During Women Founders Conference 2016 a lady asked me how she could use technology to increase productivity. She had just listened to a talk on digital skills by one of the female speakers. Today i want to talk about this topic not because i was asked to do it, but because its a very important topic as well. Technology is beyond having a computer and a smartphone, but it is about how to effectively use these tools to make more money. Here are 5 ways technology can re-energize your business to help grow your customer base, improve productivity and increase efficiency.
1-Put Your Business in the Cloud.
There are several cloud storage services like Dropbox, Microsoft SkyDrive or Google Drive to store your documents and data online. Rather than just depending on your computer’s hard drive you can keep information secure and also have access to them anywhere, from any computer using the cloud. The cloud offers a lot of flexibility, you can create different folders for different projects or team members; collaborate with employees, contractors or partners; and share files or images that are too big to sent via email.
2-Market with Social Media.
Use social media tools to drive traffic to your door especially if you live within the reach of your target customers. Create a Facebook page, a Twitter handle and an Instagram page and also list your business on Google Places so people can easily find you and get directions to your location. If you do you handwork service register on platforms like Vconnect. Be innovative and always encourage customers to leave reviews on your social media handles after visiting your store, using your services or finishing a meal in your restaurant.
3-Reach out with Email.
Research shows that 44 percent of email users made at least one purchase based on a promotional email. Once customers opt-in to receive your emails, send a monthly newsletter, alerts about sales or new products, or special offers. Email success is all about frequency and follow-up. This can be a very productive way of reaching out to customers and making more sales.
Do you have a retail store? Expand your customer base by selling your products online, either through an ecommerce website of your own, or through larger online marketplaces such as Olx.com.ng and Jiji.ng. Do you own a restaurant? Use an online service such as Chowhub.com.ng and chopnow.com.ng that lets customers place orders online for pickup or delivery.
5-Get Paid Instantly, Anywhere.
Do you serve customers at their homes or offices, or sell products on the go? Mobile payment tools such as Bank instant payments gateway, CashEnvoy, PocketMoney, Paga, which work with your smartphone or tablet computer, make life easier for both you and your customers by letting you accept non-cash payments on the spot.