Using Technology to Boost Sales

Sat, Feb 11, 2012


You might be a little wary about introducing new technology to your business operation. After all, the landscape for technology seems to be shifting at an accelerated pace these days. The minute you jump on one bandwagon, there’s something newer and better on the horizon; trends seem to come and go faster than you can possibly keep up. And while some fads catch on and outlast the rest, how are you supposed to pick the winners out of the hundreds of options flooding the market at every turn? If you choose poorly you could end up with a major expense and nothing to show for it. Sure you have to spend money to make money, but you don’t want to flush it down the toilet. So how can you use technology to boost your sales (without losing your shirt in the process)? Here are a few tips to help you select the best options for your business.

  1. Keep computers up to date. Although you don’t necessarily have to replace your computers every year (or even every couple of years) you should take pains to keep your software up to date. This means upgrading to the latest versions of the software you currently utilize (it often costs less than buying a different program new) and installing automatic updates when prompted. This will ensure that you’re able to function at maximum capacity. And when it comes to equipment, consider a five-year plan for replacement; at that point you can be assured that there is something better and faster on the market (while your equipment will likely be obsolete and probably no longer supported).
  2. Join the social network. Social media is not only a great way to reach out to new customers and take advantage of their vast network of connections; it is also 100% free! Or at least, it can be. You can create business profiles on all sorts of popular social media sites (Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Foursquare, just to name a few) and start making friends, posting promotions, and finding ways to get your name out there and get liked.
  3. Get mobile. One of the best pieces of technology for any business these days is the smartphone (although some would say it’s a toss-up between that and the tablet). It’s like having a very small and useful computer on hand wherever you go. Not only does it give you instant access to email and the internet; if you’re into apps you can find some amazing business solutions for cheap or even free. With the right apps you can access shared files for offsite meetings and presentations (Dropbox), manage projects remotely (TaskThis), and even swipe credit cards at a flat rate for transactions (Square). Does it get any better? Actually, it does, with new apps being added daily, which is one of the reasons having a smartphone is essential to improving your business and boosting sales.
  4. Sell online. Holy cow, if you haven’t taken steps to move your business into the online arena at this point you are way behind. There are so many opportunities to expand and boost sales that you are really undercutting yourself by failing to make the leap into cyberspace. So hire yourself a web designer, research Ecommerce web hosting services, and figure out a domain name.
  5. Consider SEO. Search engine optimization is the obvious next step once you’ve gotten your website up and running. You can learn the basics on your own with help from texts like SEO for Dummies (just for starters), or shell out the dough to have a pro do it for you. It will almost certainly be money well-spent.
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