Six upgrades to consider for your small business

By Lexie Lu

In the early days of starting your small business, everything is new and you’re focused on growth, learning the ropes and gaining the best employees possible. Over time, however, equipment becomes outdated and you fall into old habits that may harm your business more than build it up. It’s important to stay on top of trends and technology if you want a thriving business.

We’ve all heard of companies failing to adapt to a changing world. Kodak was once the leader in photography but declared bankruptcy in 2012. Blockbuster didn’t jump on the video streaming bandwagon and wound up closing most of their stores. The list of companies failing to adapt to a changing world and going out of business in the process is endless. At least once every six months, you should look at your business and figure out what needs upgrading.

There are six key areas you should consider if you want business growth, but these six areas will only get you started. You must also remain highly familiar with your industry and coming technology changes in artificial intelligence (AI) and advances in computers, so you know of possible changes and can adapt as needed.


When you start your business, you potentially created the website yourself or had a family friend do so. More than likely, your website doesn’t reflect who you are today. Even if you still love everything about your website, you can always improve the user experience (UX). A mere 53 percent of small businesses have a website.

If you fall into the 47 percent that don’t, now is the time to get online. No matter what type of business you run, you can benefit from an online presence. A website allows you to collect leads and provide information users otherwise might not have.


Technology grows fast, making it hard for small businesses to keep up with larger corporations. However, there are some ways of upgrading your technology and improving your business. For example, if you run a retail store, invest in the latest point of sale (POS) software. You can track customers and send them special offers and notes about new arrivals similar to past items they purchase.

If your business model is business to business (B2B), then you’ll benefit from upgrading your databases and coming up with a strong customer relationship management (CRM) system.


To share information between employees and effectively reach out to customers, your network needs the capability to share information from anywhere and at the fastest speeds possible. Upgrading from a home network to a business network is a smart move as your business grows. A business network is faster and better able to meet the demands of a growing company.

-Employee training

Spend time investing in your employees and your company culture. If you want success, you must find and keep the best employees possible. Think about the qualities you want your employees to have and host training workshops. Send top salespeople to conferences to learn even more about their craft. Spend time in team building activities.

Anything you can do to give your people an edge will benefit you. Sure, some of them will take your training and move on to a competitor, but it doesn’t matter because you’ll continue to offer training to the ones still there and outpace the competition by leaps and bounds.


Spend time each year looking at the benefits you offer your employees. Benefits come with a cost, whether in paid time off, holidays or health insurance. However, you’ll also reduce employee churn by providing the best benefits possible. The average cost of replacing an employee is about 50 percent of the person’s salary. If you can spend a little more and add dental and eye coverage and keep your well-trained, top employees, isn’t it worth the money?

-Office building

If your business is growing, then you’re very likely running out of space at your current location. There comes a point where you may feel uncertain about upgrading to a new building and taking on the additional costs of more space, but you also know without more space you can’t grow any further. One solution is adding some temporary office space in the form of trailers, but that doesn’t solve the problem and may create a divide among employees.

Work with a licensed commercial real estate agent and find out what is available in your area and in your price range. You might be surprised at the minimal costs of adding more space or creating an environment that enhances your company culture.

Talk to your customers

Spend time surveying your customers and finding out what frustrates them about your brand and what their wishes are. Giving customers what they want sometimes requires upgrades in software, network or other factors of your business. Until you dig into the data, you won’t know what your target audience cares most about. With a little detective work, however, you can create an amazing customer experience and keep them coming back as loyal fans.


Lexie Lu is a web designer and CX enthusiast. She enjoys covering topics related to UX design, web design, social media and brandingFeel free to subscribe to her design blog, Design Roast, or follow her on Twitter @lexieludesigner.

1 comment

  1. macky lasmu says:

    We are currently running out of office space and we are looking to expand. I was surprised to see how many different options there are available for all different kinds of budgets.

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