A local diner serves pancakes to a realtor who is preparing to show listings for the day. Which small business is a technology company? A kennel cares for a friendly Labrador while it’s owner is at a CPA conference. Technology company? In fact, every small business is a technology company and there is a reason why all successful businesses have a technology strategy.
Technology is fundamental, enabling companies to operate efficiently and smartly. Manual input cash registers in restaurants are replaced with at-the-table scanners enabling customers to pay their bill when they choose. Artificial intelligence keeps track of orders, adds up prices, taxes a, d tips, tells the owner how much food went out and how much revenue came in. The larger the scale-up the more technology plays a leading role in the success of a company.
Technology and the Digital Platform
Back in 1995 Amazon® founder, Jeff Bezos started his own small business when he decided to utilize technology to sell books online from his garage. With technology leading his strategic platform, Amazon has become the #1 online retailer in the U.S. with nearly $1.78B in revenue in 2017.
Small business owners, consultants, and sole proprietors also benefit from technology. A fast-loading website that showcases listed properties with clear images on behalf of the realtor. Utilizing SEO and Google My Business to increase the ranking of a diner and give patrons driving directions. Or a CPA company utilizing Facebook algorithm data to learn about their audience. Data collection and digital analytics provide details about shopper behavior and audience interaction which play a critical role in building targeted marketing campaigns.
Watching Your Competition
Technology is a superior tool for learning more about your industry and the competition. Think of it as stealth investigation from the comfort of your desk. Through the power of technology, you can learn about your competitors’ product offering, website content, online advertising, social media pages and followers, and SEO. These data points can lead to a well-built SWOT analysis, essential in creating a sales and marketing plan to drive market.
Engaging with Your Audience
Consumers are flooded with choices for products and services. There are more than 50 million small businesses using Facebook pages to connect with their consumers. If you are not connecting with your customers online your competition will. Optimizing your digital engagement benefits your business in the following ways:
- Online communities talk. The more people like and share your posts, the more your reach expands. The algorithms provide demographic and behavior details that enable you to create specific content and advertising strategies to connect with your audience.
- With 81% of consumers researching products online before making a purchase, you need to be present. Informative websites, product details, instructions, video demonstrations, and customer testimonials build the credibility of your products or services.
- People initiate conversation out of interest. Understanding their pain points, providing solutions and being true to your promises create customer relationships that are strong long-term. Earn brand loyalty and trust with your word. Use technology as your communication platform.
- Keep the conversation going. Staying engaged nurtures important relationships. With the power of technology and the digital platform, stay in touch with tailored emails, new videos, social posting, and online advertising. Hold daily conversations that count.
The beauty of technology is the sheer availability of applications, devices, and software that are relevant to your industry and your small business needs. Whether you are intending to engage with your audience, sell online, drive traffic into brick-and-mortar, or operate more effectively and efficiently, technology plays a critical role in managing your business and connecting with your customer. Contact us today to review your small business plan and identify the right online tools for your business needs.
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Larry Goldstick is the owner of Capture Digital Marketing based in Jupiter, Florida.
Capture Digital Marketing specializes in creative solutions to help businesses optimize their digital presence through website development, online marketing, and individualized SEO services. Our team of professionals, work with small and mid-size companies, entrepreneurs, and independent business owners, to develop digital strategies that drive revenue. For more information, contact us today at (561) 630-3699.