Enhancing my small enterprise with easy know-how
Technology has changed the way we do business. From bricklayers to software developers, everyone can benefit from cheap and simple tools that create efficiency and save money.
Here are five of the best tech advances you can implement today to strengthen your business before the competition.
1. DIY websites
Twenty years ago, right before the dotcom revolution began, it could cost many thousands of pounds to build a simple website. Today you can create a brilliant, bespoke and unique website for free.
An explosion in website building sites over the past few years – from Wix to Squarespace to 1 & 1 Ionos – has resulted in fierce competition in the marketplace, which in turn has driven prices to rock bottom.
With user-friendly tools, you can create an elegant online headquarters on these platforms, where you can showcase your work, quote satisfied customers, give information about your service and fees and of course offer the opportunity to connect with people.
There is almost always the option to pay for extras, such as if you want better hosting, more bells and whistles, or removing the web platform's own branding from your website, but even that is affordable in most cases.
2. Smart meters
For the UK's smallest businesses, energy use is one of the biggest bills you will face, especially if as a sole proprietor you don't have salaries to worry about every month.
However, many small businesses still estimate their energy usage instead of tracking their usage like they do with a smart meter. These devices are an increasingly popular way for homes and businesses to track the cost of energy use in near real time.
That means no more guesswork, crystal clear clarity about your expenses and accurate, predictable bills that only cover the energy you actually used.
Perhaps that is why there are currently more than 17 million smart meters installed in the UK. They can be requested from your supplier and can even help reduce your company's impact on the planet. To learn more, click here.
3. Accounting software
One area of business that has undoubtedly been enhanced by the digital revolution is bookkeeping and bookkeeping. The old stereotype of late filing, shady characters, and shoeboxes full of receipts is no longer realistic – not since a universe of accounting apps and services has emerged in recent years.
There are a variety of accounting products out there for you to research, from apps that help you track your expenses, to web savvy accounting practices with some jazzy accounting software that lets you remotely key in all of your numbers before they get yours Profit, loss and loss calculate tax liabilities.
These start at the “freemium” end of the market, meaning you don't pay anything to sign up and go all the way to more sophisticated and expensive offers. A few hours of online search will tell you a lot about which of these is best for your business.
4. Cloud Computing
Cloud computing sounds technical, but it's just a simple way to keep your information secure and accessible from computers other than the one at home in your guest room.
The cloud is useful for storing and accessing almost all kinds of records on the go, from sales figures and invoices to offers, job descriptions and even marketing materials.
Large companies use the cloud to exchange information between different teams. Small businesses can benefit from being able to edit a document in real time anywhere in the world. Either way, it's an incredibly useful business innovation.
Examples of cloud software include iCloud, Dropbox, and Microsoft 365. These products are generally inexpensive and offer subtly different tools to help you get the most out of the cloud. Search the market to find out which one is best for you.
5. Project management software
This is a great example of cloud technology that can help a company organize itself and work on time. As with accounting software, there has been an explosion of project management tools in recent years.
These include relative newcomers like Monday, Asana, Slack, and Teamwork. They allow you to create projects and manage goals while different people in your company can influence the results and update others.
Again, these tools generally start at the lower end of the cost spectrum, with prices increasing with the number of users and the level of sophistication you want. So, as with anything, it's worth looking around.
Good project management software should allow you to manage a team, customize your project portfolio, plan projects in a visual interface, collaborate with a large number of stakeholders including customers and partners, and access common tools like Excel spreadsheets, Google Drive and Integrate Dropbox example.
Armed with these five fundamental technological wonders, you can work fast, save money, and level the playing field with your larger, more established competitors. If you are missing any of the above items from your technology collection, now may be the time to update them.
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