It’s the age of technology (and COVID-19) so it’s imperative for entrepreneurs, SMMEs and modern start-ups to make use of all digital platforms at their disposal- and the tools that go with them. The truth is, those who aren’t embracing technology, particularly given the current global pandemic, run the risk of being left behind. Embracing digital tools sooner rather than later will enable you to begin your journey towards further opportunities for growth and integration in future.

Project Management Tools

The dynamics of running and managing a remote workforce requires a platform that is cloud-based, transparent and allows collaboration in real time. Applications like Trello and Jell are great for managing projects, share updates and make daily plans- making it easier to align projects.

Communication Tools

Although emailing is not redundant, it’s difficult to use when having conversations between employees and clients as well as keeping track of relevant topics. One of the most popular messaging tools currently out there is slack. Teams use this mainly for communicating but also for its many apps and integrations offered, like assigning tasks and taking surveys and polls.

Website Builder and Performance Monitoring tools

Your business website is the front door to your store. It showcases your product or service, implies legitimacy and acts as a channel to share information and news. Fortunately, you don’t need to be a tech-savvy whizz at creating websites, you just need SquareSpace. This app allows you to create a clean, mobile-optimised site that you can build -and even include a store. Naturally, you will want to keep track of how people are using your website should any adjustments need to be made. Tools like Chartbeat and Google Analytics track your visitors, see what pages they are clicking into and more. This is useful for knowing which direction your business is going in.

Customer Relations Management and Marketing

A customer relationship management (CRM) tool will allow you to log and track every aspect of every relationship you build. CRM software like Hubspot helps you stay organised and top-of-mind with customers. Another great way to stay in touch with clients and to build your database is by creating newsletters- effective digital marketing tools are Mailchimp and Constant Contact which also offer insight and tracking.

Having a social media presence is vital when building brand awareness, collaborating and marketing your business. That means posting, engaging with other users, responding to customer questions and feedback, and otherwise being active to show your commitment to the platform. Hootsuite is a great social media management tool to monitor feeds, schedule posts, interact and engage, and view analytics.

Video Calls and Conferencing

Now that terms such as ‘social distancing’ and ‘self-isolation’ are the buzz words, meetings and conferences are better off virtual. A video call allows multiple parties to join in from anywhere in the world. Zoom, Google Meet and GoToMeeting are popular options when considering the goals and purpose of the meeting.

With so many options out there to help your business, not only turn digital, but evolve with the digital times, it’s important to explore and investigate which applications are going to be beneficial and ultimately reap the most reward.