7 Tech Tools Your Business Should Be Using
Successful businesses have an important but common link in their path to greatness. It is their capability to keep everything organized and well tracked. Know how technology plays an important role in helping to streamline these processes and which all areas of your businesses should make use of technology to stay up to date.
Every business, big or small, uses technology in some sort of way. Yet, we're still surprised at the knowledge gap between what tools are out there and what businesses are using. Chances are every part of your business could be improved with the right piece of software. Often the biggest problem is that business owners don't know where to begin. That's why we created this list of seven tools that can form the base of your technology stack.
Build For Growth
When you have a new business, it's easy to keep track of everything. It often lulls business owners into the comfort of not having to be terribly organized. When you know all of your customers by name, or are intimately involved in every project, it is easier to make do with a notebook even. That, however, is a big mistake. As your business grows, you'll be kicking yourself for not implementing the infrastructure that allows you to easily scale while keeping on top of everything. Don't fret, it's very easy to add tools that will help in multiple areas.
As you get more work, you'll have to add more talent to meet deadlines. Whether that be full-time employees or freelancers that work from home, you want to be able to coordinate all of them and their work. Organizing files and easily sharing them is crucial, and thankfully there are many tools that can do this. For this task, we think you should stick with the industry standard, which is G Suite. Google's platform is well known and intuitive, and you can quickly expand to more accounts as you need. Even if you're still flying solo for a while, getting well organized now will make you more efficient and make it easier to grow in the future.
We would advise using a project management platform even if you are a one-person shop, but it becomes a necessity when you add others. Keeping track of deadlines, reaching milestones, and keeping everyone synced on progress is much easier when done in one place. A tool like ProProfs makes it simple to manage workloads of multiple people and keep the entire team on the same page. Pick a tool and get comfortable with it, as you'll rely on it in the future.
Your Ideas Are Gold
Okay, perhaps not all of your ideas are of the million-dollar variety, but you're likely coming up with some great ones along the way. The best ones may not even be a great idea at first, but spark a process that leads to one. That's why it's crucial to jot everything down so you can revisit later. Of course, nobody carries around a pen and paper anymore, but we do have phones. Well developed note-taking apps likeEvernote allow you to capture your ideas wherever you are and do so quickly. Take advantage of modern technology so you don't let that brilliant idea slip through your fingers.
At the heart of every business is the need to keep customers, existing ones and potential ones, happy. Getting them in a pipeline means properly inputting them as a lead and then following their lifecycle as a customer. You'll have to do this in a way that speaks to the customer and makes it routine for you and your employees too.
To get new clients, you have to be present. This means, you've got to be there and available to them. Good branding will give you presence, but when they land on your website there is still a small window to lure them in to stay, get more information, or buy. The only problem with being "present" is actually having someone be physically present to answer questions and requests. Thankfully, there are loads of bots that can automate a lot of this and help put most of it on autopilot. One in particular that we like is Landbot.io, which excels at giving you an intuitive and quick path to producing "conversational" pages.
Always on your radar
You must not only keep track of your leads and customers but always keep them on your radar too. That means sending messages and constantly assessing where they are in their purchase process. You'll want to adopt a proper customer service resource (CRM) platform in order to do this right. We love Hubspot for their breadth of tools and automation, as well as their free tier which allows small businesses with no budget to grow into a higher tier. Using a CRM means leads don't get cold, more customers are closed, and hopefully you get to the point where you can afford a wide range of tools to help grow your business.
Every business looks to cut costs, and this is even more so if you have a small operation. While some needs seem impossible to meet alone without professional help, you'd be surprised how much you go it on your own. That's true only, of course, with the assistance of good tech tools.
Website in a snap
Depending on what services or products you sell, your website may very well be the focal point. Even if you capture your customers offline, your site will always be where leads go to check out your brand. Its importance means that many businesses spend thousands or even tens of thousands of dollars to build and maintain their website. What they don't know is that there are some very easy and mature website building tools out there. Online platforms like IMCreator.com have made it wonderfully simple to quickly build a business website on your own, with no programming experience whatsoever. Leverage website building tools and you'll add a lot to your bottom line.
Channel your inner designer
Think you have an eye for design? Even if you aren't a trained designer, just having some good taste can carry you most of the way. Hiring out for design work is tedious and expensive. Especially if you already have a good idea in your head as to what you want. You'll spend more time explaining your vision and trying to lead your designer to get it right, than if you do it yourself. Adobe has a very powerful tool for the DIY designer called Adobe Spark. You can use Spark to create social images, memes, and even videos. It's a great option for a powerful software company and allows you to stretch your designer legs, so to speak.
As you can see from the list above, there are a lot of great technological tools out there that can help your business. In this day and age, leveraging that tech is what will put you one step ahead of your competition. Whether you use the product suggestion we laid out, or find similar tools that you like better, just make sure that you use something. It'll not only make your life easier, and that of your employees, but it will allow you to grow quickly and increase your profits. After all, isn't that what every business desires?