Australia is fortunate enough to be a part of one of the fastest-growing and innovative economic regions in the world – Asia Pacific. Our neighbours to the north have a vast population of people, forward-thinking ideas and a seemingly innate entrepreneurial spirit that has propelled the likes of China into the league of global superpowers. Within this broad region of countries, small business has taken off and being one’s own boss is a more and more attractive option for many. The growth of these SMEs over the last few years in particular is very promising for those already in the game as well as those looking to set something up for themselves, and although Australia’s growth has not been as extreme as other countries, there is plenty to look forward to.
Hopping on tech trends and making the most of new innovations is something that has been both created and used extensively by small businesses to get ahead. There are many aspects to the impact of technology on small businesses, however one of the most pertinent is the instantaneous nature of customer service, feedback and delivery of goods and services. With online platforms providing instant service to customers, the need for fast delivery on top of quality customer experience is of paramount importance to businesses around the world. In small business, this is equally as crucial in order to attract and retain customers over bigger and wealthier competitors. Small businesses that embrace technology within their organisations that improve efficiency, service levels and customer satisfaction are those that have the potential to thrive in a marketplace that can be dominated heavily by larger players, and ultimately set themselves up to be a large player themselves.
Digital payments and social media
CPA Australia’s 2017 small business survey revealed that about 60 per cent of small businesses in Australia use social media or sell online. Keeping up with the current tech market and looking to constantly innovate and invest in the most suitable technology for your business and customers is necessary to remain relevant and prosperous. There has been an increase in the amount of small businesses using services such as Apple Pay and We Chat Pay at the point of sale, in order to provide greater convenience. What’s more, businesses that use such services report that there is an increasing percentage of sales that occur through them, which reinforces the importance of recognising changing customer needs.
According to research, 60 per cent of Australian small businesses do not have a website. As a result, there is potentially a large customer base that remains untapped for these business owners. In order to not miss out on these opportunities, it is really important to have a user-friendly, engaging and multi-device website that displays what value you can offer to potential new customers.
Gaining a competitive edge over the competition is the name of the game in small business, and leveraging technology both new and established is a proactive step towards it. The greatest start-ups and SMEs thrive off innovation and creativity, as well as a desire to grow.