6 Pieces Of Business Software You Should Be Using (But Probably Aren’t)

Technology moves fast and businesses need to keep up if they’re going to stay relevant. There are so many pieces of business software out there that you can use to streamline your operations, save money, and make your employees more efficient. But it’s easy to get stuck in old habits and carry on using the same software that you’ve been using for years, without adopting anything new. Even the business owners that do understand the importance of updating software regularly sometimes get it wrong because they fall victim to a good sales pitch and end up spending money on software that doesn’t really do anything for their company.

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If you haven’t updated your business software for a while and you don’t really know where to start, these are the pieces of software that you should be using right now.

Chatbots

Everybody knows that good customer service is essential in all businesses and in the past, the way to achieve that was through good training and, most importantly, a well staffed customer service team. Having a lot of employees in your customer service department means that nobody is waiting on hold for ages or sitting there for days waiting for a response to their email. All customers get a quick reply and a swift resolution so they’re happy. The only downside to that is the cost. Paying all of those salaries and renting an office space large enough to house that customer service department is incredibly expensive, but luckily, there is some great business software out there that can help you to get the best of both worlds.

Chatbots are pieces of software which imitate a human being fairly convincingly, in fact, you’ve probably seen them already on various sites when you enter and a small chat window pops up asking if you have any queries. 9 times out of 10, that will be a chatbot rather than a real person. They can answer a lot of the basic queries that customers might have which is so valuable because a lot of customer service staff spend the majority of their time dealing with the same issues over and over. But a chatbot can take on that workload, which means you only need to employ people to deal with the more complex issues, so you can massively cut down on the number of customer service staff you need to pay without compromising on customer experience.

Legal Management Software

Your legal department is such an important branch of your business because they’re the ones that make sure that you aren’t going to get yourself involved in a lawsuit and if you do, they’ll help you to deal with it effectively. They also handle any contracts that you may have with vendors and suppliers and they’ll also ensure that you’re complying with any government regulations that apply to your business. Without them, you could easily land yourself in a lot of legal trouble and probably end up with huge fines that would force you to close the business for good. The problem is, the legal documentation that they have to deal with is extensive and incredibly complicated, which means that they’re not always the most efficient department in your business. But if you invest in case matter management software that allows them to easily collect all contracts and supporting documents, as well as email correspondence relating to each separate organization in one place, it makes life so much easier for them. If there is a contract dispute with your shipping company, for example, they can easily bring up the contracts and any emails that you sent back and forth when you were agreeing on the terms, instead of spending a lot of time trawling through endless amounts of paperwork trying to find the relevant bits.

Analytics Software

Social media marketing should be an integral part of all marketing strategies, but a lot of businesses still don’t really know how to do it effectively. The key to successful online marketing is using analytics software properly. When you’re running a campaign, it’s important that you know who it’s reaching, whether it’s connecting well with them, and exactly how much website traffic it’s bringing you. It’s not enough to just launch a campaign and then track sales in the following months to see if it’s effective. You need to know exactly why it’s working so you can continue getting it right in the future and if it isn’t working, you need to know where you’re going wrong. Good analytics software will give you in depth information about the customers that are visiting your site and clicking your ads so you know which demographics are responding well to your marketing efforts and which aren’t. You can then adapt your future marketing efforts accordingly for maximum reach.

Social Media Scheduling

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Using analytics is vital if your social media marketing efforts are going to pay off, but you also need to consider the amount of time that you’re investing in it. There is so much noise on social media and if you’re only posting every now and again, your posts will get lost in amongst everything else and nobody will ever see them. That’s why you should be posting every day and preferably multiple times a day. The issue with that is the amount of manpower it takes up. If you’ve got people that are spending their entire day posting on social media and not working on other areas of marketing, that’s not an effective use of their time. That’s where social media scheduling tools come in, they’re one of the best business automation tools that there is and if you’re not using them already, you should be.

You can set up all of your posts at the beginning of the week and then set a schedule for when you want them to go live. That means you only need to spend a short amount of time at the beginning of the week setting up your social media profiles and then your marketing team can work on other projects for the rest of the week. A lot of the social media scheduling tools also give you good analytics so you can measure the reach and engagement that you’re getting on posts and see which ones aren’t really landing very well.

Document Sharing

The way that people work is changing rapidly and more businesses are moving toward remote workers and flexible schedules. More people than ever are working outside of the office which is great because people tend to be more productive when they can work to their own schedule and do things in their own way. It also means that work isn’t confined to normal business hours, so you can offer a 24/7 service to your customers. However, if you’re going to take advantage of this new style of working, you need to implement software that will help your employees. Document sharing is the most important piece of software that you need because employees will need access to certain information when they’re outside of the office. They’re also great when people are collaborating on projects because they can pass things back and forth easily and work together on documents in real time, even if they’re not in the office.

VPN

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Virtual private networks (VPN) have become very popular as people become more concerned about their online safety. If you’re sending sensitive documents over email or using a document sharing service, you’ll need a good VPN to protect you so you don’t lose any of that data.

A lot of businesses have fallen behind the times and they’re not using these pieces of software. If you aren’t either, you need to update your software right away.

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