26 Apr

3 Ways Cloud Tools Benefit Mobile Businesses

Business owners are finding creative ways to fund their dreams by going mobile. NPR reports that one owner found that going the traditional route was out of her reach, with projected funds of $105,000 required to open a brick-and-mortar shop. Instead, she bought a used truck, remodeled it for $20,000 and was profitable within a few months. Mobile businesses like this are on the rise. A homeless man in Detroit even started his own business by accepting donations with a magstripe reader on his smartphone and creating a website by using the local library computers to solicit work for odd jobs.

Mobile businesses are attractive to aspiring entrepreneurs looking for a quick and efficient way to get up and running, all with lower overhead than their brick-and-mortar counterparts. The key for mobile business efficiency, though, is to leverage critical cloud tools. From real-time reporting to bids and inventory management, here are three ways cloud tools give mobile businesses a boost:


Eliminate Data Entry

Data entry makes business owners feel chained to their desk, even if their desk is in the back of a food truck. Fortunately, they can eliminate some of this time-consuming work by moving to operational systems in the cloud.

For example, pet groomers and dog walkers can add software to their website for clients to book appointments on a real-time, cloud-based calendar. They can choose an operational system that includes the option to prepay for services and leave customized notes. Then, payments can be automatically updated into cloud bookkeeping solutions to further reduce tedious data entry. While everything is being taken care of behind the scenes, business owners are alerted to the appointments and are able to see what inventory items need to be restocked.


Enhance Productivity

Cloud tools increase productivity and decrease time and material waste required to run mobile businesses. Landscapers, for example, can leverage cloud tools that provide streamlined bidding processes and also reduce human error. By eliminating paper and switching to digital, landscapers can take their proposals anywhere they go or email them directly to clients. The bids also help them determine and visualize exactly what types of man hours,
markups and inventory items will be used to create the most accurate bid available.


Access Data on the Go

Mobile businesses, like food trucks and caterers, don’t need to wait until they get back to their headquarters to access real-time data. A digital point of sale (POS) keeps long lunch lines moving quickly while updating sales figures and inventory items on the go. Business owners can see which items are moving the fastest that day to focus their production in real time. Although digital POS systems are ideal for quick and easy credit card and digital payment processing, like Apple Pay,  it also works with cash and offline payments with some simple manual updates to sync up sales for real-time reporting.

As businesses continue to become more mobile, cloud solutions are being developed to make them more efficient, productive and capable of providing excellent customer service.





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