‘The Internet Of Things’ (IoT) is a relatively new term, simply because it defines relatively new products. Anything physical that are connected in a way to an internet source is part of the ‘Internet of Things’ – be that your smart speaker, home hub, a BYOD application on your Best Business phone, even a toaster you control with your mobile! If it’s a physical object automated by the internet, it’s part of the category. For consumers, these conveniences are amazing, and – when they work as intended – only improve our lives. But as their power grows larger and larger, how will they affect businesses?
For businesses, gathering data is incredibly important. Without data, businesses have no idea about their customer base, and can’t market or target their products as accurately – leading to a potential loss of sales and audience. Everyone knows that personal data is king nowadays, it can be as valuable as currency, and this is why fraudsters are so keen to steal it!
However, for businesses, anyway, they can (legally and safely) collect customer information is incredibly useful. The Internet of Things is basically a goldmine for businesses. To use these items and applications, customers must hand over personal data to the businesses that create and run them, allowing companies to contact, track and market to customers more accurately – as well as helping product development – all while the customer enjoys the conveniences of their products.
The Internet of Things allows for greater communication and collaboration. When someone has access to items and apps in their own home that can be instantly connected to work accounts and emails, as well as aiding in video and call collaboration all at the touch of a button, workflow can be easily moved around and managed, and communication can vastly improve. While this is convenient for everyone involved, ‘The Internet of Things’ becoming more commonplace in employees’ homes and personal lives can also be great for a business’ bottom line. As people find they can work more freely, form a larger number of places, remote work and working from home becomes more common. This can cut costs for a business, in big things like office space and parking spaces, but even down to sundries, like electricity, water and tea and coffee costs.
Through the Internet of Things, there will also be a greater demand on businesses – which can be both a good and a bad thing. As customers become more acquainted to being able to do things like order items with just their voice or request things to be delivered on the same day, the buying cycle becomes shorter. The more convenient a purchase is, the faster a customer will buy – which means business will boom. If your business makes products available to purchase via a convenient application, customers are much more likely to buy and buy frequently.
However, this demand can also have a negative effect on businesses – customers become more accustomed to things being cheaper and arriving faster. This can place great pressure and demand on companies, and it’s their job to keep up with the boom. If they cannot, it could be a business’ decline.