5 Things to Consider when Choosing Apps for your Business
As the sophistication of technology in business has risen, so have the number of possibilities. The sheer volume of software and applications for each business can feel overwhelming. However, it’s also an exciting opportunity! There are so many more ways to conduct business than ever before, making it even easier to pursue your passions.
What do we mean by apps? There are two types of apps: Web apps and Mobile apps. Web apps typically have more features and are accessed using a browser like Chrome. Mobile apps are specific for phone or tablet use and have a separate access portal (not a browser). There are sometimes Mobile apps accompanying web apps that offer fewer features but can be used anywhere. Mobile apps might not be as powerful as web apps but are often inexpensive and provide value.
If you’re not sure which apps out there are useful, or not sure how to get started, here are some tips on how to select the most useful ones for your business.
What your Industry is
First, take a minute to define which industry your business falls under. There are so many types of businesses out there, and the more specialized it is the harder it is to define what your business does. Accurately defining your industry lets you do more thorough research about the kinds of apps that would benefit your business. Your business’ needs are specific, but the right application can help and reduce waste and ultimately save money.
Problems your Business has
What problems do you have in your business? Do the research on the apps that already exist and see which of them solve problems you’re having. Read reviews on them to get more insight on their value. Go with your gut and don’t be afraid to adapt to a new way of doing things. Businesses change, and as the owner or CEO it is your responsibility to keep up with the times.
It is also your responsibility to ensure that your business, employees, and investors benefit from the applications you use. Make sure you implement changes that improve, rather than complicate, your processes. There will always be a learning curve in the beginning, but if it’s not working, don’t be afraid to try something else.
Lots of things can change in your business’ lifetime. The number of employees, the growth rate, the technology available, and so on. It’s important that the software or apps you adopt can grow with your business. This is called scalability. It makes the most sense to invest in an app with longevity than to switch the apps you use every couple of years.
If the software you’re researching can’t adapt to your business plan, then it is probably not worth implementing. There are plenty of applications that can grow alongside you, so research potential business solutions thoroughly.
It is vital that the applications you implement into your business are secure. You will often trust third parties with sensitive client or bank information, so it’s important that these third parties are viable and safe. Make sure you are certain that software is accredited and tested before using it. Carefully review their terms and conditions and privacy and security policies. Most quality applications are secure, so don’t be afraid to pay more for one product that might seem to do the same thing as another.
The best apps aren’t usually 100% free. Many offer a free trial period, which is helpful in the research phase of implementation. Don’t let a free trial go to waste. schedule enough time to put it to the test thoroughly to help determine if it is a good fit. Products that offer real benefits to your business will often save money in the long run. Consider it an investment in your business, like any other feature you would purchase.
Deciding if new technology will fit into your budget can be stressful. Some things just aren’t feasible for your business in its current stage. That’s okay. Keep an open mind, if an app seems helpful but doesn’t have features that you can use right now, subscribe to their blog. Web apps are constantly updating, so they might have what you need in the future. Create a plan that budgets for the cost of helpful apps, and you’ll get there.
Don’t be afraid to try new things! There is so much technology out there that you are bound to find something helpful for your business. Figure out pain points in your business and see if solutions for them exist. New technology for business isn’t going anywhere, so it’s worth investigating. Get out there and see what you can find!
Looking to solve a problem in your business? Contact Think Beyond the Desktop for help with selecting and implementing technology for your business. Share your favorite apps with us in the comments below!