As small business owners start to reflect on the pandemic, it's no secret that technology played an essential role in survival. From adapting to online ordering to keeping employees connected remotely, technology saved small businesses and even helped some grow. Businesses also relayed on technology to communicate effectively with their customers and enhanced their relationships.
Now that the pandemic is behind us, how will small businesses continue to use these technologies to lead their growth strategy? Furthermore, what innovations have been discovered during the pandemic, and how is this affecting 2021 technology trends? Check out these 5 technology trends for small businesses post-pandemic that will help you grow.
It is predicted that mobile e-commerce sales will continue to trend upward, even after the pandemic. Many small businesses quickly troubleshot their way to a sufficient solution to meet demand during the pandemic. Now it is time to put in a permanent solution that is optimal for the user experience. Contactless mobile payments, such as scanning QR codes, used to be a complementary customer offering, but now this is essential to stay on-trend.
Businesses are also building their own apps to improve the mobile e-commerce experience. Due to a faster load rate and a user-friendly flow, app e-commerce is the future. To get ahead of the curve, talk with your I.T. team to understand how app development can be integrated with other internal software. At 32Waves we construct our client’s technology with integration in mind. This may seem like a big step for a small business; however, experts say this will be the new norm.
Due to unavoidable remote work, small businesses were forced to implement new HR software to keep employees connected. Today employees are returning to work; however, the value of accessible and helpful HR communication is here to stay. Having HR software that allows the employee to log in, review their PTO and pay stubs, and communicate their needs is trending. Having a centralized platform that keeps employees more engaged in communication has improved the HR experience for the better.
Don't let the buzzword, “AI,” keep you from seeing how it can benefit your small business. The goal of AI for your small business is to improve your customer experience through personalization and streamlined processes. Small business owners know that lack of time keeps them from communicating with their customers more effectively. AI software can automate internal processes from payroll to email sends, allowing a business owner more time to focus on their growth strategy. It can also help improve the speed of customer service through chatbots and collect in-depth data about the customer journey.
Another trend that is rapidly advancing is comprehensive software integration. With small businesses taking advantage of technology for everyday processes, the next step is to create an integrated system. Integration helps each tool communicate with one another and report analytics as one source. This also allows for a one touchpoint update that will automatically share the update with all other software. Besides saving time, this helps everyone in the business to be up to date with real-time information.
Lastly, keep your eye on 5G technology in 2021. This advancement has a little way to go before the small business owner utilizes it; however, it has already proven its value. With 5G, customers will increase their expectations of fast deliverables and communication. Software will be connected and updated lighting fast, and networks will go down less frequently. 5G is essential because, with all the technological trends highlighted above, 5G will be the glue that allows these advancements. As companies add more tech to their everyday workflows, servers and networks will have to process and advance to keep up with these changes. From processing customer purchases to keeping up with AI automation, 5G is the future.
We may have the pandemic to thank for this digital way of thinking, but now the technological trends are just the beginning. Don't get overwhelmed; technology is meant to help you, not stress you out. Keep researching and talk to an information technology expert who can adapt a comprehensive plan specific to your business.
Ready to grow your business with up-to-date technology that saves you time? Check out the 32Waves Assist Foundation services.