Some small industries are booming in 2013 despite the languid economy. These lithe entrepreneurs are growing their own niches, creating their own paths, and blending creativity and technology to meet with changing global needs and an evolving marketplace.
A smart small business owner needs a deft business plan to go along with their business idea in order for the business to thrive. To make the perfect business plan, an owner must be adept at budgeting, marketing, and most importantly, communicating with the customers and the business partners.
One of the best small business allies is VoIP phone service. VoIP is the technology that transmits phone calls over the Internet. VoIP calling is cheaper than traditional service, and offers more features and perks for small businesses. Here are 2013’s fastest growing small business industries and how VoIP can help new business owners make their dream job a successful business.
Organic food has become a major industry in the past 5 years. According to the Organic Trade Association, organic food is a $26.7 billion dollar industry, and is still growing. The time is ripe for small business owners with a knack for produce and production to get into the organic food market.
Organic food stores need reliable phone service to stay in contact with the organic farmers and health-conscious customers. Business VoIP is not only effective phone service, but it also saves users hundreds of dollars on their monthly phone bills because it uses the Internet instead of expensive copper wires. VoIP calling is also a “green” alternative to traditional calling since it forgoes telephone wires and metal cellular towers. VoIP helps organic food stores grow their business while saving money in the process.
Apps are big business for big businesses like Apple and Spotify, but small businesses are able to take a slice of the app profit too. Mobile app developers can design their own apps and can either sell those apps directly to customers, or they can host their apps through a larger corporation like Apple. Successful apps are known to take in over $50,000 per week with hosted royalties cutting into profit by only 30%.
In order to run a successful mobile app business, developers must be available to customers at all times. Mobile app developers need to have strong communication with their customers to understand the consumer’s wants and needs for the latest app. The thing is, app developers might not always be in the office to take customer calls. The developer might be at an IT convention, or networking with other developers, or doing research at the library. Luckily mobile VoIP keeps these developers connected to the customers even if the developer is on the go.
Mobile VoIP works in two ways: as a VoIP app that is downloaded onto a user’s smartphone, or as a virtual number that the customer can use once they log in with their smartphone. Small business owners can carry their VoIP service wherever they go so they always have access to customer ideas and input as they create and sell the latest apps. An app that begets the invention of more apps? That’s VoIP for you.
Translación, por favor? Translation services continue to rise in demand as demographics change and the US economy becomes more global. Translation businesses often need to translate whole business documents and send back the translated work to the customer. Faxing is a common way of transporting documents back and forth, and IP faxing enables companies to use fax service for cheaper prices.
IP faxing uses the Internet to send faxes, which is far cheaper and more effective than using a dedicated faxing telephone line. Customers can fax documents to the translation business using their personal fax machine at home, or through their email. The translation business will receive the fax wirelessly through their IP-enabled fax machine or through their designated work email inbox.
No matter where the small business owner is, they can receive the customer’s information, translate it, and send it back to the customer via the office fax machine, or through the company email and it will arrive to the customer as a standard paper fax.
IP faxing over email is also useful for companies that need to send and receive faxes to some people but otherwise don’t have a need for faxing. The company may have a client or partner or customer who relies on faxes and the company will need a way to send and receive faxes to this one person, but that’s no reason to hold onto a whole fax line and a machine. IP faxing allows the business to basically just send an email but still be able to communicated with these few people who need to use faxing.
Corporations and business owners alike are looking for help to secure their work from hackers. IT security is the answer to hacking, and VoIP is a secure force to be reckoned with. A small IT security consulting company can give tips of the trade while talking on a secure encrypted Internet line, and teach the customers how to best secure their information, or how to use business VoIP themselves for their own secure phone service.
By boat, by train, or by plane, Americans are traveling. Storefront travel agencies have hit a steep decline, but IBISWorld estimates that online travel agencies have seen their businesses rise 3.9% over the past 5 years with a projected 6.1 increase in the next few years as the economy bounces back.
Travel agencies need cheap extension for their agents to use. Travel agents spend most of the work day on the phone, calling airlines, hotels, spas, cruise lines, and restaurants to make reservations for their traveling customers.
Cheap international calling is also a useful aspect of VoIP technology. Using VoIP, most international calls cost less than a few pennies a minutes. This is helpful for US agents calling international hotels or resorts or car rental agencies that the customer needs booked.
Small businesses can be tiny but mighty with the right VoIP phone system. From farmers to IT developers, from translators to travel agents, VoIP saves small businesses money while giving them the tools to grow their businesses.
Jennifer Cuellar writes about the latest developments in Internet technology, VoIP, and phone service innovation.