Starting a new business or expanding small businesses take time and most of all it involves a lot of planning. While it may take a few months (or probably years) to decide the manner of execution and systematic workflow, it’s best to list down the necessary online tools and platforms to stay on the budget you’ve set and think about delegation, and day-to-day business operation.
According to Australian Government’s Department of Industry Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education: the construction and the professional, scientific and technical services industry subsectors each contributed around 16 per cent of the small business contribution to services industry value added.
Any serious start up or small business should consider doing the business online since resources are easily acquired. See below for some indispensable tools when launching a business in the 21st century:
- Company websites, e-commerce sites and blogs – Most start-ups and small businesses are working online to create brand awareness. Majority of the businesses have a website and a blog hosting service to keep its website running. It’s best to choose a scalable solution where you can easily allocate and scale resources your company grows.
- Reliable email server to host mailboxes – Using a business email with your own domain name proves your legitimacy and professionalism when communicating with clients. While there are free email accounts offered by Google, Yahoo, and AOL, a hosted mailbox by an email server will match your needs as a start-up for enhanced communication and email management.
- Platform for building applications – Start small and grow your business as you maximise the right platform for building applications, especially if you’re in the IT and Internet services industry. With the right platform, your development team can work seamlessly and focus on creating, building, and testing an application in the cloud.
- Online file storage – Since you’ll be spending more time working on the Internet, an encrypted online file storage will make it easier for you to store files without using physical storage like flash drives and external hard disks, which often times get lost and corrupted.
- Cloud-based applications for project collaboration – Using cloud-based applications will save more space in your hard disk because you don’t have to install the software on your PC. If you have a team of outsourced contractors, they can utilise these cloud-based applications anytime and start working instantly as long as you grant them the access. For an optimised work environment, you may choose to work in a cloud environment where you can deploy Microsoft SharePoint. From file sharing, use of shared calendars and task collaboration, which will increase your team’s productivity.
There are many ways in which you can take advantage of the Internet to start a small business. Some start-ups would prefer to work in an on premise environment like the traditional working space with their staff. But if you want to launch a small business in a practical way, taking advantage of the available online resources will surely yield an impressive return of investment.