tech tools for business

6 Reasons Why Your Start Up Company Needs a Mobile App

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By: Rosana Beechum

If you’re looking at starting up your own company, being in the know and having the right marketing strategies in place is crucial. To gain a customer base, you will need to think outside the box. While a website and blog can be a great way to connect with consumers, more and more businesses are taking the initiative of creating their own mobile app which can give you a clear and direct marketing channel. With that in mind, here are just a few reasons why every start-up company should have a mobile app.

Be Visible to Customers 24/7

As a business, it’s important that you’re there for your customers around the clock. While it’s impossible for you to oversee proceedings 24/7, having a mobile app allows your customers to connect with your brand no matter the time of day or night. 

Create a Direct Marketing Channel

Apps serve many different functions. Not only can they provide general information, apps can include news feeds, user accounts, prices, and more. One of the main benefits of creating your own mobile app for your business is that you can provide customers with all the information they need within an instant. What’s more, selecting push notifications means that you can get a closer direct interaction with your followers, giving your customers reminders about what products and services you have available. 

Rewards Your Customers

Instead of the old-fashioned route of collecting points on a card, why not make it easier for your customers by letting them receive rewards via your mobile app? It’s only natural that you will want to entice as many people as possible to download and use your app, so the more downloads you get, the more return customers you will receive. 

Builds Brand Recognition

As a start-up company, getting your voice heard can be a challenge. If you’re trying to compete with many other businesses, it can be all too easy to get lost in the crowd. Creating your own mobile app can be hugely beneficial when it comes to building your brand awareness.

While it’s important to come up with an app that is equipped with all the features your customers love, you need to make sure it’s well branded and designed correctly, meaning that the general public can clearly identify who you are. 

Improves Customer Engagement

Whether you’re selling flowers or operating a beauty business, it’s important that your customers can contact you. Having a help desk feature included in your app can make a big difference, enabling customers to get in touch with any general queries or concerns. Many customers prefer to communicate via text rather than phone, so having a space available for them to use on your app is crucial. 

Creates Customer Loyalty

One of the most important reasons to create your own mobile app is cultivating customer loyalty. With so many newspaper ads, Facebook ads, website banners, and billboards all around us, it can be all too easy for consumers to ignore the advertising platforms that surround us. Making a connection with your customers is vital and will show that you value and appreciate their custom. Creating a mobile app with your customers in mind is important, especially if you want to hold onto your following. 

The more people who use and love your app, the more 5-star ratings and reviews you will receive, helping to persuade others to get on board with your brand. However, as a business owner, it’s important to take all different thoughts and opinions into account. Knowing how to handle constructive criticism is a key trait that you should have. So, keep in mind that no matter how much hard work and dedication you put into your mobile app, there will always be some customers who aren’t satisfied with your product.

Building Your Mobile App

If you aren’t sure who to use to help create your mobile app, you may want to consider using companies like Appetiser. The company are known for its iPhone and Android app development, and by visiting the site, you can read up on what they do and the types of services they offer. You can receive a free consultation where you can share your ideas with the company, helping to turn your idea into a mobile app that can benefit your company.

No matter what sort of budget you have to play around with, you should seriously consider creating a mobile app that can be a great way to connect with your customers. With more and more people using smartphones, you can build a loyal and dedicated following within an instant, especially if your app is available to download on Apple and Android devices.

Standing out from the crowd and building brand recognition is key, so if you’re ready to get started, there are various companies that can help you create an exciting and engaging mobile app for your business.

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7 Tools To Help Your Business

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Image by Loya Liu from Pixabay

Today, there are many tech tools and software programs that you can buy or download to make your business more efficient and productive; software available to make your everyday work processes faster, more straightforward; and everyone will be able to accomplish more with less. However, with so many choice out there, it is difficult to know which ones are right for you and your business.

If you're not comfortable with technology, then the whole process can be overwhelming and cause you to worry about how you will utilize these platforms and train your employees on them. Many people often decide that it's more trouble than it's worth and stick to what they know, what's comfortable but essentially outdated ways of doing things which take far more time and effort. 

There are certain technologies and systems that you and your employees will use in your personal lives; some companies have come up with business versions of your employees' favorite systems. Choosing these makes day-to-day work life easier for everyone because if your employees are comfortable and familiar with the systems they are using, then it will increase overall productivity and output. 

If you don't provide your employees with tools that they feel comfortable with to help them do their jobs, then they will find other ways of doing things. This could mean they end up purchasing their own technology and while this does show initiative and commitment to the role, it can also lead to your team using a whole host of different solutions across which could hamper their ability to work together. It's important to look at incorporating the solutions that your employees, clients, and partners, either already use or can quickly learn to use, which makes collaborating that much easier.

Every business is different, and its needs are unique, so it's important to look at all the options, and which are the best user-friendly tech tools for you?

Enterprise Mobile Application 

When employees want to use their own personal mobile devices for work and access applications and company data, this is where Enterprise Mobile Application comes in. It means that all your employees can have simplified access to the same applications as everyone else in the company, which enables consistency between devices but still allows employees to have the personalized mobile experience that they are used to which will increase efficiency in the workplace and reduce costs spent on company devices. 

Trello

Trello is a well known, user-friendly, and free project management tool. It is very visual, easy to navigate and it simplifies tasks. So if you're not already using a project management tool, or you don't think you need one, it is worth giving it a go as it could really help you and make your working day far more efficient as it lets you create a system to manage your tasks and really is a time saver and a great way to organize and manage your work and your employees' work. 

