Many small business owners may look at iPads for their employees as merely a convenience and an unnecessary luxury expense, but iPads can be used by both independent professionals and small businesses to increase efficient operations and productivity, improve customer service, and facilitate smooth cash flow. Apple’s iPad has become the predominant choice for small businesses in the marketplace. Here are just a few of the ways you may be able to profitably incorporate the use of iPads into your business.
Any tool that makes it easier for your sales staff to make sales is probably a tool worth having. Equipping your salespeople with iPads can be especially useful in this regard if your company makes business-to-business (B2B) sales of products. Consider having all or part of your company’s product portfolio uploaded onto an iPad. When one of your salespeople is at a client’s place of business looking to secure an order, having an iPad with him or her enables the salesperson to show products to the prospective customer on a device that, unlike a smartphone, enables the customer to clearly see products. Using an iPad not only facilitates making sales overall but also improves productivity and efficiency for salespeople by saving the time and expense required to travel back to the office to complete sales.
Obtain Customer Feedback
An iPad is a great tool to facilitate obtaining customer feedback and reviews. If your business operates retail stores, your store personnel can easily solicit customer input by simply approaching a customer, iPad in hand, and asking if the customer would be willing to fill out a quick survey preloaded on the iPad screen. Your staff can make things even easier by asking the survey questions themselves and entering the answers for customers on the iPad. Being able to successfully elicit more customer feedback can be helpful in improving your customer service and in building stronger customer relationships.
For Independent Professionals
If you work as a freelancer or other independent contractor, carrying an iPad can help you with securing more work and increasing your client base. It also improves your cash flow by expediting delivery, and therefore payment, of invoices. For example, if you work as a freelance graphic designer, an iPad is an excellent visual aid tool to bring to a meeting with a prospective new client. You can easily access your portfolio of work to show off to your potential client. An iPad can also assist you in receiving prompt payment from clients. You can settle final bills with clients, and then type them up and email them to clients before leaving their office, as opposed to having to return to your own office to prepare and send a bill.
A Note About Security
As with any mobile device, there is some increased security risk to your business with the use of iPads. You can minimize the danger by restricting use of the iPad and making access to it password-protected. The opportunities to profitably integrate the use of iPads into your company will vary based on your business, but it’s worth considering how you might be to improve operations in one area or another of your company by adding this tool to your business technology.