There are a lot of different gadgets and systems to choose from on a crowded market. But true to our promise at Top10.com we’ve whittled down what you might need to your ten most important options.
1. A VoIP System
These days, remote is the name of the game and everybody wants to get on Zoom calls and the phone to discuss business. If you don’t already have a good voice over IP phone system in place then now is the time to start looking at what’s on the market. VoIP means that your phone calls and voice communications take place over the internet. The best VoIP systems such as cloud-hosted PBX servers and SIP trunking systems can allow you to configure advanced phone routing for your business. Many systems are completely interoperable with existing hardware.
2. Web Hosting
Does your business have a website? If not, then it isn’t too late to get yourself an impressive web presence. Many users choose to use an all in one designing platform such as Wix. However, if you own a domain name then you can increase your range of options by finding a web hosting provider. The best web hosting platforms come in various sizes such as shared hosting, VPS hosting, and dedicated (bare metal) hosting. Find one that’s the right size and budget for your needs.
Are you still jotting down information about your best business leads on the back of a napkin? If so, it’s time to step up to the technological revolution and equip your business with a customer relationship management (CRM) system. Using CRM software, you can keep track of your sales pipeline in the cloud -or on an on premises server. Besides being much more efficient, many CRMs allow you to leverage the power of automation to reduce your workload. Napkins out, technology in!
4. A (Quality) Speakerphone
Whether your business runs on Zoom or you have a formal VoIP system in place, you can easily compromise a strong professional impression with so-so audio quality. There are a variety of business-grade speakerphones on the market. Most, these days, have both USB and Bluetooth connectivity — meaning that you can use them both with your computer and smartphone. Jabra is a popular brand. Although there are plenty of competitors to choose from.
5. A (Quality) Webcam
If great audio is paired with video quality that looks like it was beamed in from the days of analog television then you’re also going to leave your sales prospects cold. We recommend scouring the market for a high quality webcam that will stream a high definition (HD) video stream of you while you engage in remote work or conversations. Look for a webcam that supports either 720P or 1080P resolution.
6. A Wireframing Tool
Your resident marketing whizz has come up with an ace new idea for a great landing page. But how to translate thoughts and words into imagery? The answer is a wireframing tool. Wireframing tools allow you to plot mock-ups of websites, in-app pages, and many other things. And the good news is that you don’t need to know an image tag from a hyperlink in order to use them. Using a wireframing tool will speed up your design and rollout process and make it easier for creative resources to showcase their best thinking.
7. A Chatbot
If your customers are asking where to find the link to your catalogue a million times a day, then it might be time that you thought about getting some of the power of artificial intelligence (AI) on your side. These days, many sites sport a live chat functionality to help users resolve queries. A live chat bot can make the process of handling these routine interactions as easy as setting up some triggers and rules (note: the complexity of setup clearly depends on the platform). Chatbots are great ways to keep support resources tightly focused on cases that truly call for thinking and personalized interactions.
8. A Blog
Inbound marketing isn’t exactly a new buzzword, but it’s a methodology that can yield tremendous results for businesses of all shapes and sizes. Mastering it might mean taking a crash course on search engine marketing (SEM) and SEO — but the good news is that there are plenty of resources, both free and paid, available over the internet. If you thought that blogging meant needing to become a HTML prodigy, then there’s more good news: a number of blogging tools take all the hard work out of putting blogs on the internet. Many content management systems (CMS tools) specialize in helping users create compelling blog content that can steer leads down the sales funnel and convert interested prospects into paying customers.
9. Antivirus Software
The cybercrooks are wasting no time in finding new ways to exploit the new work-from-home model that the pandemic has brought. That means that it’s time to get your defenses in place. Although there is an abundance of tools on the market to protect resources ranging from web servers to IoT endpoints, ensuring that every member on your team is running a computer with good antivirus protection is a great place to start. More computers accessing your company systems from more networks means a greater attack surface for cybersecurity teams to protect. Make sure that you have your resources in place.
10. Cloud Storage
These days, with many resources working remotely, it’s vital that mission critical business assets are accessible from anywhere all of the time. That means clustering business systems and resources in the cloud. Ensuring capacity is a matter of finding a cloud provider within your budget. It’s important to make sure that everything in the cloud is being backed up somewhere you can access as well (ideally) as to another cloud. Keeping your files online makes it easy for your team members to get the information they need wherever they are - at any time of the day or night.
Time To Grow
The current moment is an ideal time to look at what systems your business is running and identify areas for improvement. VoIP systems, webcams, and quality microphones can all combine to help make remote meetings more seamless. It’s never too late to migrate legacy systems to the cloud — while ensuring that your team is doing everything to ensure cybersecurity.