Utilizing The Internet For Your Business

Utilizing The Internet For Your Business

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Running a business takes a lot of time and energy, and when you’ve been operating for a few years, you will have settled into the routines and be used to how things operate. You probably make good use of the Internet for many of your functions like communications and marketing, but are you staying up to date with new opportunities to streamline your work processes and reach a bigger audience? Development of new tools and apps is taking place all the time, and while many may not be of any use to you, or indeed anyone, there are bound to be some that will be an asset to your business.

The cloud

Cloud computing offers many benefits for you and your customers. Using the cloud enables you to work from anywhere where you have an Internet connection, so you don’t need to be tied to your office. Placing resources in the cloud that your clients can make use of can revolutionize your business, for example creating a client hub where all the records and information for each client can be stored and accessed securely at any time. It also saves a lot of storage space on your own IT systems and provides you choose a reputable service; you will have automatic backups in place which will secure your files and make performing your own manual back-ups unnecessary. It’s also useful for stock control and inventory, as you can be connected to your suppliers and it does away with having to integrate their systems with your own.


You quite likely pay your staff by electronic fund transfer direct from the business account to their personal account. You can take this a step further and conduct almost all your financial affairs online, saving trips to the bank and making dealing with finances much quicker and easier. You can also access loans and credit and make financial checks online. If you need to borrow, there are many reputable companies enabling access to online money that you can take advantage of.


The more efficiently your business is run, the better your productivity will be and therefore your profitability. There are thousands of tools and apps available that can help you improve your organization, and it’s worth checking out the recommendations on small business websites to get an idea of what is available that might make a difference to your business. Diaries and planners are a popular choice because everyone in the team can see and add to the document, making it easier to plan and to know where everyone is at any given time. You can set up communication channels for discussing things with a group of contributors, or create an interactive workspace where everyone can add their contribution to a project. You can keep all the information in one place, and making changes, adding comments and keeping track of progress is all within the one document.

Sourcing products

It’s possible to buy in products from all over the world using the Internet, and indeed some businesses operate entirely using this model. There has been a particular increase in Chinese suppliers who can ship commercial quantities of goods at reasonable prices. Many entrepreneurs are adopting a drop-ship model whereby they have their stock delivered directly to a retail agent such as Amazon, who then fulfill the orders from the website with the stock held in their warehouses. This enables small businesses to deal with large quantities of goods that would require a large investment in warehousing and stock control with ease. This might not work for you, but there are other systems around that could streamline your logistics and stock control processes.


If you’re not on social media, it’s time to get on board. Having a good quality website is essential if you’re to reach your target market, but to make your website work for you it needs to be search engine optimized. There is an entire industry based around the need for businesses to be ranked higher in results lists when potential customers perform a search on the web because it’s the sites that are near the top of the list that will get the most hits. Social media plays a large part in growing your business and improving your SEO score, and there are other methods you can use yourself to boost your rankings. If you want to have a go yourself, a Google search will return plenty of results where you can find information on how to improve your SEO. Or you can outsource it to one of the companies that specialize in optimization to do it for you. Maintaining a social media presence may sound like something of a chore, but writing posts needn’t take a long time. Twitter posts are by necessity short and to the point. You can also use social media management tools that will post your messages to all or selected accounts for you, saving you the bother of entering them on each site yourself.

Staying in touch with developments that could be useful

As part of your program of keeping up to date with your sector and with your own continuing professional development, include a regular review of new systems, tools, and apps that might be useful for your business. Set up some feeds or sign up to digest emails from websites that review new tools to keep abreast of what’s being developed and take advantage of anything that could improve your business operation. This needn’t take a lot of time; a quick browse through the latest offerings will be enough for you to spot potential applications, and the savings you’ll make in terms of time, money and improved accuracy will far exceed a small investment of time spent locating viable tools.

These examples are the tip of a very impressive iceberg, so it’s well worth finding out what there is around that could help your business. One word of caution though – don’t get so carried away by the idea of using online tools that you end up using ones that don’t provide any benefit and in fact take longer to use than what you had in place originally.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusyoutubeby feather