A shocking number of companies aren’t taking advantage of the very basic technology available. For example:

  • 52% of small businesses do not have a website
  • 90% don’t have a mobile optimized website

Businesses do recognize the importance of staying up to date on technology including new software, programs and products.

Yet, there are a considerable number of companies who have not invested in building a website; the basic, modern method of relaying information to potential customers and clients. In an age of IoT and connectivity, consumers see convenience as a must and find businesses lacking in technology unreliable.

A serious innovation gap within a small business can lead to disaster. If a business is standing still then it’s falling behind, with the opportunity to catch up decreasing steadily.

There are examples aplenty. Video stores still exist in some capacity, but they aren’t the Blockbusters they once were. Netflix brought DVDs to your door, which then turned into a streaming service before creating original, award-winning content. Blockbuster cards are mere items in a museum alongside a roll of Kodak film and 16-bit Atari game system.

Adapt or die.

No Industry Unaffected

There used to be a few ways customers could interact with a bank: go to a branch, visit an ATM or log in online. However, banks are being disrupted in a major way via financial technology and non-traditional banking service. Mobile pay options like PayPal and Venmo makes it easy for people to park their money and pay as they please. They can also transfer money to friends and take payments for goods and services.

With money tied up in mobile pay, banks see fewer deposits and have less money on-hand for lending and investment.

Banks are jumping on-board though, partnering with FinTechs to fill in the technology gap and create a competitive advantage over the financial institutions not ready or able to embrace this customer convenience. Zelle, for example, allows a quick transfer of money between peers and is backed by major banks such as PNC, Wells Fargo and J.P. Morgan Chase.

Customers Want/Need Technology

In a world where customers demand convenience, organizations lagging behind technologically, are lagging behind strategically. By partnering with disrupters and understanding what your competitors are doing, small businesses can better address their two biggest worries: how to find new customers and how to keep their current customers.

Modern technology can help solve that problem simply by making interactions with the customer more meaningful and more engaging. Small steps to consider if your business is a little behind are:

  • Create a mobile optimized site – Where will your leads learn about you? Wherever they discover you, they can instantly research your company and products anywhere, at any time, right from their phone.
  • Invest in SaaS – Software as a Solution, especially a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) platform, can help businesses run more efficiently and communicate better with their customers.
  • Be Social – Make sure your customers and clients can find you on social media. Presence is importance, even if you’re B2B, because it puts a personality to a product. Social media makes recommendations, referrals and company culture more visible.

Even with these small implementations, there can be considerable time and money spent in training and maintaining. In some cases, whole departments might need to be created. But, as technology continues to dominate our everyday lives and becomes an integral part of interacting with the customer, businesses who fail to evolve may eventually find that they fail to exist.