Category: Technology Solutions

Hot Marketing Trends for 2020

Marketing in 2020 is going to be challenging and exciting. Tomorrow’s marketing trends will be shaped by the millennial market and huge leaps in technology. Businesses need to keep their ear to the ground for the latest trends and leverage them quickly. By staying on top of the major developments that impact marketing, you can drive business growth.

Let’s explore three of the key trends that could arise in 2020 and guide your marketing strategies. 

AR and VR in marketing

Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) technology are now commonplace in business-user interactions. These technologies offer immersive experiences to users and enable people to interact with your products. Adding AR and VR tech can also build brand awareness for your business.

Very often, just the buzz around AR and VR can spike interest in your brand, making it more memorable. By adding AR and VR content, you can boost engagements that lead to greater conversions. There are several helpful use cases that illustrate how virtual and augmented reality can benefit your business.

Today, tools like Google Lens and Apple’s ARKit allow people to point their camera at an image and get data. Image recognition algorithms can identify an image, download information, and display it on a user’s screen.

Augmented reality in the beauty industry allows people to try on makeup virtually to see how it looks. Brands like Estée Lauder, Lancôme, and Sephora have created AR tools that let people try lipsticks and nail polishes virtually. In this way, users can be more confident about buying a product.

Ikea has launched the Ikea Place app with AR tech that enables users to virtually place furniture in their homes. It not only helps users feel more comfortable buying furniture online, but it’s also a fun experience.

Virtual reality is used


5 Ways Machine Learning Is Improving Manufacturing

Artificial intelligence (AI) and its subsets are benefitting tons of fields, but you’d be hard-pressed to find one that’s taking more advantage from them than the manufacturing sector. Major companies around the world are heavily investing in machine learning (ML) solutions across their manufacturing processes and seeing impressive results.

From bringing down labor costs and reducing downtime to increasing workforce productivity and overall production speed, AI – with the help of the Industrial Internet of Things – is ushering in the era of smart manufacturing. The numbers speak for themselves; recent estimates predict that the smart manufacturing market will grow at an annual rate of 12.5% between this year and next.

It certainly makes sense. Numerous businesses are already experiencing the advantages of ML in several ways and working with QA testing services to refine what they are getting out of it. Here are some examples of current implementations.

1. General process improvement

One of the first things that come to mind when thinking about ML-based solutions is how they can serve daily processes across the entire manufacturing cycle. By using this technology, manufacturers are able to detect all kinds of issues on their routine methods of production, from bottlenecks to unprofitable production lines.

By combining machine learning tools with the Industrial Internet of Things, companies are taking a deeper look into their logistics, inventory, assets and supply chain management. This brings high-value insights that uncover potential opportunities not just in the manufacturing process but in the packaging and distribution as well.

A great example of this can be found in the German conglomerate Siemens, which has been using neural networks to monitor its steel plants in search of potential problems that might be affecting its efficiency. Through a combination of sensors installed in its equipment and with the help


Why Blockchain Has Yet to Reach its Potential

Blockchain was one regularly appearing in major headlines around the world, but over the past few months the technology has seen a serious decline in the amount of media buzz surrounding it. Decentralized ledger technology has long been harkened as a revolutionary asset that will change the business world and our personal lives alike, but some critics are now contending that blockchain was just a trendy innovation that’s already fading into insignificance.

Blockchain may no longer be in the center of the media spotlight, but it would be foolish to count the technology entirely out. Here’s why blockchain’s time is yet to come, and why it will grow in importance as time goes on.

The technology and its proponents are still maturing

It’s easy to dismiss blockchain proposals as pie-in-the-sky fantasies, but what few critics realize is that we’re only just beginning to learn about the myriad ways that blockchain services can revolutionize our lives. The technology itself and its chief proponents are still maturing and will need time to develop their sea legs before they’re ready for the widespread adoption of blockchain services. Regulations for the technology were initially shunned, for instance, but it’s now growing clear that more carefully delineated standards for blockchain governance are necessary if the tech is ever to become mainstream.

Many contemporary blockchain laws are hasty and ill-fitting, for example, demonstrating that legislators will need to re-approach the technology with a better understanding of it if they’re to incorporate blockchain into the modern economy. In many instances, lobbyists who may not have the best intentions in mind for blockchain’s future have often been involved in the creation of regulations governing it. Mainstream financial actors who feel threatened by decentralized digital ledgers have also taken steps to tarnish blockchain’s name in the public eye,


What You Should Know About PayPal Credit Card Fees

  • PayPal charges a flat rate of 2.7% when you accept credit and debit cards in person using a card reader and the PayPal Here app.
  • There are no monthly or annual account fees for PayPal’s basic credit card processing service.
  • Things that may cost you extra include chargebacks, accepting international credit cards and signing up for advanced services.

Credit card processing is a virtual necessity in modern business. Fewer consumers than ever carry cash, and more each year expect all businesses to accept debit cards and credit cards. Some customers have even begun using digital wallets, such as Apple Pay, Google Pay and Samsung Pay. Opening up these payment methods to your customers gives them a better checkout experience and boosts their overall satisfaction in their interactions with your business.

Unfortunately, credit card processing services can be difficult to navigate, with complex pricing structures, fee schedules and hidden fees. PayPal’s credit card processing services eliminates the confusion with transparent pricing and fees so you won’t be surprised when you receive your statement at the end of the month. If you want to better understand PayPal’s credit card processing pricing and fee schedule, read on.


Editor’s note: Looking for the right credit card processor for your business? Fill out the below questionnaire below to have our vendor partners contact you about your needs.



Does PayPal offer credit card processing?

While PayPal is best known for its peer-to-peer money transfer services, it also offers credit card processing services to businesses of all sizes, transaction volumes and sales ticket values. PayPal’s credit card processing services earned it our best pick for mobile credit card processor for Android devices, though it offers an identical slate of features for Apple devices.

PayPal’s credit card processing business is huge, serving 23 million merchants with more


How Small Businesses Can Take Advantage of Big Data

You can do it. Even though you operate a small business, you can take advantage of the power of big data analytics.

Big data technology is quickly transforming every field and industry. Resultantly, even business leaders who are generally slow to adopt new technology are curious about how they can use big data technology.

Businesses of all sizes – even small ones – want in on big data analytics, and the reason is apparent. It’s because companies that leverage big data analytics tools enjoy 15% more sales than companies that fail to do so, according to the Georgia Small Business Development Center (SBDC).

Even though the economy is expanding at a rate of less than 3% each year, entrepreneurs who operate companies that range from small-to-midsized businesses (SMBs) to large corporations are capturing vital market share by leveraging big data analysis.

The small business case for big data

51% of small business owners believe that big data analysis is a must, but only 45% of them perform data analyses, according to a report published by the Service Corps of Retired Executives (SCORE). Furthermore, 73% of small business owners express that finding new customers is a top priority, while 63% rank retaining existing customers as a top issue.

Data analyses can help small business owners meet their goals. Nevertheless, many business owners believe that they don’t have time to track analytics. However, it only takes a few moments of studying to learn how to use data to gain a competitive advantage.

Furthermore, you probably already have more than enough information to start a big data initiative without even realizing it. For instance, you can source information for data analysis from many places, including:

  • Email marketing reports
  • Sales Receipts
  • Social media analytics
  • Website analytics

This information, as well as data from