Using technology in your business is no longer a question of if but much more about how?
Some companies like to go above and beyond with their use of technology, while some tread more carefully. There is no right or wrong answer as to how you should use tech, partly because it is a deeply personal decision to you and your company, but understanding the uses available to you is vital to your future. It is without a doubt that the workplace is introducing more and more technology, so let’s take a look at some of its uses.
First of all, the use of technology in marketing, specifically the rise of digital advertising. Thanks to the growth of the internet in the past few decades, companies are now expected to have some sort of web presence and have turned their hand to promoting themselves online rather than through traditional means. The ways to do this include banner advertising on relevant websites, social media and search engine marketing (SEM), specifically search engine optimization (SEO).
SEM is the process of promoting a website or web page through the use of search engines via different methods. The most popular of these is by having an effective SEO, which is the practice of preparing your website for better internet visibility specifically on search engines. The reason SEO is so important is that it improves your ranking in the unpaid results of a search, whereas other aspects of SEM include pay per click (PPC) listings; this is where you pay the search engine to feature in their sponsored links.
Perfecting your website’s SEO is not an overnight thing, in fact, it can take some time. Initially, you should be looking to ensure you are making the most of the tools that assist you in keywords. Keywords are what search engines look for on your web page – and every other one – when a search is made. Making sure that your web page contains all of the most accurate words and phrases can be a time-consuming task, and that is why there are free tools designed which do the research for you in a fraction of the time.
As well as keywords, you need to ensure that you are producing high-quality content so that your website registers high in terms of respectability. Google and co are not just looking to see what website matches a searched phrase, because there could be millions of results, but they are instead looking to see who matches, how relevant is the website and how trustworthy is the site.
You may consider your website to be the best of the best, but if you are lacking in the vital aspects that your SEO requires, then you’re unlikely to get much traffic from search engines meaning you are missing out on a large chunk of users. Here we have seen how technology has assisted in marketing, but also how it has created a need for other types of software to be created in order help people get the most out of their tech.
There is no doubt that security and technology have a fractious relationship. Many people feel more exposed now than ever before due to the rise of cybercriminals and hackers, and while there is a convincing argument to be made that tech has been a net gain for society, there is also a need to recognise the added threat it brings and responds to it.
First and foremost you must make sure that you are using the most up-to-date version of your antivirus and web firewall. There are many other tools out there, but these are the two that everyone should have at the very least. However, as we are discussing how technology serves business let’s look at the role of virtual networks in cybersecurity.
Virtualization is a growing trend with the IT sector and is becoming more common for use by businesses when it comes to protecting their data and systems. Simply put, virtualization allows the creation of a virtual environment away from the company’s hardware so that software can be accessed via a server or network. The security implications here are as follows; virtualization allows for isolation which means fewer people will have access to the server in question making it a more reliable place to store sensitive data. Consider a safe, the more people who have the key, the more things that can go wrong. Digital data is the same; if you have all the people in your company accessing the same drive then there is more risk of hacking and breaches.
A Virtual Private Server (VPS), a service sold by an internet hosting service, allows its user to store software on a separate machine which once again fewer users have access to. A VPS is particularly popular, for example, with website operators because it means an entire server can be dedicated to processes involved with that website rather than it sharing power with other software. It also provides an extra layer of security, as discussed above, because of its limited user numbers.
Security and technology now go hand in hand, and it’s not just in the digital world. CCTV recordings and security alarms are all now integrated with technology to provide more effective protection for premises, businesses and people.
Businesses everywhere have been looking to new technology for assistance in making their operation more productive for years now, and for that there has been a wave of applications and uses for artificial intelligence that has come bounding onto the market. We will come on to the applications shortly, but first machine learning.
Machine learning (ML) is the name given to computer having the ability to learn things they are not programmed to. Far from being a terrifying glimpse into the future, ML has provided businesses with the world over with some very useful tools in order to improve productivity. One of these links in some part our first section on marketing. ML is able to take customer data and recommend potential new customers based on the information it has obtained. Any company that is looking to grow will want to do so in the most efficient of ways, and ML appears to cut out a lot of the middle person work such and cuts straight to the chase. For more on machine learning, click here.
Now, the previously mentioned applications cover a wide range of areas. There are apps which will assist you in project building, time management and organization. Apps like Omnifocus gives your employees the chance to see exactly what is due and when. This doesn’t just help them, but also allows the line manager to focus on what is important rather than distributing work throughout the day. In addition to this timekeeping based app, there is also helpful organization tools like Asana which combines creates a platform for teams to use for greater collaborative work and the ability to share documents with ease.
If you’re a business looking to make great strides in your industry, the chances are that you’re looking to technology to assist you. The best way to go about doing this is to ask yourself what you want from tech and how do you want to use it? Having access to all the great and good of the world of computers, online and applications is all very well, but if it has no place in your organization, it can quickly become a hindrance rather than help.