As a small business owner or manager, you need to stay on top of the latest trends to make sure you are getting the competitive advantage over your competition. 2016 has seen “the development of modern business technology [that] gives small businesses the opportunity to develop low-cost, enterprise-quality products and services,” states Forbes.com.
What are the latest trends in the small business world?
Importance Of Websites
Although every single large operation has a website, not all small businesses have ventured into the online world.
However, not having an online presence can put the company at a significant disadvantage.
Customers are searching for goods and services online, finding local businesses this way, reading reviews and ordering online.
Although building websites can be expensive, nowadays it can cost next to nothing to create a site for your company.
In fact, platforms like Wix allow business owners on a budget to create their own websites with easy-to-use wireframes, tools and helpful advice.
In addition, having a mobile-friendly site is advantageous to allowing people on the go to access your site from their phone.
In fact, Google penalises websites that are not customised to be used through the phone.
Wix provides an easy option for website designers to switch between web and mobile mode to alter the way their site looks on each platform.
Working With Millennials
As more and more millennials, or individuals born between 1982 and 1999, enter the workforce, it is uncommon for any business not to employ these individuals.
This new generation has their own ideals, beliefs and traditions, and it is wise for any boss to understand them to be able to create a positive working relationship.
While generations of the past have been more complacent about being micromanaged and being told what to do, millennials were raised during the age of the Internet, so they are used to transparency, the spread of information and having a say.
To be able to effectively manage millennials, bosses need to adjust their leadership techniques to include these employees in the decision-making process, be upfront and honest with them about upcoming changes and challenges and empower them to work independently and be responsible over their own tasks.
In exchange, millennials will offer new ideas about innovating business to make them more modern, technologically-advanced and prosperous.
Many small businesses and startups need funds to grow; however, not all owners can get a business loan from the bank.
In fact, a 2014 study by the government found that one of the biggest obstacles small businesses face is getting financing.
The latest trend in alternative lending occurred when the British Business Bank was created, which provides access to private and public funding from 88 privately-run companies, such as Peer to Peer (P2P) and crowdfunding.
In fact, “£1.74 billion was raised via alternative finance methods in 2014,” states smallbusiness.co.uk, and it “is likely to increase by an estimated 26 per cent in the next two years.”