Small businesses have a wealth of new technology tools available to help manage their businesses in today’s always-connected, increasingly digital world.
However, with so many new apps and software solutions being introduced every day, it can be challenging for even the savviest small business owner to keep up. Here are seven tech tools for small business owners that matter today:
1. Virtual Reality
Virtual reality is a three-dimensional image or environment that you can interact with on a computer. You do this using special equipment, like a helmet with a screen inside or gloves fitted with sensors.
Business owners are currently taking advantage of virtual reality to enable their customers to view the products they are interested in before they buy them. For example, a customer can use virtual reality to see what their new car would look like in their driveway or how large their sofa will be once it is delivered to their house.
Other uses of virtual reality on enterprises include virtual online tours, especially in real estate. The business owner creates a 360-degree panoramic view of their property. The virtual tour can then be hosted on Google Maps to allow potential buyers to virtually drive through the property.
2. Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence
Artificial intelligence is a field of study that focuses on the development of computer systems that are able to do things that usually require human intelligence, such as recognizing objects or sounds, translating between languages, and making decisions.
Machine learning is a subset of artificial intelligence that examines the construction and study of algorithms that can learn from and make predictions on data.
Business owners are taking advantage of machine learning to enhance their business processes, such as predictive modeling. For example, a business owner could use machine learning to predict when a certain product is likely to sell out. This would allow them the opportunity to order additional stock if necessary to prevent a shortage of products. They could also use machine learning to predict future sales by examining current trends and historic data.
3. Business-Friendly Vehicles
Business-friendly vehicles are defined as vehicles that have been specifically modified to offer their owners a better business proposition.
For example, many trucks these days are equipped with technologies such as GPS tracking and a button that allows a driver to send their location information to the office in real-time.
Even trailers and truck beds are getting a redesign. Hillsboro Industries, for example, has created product lines that are lightweight, easy to install and remove, and fewer welds to improve payloads, efficiency, and towing capacity.
4. 3D Printers
A 3D printer is used for rapidly creating physical objects from a digital design. They are typically used for producing toys, machine parts, and architectural models. However, they can also be utilized to print promotional items such as pens, coffee mugs, or candy tins that have the business owner’s logo imprinted on them. In addition to being used as a marketing tool, 3D printers can be used to speed up prototyping and cut down on production costs.
3D printers are not only beneficial for businesses but could also be highly useful for people who like to invent things or handle repairs around the house themselves. In other words, 3D printers allow you to create all sorts of objects from scratch by simply designing them on the computer.
Drones are unmanned vehicles that can be remotely controlled and piloted by a person from a distance. They can range in size and complexity, reaching over six feet in length or weighing less than two pounds.
The use of drones in businesses has become popular among companies for different reasons, such as taking overhead footage (e.g., real estate) or delivering packages. In addition, drones can be used as a security measure to check on property that is hard to access by people or vehicles. They are equipped with cameras that film from high up in the air and send images back down.
6. Big Data Analytics
The definition of big data analytics is the use of software and hardware tools to perform analytical calculations on large sets of data or very fast computing platforms that can execute these types of algorithms at a more rapid pace for the purpose of gaining insights into a business process.
This type of technology can be used by business owners to analyze large sets of data to gain information that can be used for making important corporate decisions. For example, they could use it to gain insight into the demographics and interests of their customers, so they know what types of marketing strategies will appeal most to them.
7. Nanotechnology/ Biotech
Nanotechnology is defined as the study of manipulating matter at a molecular and atomic level to take advantage of the physical, chemical, and biological properties of materials.
Biotech is a type of technology that deals with living things. It typically involves using engineering techniques for making machines or software to solve problems related to medicine, agriculture, industry, and energy.
For example, nanotech could be used to produce lighter batteries to power various types of devices (e.g., smartphones), while biotech could be used in the development of new drugs for treating diseases or disorders.
Ultimately, all these technologies are here to stay and will become more integrated into our daily lives.
However, it is important that business owners understand the different ways in which these types of new tools can both help them run their operations more efficiently or aid in growing their businesses.