By: Ryan Malone
The Best Tech and Software Investments for Small Businesses
Many small businesses are understandably hesitant to spend money on tech upgrades. But making smart investments in software and technology can help your business grow to new levels! Also, many of these tech advancements will end up paying for themselves in the long run, either by saving costs or generating additional revenue. Here are some tips to get you going, courtesy of PDH Now.
Investing in professional tech help is a great way to ensure your money will be used efficiently. You can hire people to help with tech-related business tasks including cybersecurity, digital marketing, and web design. If you’re not confident in your tech skills or you’re feeling unsure of your next steps, hire an agency or contractor who can offer guidance!
Investing in project management tools and software is also a smart move. For example, Trello allows you to collaborate with team members in real time and color code projects to enhance organization. There’s also Zoho Projects, a cloud-based tool that allows you to plan projects, automate routine tasks, manage resources, assign work, and collaborate with remote team members. In the end, using such project management solutions improves efficiency and helps to streamline processes, which makes for a great return on investment.
If you work with any sort of product design, from clothing to food to machinery, then this may be a good option: investing in 3D software. Not only will you save money by not wasting materials in the prototype process, you can share your in-process designs with clients, investors, and customers.
Not every tech upgrade has to be an investment. With a little Googling, you should be able to find all kinds of free online tools to get your business up to speed with the latest technology. For example, you can use free graphic design tools to design logos, social media graphics, and branded invoices to send to clients.
Starting with an invoice maker can be a life saver and help you create professional invoices that will capture the attention of your clients and encourage them to pay on time. All you have to do is choose a premade invoice template and customize it with your own text and logo!
Solid account software can save you countless hours on bookkeeping tasks. For one thing, accounting tools make it easy to track your tax obligations so you can remain compliant with state and federal tax laws. Accounting software also lets you keep an eye on client spending, payments, and overdue accounts. Many accounting tools even include automated features for efficient invoicing and payroll! Look for accounting software that’s compatible with workflow automation apps like Zapier to get even more done in less time.
Managing customer service issues can be a huge time sink for business owners and employees. Not only is this bad for productivity, but long customer service wait times can reduce your customer satisfaction as well. Customer service software will allow you to automate your customer service and organize your contacts so you can provide help as efficiently as possible. Hootsuite suggests tools like CRM software, messaging and live chat software, social media inbox managers, and customer service ticketing apps.
Employee productivity is vital to the success of your business. Investing in employee productivity software can make your team more efficient and help you save a lot of money on labor. Employee productivity apps work for both in-house and remote teams! For example, you can use different apps to manage employee attendance, measure real-time performance, track projects, monitor app usage, and more!
Try not to use these tools to micromanage your employees, but to improve their overall performance. Outfitting your team with the right productivity tools benefits everyone! You’ll save money and your employees will have more time to work on projects that are meaningful to them. BetterUp notes to work on building trust with your employees so you feel confident leaving them to their own devices.
Investing in technology – including project management and CRM software, 3D design and prototyping tools, as well as employee productivity tools – can save your business time and money while increasing sales and improving employee satisfaction. If you run a small business, don’t hesitate to invest in a few tech upgrades. Even if you’re on a tight budget, a few low-cost or free software tools can take your business to the next level!
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