Buffer

Buffer is a social media management tool which allows you to manage multiple social media accounts at once. So, whatever industry you're in - whether it's marketing and comms and you're managing other people's social media or even if you're just managing your own for your business, then it's a handy tool to have.

Managing your own Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter, and Instagram profiles can be time-consuming and can get pushed to the bottom of the pile. However, a social media management tool can really help you; it enables you to schedule posts ahead of time, have access to useful insights to show you how your posts are performing. It can also free up time for you as you can post several posts out in one go.

There is a free version of Buffer, but it has its limitations, so it is worth trying it first and then upgrading and paying for more features if it works for you. Buffer's blog is also excellent and an excellent resource which can help you learn a lot about your social media strategy.

Slack

Slack is not only one of the largest and fastest-growing companies, but it is a great tech tool for internal communications within your company. Slack allows teams to create specific channels of conversations, video conferences, and you can also create alerts for particular objectives. A platform such as this can be advantageous with our ever flexible working lives as people can work from home and work at different times. Having somewhere where staff can coordinate online is useful and can be extremely productive for your company.

Expensify

Even though you want your expenses back, it can be a dreaded task each month to collect your receipts, make sure you have them all, and fill in those expenses forms. So, if you're not using Expensify, you should be. Expensify is a handy tool that keeps track of business expenses, receipts, reimbursements, and business purchases. It makes all of this more manageable for employees, managers, and the finance team too as it allows you to upload images of receipts and submit purchases for approval right from your phone. 

Lion Desk

Customer relationship software, or CRM, is a big business as companies need tools that help them manage their contacts, know who has ordered what, and generate leads. Liondesk is a CRM provider that takes an explicitly sales-based approach and is aims to help real estate agents achieve more sales and generate more leads. The company's mission statement includes the phrase "close more sales," and the company claims that it is continually innovating and looking for new ways to free up employee time and make sensible predictions about which customers are ready for a new sale, and which aren't.

SalesForce

SalesForce is another popular sales tool and essential if you are working in sales. It is a Customer Relationship Management platform which you can set up and manage yourself. It also offers numerous cloud services, integrations with other programs and APIs, and they continue to acquire other companies that will enhance their software further. Salesforce, on the whole, enables you to organize better and to see the bigger picture of your sales funnels and pipeline and Sales teams can use Salesforce to do everything from managing their leads, tracking opportunities created, sales funnels, reports, sales conversations.

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The Four Bits Of Tech All Businesses Need

Being tech savvy can be a real benefit to any business owner by helping to cut costs, improve business efficiency, and find new ways to make work smoother and more enjoyable for your employees. Here are some must-have tech items all businesses need to get on board with. 

Tech tools

Photo credit: Unsplash.com

Mobile Device Management

Find out what MDM can do for your organisation. Mobile device management is essential if you provide staff with any devices like laptops, mobile phones, or tablets. You can use MDM to remotely manage all devices, whether they are in the office or not to keep them secure and up to date.

Block access to apps that your staff won’t need and ensure the devices can only be used for work purposes. You could even track usage if you felt it was needed. Automatically push software or security updates to the devices to keep them all functioning as they should and properly secure. In the case of a device being lost or stolen, you’ll also be able to wipe them remotely to protect all your information, and even block them from being used. 

Social Media Marketing

Social media is a very important part of any modern marketing mix and you should build a proper social media plan. Save some funds on your marketing by making use of the free options on social media, and speak to your customers in a more informal way. 

Do some research into which social platforms your customers tend to use, such as Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. Set up profiles and keep your branding consistent across all the platforms you decide to use. Use the same username to make it easier to find you, and choose a professional looking profile picture and header image, like a logo.

You can use social media to engage with your customers in a relaxed manner. Your customer service team can respond to questions and complaints, and engage with customers who leave reviews. Make sure you post content on a regular basis, and try to keep the tone of the content in line with the rest of your business. You can share a more human side on social media, but remember you are a business. 

Email Campaigns

Make the most of online tools that are designed to manage your email marketing. Many of these tools are free, and you can gather your customer email addresses and divide them into lists by specific interest. You can send hyper-personalised emails to these different lists. 

Regular emails or newsletters can be sent out to targeted customers to share offers, news, or product adverts. Send these emails regularly to keep you in the forefront of your customers minds, but not so often as to make them consider your emails spam. Keep the emails you send relevant and avoid a spammy vibe.

Remote Working

Many offices now have at least part of their team work remotely at least some of the time. With the right technology, you can make remote work a possibility for anyone in your company. With work device and mobile device management, you can easily add other tech options to make remote work easy and simple to arrange. With staff out of the office, you can get away with using a smaller office space which will be cheaper to run and will require less spending on office supplies. 

Make sure that any devices, like laptops, that you provide to staff are reliable, to ensure they can get online with no technical hitches. Make use of communication tools like Slack, WhatsApp, or Skype to keep talking to your team all day, no matter where they are. You can use some of these programs to share screens with your team to allow for remote meetings.  

You can use online file sharing tools like Google Docs, which are ideal for remote working teams. Share files easily between your staff, and keep them safe in the cloud, where they can be accessed any time, anywhere. If there are any problems, you can track changes on the document too, see who made them, and restore to an earlier version. It’s also easier to share documents to other machines, without the potential for incompatible software causing problems. 

Offering the option to work remotely gives your staff a much better work/life balance, which in turn makes them much happier and less stressed. A happier workforce is likely to stay working with you for longer, saving you the cost of recruitment. It’s great for staff with children too, as they can work around the children’s care needs.

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