How cloud technology can help SMBs to compete [Q&A]
Smaller businesses have always found it hard to compete against their larger rivals, but that’s starting to change as technology allows a leveling of the playing field.
So how can technology, and in particular the cloud, help to give smaller companies an edge? We spoke to John Buni, CEO and co-founder of the Clean Cloud SaaS platform and founder of bespoke tailoring company Tailor Made London, to find out.
Isn’t it always going to be difficult for smaller businesses to go up against dominant players, especially in the internet age?
Not necessarily. When e-commerce and Amazon in particular started to make its presence known in the retail sector, it was the “stack ’em high, sell ’em cheap” companies — the ones that offered a homogenized product at low cost –that suffered the most. When it comes to convenience and price, the big digital businesses will always come out on top. But smaller businesses, such as boutique clothing stores, beauticians, barbers and florists, endured the ‘retail apocalypse’ and have often flourished. They promise something different: a great customer experience, a sense of discovery and real originality. Smaller businesses can thrive so long as they focus on what they do best, and this is what we’re seeing the dry cleaning industry.
Can technology help smaller businesses deliver a more personalized experience?
Absolutely, if indirectly. Creating a great customer experience is all about making the individual person feel important, and small-business owners can only do this if they aren’t weighed down by menial tasks. Technology such as Clean-Cloud can take these tasks off their hands, and once business owners are emancipated from the need to do these basic tasks, they can dedicate much more time to providing a very personal experience for the customer.