When we talk about the game-changing impact that mobile technology is having on the way we work, it’s easy to look at the statistics and marvel. For example, a survey by AT&T and the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council found that mobile technologies save small businesses “a staggering $67.5 billion a year.”
But the real value of mobility for small businesses hits home when you hear the personal stories of small-business owners who have integrated mobility, or in some cases completely migrated to a mobile way of doing business.
Kathy Heeter, a licensed massage therapist and owner of the Massage Studio on Main in Ottawa, Ohio, recently shared her smartphone story with LimaOhio.com. While some small business owners like to dip their toes in the water when it comes to mobility, Heeter has gone whole hog and is actually running her business from her mobile device.
When Kathy Heeter switched to exclusively using her cell phone for her business, the amount of business she had doubled.
She used to miss calls on her landline. If the caller didn’t leave a message, she’d potentially lost a client. Now, if people call and don’t leave a message on her mobile phone, she can just call them back.
Heeter, a licensed massage therapist, opened The Massage Studio on Main in Ottawa on March 6 and has since used her smart phone to access her business’s website, schedule appointments, text clients, deposit checks, process clients’ credit cards and more.
For some small businesses, mobility’s main benefit is its ability to make operations faster, more responsive and less burdensome, and ultimately help the business realize more profits.
“It helps them fill up their schedule and bring more income to their business,” said Amy Sealts, executive director of the Ottawa Area Chamber of Commerce.
Two other small business owners interviewed by LimaOhio.com talk about how they’ve increasingly relied on their mobile devices for work. Heather Liening, owner of photography company Xpressions by Heather in Lima, says she uses her cell phone for work and doesn’t have a landline. This makes sense when you look at larger societal trends, given that many households are also eschewing landlines in favor of cell phones.
For small business owners who are still unsure of how mobile technology fits into their organization, perhaps “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself,” as FDR said. Samara Lynn, writing about small business mobility for PCMag.com, put it best:
“Whether it's mobile point-of-sale solutions or VPN services or custom applications, the only limit to making your business mobile-friendly (and mobile-powerful) is your willingness to adopt new mobile technology and services.”