Today’s smartphones are the ultimate multitool. You can use them to watch videos, take pictures, listen to music, browse the web, keep in touch, and so much more. We all know about and utilise these functions on a daily basis, but there is another purpose that smartphones are becoming increasingly capable of serving.
Thanks to recent advancements in processing power, connectivity and modern apps, you can effortlessly use your smartphone to handle a myriad of daily business tasks. Coupled with cloud technology, smartphones are the perfect way for tech-savvy entrepreneurs to knock out work on the go.
This is especially true for smaller, but nonetheless important tasks, which can boost your productivity if you tackle them in situations where you don’t have access to a laptop or work computer. To help you make the most of this opportunity, here are 6 tips for running a business from a smartphone.
While most banking apps and payment processors allow you to easily send payments from your smartphone, you can take it even further by being able to accept payments. This can come in handy at trade shows or pop-up events where someone might want to make a payment with their card.
For this purpose, you can utilise a service such as BluePay, PayPal Here or Square to turn your handset into a mobile card machine. All you’ll need is a card-reader device, which can connect to your phone through a USB cable or via Bluetooth. It would be wise to weigh up the costs associated with each service when making a choice.
Whether you’re compiling emails, taking notes, filling out forms or updating your website, being able to type comfortably and accurately has always been a challenge on smartphones. Granted, most modern handsets have much larger screens, but you can make typing even easier by connecting a portable Bluetooth keyboard.
Some of these keyboards can even fold up, thus reducing their footprint and making them highly portable. Look out for one that features a built-in smartphone stand. When it comes to printing out the content you’ve typed, it’s now possible to do it directly from your smartphone.
Consider utilising cloud printing, which allows you to send documents to any Wi-Fi-enabled printer through services such as Google Cloud Print. If your smartphone has NFC capabilities, then you can quickly sync it with a modern wireless printer and make a direct connection between the two devices.
Using the Web
Unrestricted web access is a highly underrated advantage of having a modern smartphone. There are many websites out there that you can make use of to improve your efficiency and save costs in your business. For example, sites like Utility Bidder allow you to compare business energy rates across different suppliers, thus reducing your monthly bills.
Consider downloading a web browser that integrates with your other devices. Popular platforms like Google Chrome and Firefox will automatically sync your passwords, bookmarks and browser history with the devices on which you have the software downloaded, thus saving you a great deal of time.
Cloud technology has facilitated incredible efficiency improvements in nearly all aspects of business. For instance, you can use cloud storage services such as Google Drive and Dropbox to upload files from your smartphone to have them available across all your other devices and vice-versa.
Collaboration tools like Slack allow you to start conversations with your team on your smartphone and continue them on your laptop. Most office staples, including G Suite and Office 365, allow you to view and edit documents on the go, with automatic synchronisation with their desktop counterparts.
This is a simple one, but if you have a fairly recent smartphone, chances are that it has an excellent camera. So, instead of buying a dedicated camera or hiring a professional photographer to take pictures of your products, save some money and use your smartphone instead.
When it comes to running your business on a smartphone, security is well-worth mentioning. It’s also one of the biggest reasons why it’s better to have a separate business phone. This helps you secure your company and its vital information on a dedicated device.
Start by performing routine backups of all your essential data. This is another area where the cloud comes in handy. Be sure to make use of strong passwords and two-factor authentication where possible. You should also enable device tracking so that you know where your smartphone is in the event that it’s lost or stolen.
When used properly, a smartphone can serve as a valuable tool in running your business. Be sure to look out for the latest tech and apps that can help you further leverage its potential.