When Big Ben chimes this New Year’s Eve small business owners up and down the country will be hoping for a prosperous 2018. A recent survey by Exact revealed that two thirds (64%) of UK SMEs face competition from new digital players in their industry. Despite this, only 6 per cent of these SMEs were investing in the modern technology needed to retain their customers.
Here at Businesscomparison.com we can’t offer a crystal ball to help you see into the future, but we can give you a roundup of the latest tech trends that might help guide your business to prosperity next year.
Social Media marketing
Many small business bosses will be devoting time and money to social media marketing in 2018. Social media and paid advertising on social media platforms will continue to boost SME revenues through SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) next year with the most progressive businesses staying ahead of the game.
Being cyber aware won’t make you money in 2018 but avoiding being hacked will save you money. The government’s Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2017 found only a third of companies have security policies in place despite a quarter of them experiencing a breach at least once per month. The new year will also bring larger fines for cyber breaches that involve the loss of client’s data due to the new General Data Protection Regulation.
The World Economic Forum predicted that robots will result in the net loss of more than 5 million jobs across 15 developed nations by 2020 in a recent report. Add to that the warning that robots will threaten 15 million UK jobs by the Bank of England, and it’s hard to ignore the significance to SMEs in 2018.
Cloud computing and IoT
Despite being popular for several years now, cloud computing and the Internet of Things (IoT) will become more accessible to business owners next year. Now, entrepreneurs can take advantage of flexible pricing models for cloud storage, reducing infrastructure and IT costs. More applications of IoT and better Internet quality are expected to benefit business owners.
Chatbots are becoming the new must-have technology for businesses. A chatbot is a computer program that maintains a conversation with a user and sends a suitable response. Consumer familiarity with online messaging and investment in AI make it likely that chatbots will be a growing technology trend for small businesses in 2018.