Change is everywhere. From the way we shop groceries to how we take classes, everything has evolved because of the technological advancement taking place in our society. Like our personal life, technology is also changing how businesses go about their operations, communications, etc. Until recently, mainly large corporations would rely on technology. But that is not the case anymore. There are several budget-friendly tech solutions for small businesses available in the market today. Here are some of the technologies small businesses can invest in without breaking their bank:
- Reporting tools
As a small business owner, you must ensure that all decisions are based on actionable and relevant data. It is a surefire way for a company to reach new heights. That is where reporting tools can come in handy. You can integrate a smart report tool into your business to quickly collect and organize information. That way, you will create comprehensive reports for each department, enabling you and your team to make better decisions about customer experience, sales, marketing, and other matters.
- Online education and training
A well-trained workforce is hands down one of the key assets for small businesses. However, in the age of the internet, you don’t need to rely on inflexible, campus-based learning. There are many online training websites and applications that can spice up the skills of your staff. Considering your team’s weak and strong points, you can also avail customized training programs. Similarly, you or your team members can strengthen your academic standing by tapping into online education.
Arguably, the best thing about online education platforms is that they set low criteria to get enrolled in the desired course. For example, you can even sign up for an online MBA no GMAT program without any hassle. Again, not all education and training platforms are entirely free. But they are well within the financial means of a small business and much cheaper than campus-based education.
- 3D printing
Depending on the nature of your business, you can make affordable prototypes within a day with 3D printers. It means everyone, from biomedical engineers to tech startups, will be able to work faster. Small businesses often come across space issues. Owing to their lack of financial resources, they cannot afford to hire third-party warehouses. 3D printing can help you to resolve this issue. With a 3D printer by your side, you can make your parts whenever only when you need them. Companies can also use this technology to personalize and customize their products to a large scale in little to no time.
Experts believe that 3D printing is crucial for small businesses since it somehow ends the hegemony of giant corporations and creates a level playing field for all market players. 3D printers are an affordable solution for small businesses that once had difficulty scaling up their production. Do not assume 3D printers are an expensive commodity nowadays. Their prices have come down significantly because of the increasing number of competitors. Hence, small businesses can afford them.
- Inventory management software
Businesses of all sizes need to be able to manage their inventory effectively. Small businesses, in particular, can benefit from effective inventory management software to manage their limited resources and maintain accuracy at every point in the supply chain. It will help them make intelligent decisions about product development and marketing in order to grow and sustain a profitable business.
Considering all these factors, purchasing reliable cloud-based inventory management software can optimize the supply chain to a large extent. More so, if you are into a product-based business. The tool will ensure you have enough inventory in stock and at the right locations to meet customer demand. It also helps them maximize efficiency in manufacturing.
- Teleconference services
As a small business owner, virtual communication will be a big part of your daily work. From conducting audio conference calls with team members to using video calls to discuss a product with a client, robust teleconference services simplify the process. Fortunately, you have many options here. The icing on the cake is that you can buy some of them without paying a dime. These services allow you to hold virtual conferences with multiple people at once.
The teleconference services industry is going through a massive boom, especially after the pandemic hit the globe. Statistically speaking, the video conference sector alone is likely to grow at a CAGR (Compound Annual Growth Rate) of a colossal 19.7 percent from 2021 to 2026. This is one reason why acquiring teleconference services has become all the more affordable. So the budget is never going to be an issue for small businesses.
- Online accounting software
There are many types of bookkeeping software available and they can make a big difference in the success of your business. This technology allows you to seamlessly manage your bookkeeping while on the move since all of your data is stored in the cloud. On top of that, it is simple to use. So you do not necessarily have to be a bookkeeper and tech-geek to make the most of it. Depending on the software you opt for, you can take a picture of your receipt and easily upload it in the breeze. Rest assured, you will not miss registering any expense as long as your phone is with you, allowing you to keep your books tidy, especially during tax season.
Chatbots are not a new invention; they have been around for quite a few years now. But the contemporary bots are sharper than their predecessors. What is more, their cost has also come down significantly, which makes them an affordable tech solution. If you are wondering how chatbots can boost your business, here is your answer:
- Chatbots empower small businesses with limited resources to find leads and subsequently increase conversion rates
- Chatbots can be a cost-effective way to provide a better customer experience. Unlike human customer service representatives, bots can stay active 24/7 without remotely dropping the level of service
- Chatbots are extremely easy to use. Customers do not face any difficulty using them
- Chatbots can collect and organize a lot of data for business owners
The modern business world is being transformed rapidly by technology. Small businesses need to invest in digital transformation to reach their goals and grow in the new normal. Knowing that budget is always the point of concern for small organizations, we have listed tech solutions that you can easily afford. Use these cheap ideas to maximize your ROI.