Running a business nowadays is anything but smooth sailing. Entrepreneurship has never been for the faint of heart, but the fast-paced world we're living in and the ever-changing consumer behavior are making the business environment tougher than ever before. If you're an entrepreneur yourself, you already know the challenges one has to face when starting a venture and the efforts one has to make to keep it afloat.
But this hectic modern age also brings us the solutions to navigate the intricate and competitive world of business. The answer lies in the technological advancements and the wide variety of digital tools that are available to us. Technology can solve a multitude of business-related issues and ensure a more effective way of running your operations. Whether you want to improve communication and collaboration between team members, upgrade your invoice system or save time and money, there's already a digital tool (or more) that can help with that.
In the end, it comes down to a simple choice: you either embrace technology, learn how to make the most of it and help your business thrive or you stick to your old ways and get left behind. Assuming no one wants to pick the second option, let's see what tech tools you should use to develop a successful business.
No matter what type of business you run, you have to have a website, or else how are people going to know you exist? A strong online presence is an absolute must these days for all companies, big or small. Apart from making it easier for customers to find you and learn about the products and services you provide, a website also helps establish credibility and build trust with potential clients.
If once upon a time the mere idea of building a website gave entrepreneurs a headache, now things have changed for the better. You don't have to hire an entire team of web developers and IT specialists or be a tech whiz to design a top-notch website. A website builder can do the heavy lifting for you and help you create a highly functional and visually appealing website for your business.
Video conferencing platform
Contrary to common belief, not every meeting could have been an email. Running a business involves a lot of meetings and lengthy discussions, often with people from remote locations. And the last thing you want is to be interrupted in the middle of an important conversation or have a hard time communicating with team members or clients due to technical problems. So, you need a video conferencing software that will ensure you can communicate with other parties in optimum conditions, no matter where you are in the world. Search for a top-rated conference call service that guarantees a reliable connection and high audio quality.
Project management and productivity tools
Multiple projects, countless tasks, to-do lists, deadlines, expenses and so on. Life as an entrepreneur can be quite exhausting and coordinating the activity of your employees can easily turn into a chaos overnight. It's next to impossible for one single person to keep track of so many tasks, and if you do try to do it all on your own, the only thing you'll achieve is to bring yourself to the brink of burnout.
Luckily, technology can step in and take some of the burden off your shoulders. There are a myriad of tech solutions such as planners, reminders, software for timesheets, productivity tools and much more that can cover all these aspects and make project management feel like a breeze. All you have to do is choose the digital tools that will suit your business needs and put them to good use.
Customer relationship management software
Keeping customers happy and engaged is at the core of every successful business. After all, customers are the lifeline of every company, so it's absolutely essential to learn how to build and maintain fruitful relationships with the people that are interested in what you have to offer. Too many times entrepreneurs rely solely on old-school methods to manage customer relationships and in doing so they lose a lot of leads and clients.
It's time to step up your game with a customer relationship management (CRM) software if you want to win over customers and establish long-term connections. This will help you keep track of relevant information regarding your clients and manage interactions with them like a pro, which will ultimately translate into higher profit.
Virtual private network
The internet offers countless possibilities for businesses to develop and grow, but it can also be a very dark and scary environment full of hidden threats. Since a lot of businesses conduct most of their operations online, they're being exposed to numerous risks and many of them fall prey to cyber-attacks.
If your business involves collecting data from your customers or working from public networks, it would be irresponsible not to have a set of safeguards and protective measures in place to keep cybercrime at bay. If you're still not ready to invest in a costly security system, a virtual private network (VPN) is a good starting point, as it will create a safe connection, allowing you to transfer data safely and protect your online activity.
A business also produces a lot of files, documents and important information that need to be stored safely to avoid unpleasant surprises. It would be a disaster for all your data to be lost due to a technical error or some work accident on company premises. That's why you have to expect the unexpected and prepare for the worst-case scenario.
Most experts will recommend using a cloud storage service, as it offers plenty of benefits such as easy access and sharing, security, scalability or convenience. However, it's a good idea to store your data in multiple locations and select a few other storage solutions just to be on the safe side. As they say, it's better to be safe than sorry.