Analyst firm IDC early this year said that it expects digital transformation to attain
macroeconomic scale over the next three to four years, changing the way organisations operate and reshaping the global economy and calls this as the dawn of the “Digital Transformation Economy”
Sure, you may say, digital transformation is key especially for big companies but how about for SMEs?
Going digital is not anymore an option even for SMEs; it is an inevitability. However, as an SME, your digital transformation journey won’t happen overnight. You must take steps today, no matter how small, in order to survive and ride the digital wave tomorrow. Here are some insights you can start considering right now in your journey to go digital.
1. Use available technology to your advantage.
SMEs have fewer resources, but don’t let that stop you. There are many tools available online that you can maximise. Do you already have an online presence? Secure your own Facebook page, or start with a website, however basic.
2. Bring your retail and service offerings online.
E-commerce is already the name of the game online, and you need not start from scratch as there are a number of platforms you can try. Platforms such as TackThis! (www.tackthis.com) can help you get on board eCommerce with the necessary tools you need. TackThis! understand that you need to focus on retail operations instead of tinkering with the technical and ecommerce operational stuff. These come with bundled options from digital marketing to payments that you can implement as you scale.
3. Provide a smooth payment experience for your customers.
Whether online or for your physical stores, make sure that you are accepting digital payments. Providing your customers with a cashless option - be it QR-code enabled, POS terminals, or mobile payment integration - will make for a more seamless digital experience.
4. Increase customer engagement on digital platforms.
When was the last time you chatted with a customer? As a small business owner, it feels good to know what your customer thinks about your product. Instead of just posting announcements on your social media pages, make sure you reply to comments and messages. Free social listening tools can also cue you in on customer feedback. Send out a newsletter periodically for new offers or updates. You can check out tools such as Hootsuite, Mailchimp, and Sprout, which you can trial for free.
These are just a few tips to get you started on your digital transformation journey now. However, always remember, every journey starts with a mindset. Technology tools and platform will accelerate your digital transformation but how you embrace digital as a company is what makes the difference. This entails adopting a more open workplace culture, fostering agility and focusing on customer experience.
- Dickson Gregory, Co-founder, Takatack Technologies Pte Ltd -