Today, the definition of small business is only limited by our imagination and entrepreneurial skills. Although there are several factors which have contributed to make that happen over time, nothing else has played a bigger role in broadening the horizons of small business opportunities than the world wide web. Therefore, whether you have plans to launch a new small venture, or modernize your established business, digitization is going to be the key factor. As to the exact steps you should take to digitize a business, let’s find out.
The Internet Connection
The term digitization does not exist without an active internet connection, at least not if you have business in mind. Therefore, the very first concerns should be regarding:
- Which ISP to choose?
- What type of connection to get?
- Which monthly/yearly plan to opt for?
In large metropolitans, fiber internet is the default option for businesses of all size but the plans they choose differ significantly in accordance with company’s/office’s specific needs. Regrettably, smaller cities and towns do not always have the best ISPs or even fiber cable plans to choose from. Fortunately, that’s not quite true for Washington, Missouri anymore. Reliable, ultrafast fiber connection is now an available option via a residential and commercial internet service Washington, MO.
Not only is the definition of small business extremely broad, but they can differ so widely in size too. It includes everything from a small home office where the business owner is also the sole employee, to a small company office that has 50+ people working in it. Despite the extreme diversity, the need for a router, or rather multiple routers, is universal for digitization.
If it’s a small home office with just couple or so people working in it, all you need is a good triband Gigabit router to maximize your fiber optic connection. For comparatively larger offices, mesh routers are recommended. How many mesh routers the office needs will depend on how big the office is and what the estimated range of your mesh routers are.
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Unless your business has more specific needs, laptops and/or desktops with the latest generation of Intel Core-i7 (12th or 13th) or AMD Ryzen 7 (5000, 6000 or 7000 series) processors, coupled with at least 16GB of RAM should be enough. There could be the need for additional features as well, but they are far too diverse to recommend without knowing the specific niche of the business.
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The Software Solutions
Once you have everything else ready, now it is time to look for software solutions, mobile applications, and web tools you will need to create, manage, and market your business online. As you can imagine, it would be impossible to recommend exactly what you need without knowing your business. Nevertheless, you will probably need to invest in at least:
- A web host and site builder solution
- A content management system (CMS)
- A Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and marketing platform
- A commercial grade office software suite
- A visualization software platform to streamline and overview workflow.
- A complete cybersecurity suite of enterprise-grade software solutions.
The rest should fall in place automatically, but don’t end up opting for more SaaS than you need. It can end up creating an unnecessary and undetectable drain on your financial resources.