Commerce is a massive driver for technological evolution, and technology is a significant driver of business acceleration at the same time. A lot of companies wouldn’t even exist today if it weren’t for computers or the internet. Meanwhile, devices like smartphones have made it easy to do everything faster and from practically anywhere.
Undoubtedly, there’s a lot of mention-worthy tools and devices that have altered the way people do business. So it’s challenging to narrow this list down to a couple of items when so many things have changed most industries. But instead of pointing out the obvious, let’s look at a few recent revolutionary developments.
What would smartphones, and even computers, be without apps? These convenient tools have changed life for the better in many ways, and businesses are no exception.
Apps are now a big part of how people communicate, share files, present information, and keep notes. They have also made a lot of things more convenient, from scheduling and keeping track of events and meetings to doing payroll.
There are countless benefits, so it’s hard to imagine a world without apps now. With over 5.5 million apps on the various leading app stores, there is so much more to discover.
2. VPN Services
Virtual Private Network technology has been around for almost 25 years now. Various businesses and institutions were the first to use them. After all, a VPN service enables remote access and puts a protective encrypted tunnel around one’s connection. It ensures no one else can jump on it and steal anything valuable.
Because of this, VPNs were always useful for protecting companies with remote workers who want to connect to their intranet. And they still are to this day.
But now, both individuals and companies use VPNs for various reasons. Companies don’t only use VPNs for remote workers. It also helps to protect everyone in the office or during a quick lunch crunch session at a coffee shop.
3. Artificial Intelligence
If the vast impact that the introduction of computers has had is anything to go by, then artificial intelligence is the next big evolution in business. It’s not a thing of science-fiction anymore. Artificial intelligence — simulating human thinking processes — has improved by leaps and bounds in recent years.
AI is starting to change all industries. Transportation, manufacturing, healthcare, retail — you name it. But one of the biggest impacts AI has had on business is in marketing and big data. Artificial intelligence can analyze massive amounts of data much faster. It allows companies to gather more in-depth insights into buyer behavior that enables better-customized experiences.
Another significant implementation of AI is virtual assistants. While they can’t substitute real human interaction (yet), chatbots are a big leap in customer engagement.
4. Cloud Computing and Cloud Storage
This is a two-for-one combo. Even though cloud computing and cloud storage have different functions, both rely on the same cloud-based remote server technology.
Companies (and individual people) use cloud storage to save and share files, documents, videos, and images. Servers for cloud storage purposes usually have larger storage capacities to cope with this demand. Think of services like Google Drive and Dropbox. A lot of companies are now making the switch to cloud servers because it’s cheaper, and in some ways, safer.
Cloud computing involves complicated processing to complete tasks on a remote computer or processor. A typical example of this is Software as a Service (SaaS). A project is handled remotely and doesn’t require much processing power from the computer.
Both cloud-based technologies have made a big impact on the way businesses store and manage their data and systems. It also enabled more far-reaching business applications with fewer resources being necessary.
5. Contactless Payment
Possibility of quick and simple transactions via tools like Paypal or Google Wallet has opened up doors for many businesses, retailers, and eCommerce stores. The global online shopping market should reach 6.54 trillion US dollars in 2022.
Contactless payment continues to grow in popularity because it’s convenient, and one can do it from anywhere. And companies have benefited greatly from that. By integrating contactless payment with customer relationship management (CRM) tools, businesses can target individual customers with personalized offers.
The world of commerce has changed for the better in many ways this last decade. New technology is more accessible than ever — and not only to large corporations but also to small startups. There’s a lot more innovative and revolutionary technology that needs mentioning, but these five have certainly made their mark.