2013 Small business technology survey

| October 22, 2013

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In an increasingly technology-reliant global marketplace where cybersecurity issues and vulnerabilities can bring commerce to a screeching halt, understanding how small businesses utilize technology is of critical importance not only to policymakers, but to thought leaders in the IT industry. To help provide clarity on how small-business owners utilize technology as well as a host of related data points, including intellectual property, data collection and storage, and so on NSBA recently surveyed more than 800 small-business owners and is pleased to provide the results of that survey this document, the NSBA 2013 Small Business Technology Survey.

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5 Things a Small Business Should Consider During a Downturn

Article | March 31, 2020

No matter what your business is, you are likely to have been impacted by the coronavirus outbreak Covid-19. As a result, your business activities have probably reduced or even been suspended for the time being until the crisis is over. At this difficult time, you should consider it an opportunity to reassess the aspects of your organisation such as the operations and the financial outgoings. By taking these considerations, you will effectively put your business in a better footing coming out of a crisis. If you are a business owner, here are 5 questions to ask yourself regarding your business during a downturn;

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A Comprehensive Guide to Social Media Strategy for Small Businesses for 2021

Article | July 6, 2021

With the emergence of COVID-19, social media became a powerful platform for small businesses to connect directly with an audience and thus, build brand awareness, direct sales, reaching the target audience, and cultivate customer relationships. As a result, social media strategy for small businesses is in high demand. According to the most recent data, there will be 4.33 billion social media users worldwide at the start of 2021, accounting for more than 55% of the total global population. With more than 70% of the US population having a social media account, these platforms and services have risen to prominence as some of the most popular online activities in recent decades. As a result, the number of social network users in the United States will reach 243 million by 2025. Furthermore, the world spends more than 10 billion hours per day on social media platforms, equating nearly 1.2 million years of human existence. The statistics states that maximum people spend most of their time on social media apps; thus it is a powerful platform of marketing for small businesses. What is a social media strategy for small businesses? A social media strategy enlists everything you want to do and achieve on your preferred social media platform. It contains information about your goals, what you intend to post, and how you intend to measure the success of your goals. Social media strategy requires setting social media goals and objectives. A smart social media strategy helps you build brand awareness, connect directly with customers, increase revenue, and build relationships with your audience. The more detailed your social media plan, the more effective it will be. The primary goal of social media strategy is to create a systematic plan for maximizing engagement and interactions across social media platforms to achieve a company's goals. Why do you need a social media strategy for your small business? Trying to build a strong brand on social media is not a piece of cake. It demands a well-defined strategy that will help you to build a strong and organic presence online. Having a well-built social media strategy helps you save time. Social media is a crucial part of an inbound marketing strategy and requires a lot of effort. At one point in time, social media was just an option for small businesses, but 2020 has made it essential. Social media strategy enables targeting your audience more effectively and will also help you stay ahead of the competition. To taste success, small businesses should have a social media strategy in place. According to the study, 53% of customers who follow a company on social media are more likely to be loyal to them specifically. There are several social media channels available such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, etc. From a social media marketing perspective, Facebook is the most used social platform and can be one of the best social media channels for small businesses. However, having a dynamic social media strategy for small businesses is extremely beneficial for its success. Set social SMART goals It is easy to start using social media for business, but before that, it is important to create a social media plan that ensures all social efforts support specific business goals. Be clear on your goals for making social media plan. Hence, create smart goals with a SMART framework. A SMART goal is defined as specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound. You can keep your efforts focused and effective by setting these goals for social media marketing tips. Specific: Be specific with your goals and objectives to set your strategies and determine which channel will assist you in achieving them. The goals of each business owner differ; some want to connect with customers, while others want to increase conversations or traffic to their website. Measurable: Your goals need to be measurable to determine the effectiveness of your strategies. Each social media network has a set of metrics that businesses can use to gauge their efforts. However, few tools like Google Analytics help to track engagement and conversion metrics. Achievable: Your goals need to be achievable by your business. Relevant: Your goals need to be relevant to the objectives of your business. Time-bound: Your objective must be time-bound. But determining the best time frame can be difficult. Set a quarterly goal to ensure you don't waste time on ineffective strategies for too long. Evaluation will be simpler and more frequent. Setting a SMART goal is an essential social media strategy for small businesses. For 2021 and beyond, SMART goals are the most popular and long-lasting goal-setting frameworks in the industry. Hand-pick the right social media platforms Choosing the right social media platforms among over 100 platforms available is a bit tricky. How do you know which is the right one for your business? If you try to use multiple channels at the same time, your chances of success will decrease, and it will be difficult to deliver a consistent experience across all