Small businesses have had it rough recently, between supply chain issues, inflation, pay raises, and worker absenteeism. But there is hope for entrepreneurs who need a new way to do business. In a recent study from Bank of America, small business clients report a 300% increase in digital sales in the past two years.
Virtual channels, which cover everything from marketing, sales, and customer engagement to social media, are used by over 85% of Bank of America’s clients. As much as 50% of sales came from the digital market in 2020.
While services such as Shopify help establish a digital footprint, businesses need to stay organized when they’re looking to expand their online presence. The most efficient way to accomplish that is through apps. Medium and large corporate clients have always utilized these solutions, and many have specialized accounting departments to keep track of cash flow. But now, small businesses are also reaping the benefits, with specialized tools crafted just for their needs, even if they have limited staff or owners managing the company’s finances.
More banks and payment processors, including Paypal, Venmo, or Square Up are now offering more resources for small businesses by providing a suite of programs focused on financial wellness, according to recent data from J.D. Power. Apps like Bank of America’s CashPro experienced a 199% increase in payments in 2021 alone, to the tune of $384 billion. And in addition to phone-based apps, online portals are also helpful for many small business owners. In particular, Bank of America’s Small Business Hub includes easy-to-use tools that aid entrepreneurs in managing their finances. These tools include a credit score tracker, a Cash Flow Monitor that keeps track of spending, Zelle for payments, and more.
Additionally, banks are now looking to help their clients become more financially literate to facilitate success. Programs such as Life Plan help business owners set financial goals and offer advice and mentorship on how to achieve them. Another app, Money Habits, offers more individualized educational resources for business owners at any stage of their professional development.