Technology to empower small businesses to thrive

Tue 14 Jul

Vodafone, Google and Virgin are set to discuss the importance and implications of technology, mobility and the cloud for small business, at COSBOA’S National Summit this week.

On Friday 17th July, Andrew Chanmugam, Business GM of Vodafone Australia, Richard Flanagan, Head of Business Marketing at Google Australia, and Mark Rizzuto, General Manager Distribution and e-Commerce at Virgin Australia will discuss ‘Small Business Mobility Across The Planet’.

Small businesses and their employees increasingly operate on the move, and as such they are using mobility tools, such as smartphones, tablets and apps in the cloud, to improve profitability, flexibility, communications, and collaboration.

Richard Flanagan, Head of Small Business Marketing at Google Australia, added: “Australians are increasingly researching and buying via their mobile phones, so it's vital that small businesses have a strong mobile presence. And business owners can also benefit from the move to mobile, saving time and money by managing their business on the go"

The increasing use of mobile by Australian consumers makes it even more critical for small businesses to ensure their websites are mobile responsive. The use of mobility tools across small businesses continues to increase at a voracious rate, with mobile app development spending expected by IT organisations to increase by 36% in the next year.

Google’s new mobile friendly algorithm makes it even more critical for small businesses to ensure their websites are mobile responsive to maximise SEO opportunities. Cloud computing has, at last, shed its mysterious persona and is being embraced worldwide by small businesses for its opportunities. Better Cloud’s survey of 1,500 IT professionals, representing organisations in 53 countries for its “Trends in Cloud IT”, revealed rapid cloud adoption is expected. The survey found that 12 percent of companies currently run all of their IT in the cloud.

By 2020, 62 percent are expected to run cloud-only IT. Andrew Chanmugam, General Manager of Business at Vodafone said: “We know many small businesses have moved to the cloud or are considering it. There’s no question that if you’re looking at high IT costs, need more computing power now and in the future, or if you want to truly mobilise your business operations, the benefit of a cloud based environment cannot be denied. The cloud is one of the greatest advances that small business can take advantage of in 2015.”

Peter Strong, CEO of COSBOA, concluded: “Small business owners often have to be highly involved in all aspects of running their business from accounting, sales, marketing right through to operations and being able to conduct their business while being mobile is vital to their success. “By streamlining their technology to work harder for them getting help with the books, admin and legal matters they create time, which is a valuable resource for a small outfit.”