Many businesses quickly discover that having a website and a few social media profiles does not equate with the digital transformation they had been expecting. Digital transformation is a complex concept only because for every business it will be different. Whether it is a home office, a small to medium enterprise or a corporate entity transformation should take place according to the needs of the business.
What is digital transformation exactly?
Simply put it is the change that takes place when a business moves its infrastructure from a paper based or manual based operation to one involving digital and computing. This transformation can be holistic or applied partially because of the nature of the business. What is important is that the transformation achieves the outcome that it was intended for.
Before embarking on a digital transformation, project consultancy is critical for success. It is very much the modern day equivalent of the leap from typewriter to word processor. Almost every aspect of the workplace has become digital from administration to telephony. Marketing to filing and data retention. Even workplace access has become digital from the old clock in cards to modern access cards and even fingerprint technology simply to get the day started.
Why digital transformation
The very first reason why any business should undergo digital transformation is to remain competitive. The key to retaining or in some cases obtaining a grasp on the current market in any industry includes duplicating what your competitors do well, but doing it better.
Transformation is certainly not only developing a good website and an online marketing strategy. It covers everything from the software licences you obtain that will increase productivity to where your store your data – whether it is on a local server or in the cloud.
Digital transformation increases productivity which in turn drives the profitability of any business.
Integration of All Areas of Your Business
Digital transformation involves the integration of all areas of the business functions where possible. Sales processes can be streamlined from the moment a customer makes a purchase to where the figures are incorporated onto the balance sheet. This includes the process of the sale itself, stock control management and despatch, as well as returns management and monitoring of breakages and losses. When setting up ecommerce, no one wants to have to print off the and store the invoices and manually adjust the stock. Well integrated systems will do this for the client, removing the labour intensive tasks of yesterday.
Creating user friendly digital assets that integrate across different business functions is the most user friendly way to approach transformation.
Your Online presence
The greatest digital transformation that a business can make is its online presence. Far more than simply developing a website, this will involve creating a presence that is easy for your customers to find, easy for them to use and easy for you to manage.
Website development is the foundation of your online presence and from this development should come your other online assets including your ecommerce, social media visibility and your value to the various search engines.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
Search Engine Optimisation will singularly be the most important investment you make once your website has been completed and your social profiles set up. It is all very well having the best online store or related website, but unless it can be easily found, the investment is futile. SEO is made up of multiple facets and Google the most significant search engine in the western world has over 200 factors that determine how your website and other assets will rank in any search. Optimising for search engines requires an expert, that will not only be able to determine a strategy but also ensure that you are continually visible.
It is important that all digital assets work in concert. An all whistles and bells website is as good as a supermarket in the middle of the desert unless people know how to find you. Your Social media assets should enable and enhance customer relationship management and draw them to your website where you want to convert them from visitors to customers.
When you find that your budget for flyers and brochures has been largely replaced by your budget for SEO and content development, combined with website and ecommerce maintenance, you will know that your business has been digitally transformed.
To achieve a complete and holistic transformation speak to your consultant today. Transformation may not take place overnight, however a good consultant will enable you to develop a strategy that will realise the transformation at the right time, with the right budget and in the correct order.