If there’s one truth regarding society, it’s that progress stands still for no man. This is certainly the case in the world of business. While you may be set in your ways and be used to doing things one way, that strategy can be foolhardy and detrimental to your long term profitability. Technology, for one, isn’t adapted by most businesses because they want to follow gimmicky trends. Instead, they do so because new and better tech can increase efficiency, customer satisfaction and profit margins.
However, many business owners may be confused on how to integrate technology into their companies to make the most difference. It has been forecasted that businesses will invest $2.7 trillion in IT by the year 2020. Still, this doesn’t explain where those dollars would be best spent. With this mind, below are some strategies you can use to allow technology to take your business to the next level.
Harness the Power of Your Data
One way you can use technology to evolve your business is by launching a big data strategy. Big data may seem like a fuzzy buzzword, but it’s actually a rather straightforward concept. If you can collect all kinds of data regarding your business processes and transactions, that data can be stored and then later analyzed to help make your business more efficient and profitable.
Think, for example, of all the different transactions you perform with different people. What if you could record information regarding the physical location of each person who purchased a product at your online store in a database? You may find that you receive more sales from one part of the country and not many from other parts. This can be great information to have if you want to adjust your marketing to reach untapped markets of consumers. Being able to leverage your data in this way is part of the reason why 53 percent of companies are integrating big data analytics into their businesses.
Increase Your Business Intelligence
Something else you should certainly consider investing in for your company is business intelligence. Business intelligence can be described as the analysis of data by a business to transform it into actionable intelligence for a business owner or manager. A business intelligence strategy should work part and parcel with your big data strategy. Your big data strategy helps to create and record the data, and BI reporting tools allow you to analyze and parse that data to provide you with meaningful suggestions on what steps you should take for your company.
For example, if you examine past trends based on when what products were sold when, business intelligence tools can actually create forecasts for future sales. With this information, you’ll know exactly what products to have in stock when. This can eliminate overstock and out of stock products and in turn greatly increase your profit margins. Products that are overstocked or run out of stock when customers actually want to purchase them contribute to an estimated $1.75 trillion in losses for retailers. Being able to avoid such costs is a big deal, and business intelligence software can help you to achieve that.
Broaden Your Market
The internet may no longer be new, but it is still something that can completely transform your business. If you rely on a brick and mortar location to make sales, you are dependent almost entirely on that local community to provide you with a steady stream of revenue. However, if you expand your business to cyberspace, your prospects for a customer base are almost limitless. As long as someone has a mailing address, you will be able to sell that person your products.
Overall, there’s a lot technology can provide to your business. Investing in it can increase your efficiency, expand your profits and greatly broaden your reach to new consumers. Consider different ways you can integrate technology into your business. Doing so can have some great benefits.
by: Dennis Hung