Having worked recently with a handful of corporate clients in the tech space there’s a buzz phrase going around at the moment that is unavoidable – and that’s ‘Digital Transformation’. In most cases, shifting to digital is the only way an enterprise level company is going to stay ahead of the competition due to the complex bundles of products and services now being offered.
But what does Digital transformation mean for smaller businesses and start-ups and why should it not be ignored. In many cases for a small business, processes for managing stock, sales, and precious customer information relies on the good old spreadsheet which in turn means that the only method of updating multiple sheets is to send emails back and forwards or walk across the office holding a piece of paper to compare notes with a colleague. As your business grows – this simply is not sustainable.
Cloud Computing – yes, this may seem like a scary phrase or one that someone throws in at a dinner party where you nod politely but desperately hope the topic of conversation will stop there – but cloud-based Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems can truly level the playing field for smaller businesses. Such systems mean all your company data is stored on a single online platform that everyone can have access to and removes the headache of version control or the worry of not having the most up to date spreadsheet. Invariably, these systems can also go one step further and enable your business to take advantage of a range of marketing automation tools – so you can easily see, for example: who’s following you on twitter or schedule an email to be sent announcing your latest seasonal sale. Having your data all stored on one system that is easy to access and gives all your employees a single view of the customer can really change the way you do business. No more embarrassing moments when a customer has to call up with a question about an order they placed online because they didn’t receive an email confirmation, because all that customer interaction has been logged in one place. This can be game changing when your business is able to interact with a customer in the way they want to interact with you.
If smaller businesses can embrace the digital revolution and invest in technology, not only will they improve their sales effectiveness but also improve customer satisfaction and indeed brand loyalty.