Small to medium businesses need to find a partner that understands how all the pieces of a tech stack fit together.
Advancements in technology allow us to use a variety of tools, but this leads to challenges in getting them all to work cohesively. Here’s how to be smart about building your business tech stack for your small business to market digitally.
If you’re like most small businesses, you probably have a wide range of tools and technology to help you do your job – from an email marketing service to a social media scheduling tool and many more.
Today, the need to do more with less means selecting the right marketing and sales tools to fit your budget and run smoothly.
1.Why do you need to define your tech stack?
One of the biggest reasons you need to map out your technology and determine your tech stack is to achieve efficiency (and scale) to market to your potential customers. Consumers expect a great experience online, and they expect your business to have integrated systems. Unfortunately, many companies get this wrong.
Having a well-defined tech stack helps improves business efficiency, so you need tools and technology that are well integrated, so you prevent duplication of tasks and have transparency into what activities are working. And which ones are not bringing results.
I’ve worked with multiple clients (big and small) across various industries, and their business challenges reflect the need to improve one of these categories – people, process, and technology. In this article, I will focus on building a tech stack that works for you and your customers, and I’ll dig into some tech integration best practices.
2. Integration & Benefits
The benefits of Integration: Sales, Marketing, and Service bring help you avoid data silos and create a single source of truth. Technology on the market that’s worth ten cents encourages integration with other solutions, such as payment services, etc. Here are some other benefits:
— Avoid wasted time and lowers costs.
— Streamlines your work and will save you time.
— Make it easier to access and extract insights.
— Makes reporting easier and quicker.
— Increases productivity of team working with multiple applications.
3. Steps to technology integration
Integration is naturally very dependent on several things, like your business needs, your existing technology, and your budget. Here’s how to approach tech integration:
1. Perform tech stack audit: Start listing all the tech in your company and use cases along your buyer journey. You must include your Website.
2. Add the functions of each of your programs to your audit.
3. Add Benefits, Problems, Value definitions to each program and if can grow with your business?
4. Does each program provide the right data to accomplish your goals, or does it hinder? For example, do you get multiple reports from separate systems?
5. Streamlining is a significant factor to consider. It’s not always possible to simplify, so focus on what you can do to make a process more comfortable to maintain.
6. Which program will be the core system for your business – your single source of truth (hint: CRM).
7. Identity your integration points and ability to streamline. Look at opportunities to connect your software and technology to improve efficiency and always include data currency. In the digital world, healthy, accurate, and current data is your foundation. You also need reporting tools for data analysis – You DO NOT want to go to multiple places for reports.
8. Identify the ease of Integration. Software today needs to integrate easily using open APIs or possibly Zapier (or similar tools). Do not select a new software program that doesn’t integrate with your existing or future applications. It’s another quite costly mistake to avoid.
Shifting to the new digital platform, whether you’re starting from Excel or using the same system for ten years, not all tech is design-ready for Integration. Some may require custom integrations, which are a signal it’s time to migrate. Below are a few know challenges:
Building custom integrates can be costly and require on-going updates and support. Many businesses don’t know precisely what they need to integrate their existing platform with a new tool. Let’s say an Email Marketing platform, for example. Avoid custom integrations if possible – If you go down this path, consider researching tools like Automate.io, Zapier, or PieS.
5 Tips to Choosing Technology
Now that you’ve developed a blueprint of your current tech stack and processes for your business. You need to include a vision statement of where you need to go – I need more transparency in the marketing and sales process is a good example. Set goals for increasing market reach through multiple digital channels to increase sales or engage with customers more frequently to lower attrition.
Note! Make sure your website back-end is easy for your team to make simple updates and that it’s integrated with your marketing & CRM platform!
- Does my current tech stack provide what I need?
- Does this new tool “talk” to my current tools (i.e., can it integrate)?
- Does this new tool serve the needs of your business?
- Does this new tool give your customers a better experience?
- The new tool needs to connect the dots between your departments. How does it accomplish this?
Peritus Marketing offers a one-stop-shop for Website, CRM, and Email marketing automation and can easily integrate this platform into over 300 other popular business tools that drive your business.
We use Active Campaign in our own company and help clients integrate their other technologies into your personalized platform. Active Campaign gives clients extreme flexibility and allows you to truly create a streamlined marketing-sales-customer service tech solution for your small-medium business under one tech umbrella. And at one-third the cost of competing solutions. Your business needs a digital-first sales approach.
Get a website, email marketing, and sales automation – all on one platform.
Imagine having your Website optimized to drive more organic traffic and see how leads are engaging on-page and via your emails. Leads that covert from your Website then turn into Sales Deals where you can see the pipeline progress. A new deal turns into a new customer (automated contract integration) that will begin automatically receiving client nurturing emails. A new Add-On agreement is created, and you have access to all existing client pipeline activity—All in One Platform.
I hope these best practices and guidelines prepare your business for its digital transformation — Knit these tools together—plan for success by mapping out your tech stack to give your business the edge to drive more sales in 2021. Where here to help you, so feel free to contact Peritus Marketing.