What if we told that you’d only heard half the conversation about mobile technology’s potential to improve your business performance?
Mobile’s hot and everyone’s talking about it. But the majority of the discussions taking place in media and the trades focus on how mobile makes life easier for consumers. Mobile features allow you to easily pay for products, access coupons, and even showroom (trekking out to a local store to check out a product in person, then doing price comparison on your smartphones before deciding to buy online or in the store). As an example - the words below are from a prominent retail news blog’s mobile section (bigger means more mentions)
There’s also a lot of noise about the potential of mobile tech to help marketers more effectively reach consumers. Yet the application of mobile for small businesses goes way beyond using geo-fencing to offer location-based coupons or engaging your customers with interactive games. There’s a missing piece of the conversation: how mobile is helping businesses become more efficient.
A recent report from Harris Interactive is telling. 88% of small business owners they surveyed are using smartphones. The majority are still leveraging their smartphones for basic functions: 76% are using it for communications, 48% for calendars and scheduling and 42% for navigation. When the research team asked managers where the greatest future potential for mobile tools was in their businesses, mentions of marketing increased by 94%; making and receiving payments increased by 82 percent; and customer relationship database management increased by 63 percent. But what about functions that make everyday business operations better, faster, cheaper, and easier?
Very few businesses are really looking at the potential for mobile from the standpoint of business efficiency. We’re still primarily using mobile in the same way we did in the last two decades: to check email, talk on the phone and consume information. The potential of mobility to help create efficiency in every day aspects of our businesses isn’t properly ingrained in the DNA of how we operate.
Consider these scenarios:
- Management consultants travel around the country to gather research data from retail clients, spending thousands of dollars on airfare and tens of hours in-flight. Why aren’t they leveraging networks of local, mobile workers to complete these tasks instead?
- Companies that use field workers invest tremendous amounts of time and money working with search firms and temp agencies to get adequate coverage. Why not mobilize your workforce in the regions that you need them, when you need them, with a mobile work platform - all through a single gig posting?
- Consumer Goods Companies with product displays in locations around the country take it on faith that they are being represented the way they want to be in retail locations and restaurants. Why not leverage a local with a smart phone to visit locations, answer specific questions, and send photo verification of product placements, pricing and more?
While the consumer and marketing applications of mobile technology are advancing rapidly, the business efficiencies that can be gained from mobile tech are just as important to the bottom line. Contact us to see how Gigwalk’s network of mobile workers can help you reach your business goals today.