The holidays are coming! Are you doing everything you can to ensure your electronic tools are a help, rather than a hindrance?
We don't need to tell you how important the period between Thanksgiving and New Years is to any business - but in our experience, a lot of businesses aren't properly preparing themselves for the holiday rush when it comes to their electronic infrastructure. There's a lot you can do to make your in-house technology and network security work for you during the holidays, but there are also mistakes that could make one's Christmas pretty miserable.
Today we wanted to briefly go over some of these opportunities to seize, and pitfalls to avoid, when it comes to your electronic infrastructure.
5 Ways To Prepare Your Small Business Technology For The Holidays
1 - Expand your WiFi bandwidth\coverage.
Are you expecting a lot of foot traffic? Your visitors will probably be expecting in-house WiFi, and they'll be glad for it. They might even tell their friends! 802.11ac Wave 2 WiFi access points are becoming increasingly affordable, while ensuring everyone still has good connections even with a packed house.
Plus, many WiFi APs now include Bluetooth beacons, which can be used for messaging, advertisements, and other visitor interactions via their smart devices.
2 - Increase your security.
Whether you have public-facing network access or not, you could almost certainly use a security upgrade. Reports of data breaches and cyber-attacks are coming ever more quickly, with more damage done. In particular, look at how you're dealing with your customers' credit cards and other personal information. If those got stolen over the holidays, you'd be looking at a very black Christmas.
If you're uncertain how good your security currently is, consider hiring experts to conduct an live penetration test. There's no better way of discovering whether your security is truly keeping your data protected.
3 - Get your email marketing campaign together.
Chances are, you've been gathering email addresses from your best customers - but are you making use of them? You can greatly improve awareness and attendance of your holiday sales and events by leveraging your mailing list to keep your guests informed. This would be a great time to invest in some marketing automation software and making use of the automatic email systems to ensure plenty of messages go out ahead of your biggest sales.
4 - Do more on social media.
No matter what your social media presence is, it could be more robust. Consider expanding onto a new network, or increasing the frequency of your interactions with existing networks. This is another good way of maintaining mindshare, and you can be assured that your competition will be upping their social game too.
In particular, if you haven't embraced a visual social media network - such as Pinterest, Tumblr, or Instagram - this would be a great time to do so.
5 - Work on boosting your local reviews.
More and more buyers are using their smartphones while on the road to locate businesses near them providing desired products or services. In turn, the recommendations they get are heavily influenced by the quality of the reviews they're getting online, on Google as well as independent sites like Yelp. The best-rated businesses will be at the top of the list, and when buyers are rushing around to get their last-minute shopping done, they won't be taking time to comparison-shop.
If you aren't already, encourage your customers to leave positive reviews on Google, Yelp, and similar sites. It'll pay off with better local SEO.
Hummingbird Can Help!
Need technology upgrades or a security consultation? Contact us today to make it happen before the holiday rush!