For owners of small businesses, it is always important to preserve capital funds at every stage. The money not only helps them preserve the business in times of crisis but also explore new opportunities for expansion. Therefore, it makes sense for them to implement technology-based methods that liberates human effort from basic tasks without draining the coffers.
Thankfully, technology these days is not only user-friendly, but also accessible to businesses of every size. In fact, there are ways in which small businesses employ technology for free or very little cost. Here are some of the ways for entrepreneurs to harness technology without straining their reserves:
- Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP)
Using VoIP application like Skype or Google Duo allows a user to make free audio and video calls over the internet, preferably on a wi-fi connection. These applications are freely available and offer high-quality video calling features. If you work with teams and clients outside your city, a VoIP call will significantly reduce your telephone bills.
- Accepting cashless payment
Usually, small business owners cannot risk offering long credit periods to their clients. The sooner they receive payment, the easier it becomes for them to manage their working capital. Therefore, entrepreneurs must invest in electronic point-of-sale systems that accept instant imbursement through cards (MasterCard, Visa) and applications like Apple Wallet.
For the returns that will follow, this upgrade will require just a small investment. According to a public poll survey, as many as 64% of UK customers prefer cashless payments. Hence, a ‘cash-only’ policy will only discourage potential customers.
- Free online invoicing
Invoicing and related expenses on stationary and postage fee can be reduced using free invoicing services available on the internet. These services help in sending electronic invoices, tracking expenses and keeping record of customer payments. Also, clients find it easier to keep records of payments online than preserving sheets of papers. It is no wonder then that electronic invoicing is becoming increasingly popular. As entrepreneur Jason Sugarman explains the trend, companies that are always ready to adapt new technologies have a better chance of surviving in the future.
- Cloud for storage
Cloud storage system stores data on remote servers that can be accessed using the internet.
Cloud services are both paid and free, depending on the size of your business. Furthermore, they offer a range of services like location-free access, easy business collaboration, analytics tools, e-mail marketing, expense management, etc. Microsoft and Amazon offer popular cloud storage services.
- Digital Marketing for free
One of the greatest offerings of modern technology for upcoming businesses is the free use of social media for promotion. A simple internet search will reveal a wide range of tips and tricks that cater to marketing plans of every size. Reaching out to customers, engaging with them directly and keeping them posted on new products/services has never been easier. Even if you are strapped for cash, you will still be able to build and promote your brand. Just make sure you interact with your social media followers regularly.
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