Every year brings new opportunities for growing a small business, and this year is definitely not an exception. Exciting technology trends keep emerging, completely transforming the way we work, learn, and develop.
To take your small business to the next level, stay relevant, and emerge triumphant from the competition, you should follow the latest tech trends to stand out from the crowd and grow.
Here’s what the year of 2019 has in store.
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1. Optimizing content for voice search
People are increasingly using voice search on their smartphones to find the content they need online. They use voice search to find information relevant to their pain points and to find various products and services. Why use voice search? Because it’s easier than typing. It’s much more convenient and enables people to find what they need in an instant, which is exactly what they’re looking for.
Optimizing your content for voice search will help you increase your online visibility, so your target customers will find you easier. This is one way to increase your SEO ranking and traffic, which will help you drive more customers to your door and grow your small business.
Voice queries are longer and more conversational but don’t confuse them with long-tail keywords. They’re usually made up of question phrases, and they’re often related to local searches. This means that this tech trend can provide you with an excellent opportunity to boost your local business.
2. Harnessing the power of AI
There are many business benefits of AI, so you should definitely jump on the AI bandwagon and join the revolutionary ride.
With various AI technologies, you can automate your daily tasks and significantly increase efficiency in your organization. You’ll be able to speed up and streamline your operations, helping your team become more productive and focus on core competencies.
AI-powered tools can help you quickly analyze huge amounts of data, and provide you with insights into your assets, your customers, your target market, your competition, the performance of your employees, and much more.
Leveraging AI technologies saves a lot of time and money, helps make better business decisions, eliminates the risk of human error, provides intelligent support, and helps drive more sales, revenue, and ROI.
3. Using chatbots for customer support
Live chat is extremely important for every website, but chatbots come with a few more benefits that are vital to consider. They are available 24/7 and can interact simultaneously with hundreds of users, with absolutely no waiting time.
If you integrate a chatbot into your website, your customers and prospects will be able to get instant answers to all of their questions. They won’t have to wait for your customer representative to respond to their messages and emails, or to wait for someone to answer their phone call.
Many small business owners are worried about the lack of engagement and human touch when it comes to chatbots, but chatbots are becoming more advanced. They can now recognize emotions and respond accordingly, keeping the level of engagement high. They’re powered by AI and machine learning, so they can understand the context in every conversation and provide meaningful and relevant answers.
4. Improving customer experiences with VR
VR is no longer reserved only for gamers. It can help a business greatly improve customer experiences and supercharge their sales.
VR technologies are becoming more affordable, which is precisely why small businesses are adopting them rapidly. But how can you take advantage of VR to grow your small business?
You can enrich your website with videos that people with VR headsets can watch and truly immerse themselves in your brand. For instance, if you’re running a real estate business, you can enable your clients to virtually walk through your properties, as if they’re physically present.
You can enable people to take a virtual tour of your hotel, offices, factory, or any other facility you own. You can also enable your customers to explore your products and services in VR. You can even train your employees, preparing them for real-life tasks. The possibilities are endless.
5. Staying connected with IoT devices
According to the latest IoT statistics, there will be a staggering 20.4 billion IoT devices by 2020. The Internet of Things is very much on the rise, and for a good reason.
IoT devices can help teams stay connected both inside and outside office walls, helping them communicate and collaborate more efficiently and effectively.
You can also monitor your field sales team better, who can also benefit from IoT while out in the field. Your field sales representatives can save a huge amount of time using their connected devices, and they can perform considerably better and close more deals.
6. Training employees with LMS software
Training employees is often time-consuming and expensive. Nevertheless, it’s crucial for success. Every business owner knows that regular employee training is vital, but many don’t know how to make the most out of it.
This is where LMS software comes in. An increasing number of LMS software solutions are hitting the market, even as business owners are realizing their huge potential as far as employee training is concerned.
With E-learning software, you can help your employees continually grow and develop. By giving them access to training materials 24/7, which they can access on any device, you’ll provide them with learning opportunities that will eventually help you grow your small business.
E-learning software can help you create and deliver training courses, track employee performance, identify their strengths and weaknesses, and ultimately help them perform brilliantly and increase their job satisfaction. This is precisely why this tech trend may be the most essential to follow.
Following the latest technology trends may seem challenging if you’re not tech-savvy, but you no doubt realize how much potential they carry. They can save you both time and money, help you increase organizational efficiency, make better business decisions, and improve customer experience.
Try and follow all of these trends this year, and take your business to great heights. If you would add any other tech trend to this list, or you’d like to share your experience with any emerging IT trend, feel free to leave a comment below. We’d love to hear from you.
Guest author: Robin is a Technical Support Executive. He is an expert in various LMS and employee training software. Currently, he is a resident learning management expert at ProProfs. In his free time, Robin enjoys cycling and sky diving.