platforms, especially for small businesses with limited resources. All social media platforms have advantages and disadvantages; you must be cautious when choosing the right network, keeping in mind your target audience and where your current customers are most active. Choose the platforms that make the most sense for the nature of your business. Pay attention to trends of social media It is a good practice to pay attention to trends in social media because they change all the time, so you will be aware of what people are looking for in social media platforms when they are active. As a result, you will be able to create content that is relevant to the search. It is critical to monitor social media trends and keep your social media strategy up to date to achieve your business goals. Keep in mind your current audience’s needs so that you can change your strategy accordingly. Customer’s tastes, behavior, and likings are dynamic, and you will know it only when you keep track of social media trends. If small business owners want to take advantage of social media platforms, they will have to pay attention to the social media trends. Track and measure your social media goals Tracking and measuring the performance and progress of your social media goals is important once you implement your social media strategies. Consistency is essential for the success of social media strategy for small businesses. There are analytic tools such as Google Analytics that give you information about the metrics. Social media goals determine your metrics. Social media metrics give you a clear picture of how well your social media strategy is performing. Once you know how your strategy is working, you can find ways to improve it further. When you have determined your goals and social media metrics, you can choose the right social media tools to help you manage your accounts, monitor engagement, and advertise on social platforms. To track and measure your social media goals is one of the important social media marketing tips. Schedule social media calendar for small business A small business owner needs to be consistent in their presence on social media. Now the question is, how do you do this? When you have a long list of things-to-do, you can schedule posts in advance by making use of technology and tools. By using tools, schedule a social media calendar for small businesses to post them automatically at the right time. This will give you consistency as well as save time. It is of utmost importance that your social media plan for small businesses include certain fixed days every month or a fixed few hours every week to schedule your social posts. It gives you ample time to concentrate on other aspects on different platforms for real-time engagement when you plan it well. This is an effortless social media strategy for small businesses. Frequently Asked Questions: Which social media is best for small businesses? The most common social media platforms used by small businesses include Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest. Social media is easy for small business owners because it is cost-effective. Among all these, LinkedIn is considered best for small businesses to connect with other businesses and professionals. Why is social media good for small businesses? Social media helps you build brand awareness, connect with current customers, and increases your customer base. Social media platform gives you a better understanding of your customers. What are the five benefits of social media? The benefits of using social media are endless. A few benefits to pen down are it helps to build relationships, increases visibility, helps connect with wider audiences anytime, anywhere, reduces marketing costs, and provides better search engine rankings. { "@context": "https://schema.org", "@type": "FAQPage", "mainEntity": [{ "@type": "Question", "name": "Which social media is best for small businesses?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "The most common social media platforms used by small businesses include Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest. Social media is easy for small business owners because it is cost-effective. Among all these, LinkedIn is considered best for small businesses to connect with other businesses and professionals." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "Why is social media good for small businesses?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Social media helps you build brand awareness, connect with current customers, and increases your customer base. Social media platform gives you a better understanding of your customers." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What are the five benefits of social media?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "The benefits of using social media are endless. A few benefits to pen down are it helps to build relationships, increases visibility, helps connect with wider audiences anytime, anywhere, reduces marketing costs, and provides better search engine rankings." } }] }

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Adding Text Marketing to Your Marketing Plans

Article | July 13, 2021

Have you incorporated text marketing into your overall marketing strategies? Unfortunately, not all companies have yet because many small business owners aren’t familiar enough with the benefits. B2C text messaging “is growing rapidly,” according to eMarketer, citing statistics from Juniper Research showing global mobile business messaging traffic hit 2.7 trillion last year, up 10% from 2019. The rise of text marketing in 2020 was “undoubtedly” accelerated, eMarketer says, by the pandemic. According to cloud communications provider Infobip, SMS marketing grew 8.5% and 20% in March and April 2020, respectively, compared to February 2020’s numbers.

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7 Best FreshBooks Alternatives for Small Business Owners

Article | February 24, 2020

If you’re a small business owner, then your business accounting is one of the most important things you manage to keep your business running smoothly. That also means that having the right accounting software can go a long way in helping you achieve your goals. Maybe you’ve heard of, if not tried, FreshBooks in the past and are wondering what else is out there. We’ll go over some of the best FreshBooks alternatives on the market for your business. Some of the highlights of FreshBooks include that it’s cloud-based, has a mobile version, offers a variety of plans at different price points, and more. Before we dive into the FreshBooks alternatives, let’s take a look at what FreshBooks has to offer your business.

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