We are living in an age where businesses can be started and managed without ever stepping into an office building. Sure, if you wanted to set up a traditional brick and mortar, no one will stop you. Truthfully, if you want to add value by giving face-time to customers, this is still the best way to go.
Thousands of entrepreneurs make their living online and many would admit that most of their day-to-day responsibilities are carried out on a mobile device. Here’s 5 ways that they do it from their smartphones:
- Centralize Email & Instant Message Communication
Whether you are managing a product or rendering a service, 90% of your customer interaction can be managed through your smartphone’s email client. Have multiple email addresses you need to manage (personal, business, multiple brands, etc.)? Just make a generic signature with your name and contact details and you can manage those conversations all from one central location.
An added benefit to restricting your communications to a mobile device is that it forces you to be concise. Get to the point in as few words as possible and you will delight the recipients of your messages. Become EASY to deal with.
Apps like Skype will let you hold quick chats with clients to answer questions.
- Manage Order Fulfillment & Marketing Automation
Marketing software has come a LONG way. You can automate most of your daily tasks like sending emails, fulfilling orders and processing payments. The options out there are increasingly affordable and most of mobile apps that simplify the workflow.
A good place to start is with Infusionsoft. Check out this extremely comprehensive infusionsoft review for an in depth look at how you can automate those daily tasks. You’ll also get a peek at the mobile app which let’s you take marketing/CRM management work on the road…wherever it takes you.
- Payment Processing Apps
Even if you are using a marketing automation software like Infusionsoft, it still pays (literally) to leverage the power of PayPal on your mobile device.
You can accept credit cards in person, send/receive payments for services rendered, or even withdraw cash from an ATM, all using PayPal’s free service.
The added benefit to using PayPal for the bulk of your operations is that you get a nice record of transactions (income and expenses) at the end of the year for your tax purposes. You can even integrate with a tool like Quickbooks.
- Expense Everything You Can
Search your respective app store for an expense tracker. When you run your own business (even an online one) you can expense certain things and receive a hefty deduction in taxes when you go to file.
For example, use the expense tracker to track any miles that you drive for business purposes. In the United States, the U.S. may allow you to deduct up to 50 cents per mile on your tax return! This adds up quickly and can be tracked all right from your smartphone.
- Manage Social Media
Download an app like HootSuite or Buffer. These allow you to automate or semi-automate your presence on social media. You can be active on multiple accounts all from the same interface. No logging in/logging out. Everything is right in front of you, allowing you to expand the reach of your brand right from your smartphone.
Social media is all about being responsive. Show that you’re a human by responding as quickly as possible to customer enquiries, or conversations related to your industry.