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What Does Digital Disruption Mean for Your Growing Small Business?

Among the many challenges being faced by small and mid-sized businesses today, one must not overlook the effects of digital disruption. What precisely does this mean for your business? First, what exactly is digital disruption?

Digital disruption refers to the change that takes place when emerging digital technologies and business models affect the perceived value of existing goods and services coming from a particular vendor. One example of this is how Netflix and other streaming services have disrupted the television industry, impacting the way that the older cable channels must operate in order to stay competitive. It should not be confused with disruptive technology, which is a new technology displacing an established one.

The Effects of Digital Disruption

It doesn’t really matter how large or how small a company is these days; digital disruption is affecting them all. Staying on top of digital transformation trends is not optional. Either you will keep up with them, or your business will suffer and fall behind. Losing customers is not a position to be in, given that it is harder to gain them back than to keep them in the first place.

According to a recent article, more than half of businesses feel that they are prepared for digital disruption, with 65% saying that they feel positive about change, and that they will be able to adapt as needed. Even more encouraging, nearly half of a company’s efforts regarding digital transformation are being led by board members or CEOs.

What are the Challenges Facing Small Businesses?

With 2 out of 3 businesses reporting that they feel prepared for disruption, what are the difficulties that small and medium-sized businesses can expect to face?

SMBs need to remember that other departments beside IT need their attention. Information technology will be focusing on efficiency but maintaining excellent customer service and other client-facing departments is also vital to success. Businesses are no longer judged merely in relation to local competitors, but also against online experiences.

A significant challenge is simply having all parts of your business in alignment. A lack of resources, and the inability to put objectives into alignment are obstacles to be overcome if SMBs are to remain competitive in today’s digital environment.

What Can Businesses Do?

When things are changing, it is best to not only change with them, but to also be ahead of the curve. Accordingly, one of the best approaches for small and medium-sized businesses is to embrace innovation as a standard way of doing things.

Small and medium-sized businesses have to understand current challenges, while also looking ahead to what is on the horizon in order to properly handle both. The old way of doing things simply isn’t going to work going forward. Developing applications, integrating new systems, and finding innovative approaches will be called for.

These innovations needn’t involve massive changes. There simply need to be creative new ways of doing things that can result in greater speed and efficiency. They also don’t need to be brand new, never-seen-before innovations, but just something that is new within your industry.

A key point to remember as you develop new solutions and applications, be sure to consider how they will interact. Having your technology interface well with other tech will improve customer satisfaction.

Smaller businesses have the advantage of being nimbler when adapting to new technology, and this is something to use to your advantage. Being able to adapt, change, and innovate all while improving your ability to interact with your customers means that you will be ready to handle any digital disruption that arises.