One of the greatest challenges among small business owners today is making the decision about IT solutions, support and maintenance of the information system. However, tech giants and independent companies today are not only offering these services at affordable prices but also going a step further to develop unique offerings to tap the ever- growing start-up market.
Networking major Cisco recently launched a range of solutions portfolio tailored to small businesses addressing their networking, security, collaboration, cloud and internet connectivity needs. Hewlett Packard Enterprise announced the next generation of the HPE Modular Smart Array (MSA) helping SMEs focus on growing their business with an entry-level hybrid-flash storage solution. Their likes, including Microsoft, Google, Oracle, have also lined up to cater the segment.
Developing specialised programs and cost-effective packages for start-ups
Around a decade ago, start-ups used to set aside a portion of their capital for setting up infrastructure. The practice changed with the spread of cloud technology, as it helps companies save on infrastructure costs and divert the capital into other business aspects, such as hosting. Cloud service providers such as Amazon, Google, IBM, and Microsoft have specifically designed cloud programmes with free-of-cost services to help start-ups get started in the cloud.
For a transactional-based start-up, the hosting services provided by the above-mentioned big companies is the best option. However, for a smaller service-based business, independent brands like Digital Ocean, Godaddy are more affordable and come with a complete package. Besides providing access to their platforms for 12 months, they also offer technology training, mentorship, and priority support.
Email server/marketing service provider
There are a host of providers in this segment, who over the years have developed unique offerings, especially plans, for small businesses. Companies like Mailchimp, GetResponse, BigRock, Dreamhost are providing quality services priced under $1 per month per user, including email marketing.
Tech giants are developing range of solutions portfolio tailored to small businesses addressing their networking, security, collaboration, cloud and internet connectivity needs.
Website, mobile app developers
For a static business or a service-based start-up, the market today is flooded with web design and development companies and mobile app developers like Hyperlink InfoSystem, The NineHertz, Emizen etc. The sheer competition in this space has solved the problem of affordability for small businesses looking for these services.
Instead of spending large amounts of money on hardware installations, SMEs are using SaaS applications which can be easily downloaded and maintained. These applications are perfect for all types of online businesses, especially transaction-based businesses or e-commerce platforms, offering-customer support, accounting and payroll, e-commerce etc.
Based on the pay-per-usage model, these applications, especially of international brands, have become more affordable and user-friendly. For instance, if you own a small-scale business with limited expenditure capabilities, US-based website Shopify.com can turn out to be quite a decent option. In India, Zepo.in offers hosted online store solutions starting from Rs 750 a month. BuildABazaar.com offers similar services starting from Rs 1,000 per month.