Innovative Tech Tools for Remote Businesses

The outbreak of COVID-19 has caused many businesses to transition their employees to remote work, and other companies offer remote work as a perk for those who want a flexible work schedule. Regardless of why companies use remote work, it’s grown significantly. From 2005 to 2017, remote work has increased by 159-percent.

What are the Best Technology Tools for Remote Businesses?

Although working remotely has many advantages, it also comes with organization and communication obstacles, which is especially likely for businesses that are just starting the transition. However, there are numerous tools that can boost production and make communication easier.

Organization Tools

There are a host of project management and organization tools on the market. Before choosing an organization tool, business owners should research which platform is best suited for their business’s needs.

Asana

Asana is a platform that focuses on project management. This allows team members to stay informed about what tasks need to be completed and see if any changes need to be made to the project. With Asana, users can store files and prepare for future projects.

Google Drive

Google Drive lets users share files with other group members. Many businesses use it because it allows documents to be stored in one place. With Google Drive, team members can also edit documents and make comments for other members to see. Google Drive is also beneficial because it’s a cloud storage system, so files aren’t saved on one device, which prevents files from being lost if a system failure occurs.

Communication Tools

Team members need to communicate effectively to get the best results. Several technology tools can make communication between team members easier.

Slack

Slack is a communication tool that lets users create channels and groups to chat with other team members. With Slack, team members can connect with each other quickly and easily.

Zoom Video Communications

Zoom Video Communications is another way that remote workers can stay in touch. When users get face-to-face interaction, they’re more likely to feel like part of a team. This is an effective tool to use when physical meetings aren’t an option.

Utilizing Live Video for Audience Engagement

The coronavirus pandemic has completely changed the way we hold events. In a world where social distancing is a must, uniting large groups of people in small indoor spaces is no longer possible. Event organizers now have to get creative to pull off fully virtual events.

While the pandemic has certainly brought virtual events into the mainstream, the sudden change represents an existing trend’s acceleration, not an entirely new phenomenon. For years, emerging technology has driven communication increasingly into the digital world. It is likely that after the pandemic, virtual events will continue their prevalence since society was already moving in this direction pre-coronavirus.

With the virtual encounters here to stay, we all must learn how to plan and carry out a non-physical event—as with normal in-person lectures or meetings, engaging the audience is the key concern for virtual event planners. But can you keep people interested when they’re not even in the same room? Yes, and here’s how.

Think Carefully About the Topic

The topic is always the most important element of an event, but it’s especially crucial when you’re going virtual. Choose a relevant topic that is bound to keep the audience’s attention. Before starting your live stream, make sure everyone knows the theme. Then, stay on topic throughout the event.

Take Advantage of the Format, Show Operations Up-Close

Live streaming an event causes some serious complications, but it also offers some advantages. One of the most noteworthy benefits is that you can virtually bring large groups of people into smaller areas where they wouldn’t typically fit. Take advantage of this by live-streaming from unique locations inside your business that will pique the audience’s interest.

Invite Questions from the Audience

Q and A components are a good idea for almost any event, and they’re especially helpful when you can’t be with your audience in person. A virtual event where you talk and everyone else passively listens will quickly start to feel like a Youtube video to the audience. By inviting people to interact and ask questions, you’re reinforcing that this is a real live event, not some pre-recorded presentation.       

An Emphasis on SEO and Marketing During Lockdown

Marketing is the fuel that drives your business forward. SEO marketing, in particular, has proven to be one of the most potent fuels to grow any business. If the present lockdown crisis has impacted your company, then search engine marketing is more important than ever to your business’s suçcess and survival.

Many nonessential businesses have seen their sales drop off a cliff in this present crisis. This decrease in demand for their product offerings has naturally led to a significant decrease in their product offerings’ visibility. Just because the economy has come to a virtual standstill doesn’t mean your customers aren’t still in need of your products and services, and that is exactly why search engine marketing is so important right now.

A search engine marketing company has the tools struggling businesses need to stay relevant. As soon as the lockdown ends, your customers are going to return to their usual buying patterns. By partnering with an SEO specialist today, businesses can better position themselves to take advantage of these future consumer trends. 

While their competitors sit on the sidelines waiting for things to return to normal, the most astute companies are actively pushing forward to increase their brands’ visibility online. These companies will be able to make the return to profitability the fastest once this lockdown is over.

Even if the crisis has positively impacted your business due to an increase in demand for much-needed goods, it may be greatly benefitted by the introduction of SEO marketing. A search engine marketing company can also help the most successful businesses in this crisis by assisting them to understand better why customers are flocking to their products and services in this time of need.

Through an in-depth analysis of which keywords customers are using to find them, these successful enterprises may better position their products and services so that they may sell even more of these products to outpace their competitors further. Search engine marketing isn’t a passive activity, though. In fact, an SEO specialist can also leverage the current success of a business by creating additional content that targets these lucrative keywords even more effectively.            

