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Using Technology to Put Your Small Business on the Map

Using Technology to Put Your Small Business on the Map

Technology has leaped forward exponentially over the past few years as we seek out inexpensive, pioneering solutions that can be quickly applied to various problems that have arisen in the world and various different industries. High-tech 3D printers are being utilized to create individual, personalized limb and bone replacements for both animals and humans; scientists are testing out a variety of different ways to reduce pollution and plastic waste in the sea; and various apps are being created to monitor and advise people of their health and well-being. These are just a few of the technologies being developed and used currently.

Whether you’re just starting out turning your side-hustle into a viable small business, or are looking to reinvent and expand your current small business, it’s becoming increasingly important to consider how you can incorporate new technologies to solve a variety of problems, regardless of the industry umbrella that your business sits beneath. No matter how technophobic you are, or how insecure you feel with the rise of new tech in everyday life, you will find that to keep up in an increasingly competitive market, you will have no choice but to embrace its infiltration wholeheartedly and enthusiastically into every business sector, and identify ways that it can help to both strengthen your business and put you on the map.

So, how could you make a bigger name for yourself and your business via the inclusion of up-and-coming technologies?

Seeing it in 3D

CAD modeling isn’t exactly a new technology, but it is only just starting to witness a veritable boom across a variety of industries, including retail and service. The benefit of such modeling is that you can use 3D rendering to efficiently create an image that is customizable and reflective of a product or service to ensure that your customers or clients are able to fully visualize what they are potentially going to spend their money on, helping them to make sound decisions prior to investing their hard-earned cash.

Initially, this technology was predominantly used to model the construction of stages and equipment at large-scale events, as well as the gradual erection of buildings in architectural firms and on building sites. However, it’s now being utilized across retail sectors to design and model products to individualize them for marketing and branding purposes.

If you are looking to create 3D configurations of products and packaging that are unique to your brand or business, you should take a close look at Apviz’s ecommerce solution. They pride themselves on providing a secure SaaS 3D configurator to help accelerate your marketing process, reduce your overheads, and remain intricately connected to your customers, whether you are a purveyor of jewelry, garments, watchmaking, or cosmetics.

Try Before You Buy

In the fashion and garment industry, one of the biggest issues that’s dominant is the continuous mass production of items that eventually end up in growing landfill piles, rotting away and leaking harmful materials and substances into the world’s oceans. The vast majority of this is derived from customer clothing returns that have been tried on and are unwanted or deemed faulty. For big clothing brands, online or in brick-and-mortar stores, it’s expensive having to check, clean, and repackage items to be resold, so to reduce costs, many of these companies simply send the items to landfill – and, most of the time, the items are simply the wrong size or the style doesn’t fit the figure of the purchaser. Environmental campaigners purport that the fashion industry is one of the biggest reasons behind climate change and environmental damage, from production to waste.

While many smaller, independent fashion brands – such as Isolated Heroes – have dedicated themselves to designing limited clothing lines that are made-to-order, this isn’t yet having a big enough impact on the fashion industry as a whole. However, the creation of tech that essentially mirrors the technology that Cher uses in the much-loved 90s film, Clueless to choose her daily outfits is a bit of a game-changer. Taking an individual’s measurements and using facial recognition software, technology has been created that shows a digital representation of the customer. This way, customers can see whether a certain item of clothing is going to look right on them – in essence, a way to try before you buy that doesn’t require the mass production of items. Additionally, this technology can be utilized to create made-to-measure items of clothing, reducing the need for mass productions and creating well-fitting items that are less likely to be returned. Pretty cool, right?

Eco-Friendly, Ethically Conscious

As mentioned, the fashion industry is well-known for its negative impact on the environment, and technology is being used to help alleviate this impact as much as possible. Not only is it being used to design programs that can be used by fashion brands to reduce waste and returns, but it is also being utilized to design, create, and test out the production of new materials that are eco-friendly, limiting the inclusion of long-lasting plastics in clothing and the use of animal products and by-products.

Further, scientists have been using such technology to devise ways of generating renewable energy, remove microplastics from our oceans, produce plant-based meat replacement products, and create packaging that is biodegradable yet long-lasting. Numerous companies and brands are incorporating these ideas into their business models, choosing customizable packaging for products that is unique and environmentally-friendly all while protecting the products from damage.

Social Media and Apps

Gone are the days of having to buy a page within a newspaper or magazine to advertise your business, or relying on the work of others to personalize your brand; the growth of various social media platforms and apps have completely reinvented the marketing wheel.

Whether creating videos of your products on TikTok or Instagram with the help of online influencers, owning and updating your brand’s profile on Facebook or Instagram with the help of a social media manager, or utilizing apps such as Canva to create unique logos and branding for your business, the sheer sway that social media platforms and various apps have on the attitudes of consumers cannot be underestimated – ignore them at your peril!

Up-and-coming small businesses would be foolish to ignore the impact technology can have on the success of their business, particularly in terms of advertising the business in a way that engages customers and that meets the growing environmental demands of a society that is well-aware of their impact on the world around them. The world is demanding change, and it’s demanding that such change occurs as soon as possible, which is where the advancement of new and pioneering technologies come into play. A savvy entrepreneur will recognize this and seek out those elements that will benefit their business model, consumers, and the world as a whole.

Investing in certain technologies now could save small businesses time and money in future, which will not only help them to expand, but also put them on the map as a brand that can be trusted. Technology is going to continue to change the face of retail; best to get on board now, or risk being left behind in the dust by those choosing to embrace such advancements.

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by Harvey Carr // Harvey Carr is a contributor to Businessing Magazine.

Opinions expressed by contributors are their own.