While innovation happens every year, with technology ever multiplying in power, the trends in 2020 will make dramatic changes to the way businesses work. While large corporations usually take a while to adapt to market changes, there are some fantastic openings for small businesses to out-manoeuvre into new markets and grab hold of new opportunities.
- 5G’s take-over: 5G will begin to launch across the world from 2020 and allow super-fast mobile communication like never before. 5G will have download speeds of around 1 Gbps which will allow the internet to be used completely differently than it is today on mobile. It doesn’t just mean that audiences that enjoy video can get more of what they love, but will allow other tehcnologies to begin to thrive, such as virtual and augmented reality, and especially important for small businesses – the Internet of Things. This, combined with blockchain will create an interconnected world where your devices are not just interacting with you, but also with each other. With this, the possibilities are limitless.
- Availibility of big data: While big data on customers and markets have been kept for years at this point, there are two seperate threads pulling at it. The first being controversies and legal issues surrounding its use and capture. Many people are upset that their data is being used without their knowledge for immoral purposes. At the other end, analytics tools and applications are constantly being built for businesses to take advantage of. There’s no use having access to big data if you aren’t able to parse it and create strategies with it, and that’s just what these new tools are doing!
- Voice, over text: Whereas people have been used to texting to communicate with their device and other people, the adoption and use of voice just keeps rising, thanks to products like Amazon’s Alexa and Google Home as well as Siri and Cortana in devices. It’s estimated that by the end of 2020, more than a third of web browsing will be voice-activated. If you want to jump onto this while it’s still new, make sure you’re optimising for naturally spoken phrases now as opposed to just keywords.
- Employee happiness will become even more important: In today’s world where recruitment is incredibly competitive and budgets are tight, future employees realise that they have to look at a company’s culture, not just the pay, when applying to work. This means that you need to take care of your current employees, keep them happy and feeling like they make a difference and that, in turn will help you attract the best talent to your company!
- A growing gig economy means more outsourcing opportunities: While solopreneurs have been leveraging the internet for outsourced work for years, this has almost exclusively been to cheaper labour countries like the Phillipines and Vietnam. However, with the gig economy growing all the time, it’s now normalised for UK and US based workers to become a virtual assistant or freelancer. This means you’ll be able to gain a better quality of work and customer service for your brand!
While things are constantly accelerating and we’re sure there’s going to be more developments over the year, for now, these are the biggest business trends to watch out for in 2020!
John is Managing Director of Cotter Marketing, Ireland’s leading manufacturing product distributor. They specialize in the supply of Gaskets and Vacuum Pumps to some of the biggest pharmaceutical and manufacturing brands in the world.