4 Key Tech Investments To Keep Your Costs Low and Profits High
Running a small business is all about cost management, especially if your company is a fledgling. Shoestring budgets being what they are, every penny counts -- and that can be a real challenge when it comes to gaining access to the latest and greatest business technologies. The truth is, though, that investing in cutting-edge tech can, in the long run, be a major boon to your bottom line. Here’s how your small business can benefit from the best business tech out there.
1. Reach Out and Touch Someone
As Chron explains, startups and small businesses thrive on connectivity. This means relying on mobile devices such as smartphones to keep in contact with customers, suppliers, contractors, employees -- you name it. Many startup owners simply use their own personal mobile data plan, but the truth is that you often end up paying through the nose on a “cheap” mobile plan if you exceed your data or minutes.
A better option and one that will save you money, in the long run, is to shop around for a data plan that takes the demands of running a business into account. Whether this means changing plans with your current carrier or switching to a rival, in many cases you can get excellent deals for jumping ship, up to and including a brand new phone.
2. Better Safe Than Sorry
If there’s one thing that can totally hamstring a growing business, it’s the loss of crucial information. In the event of a catastrophic technological failure that wipes out key data like inventory, purchase order records, customer information, or if your company is hacked, it can cripple your business, and even mean shutting your doors. That’s why investing in data loss protection is a must.
Data loss protection isn’t cheap. Putting data loss protocols in place will impact your operating budget, and this can strain the finances of many startups. But if the alternative is having to shut down because the records from your entire accounting department were wiped out, suddenly the expense doesn’t seem so terrible, does it?
3. Throw Out the Fisher-Price Cash Register
Point of sale systems is, obviously, indispensable for any retail-based business. After all, you can’t turn a profit without the ability to process purchases. Talech points out you need a modern point of sale system, one that’s both capable enough to handle run-of-the-mill purchases and agile enough to adapt to evolving conditions. Today, even garage sales and market stalls can support mobile POS systems that accept debit and credit transactions as well as cash.
There is a wide range of POS systems. Even highly mobile ones, which are usually more affordable, still need to have modern capabilities like chip readers. This can be a significant investment, but a small business can miss out on major revenue opportunities without being able to handle as many different transaction types as possible. This means that a more expensive POS system can help pay for itself rapidly, provided it works consistently and reliably.
4. Taking the Long View
Running a small business, whether it’s brand spanking new or decades old, involves a lot of day-to-day maintenance. That means immediate concerns often outweigh long-term ones. But when it comes to growing your business, taking the long view can help secure your company’s continued success. It might seem like an unnecessary expense to invest in technology solutions that don’t confer much of an immediate benefit, but whether it’s data loss protection, a more flexible mobile data plan, or a highly agile mobile POS system, all of these tech solutions will pave the way for your company’s continued success in the future.
Author Gloria Martinez runs WomenLed, a group that celebrates women's accomplishments and achievements in the workplace. WomenLed is dedicated to increasing the number of women-led organizations and Martinez continues to be a leading voice for this movement. You can follow her work on WomenLed.org