One step: Uncovering the mindsets and behaviours holding back small businesses

It’s been an incredibly tough couple of years for small business owners around the world. Though we’re starting to see signs of recovery, many are still operating under unusual circumstances.

One thing I have been really impressed with as business owners have navigated this ever-changing landscape is how well many of them have adapted their business practices. We’ve seen in-person retail businesses quickly adapt to ecommerce; service providers operating in completely new industries; and an uplift in adoption of digital tools as business owners continue to make the best of challenging circumstances.

But while many businesses are eager to adopt tools and explore new ways of operating, many small business owners still find themselves struggling to get to grips with digital tools – and at Xero, we set out to find out why.

We commissioned behavioural science experts to delve into the human factors that get in the way of small business owners from adopting the digital tools we know will help them to thrive. The resulting report, One step: Behavioural barriers to technology adoption amongst small businesses – and how to overcome them, delivers a unique perspective on the subject. It uncovers three key mindsets that are common in small business owners; delves into the top five behavioural barriers sole traders experience; and offers recommendations about how they can overcome these barriers.

The report also examines the similarities and differences in attitudes across small business owners, with more than 4,200 small business owners surveyed across Australia, New Zealand, the UK, the United States, Canada, and Singapore. Read the report for detailed regional insights.

One step is full of rich insights into why small business owners make the decisions that they do, backed up with facts and figures from our markets around the world. The insights are valuable for even the most digitally-savvy business owners, so we encourage you to read it in full.  – Read more

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How To Choose The Best Cloud Server

In the modern world, there are various factors that need to be taken into consideration if you want to achieve sustainable, long-lasting success. The quality of your goods or services, for instance, are incredibly important – if they are lacking in this department, the reality of the situation is that your business will fall by the wayside. Similarly, you will need to constantly update and improve your customer service capabilities, as these will be routinely called-upon by your audience. However, by far-and-away the most crucial in this day-and-age is your website, hence why this is an area that is worth investing in.

Here at catalyst2, we take great pride in having an excellent working knowledge of the technical landscape. Having been operating for over twenty years, we have seen hosting trends come-and-go in relation to websites. Currently, it is the cloud-based systems that are seeing their demand continue to rise, and there are no-signs to suggest that this trend is going to slow down. Below, we have taken the liberty of showcasing the advantages that can be enjoyed when utilising cloud storage and resources, as well as what you need to take into account when choosing a service provider.

Cloud Servers, An Introduction

As we have already mentioned, the importance of your website cannot be stressed enough; whilst there are certain industries that still rely on word of mouth, this is a platform that you can use to reach new audiences on a daily basis. However, if prospective customers were to see that your website is sub-par, it will not take long for them to take their business elsewhere. Case-and-point, if your loading times are excessively long, they will become increasingly frustrated, to the point that they will find a different company to help them. It is for this reason that you should constantly be on the lookout for ways in which to improve your site; this is where investing in a cloud server can pay dividends.

In case you weren’t already aware, a server is what allows your website to be found on the Internet. Without this, you would be left with a site that is, to all intents and purposes, useless. With so many different options from which to choose from, you might be left wondering why it is that you should opt for a cloud-based system as opposed to a dedicated server that is physical. First-and-foremost, you should be aware that the latter, whilst notorious for its speed, is not quite as good from a security standpoint. As the years have gone-by, the capabilities of cyber criminals have improved, which has put businesses across the globe at risk. Naturally, you will want to do everything in your power to protect yourself – although public cloud systems are not perfect, private servers will offer you the finest cyber protection measures on the market. – Read more

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Help Your Customers Avoid These Five Common Website Security Issues

The most common targets for hackers are web applications and websites. According to SiteLock data, websites are attacked 94 times per day on average and IT Chronicles estimates that 4,000 cybercrimes are being committed each day in the United States alone. As a trusted security partner, it’s important to help educate your customers on today’s ever evolving threat landscape and provide guidance on proactive protection and threat prevention. With that in mind, this article will cover five common web security issues your customers should know about, along with best practices on how to avoid them.

PCI Noncompliance

If a business accepts credit cards to pay for goods and services, it needs to be PCI compliant. The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) is what determines if a business is compliant or not. The goal is to protect cardholder data by encrypting it so that in the event a bad actor was to somehow intercept data, all they would get is indecipherable data.

Web security issues that can occur when a business is not PCI compliant include, but aren’t limited to:

  • Identity theft
  • Fraudulent charges
  • Sale of credit card numbers
  • Medical fraud and more

To combat this, it is critical a business stay up to date on PCI DSS regulations. The PCI Security Standards Council has created a quick reference guide that can help to determine compliance or noncompliance

Unfortunately, becoming PCI compliant can be a time consuming and complicated process, especially if you don’t know where to start. It’s helpful to look for partners that offer solutions to help your customers become PCI compliant easily and efficiently. Look for vendors who can help streamline the assessment and application process, as well as provide the solutions needed to protect against any potential security threats or weaknesses. – Read more

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