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How SMEs Can Benefit from Keeping Up to Speed with Mobile Technology

February 20 2017

Just as the internet transformed business processes and marketing, mobile technology is a game-changer for SMEs. Keeping up with the pace of technology can seem daunting, but there’s much to be gained from keeping up to speed with mobile technology and embracing the opportunities it offers.

In this post, we will explore how SMEs can use mobile technology to enhance the way they do business, connect with customers and market their products and services.

How Mobile Technology Can Improve Working Processes

There’s so much that mobile technology can offer by way of improving working processes, it really depends on the type of business you run. There’s an app for almost any requirement these days.

One of the ways that mobile devices are changing the way businesses operate is by allowing employees to work efficiently whilst on the move. This allows companies to offer flexible working conditions, without having to compromise on productivity. With office tools at their fingertips, employees can check emails, create documents, organise their workload, manage accounts, update social media, collaborate with colleagues and communicate with customers, no matter where they are located.

The ability to update information instantly and send it back to head office, saves a great deal of time and paperwork for field workers. Time saved not only means reduced operating costs for the business, but also a better, more efficient service for the customer.

With mobile devices at hand, employees can respond instantly to web and social media enquiries, which can lead to greater customer satisfaction and increased sales.

There are real benefits to implementing mobile technology in your business. However, it’s important to be aware that this brings additional concerns regarding cyber security. Increased connectivity can mean increased vulnerability, if such a project is not planned and managed effectively.

For maximum benefit with minimal risk, companies should plan and implement a comprehensive mobile device management strategy which incorporates well-defined policies and effective controls.

Why a Mobile Responsive Website is Vital

Last year, mobile web browsing overtook desktop browsing for the first time, with 51.3% of people preferring the convenience of browsing on handheld devices such as smartphones and tablets.

If your website has been designed solely for desktop users then your business is at serious risk of being left behind, if it hasn’t already suffered because of this. Any business without a mobile responsive website will suffer from reduced visibility. Not only will potential customers find it difficult to navigate your website on their mobile devices, but they may not even find your business in the search engines.

Having noticed the growing trend of mobile web browsing some years ago, Google has already been displaying a preference for mobile responsive sites in its search results. If your competitors have a mobile friendly site and your business doesn’t, they’ll have the upper hand online.

If your website is not currently mobile responsive, don’t panic. You can submit your site to Google for analysis, to find out how user-friendly it is. From there, you can make a few changes and will soon be back in the game. You may have to invest a small sum to make the necessary changes, but it’ll be worth it for the return you’ll see in terms of new customers and extra sales.

How Mobile Technology & Apps Can Help a Business to Target & Reach More Customers

Thanks to mobile technology, we are seeing an unprecedented level of communication between businesses and their customers.

The mobile phone has become the primary tool that people use to find information, from searching for local businesses and checking directions to comparing prices and reading reviews before purchasing. There’s no doubt that this technology puts a lot of power in the hands of consumers, but it can also be extremely beneficial for businesses that are willing to embrace intelligent mobile marketing.

Using mediums such as SMS, mobile apps, banner ads and QR codes, businesses can deliver highly targeted adverts and special offers to entice both new and existing customers.

Mobile technology is particularly useful for companies that want to target local consumers because smartphones are equipped with GPS trackers. This allows businesses to target customers based on their exact location, sending promotional messages direct to their phones.

This type of data is changing the way marketers target customers, providing valuable insights on consumer behaviour and personal preferences, which allows for highly targeted advertising.

Social media has become an important advertising platform for most businesses. Some of the big players these days are mobile-only sites such as Instagram and Snapchat. Having a presence on these sites can help businesses to stay current, reach a wider audience and build brand awareness.

 

If, up until now, you have avoided mobile technology like the plague, it’s likely that this will all seem a bit daunting. However, it’s not just the future of business – it’s already here. And you can bet some of your major competitors are taking advantage of it already.

Of course, there will be concerns regarding implementation, security and budgeting. But you don’t have to make drastic changes immediately. Being in the know is a good place to start.

Research the various technologies and trends and see what fits with your business. Begin by ensuring that you, at least, have a mobile responsive website.

Introducing mobile technology in your business is a big step and it’s important to plan ahead, consider security issues and put effective mobile management strategies in place.
If you’re considering implementing mobile devices, but are unsure of how to manage such a project, we recommend consulting a specialist IT company.

Contact Grant McGregor today for expert advice and assistance.

 

Image source: Freerange Stock

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