If you’re a business owner or entrepreneur, you know the importance of staying ahead of the game, keeping up with the latest innovations and out-performing your competition. With the new year just around the corner, now is the time to prepare for 2020. Here’s what you can expect to be big trends in the coming year…

AI (Artificial Intelligence)
The artificial-intelligence world is continuing to grow year on year and is expected to have a significant impact on the world in the future. AI tools and algorithms can be used in businesses to improve sales and marketing, streamline human resource tasks and automate customer service communications (chatbots).

However, where customer service is concerned, AI will not completely replace real humans like it was once predicted to. Instead, businesses need to use AI as if it’s the co-worker that helps them become more efficient, so customers are better served.

Cloud computing
Cloud computing can drastically benefit businesses that use computer technology by replacing the need to maintain computer systems and hardware. This makes it more cost-effective for businesses and also means small businesses have a better chance of competing against bigger competitors.

Cloud initiatives are expected to account for 70% of all tech spending by the end of 2020 and as much as 80% of organizations are predicted to migrate toward the cloud by 2025!

Reviews and testimonials
User reviews already influence many of our buying decisions, but in 2020 they’re set to have an even bigger impact on customers as e-commerce continues to grow and more and more businesses adopt a digital marketing strategy.

92% of people hesitate to complete a purchase if there are no reviews for the product/service. Small businesses, in particular, don’t always have the marketing budget of bigger companies and rely solely on their reputation and customer reviews.

Going green
2019 saw a huge shift in businesses paying more attention to their carbon footprint, and 2020 is set to see these efforts increase even more.

By now we’re all aware we have to do our bit and as businesses enter the new year, they need to think of how to run their business in a more energy-efficient way and implement ways to reduce their negative effect on the planet. Going green not only helps the environment, but it can also cut costs.

In 2020, many businesses will implement a paperless working system or make recycling mandatory, reduce utility costs by installing eco lighting and heating sources, and reduce water usage by installing filter systems. Businesses should also consider how vital commuting is and whether meetings can be done remotely through video conference software.

Which leads us to our next point…

Remote workers
Over the last few years, we’ve seen more and more companies adopt a remote workforce or offer flexible working for employees – whether that’s working from home, a coffee shop or on-the-go.

The benefits of remote working can result in higher productivity levels, fewer costs and less impact on the planet due to eliminating the everyday commute.  It also means businesses will be able to flex higher and lower to better manage natural business fluctuations.

With remote working set to grow even more in 2020, business owners will need to consider the needs of their staff and adapt their operating models. Additionally, as the start-up culture grows,  2020 will see more people trade the security of traditional work for the independence of being a freelancer or starting their own business.

The overall growth of remote working will see a huge demand for virtual offices as businesses will still require a physical presence online and professional business address even if they don’t require a physical working location to run their business.

Get a virtual office for your business here!

Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash