he following is a list of technologies that small businesses are already using or planning to use within two years. As a small business owner, it’s important for you to stay on top of these trends. These technologies are being used by successful businesses in 2019. While new technologies like machine learning have emerged, data security, mobility, and social media marketing will make a positive impact on your business.

Data Security

This is the most important technology that small businesses need to invest their time and money in. However, only 68% of small and medium businesses have invested in these technologies. Small businesses that operate without data security protection could be a fined as a result. Laws such as the UK’s General Data Protection Act are becoming common. If you’re launching a small business, not having data security solutions will make your business more vulnerable to threats.

Business Security

Business security is the second most important technology to have. You’ll find an affordable home security system with technological advancements such as body heat detectors, motion detectors, and wireless alarm systems. Some home security systems are becoming integrated with smart technology. They include features such as a video doorbell which allows you to see who’s at the front door. Some of these smart doorbells come with a camera that uses motion sensors and night vision to help you recognize and record the people who enter your business.

Machine Learning

Machine learning has become a popular form of enterprise technology. While it was originated for enterprises, it can also help small businesses that make use of data flows. These analytics can help you determine the trends and notice data that follow customer intentions. Any business that brings in a large amount of data should find unique learning tools that can increase agility and responsiveness.

Machine learning allows you to analyze each of these data streams, so you can be on the lookout for certain patterns. Your business will get better at identifying your dedicated customers, personalizing online interactions, and recognizing cross-sell or upsell opportunities. You can extract the data from your email marketing system to find out how often customers open your emails.

Mobility

Small businesses are investing in mobile devices and mobile technology. This allows your employees to work remotely from anywhere in the world while providing them with smartphones and tablets. If your business doesn’t have the funds to supply mobile devices, then you can create a BYOD (bring your own device) policy in which you can manage your employees’ devices through enterprise mobility management (EMM) software.

Social Media Marketing

Influencer marketing and social media marketing is expected to rise over time. While influencers are mostly considered as social media stars, social media marketing includes other areas, such as pay-per-click and search advertising. The increased use of social media marketing entails personalizing your online communications with your customers. People don’t want to be advertised to. They want to be engaged with.

Social media marketing is expected to grow as it’s seen as an affordable and efficient way to target relevant customers. The ability to create compelling and unique content that engages with your customers on social media is important for today’s landscape. Three-quarters of U.S. customers have purchased a product they saw on social media. If your business is not on social media, it’s time to get started.

Chatbots

AI services are important for businesses of all sizes. Use a chatbot that includes a conversational user interface (CUI) that combines artificial intelligence and machine learning that help you get better at answering customers’ questions. Chatbots consists of live chat interactions that involve simple questions and may be escalated to a customer service agent who could answer the challenging questions.

There has been an increased use in AI chatbots in the past few years, and is expected to increase within the next five to 10 years. Eighty percent of businesses will use chatbots by 2020, according to the Chatbot Consumer Report. Keep abreast of this technology can put you ahead of your competitors.

By focusing on some or all of these technologies, your small business can get an edge. This will lead to improved customer service, engaged employees, and increase productivity.

by: Donna Jo