It wouldn’t be wrong if someone said we are living in the future. We have AI (artificial intelligence), machine learning, smart assistants, and our entire home appliance control on the cloud. The advent of the Internet of Things (IoT), in combination with AI, is making ascent of the world into the future a smooth one.

However, 2020 is just 6 months away, and small businesses are yet to adopt a considerable number of the technologies mentioned above. Whatever technologies have helped most small enterprises sail through 2019 might not be enough to induct them in the hall of success in the next year.

Here are the top 10 technology trends small business have to embrace in 2020 to remain relevant and profitable –

The adoption of automation will take over menial tasks

automation

Organizations are no longer inclined to pay hundreds of dollars per week for someone to update their inventory and sales accounts. It might seem simple – filling up numbers and serial numbers on an Excel sheet. But manually updating inventory sheets can take a good few hours.

On the other hand, several companies have already accepted AI as their regular record updater. Whether it is a batch of products that are about to go out from production to delivery or a shipment of faulty products returning to quality control; these automated systems can log in all the details in real-time. It will not only keep the records up-to-date, but AI will also help reduce the employee cost per SMB.

These will be an increase in self-serve cloud services

Cloud has become a must-have tech for almost all SMBs across the US. Only a few niches and local small businesses still operate with data on internal and physical storage. However, with the implementation of GDPR, CCPA, and other similar laws across the different states, it will become imperative for most businesses to store their consumer data somewhere safe and away from hacking threats. In 2020, companies will approach and leverage cloud services a bit differently from they had in 2019. Entrepreneurs are highly likely to incline towards self-provisioning cloud services.

Business decisions will depend on Big Data analytics

Big Data analytics

Big Data has been in the picture for quite some time. Most businesses have been collecting big data, without any clue about what it is and what it can do. However, 2020, will give your business the opportunity to leap ahead of your competitors by making informed decisions based on big data-based analytics. Most importantly, your business will get an edge by being able to understand the customers much better using the personal information stored in the company clouds.

Time for cloud-hosted security

cloud-hosted security

2020 will see many more small businesses adopt in-cloud security measures to thwart the more complex hacking threats. There were similar technologies in the past, but hardly any of them combined artificial intelligence and machine learning to design the “cognition” necessary to identify and neutralize threats by code patterns and similarities in attacks. Future cloud-hosted technology is likely to use a combination of both AI and ML to strengthen a company’s firewalls.

Smaller businesses will shift towards “work from home” models

Smaller enterprises may give up brick-and-mortar operations altogether in favor of remote working. The development of company clouds and in-cloud security is more likely to favor work-from-home models for these organizations. An additional perk of this model is the employee, and office maintenance costs a small business can save over the years.

Optimization to comply with data privacy laws and regulations

The GDPR will not only affect companies working within the EU, but it will also influence the operations and infrastructure of several small businesses in the US, which deal with personal data of EU residents. Something similar can be said about companies operating within states that are about to imply laws and regulations similar to the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA). While CCPA comes to effect in 2020, many of the “copycat CCPA regulations” come to effect soon after in Massachusetts, Maryland, New Mexico, Hawaii, and Mississippi. So, if your enterprise is based in any of these states or processes information of individuals residing in any of these states, you might have to rethink your data processing infrastructure.

Businesses will make room for social media consultants

social media consultants

The job of a social media consultant will become indispensable for most small businesses in the wake of 2020. More small enterprises are likely to invest in their online reputation management, and the only way to achieve this is by either outsourcing the work to a reputation management company, or hire a dedicated social media consultant.

Integration of blockchain

Many businesses have done it already, but the lion’s share of small companies have not yet integrated blockchain into their transaction methods. According to Gartner, the value of the decentralized ledger system will reach a whopping $3.1 billion by 2030. Therefore, we wouldn’t be surprised if you are thinking of adopting blockchain tech the next year.

Voice interactions

Siri and Alexa have been ruling the world of searches for a while now. However, 2020 is your last chance to update your website content to suit voice search results. Voice searches amount to more than 58% web searches in 2019. Over 76% of the owners of home speakers use voice searches to look for local businesses around once a week, and approximately 53% run similar searches daily. If you are catering to a niche local crowd, you might want to rethink your voice search SEO.

Companies will embrace BYOD with rising high-tech security measures

Small businesses are likely to adopt Bring-Your-Own-Device unless they embrace a “work from home” policy first. However, the security threats that private devices in a company environment can bring will subside significantly. The presence of in-cloud security, along with multi-authentication log-ins for recognized devices, will finally make the marriage of BYOD and data security possible in 2020.

It is time to revisit your company’s technological progress before the confetti begins to fall, and people draw out their kazoos. The countdown to 2020 is still a few months away. That should give you enough to time consider the usefulness of each new tech trend for your business and adopt them accordingly.

It is time to revisit your company’s technological progress before the confetti begins to fall, and people draw out their kazoos. The countdown to 2020 is still a few months away. That should give you enough to time consider the usefulness of each new tech trend for your business and adopt them accordingly.

Photo Credit: Pixabay

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