Technology for business is always changing. Companies that can stay out ahead of the curve will tend to be more profitable than those who do not. It helps to be well-informed and nimble in order to incorporate the latest technology into your daily business operations. With that in mind, here are some technology trends to be aware of and to consider adding to your business in the future.
Increased AI Utilization
Artificial intelligence can be used to help predict the future for businesses based on developing trends. Defined simply, AI is the use of computers to replace tasks that would usually be done by humans. AI can be used to mine past transactions to spot any patterns. It can also be used in general to help business owners get to know their business better. AI is also helpful in guiding a company to know where it needs to make future investment. This will crunch the numbers for you and will result in an intelligent recommendation for future action.
Increased Use of Texting For Businesses
As more companies send frequent emails to customers, it makes it more difficult to use this medium to break through the noise. Now, companies are turning to texts to communicate more directly with their customers. Text messaging is preferred by half of consumers as a way to connect with businesses. Of course, you have to make sure that people truly have a preference for SMS by having them opt into communications. Once they do, you are pretty much guaranteed to have the customer see your communication. Many of them will even respond with the necessary action since the communication is more direct and real-time.
Analysts are promising that 5G will change the way that business is done due to its lightning-fast speed. 5G promises speeds up to 100 times faster than 4G which will give you new possibilities. For example, a new generation of driverless technology and drones will be powered by 5G. Devices will become faster and more functions will be able to be automated. In addition, communication between your business’ devices will become much faster, allowing for a more interconnected company that can rapidly shift to meet customer needs.
The amount of business that is being shifted solely online continues to grow each year. In 2019 alone, e-commerce sales are expected to grow by 22 percent. If you are a seller, you must make greater investment to keep up with this trend. Specifically, you need to spend money to become visible to purchasers and to ensure a quality purchasing experience. If you are a purchaser, you can use this trend to your advantage to take advantage of greater competition among sellers. When you purchase online as opposed to from a physical business, you can take advantage of lower prices.
Blockchain can provide a greater amount of transparency for your supply chain. It can make it easier to track certain items and when and where they were made. This can help ensure quality and responsibility in the supply chain. In addition, it can help lower operating costs by cutting out the middleman. Blockchain can also make your business accounting function run more smoothly and cost you less. Speed and accuracy of financial reporting can be increased through the use of blockchain. In addition, it can help feed more information to your AI function, increasing your visibility into your business.
Businesses are having to invest more money in this critical function as hackers deploy more sophisticated tools to disrupt your company and steal information. Companies are having to spend an increased amount of time to defending their networks. Government enforcement is being stepped up in the wake of high-profile data breaches so the stakes for business are even higher. Companies are being required to provide attestations of their data protection measures in more instances, so even small businesses are now required to spend money on cybersecurity. Nearly all businesses can expect to weather repeated cyberattacks in the coming years.
Internet of Things
The internet is becoming more interconnected with both itself and everyday devices that people use. This allows people to exert more control of growing numbers of things. Terms such as the “smart home” are becoming a growing part of the lexicon. This is impacting even more physical businesses such as manufacturing and construction. Being able to integrate and centralize control can reduce the number of choke points and will speed your business. At the same time, this function must be done right so adequate investment is a must.
Technology can help your business stay ahead of the competition or, at the minimum, maintain your standing in your industry. Make sure that you do not overlook these technology trends and that you pay attention to other trends as they arise.