Startups not only have to think about growing their business. They also have to constantly be on the lookout for what’s happening in their niche, as well as across business in general. It’s essential for startup teams to have their ear to the ground because investors and customers expect them to be leaders and innovators.
To be an innovator, you have to not just know the trends, but be ahead of them and maximizing them before other people even realize what they are.
Below are some trends that startups should watch for as we begin 2017.
The Demand For Instantaneous
Today’s consumer is completely spoiled. They can order something online and depending on where they live, have it delivered the same day. Consumers demand information, it’s there, they need customer service, and a representative is ready and waiting.
It’s important for startups to understand that consumers don’t just want instant gratification. They require it.
If you’re a startup and you’re struggling to keep up with the needs of your customers, it is probably going to be one of the single biggest problems you face in 2017.
According to outlets such as Firmex, which recently released its quarterly M&A report on the dealmaking environment in 2017, it’s widely expected that many regulations will be cut with a new administration coming into office.
If that’s the case, it could have a significant impact on startups and all businesses in areas ranging from taxes to the ability to get capital, and also in areas such as regulatory approval in the biotech sector.
Cybersecurity is one of the most pivotal and constantly changing threats impacting the entire economy, as well as the government and individuals.
It’s a hot topic everywhere from global politics to conversations about consumer protection.
The concept of cyber security is leading to the rise of new startup opportunities to combat threats, but even if your startup isn’t related to cybersecurity, it’s still critical to make sure you’re protecting your customers, and you’re letting them know how you’re doing that.
The Internet of Things
The Internet of Things or IoT is a term that simply refers to all of those smart devices many of us are probably using at this very moment, from our smart watch to our home speaker systems. The Internet of Things is important for startups to be aware of and ahead of, because not only are consumers searching for these smart, connected devices, but it’s also important for startups to realize how these technologies can help them better target customers.
These devices are offering the opportunity to utilize massive amounts of customer data and personalize products and services to the exact needs of the consumer, which is invaluable for startups and businesses at any phase.
It’s not difficult to see why customers would want customization in how they shop and how they buy. When customers have the opportunity to easily access tailored products and services, they’re more engaged with the brand, and they tend to value the overall experience.
This is something that’s going to be important for startups to take note of in 2017. Customers are going to want personalized websites and mobile apps, customized recommendations and add-ons, and the ability to build their own products and services based on their preferences.
The more creativity customers have in the choices they make, the more they’re going to feel satisfied with the experience of a particular brand.
Regardless of your industry, as a startup, the above are some of the broad but pivotal trends you should be looking toward this year.