2010 through 2019 was a time of change and growth for many businesses. January 1, 2020 will mark a whole new decade with changes and challenges of its own.
In the 2010s, there were only two top 10 tech sector companies globally. Now, we see that public companies are in the majority, with some company values estimated at over $1 trillion.
We predict that the new decade will feature many opportunities and challenges that will impact the face of the future in business. Technology was constantly evolving throughout the 2010s, and it will continue to do so throughout the 2020s.
Are you ready? Take a look at our list of ways to leverage technology for your business’ best decade yet.
1. See and Be Seen
One of the major keys to a successful business plan is to strengthen your presence on the web. The world is connected, and you need to be connected along with it. In 2018, more people were online than not. By 2022 the number of connected people will grow even more: it’s estimated that 75% of the globe will be connected to the internet, and an astounding 90% of the world is predicted to be online by 2030.
What do all these numbers mean for your business? They could mean that you aren’t taking advantage of a wide open digital market.
Voice Search Optimization
Devices are getting smarter every day. More and more people are connecting to services such as Google Home and Alexa. It’s estimated that nearly half of all internet searches will be done using voice search in 2020.
It’s a new trend, and one businesses should be aware of. It’s no longer enough that web content is SEO optimized, your content must also be optimized for voice searches.
Mobile Phone Friendly User Experience
From a world where cell phones were a luxury to a world where everyone has one in their pocket (or hand) at any given time, the mobile phone industry is booming. How important is the mobile phone for your digital presence?
In 2018, over half of all internet traffic took place on mobile devices. It’s predicted that in the very near future, mobile device transactions will account for nearly half of eCommerce retail sales.
If the user experience on your business’ mobile site isn’t smooth, connected and easily navigated, your potential customers will go to a site that is more user-friendly. This is UX, or user experience, and it matters. Half of all traffic to a mobile website will leave if the page isn’t fully loaded and interactive within three seconds.
If your online presence isn’t mobile user friendly, you may be missing out on a huge target audience.
Social Media Presence
Social media isn’t just Facebook anymore, and to take advantage of social media requires a lot more strategy than simply posting random content and memes. Your social media content should be designed to drive, engage, and convert.
Your ability to connect with “social media influencers” is an important part of your social media strategy. Connecting with smaller social media influencers (normal, everyday people) is a vital way to be recognized by people who trust their social media “friends.” You will get the most bang for your social media buck by building trusted communities across all platforms.
Today’s social media users have expanded far beyond Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. These three platforms, while still important marketing tools, have been on the decline for the younger generation. Pinterest, various private messaging apps, and TikTok are more appealing sites for younger audiences.
That’s not to say the familiar classics are no longer a viable platform for your social media presence. In fact, Instagram stories are on the rise. An Instagram story is a little different than common feed-based posts. They are designed to be enjoyed in the moment, and are a far more authentic experience for users. Instagram stories can be a valuable tool in your social media strategy toolbox.
Don’t overlook the three classics, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Include them in a social media strategy based on your target audience’s age, and don’t forget to use newer, more popular alternative social media sites if necessary.
2. Let The Data do the Talking
By 2020, Gartner predicts that digital businesses can increase profits by nearly 15% by embracing smart personalization engines.
Businesses are advised to use newer tech, like machine learning (ML), artificial intelligence (AI) and Internet of Things (IoT) to keep up to speed on their customers’ changing needs. This allows businesses to give each customer a personalized experience.
Look at some common business that use this already: Spotify, Amazon, and Netflix are three companies that have taken full advantage of data capturing and processing tools. They have used these analytics to make a customized “Recommended for You” and product suggestion list for each customer.
You don’t need to be a giant enterprise to use this technology. With today’s easy to use data analytics, any business can personalize each customer’s experience.
3. Freedom is the Word for Employees
Today’s workers, comprised largely of a millennial workforce, demand more freedom in their work days. You will see a trend away from the normally accepted “nine to five” office hours.
The good news for your business is that by allowing your workforce to be remote, you are not limited in the location of your employees. This means you can “shop” for the talent and industry experience that your business needs to grow.
Remote workforces can save employers money in operational expenses, such as utility costs. Many businesses do not have a centralized physical office location at all, preferring all employees to be remote. Employers can save money by hiring contractors and freelancers. Known as “gig workers,” these workers comprise over 34% of the current workforce. It’s predicted that the prevalence of “gig workers” will rise to over 40% in 2020.
Businesses know that in order to compete, they need to be flexible enough to hire the right workers for the job. These workers may come from any corner of the state, country, or even globe. In addition, more and more business models are turning away from traditional work hours for existing workers and allowing employees the ability to work from home several days a week.
Your employees can still be connected, no matter how “remote” they are. WIth faster internet speeds, team messaging, smartphones, laptops, and video conferencing, your team will stay connected.
Grow your business over the next ten years by hiring the right person for the job, no matter where they are located, and give them the flexibility to work from home a few days per week.
Find the Right Partner for Your IT Needs
Your competition is already connected. It’s time to ramp up your digital presence to meet the demand.
It may seem like meeting these demands is way beyond your scope, skill and budget.
Digital technology is constantly changing. It affects everyone on a personal level as well as on a business level. You can’t afford not to up your technology game.
Call Iconic IT or fill out this form for a free, no-obligation consultation today. Let us show you how we can equip you with cost-saving solutions and strategies that will keep your business up to speed, up to date, and up to the rising demands of the next 10 years.
Your customers are waiting. Connect with us to connect with them.