Hitesh Shah is the technical lead and architect at Ask.com and has been in the IT industry for more than 17 years. He has worked with Silicon Valley based start-ups as well as software industry leaders in various leadership positions. Currently, he is working with Ask.com as a technical leader. Outside of work, he is interested in entrepreneurship and investing.
As a technical leader at Ask.com, Shah is responsible for all technical aspects and delivery of the Online Content Delivery Platform, including architecture, design and development. He guides the business in making sound technology choices, allowing business to sustain uninterrupted growth with at least five years of horizon in mind.
Shah shared his extensive knowledge in tech and growing a successful business.
(Photo courtesy of Hitesh Shah)
What are the top 5 things small businesses can do to be successful in the marketplace in terms of tech?
One of the top priorities for small businesses is business growth. If you are a serious entrepreneur, you must stay laser focused on growth. Technology in this case can be a huge driver. It is most important for a small business leader to keep in mind how to differentiate their business from competition.
Online website. Not only it is important to have an online presence, as the internet has grown from early days, you should evaluate your online strategy to setup an advance website for robust user engagement, online user communities and for online support. Also, make sure your website also supports e-commerce — on-line ordering.
Search engine optimization. You have a great website, but there is no point if the marketplace cannot discover you. It is very important to have a comprehensive SEO plan. New customers interested in your products should easily be able to find you on key search engines.
Social network presence. With the invention of social networks, it’s no longer enough to have just a website. You must also maintain an active presence on various social networks like Facebook, Twitter, Google plus, YouTube, Yelp, etc. This allows users to stay in touch with you and will help viral marketing.
Mobile presence. Similar to social networks, with the broad adoption of mobile devices, a substantial portion of internet activity occurs on mobile phones and tablets. In which case, it is very important to maintain a mobile presence either via a dedicated mobile application or via a mobile friendly website.
Business operations. Tech can be a huge factor in efficiently running business. It is very important to provide continuous connectivity and reliable back-office solutions for uninterrupted employee communication and collaboration. Better yet, use automated solutions for business processes as well.
This article was written by Michelle Guilbeau of Examiner.com for CBS Small Business Pulse.