In India, MSMEs have come a long way since the last few years and are now contributing about 40% to the country’s GDP. The industry that is now harbouring close to 56 million MSME entrepreneurs paints a favourable landscape displaying the capabilities of Indian entrepreneurs to innovate and create products that address the specific needs of India.
Currently, India is witnessing a rising wave of digital transformation. Many large corporations have taken to this new development and are utilising new technologies to leverage their massive customer bases and data warehouses to bring about efficiencies and insights.
Also, the entrepreneurial bug has spread beyond the handful of venture capitalists that have been cropping up in a last few years. Thus, the entire ecosystem has evolved at an overwhelming pace. For an MSME now, the digital revolution is no more a distant dream which only large companies could think of.
With the increased adoption of new-age technology in the MSME sector, a recurring area of focus has been technological evolution and how startups and small businesses are using it.
There are many SaaS products (Software-as-a-service) that cater to different aspects of managing a business. These range from infrastructure, ERP, payment and accounting to partner evaluation, online marketplaces and so on. These are available at economical prices without any upfront costs, and the products have evolved as user-friendly and tailored to the needs of MSME entrepreneurs.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) has levelled the playing field, allowing small businesses to scale themselves up and go head-to-head with larger corporations. In turn, the unique edge that small businesses have always had in terms of close customer engagement, niche products and services, and robust company identity has become even more valued in the eyes of the customers.
And with the introduction of government initiatives such as UPI and other emerging payment platforms, MSMEs have been able to go digital.
How small businesses can win with new tech trends
Merely having a great product already is not enough. Businesses need to innovate and upgrade continually. They must keep tweaking and make those incremental changes that will make their product even better. This has become inevitable with the continually growing competition.
Automation of back-office tasks
Quite often, the biggest roadblock that small businesses tend to face when trying to maintain work-life balance is the administrative tasks involved in keeping their business afloat. Technologies such as AI can take care of those time-consuming, repetitive and mundane administrative tasks so that businesses can focus on more critical, strategic work.
Gain customer insights
Technology helps businesses determine how customers might behave. It also equips them to use data to conclude how to serve those customers in the future better.
To stay competitive, MSMEs can utilise this information to identify patterns and make informed decisions about how to evolve a product or service over a period of time to meet customer requirements.
Make sound decisions and increase efficiency
Entrepreneurs need to take many critical decisions. Technology can help sort methodically through heaps of data that the business generates to bring out more in-depth insights.
This can also help expedite essential business decisions such as whether to adopt a new tool or enter a new market. Technology can also help businesses become more efficient in their day-to-day tasks.
Deliver tailored customer experiences
Machine learning technology uses algorithms to excavate hidden insights from data without being explicitly programmed to do so. Learning from past customer experiences, the algorithms are capable of creating more relevant and personalised experiences in the future for customers, allowing small businesses to extend that personal touch.
A growing number of MSMEs are warming up to the concept of adopting latest technological trends as more of their practical benefits are being realised. Technology has immense power to enrich the small business experience for customers and empower them to play shoulder-to-shoulder with big corporations.
(Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of YourStory.)
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