Small businesses owners that plan for the latest technology trends have a distinct advantage over competitors. Knowing these trends helps growing company sales, provide better customer service, and operate more effectively.
Below is a list that we have compiled lists of 2020 small business trends that we believe will most impact your business this year.
Small Businesses will begin adopting the Bring-Your-Own-Device policy as the security threats that private devices once meant for a business’s network environment have subsided with the presence of in-cloud security coupled with multi-authentication log-ins for recognized devices.
AI and automation have created incredible opportunities for small businesses to compete with larger organizations. Robotic Process Automation (RPA) has been a major innovation in the office workflow. RPA are bots that accurately execute menial, repetitive tasks, and transactions. Small Businesses that utilize RPA reduce the number of human interactions required to complete tasks such as data entry, date extraction, payroll, and order processing with minimal error. These bots improve a business’s productivity more efficiently.
Current projections expect RPA technologies to reach nearly $4 billion by 2025.
MANAGED SERVICE PROVIDERS (MSP)
MSP’s provide 24/7 monitoring and enhanced data security like that of a large corporation for Small Businesses. Hiring an MSP to help safeguard and protect your business is critical. Cybercriminals are increasingly targeting SMBs and data breaches and identity theft are at an all-time high.
At 57%, consumers prefer online customer support vs. phone calls for simple issues. An automation solution is incorporating chatbots and autoresponders, giving your customers the instant gratification, they desire. These bots answer frequently asked questions, e.g. business hours and location. Real-time chat will also encourage interaction with customers who do not like to talk on the phone or wait in queue for the next available representative.
SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING EXPERTS
Small Businesses who utilize social media technology to market themselves will continue to accelerate. Platforms such as Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Facebook are continuously refining their technology to increase marketing return on investment for their customers. Small business owners are rapidly becoming aware of the value of social media influencers. These are professionals who have large followings can help bring your offerings to the attention of their many followers. If you want to get the biggest bang for your marketing buck, consider engaging a social media influencer to help with your marketing campaigns and across social media platforms.
VOIP BUSINESS TELEPHONE
Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) allows you can stay connected to your office and customers, no matter where you work.
Remote work increased again this year and it is predicted to keep rising. In 2019, 66% of companies allow remote work and 16% are fully remote. Working remotely save costs; business owners will spend less money on operational expenses like water and electricity, and employees will save on their commute. Statistics show that employees who work remotely are less stressed and more productive. All wins!
As more small business leaders rely on a remote workforce to scale their business, collaboration software becomes vital. These tools connect in-house staff with contractors across the globe, resulting in increased productivity. Communication gaps are not an option in 2020 when there are tools to prevent it.
5G pushes download speeds of about 1 Gbps and with high download speeds, making interaction almost instantaneous.
Consumers have shifted their focus to the reviews. Fan & Fuel reported that 92% of people will hesitate to complete a purchase when there are absolutely no reviews available. What does this mean? You need reviews, Google reviews, FB reviews, website product reviews, REVIEWS! Your consumer want and expect them before making a purchase.
Tech-savvy and mobile-driven Millennials represent 50% of the workforce. Therefore, keeping millennials focused and engaged means shifting to mobile-first communication.
As mobile experiences continue to change the way relationships are conducted between businesses and their customers, so having a strategy to cater to your audience will become crucially important. It doesn’t matter how great a company service offering is—if it’s not accessible on a mobile device, customers will be turned off and use a different provider.
Many small businesses are gearing towards e-Commerce to accommodate the growing demand. Statista reported that global e-commerce will grow to about $5 trillion within the next four years.
The year 2020 will be your last chance to update your website content to suit voice search results. Voice searches amount to more than 58% web searches in 2019. Over 76% of the owners of home speakers use voice searches to look for local businesses around once a week, and approximately 53% run similar searches daily. If you are catering to a niche local crowd, you might want to rethink your voice search SEO.
Over half of US small and midsize businesses are accelerating cloud adoption and expect to continue to grow as cloud services continue to rise. Small businesses are adopting in-cloud security measures to thwart more complex hacking threats. There were similar technologies in the past, but few combined artificial intelligence and machine learning to design the “cognition” necessary to identify and neutralize threats by code patterns and similarities in attacks. Future cloud-hosted technology is likely to use a combination of both AI and ML to strengthen a business’s firewalls.