management platforms such as Oyster are great for onboarding new team members, boosting employee morale, organizing payroll, and enhancing productivity – particularly if you’re working remotely. Your workforce is one of your most important assets, so maintaining up-to-date records about their performance, pay, and more is vital for growing a business.
Invest in new technologies today!
As you can see, there are plenty of premium technologies out there to streamline your business operations – and the tools we’ve mentioned represent the tip of a huge iceberg. If you’re looking to optimize your small business, there’s never been a better time to start exploring and testing new technologies.