Looking For a Business Loan? Know These Basic Terms First

Starting your own business is one of the most rewarding yet daunting experiences you will ever have. Perhaps the most complicated to navigate is the business loan process. Not only will you have to know what you need to present to your chosen lender, but you’re also expected to know some of the jargon being used. So, to make that experience a little easier on you, we’ve outlined a few basic terms that you must know to obtain a business loan.

Assets

One of the first things that will come up during a business loan interview is your assets. When a lender asks you to tell them about the type of assets you have and which you are willing to put up for collateral, they are talking about personal property. Now, there are two types of assets, depending on your position. If you’re just starting a company for the first time, they are usually asking about personal property such as cars, extra homes, and boats, to name a few. If you already own a business, they may want to know about company cars or equipment that can be possessed if you cannot pay back the loan.

APR (Annual Percentage Rate)

When obtaining a business loan, the goal is to get as much as you can with the smallest APR as possible. The APR stands for annual percentage rate. This is a sort of fee that you’re going to be paying for having the loan, expect you’re going to be paying for it every year that the loan is active. Even if this is your first time asking for a business loan, it is highly recommended to negotiate on the rate if possible.

Consolidation

It can be stressful to have a ton of loans added with multiple due dates and payment amounts. When you are offered a consolidation, you are essentially putting all those payments into one. This allows you to concentrate on one due date, thus eliminating the risk of forgetting to pay a loan on time.

Grace Period

As a new business owner, you’re going to have a lot on your plate with not much very help. This can cause you to forget to pay your business loan on time. However, banks understand this and thus provide business owners with what is called a grace period. A grace period is a set amount of time after the due date, where a missed payment doesn’t mean you are having to pay a late payment fee or have interests accumulate.

Legally Proofing Your New Business

The nature of innovation is to be creative in everything you do. Even as you look at the bigger picture, you have to ensure that everything is operating well. It is always advisable to prioritize legal considerations as they help set up a business without infringing copyrights.

Why do you need to undertake legal procedures?

Before convincing clients to get your products and services or recruiting staff, it is crucial to go through legal procedures. The legal framework ensures that you operate legally, and your services and products are protected. If you do not copyright your business during its initial stages, losing it is relatively high.

Each business startup has to pursue its legal needs so that the owner does not end up losing the job. Legal challenges have significant implications and should never be underestimated. To be abreast of the legal requirements, here is what you can do to shelf your business legally.

Define your business

Setting up a legal framework is one of the necessary steps in establishing your business. At the initial stages, you should have a comprehensive definition of your business and how you intend to operate it. If you do not define your business, someone could legally document your ideas, gaining patent rights.

Take a scenario whereby a former employee or a partner can start up a business using your ideas, that individual is entitled to its patent rights. Legally, the individual who took the first initiative to document the ideas is the business idea’s rightful owner. If someone takes your idea and goes through the legal requirements, there is no way you can claim your rights over it –you can be sued for copyright infringement.

You should hire an attorney who understands your business’s structure and its operations. Though the CEO and part of the management team can help define the business, it’s crucial to include team members. For instance, you can get ideas on protecting your information and maximizing the use of technology to propel your business to the next level.

The initial steps should be copyrighting your business idea and get its patents. Your trademark should be registered at the appropriate legal firm. While these procedures might be costly, they are worth every penny compared to scenarios where you have been sued for infringement.

Hiring Globally Following the Pandemic

The coronavirus pandemic has changed many aspects of today’s workplace. What was once considered a temporary quarantine measure might become a much longer-lasting cultural trend of working from home. With this increased telecommuting flexibility, some employers want to hire global employees. What are the considerations that should be kept in mind?

As some regions of the world return to normalcy, business administrations are facing new tests regarding workplace security and health. Human Resources departments are tasked with ensuring that offices are safe and that proper sanitation procedures are implemented and followed. Safety is the first priority for all employees, and once that is established, businesses can begin focusing on growing again.

It’s still possible to grow on an international basis. Though some international regions are showing slowed economic growth due to the coronavirus, other areas are still showing increases. For example, parts of China are expected to grow by about 1.2 percent, while parts of India could potentially grow by almost 2 percent.

These percentages are certainly not the explosive growth rates seen in a non-stalled economy. But they indicate that it is still possible to hire and grow on an international front. India is currently considered the top country for technological expansion, beating out European and North American countries ravaged by COVID.

As for Europe, some European countries are projected to have GDP growth. France, Italy, and Germany are all supposed to have economic growth throughout 2021. This has made them favored areas for US entrepreneurs who want to expand into international markets. Many business owners are looking for employees in these countries to gain a foothold.

The market changes mean that companies have to consider how they recruit and retain international employees carefully. They must also be cautious about compliance and administrative needs when it comes to office work.

Companies who test their presence in international markets should take into account important factors like labor laws, payroll, and employee benefits. It’s common for US entrepreneurs to be surprised by the stricter regulations imposed in many European countries regarding employee benefits.

If a business owner does choose to expand into a foreign market by setting up a new presence, they must be willing to give a long-term commitment to that venture. 

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