No matter how good your website or products are if you’re not mapping out the customer journey, your company assets are futile. That’s why creating a digital marketing funnel is imperative to encourage customers to become advocates of your brand.
In social media, you can create a funnel to increase visibility and finally bring in more traffic to your site or make shoppers loyal followers of your brand. A social media funnel consists of five stages that describe the customer journey.
These stages are:
Here’s what each stage means and some examples of how you ace every stage so customers end up on the last step — advocacy.
The Digital Marketing Funnel
Awareness is the first stage of the social media or digital marketing funnel, where potential leads become aware of your brand. These leads find other supporting information about your brand, like benefits, usage, and history.
The primary goal of the “Awareness” stage is to focus on the customers’ pain points. You must create content discussing your potential leads’ personal or professional challenges.
You can share testimonials about your brand or post reviews and blog posts via Facebook. You can also work with influencers to gain more visibility at this stage.
At this stage, potential leads research more about your brand because they see the potential. Your brand will have a competitive advantage among your competitors, and leads are now considering using your products or services over others.
They hunt for more details and want to ensure that your product or service will enhance their life or improve their business. One essential factor that leads consider at this stage is your upper hand over your competitors. What makes your brand unique? What benefits does your brand offer? What is your competitive advantage?
This is where you can showcase your product or service by creating tutorials and how-to videos. Highlight the product’s features and benefits in your demos.
Now we’ve come to the fun part — the sale! This is when potential leads take action from your posted content or ad. The third stage will slide easily if you successfully create the first two stages.
While your goal is to make leads purchase at this point, you must also lead them further down the funnel. One of the ways you can rock this stage is to offer limited-time coupons, free eBooks or guides, or big discounts.
After the customer makes a purchase or grabs any offer you provide, you must foster the relationship. You want customers to engage with you perennially.
This is where many brands fail and drastically suffer the consequences. It’s easier to retain customers than to get new ones. Also, having repeat customers means it’s easier for you to re-market your product or service to increase revenue.
One way to boost engagement is by creating user-generated campaigns (UGC). Your followers can share your posts and increase visibility. You may also do live sessions on Instagram or provide custom offers for regular customers.
The last stage is where you want your customers to end up. You want them to become brand advocates who recommend your products or services to others. When you achieve this, loyal customers will likely share your posts on their social media channels.
Consider your customers your most robust assets in promoting your brand. Of course, providing incentives for costumes is also crucial in encouraging them to recommend your brand.
Social media funnels are essential in transforming leads into customers and making them advocates of your brand. Once you get loyal followers, you’ll have a marketing advantage as they will undeniably help promote your brand to their circle.
12 Best Manufacturing Software for Businesses in 2022
Small or mid-sized companies in the manufacturing sector acknowledge that manufacturing software helps them keep up with orders and production jobs. This software allows business owners to come up with accurate bills of materials as well as inventory management.
There is plenty of manufacturing software available in the market today. To help you find the right tool, we’ve compiled the best manufacturing software solutions rated well by real software users. We’ve listed twelve products that stood out among thousands of applications in manufacturing that deliver excellent value.
Odoo is an open-source business management tool that offers various applications to streamline every company’s needs or processes. Its features include enterprise resource planning (ERP), customer relationship management (CRM), point of sale (POS) system, accounting, manufacturing, email marketing, and invoicing.
2. Genius ERP
Genius ERP is a manufacturing ERP software made for custom manufacturers. It assists manufacturers in reducing costs, increasing productivity, and improving business performance. Genius ERP’s key features are accounting, scheduling, product engineering, production planning, and job costing.
JobBOSS is a job shop management software for manufacturers and job shop owners. The answer can assist with quote processing, order processing, shop floor control, inventory control, shipping, estimates, and data visualization.
4. Epicor Kinetic
Epicor Kinetic is an ERP solution that helps manufacturing plans and manages its resources. The software has all the features you need to scale, compete, and attract top talent to your organization. These include CRM, advanced planning and scheduling, supply chain management, product lifecycle management, and a quality management system.
NetSuite is a business management solution that integrates various applications such as ERP, accounting, CRM, HCM, omnichannel commerce, reporting, and analytics. The solution offers real-time operational and financial performance insights while automating core processes.
6. DEAR Systems
DEAR Systems is an ERP software specifically created for small and medium businesses. The comprehensive solution has modules dedicated to manufacturing, purchasing, sales, inventory management, accounting, POS, and warehouse management.
7. Fishbowl Inventory
Fishbowl is a popular manufacturing and warehouse inventory management solution for small and medium enterprises. The software enables the user to generate work orders and track inventory. Likewise, it integrates with accounting software to scale your business.
8. Katana Manufacturing ERP
Katana Manufacturing ERP lets you gain clear visibility over inventory sales and order management. The solution also controls the total shop floor while tracking manufacturing costs based on product operations.
MRPeasy is a manufacturing software for small companies that integrates various modules in one solution, including procurement, supply chain management, and CRM. It also streamlines the purchasing process while managing every purchase order and organizing purchase cycles.
California-based Prodsmart is a manufacturing execution solution for portable and mobile devices. The floor supervisors and machine operators can use the software directly from their workstations rather than stepping away from the floor.
11. Sage 100cloud
Sage 100cloud is an ERP solution for discrete manufacturers, wholesale distributors, and professional service processes. It streamlines the manufacturing business to provide greater visibility into every item’s status and optimized inventory.
Statii is an ERP and MRP software created for small manufacturing firms. The solution helps create work orders, scheduling, inventory, purchase orders, invoicing, contact management, and reporting.
Adopting technologically advanced manufacturing software can give your business all the functionalities the tool offers to ensure maximum productivity. These solutions allow you to efficiently handle shop floor management, scheduling, time tracking, and accounting. Finding a platform that’s easy to use can be a great way to start your software-buying process.
The 8 Best Enterprise Accounting Software
For large companies that handle vast amounts of financial records, enterprise accounting software is a necessity. If you’re looking to get one, below are 8 of the best we found:
1. Oracle NetSuite ERP
A leading name in the business software industry, Oracle NetSuite ERP (enterprise resource planning) is a powerful choice. It takes care of everything accounting, from tax to cash management concerns, and many more in between. This accounting software integrates seamlessly with NetSuite’s other features to provide enterprise-sized businesses with a full-service suite.
Oracle helps you manage inventories, track finances, host e-commerce shops, and maintain your CRM (customer relationship management) systems.
2. Sage Intacct
Cloud-based platform Sage Intacct is another solid choice for enterprise accounting software. It provides the usual essential accounting tools such as general ledger, accounts receivable and payable, cash and tax management, among many others. Its users love the additional features Sage Intacct has to offer.
Its advanced accounting tools include dynamic allocations, project-based accounting, and AI-powered timesheets, to name a few. Its intelligent general ledger tool is AI-powered which is efficient and saves you time and money.
3. QuickBooks Enterprise
A popular enterprise accounting software, QuickBooks Enterprise has industry-specific solutions any entrepreneur will appreciate. It has built-in automation tools that include payroll, collection of customer payments, task management, recurring invoices, and many more.
It has robust reporting tools and more than 200 customizable reports for better financial visibility. QuickBooks Enterprise has built-in budgeting and forecasting tools and advanced inventory and order management capabilities.
Initially created for small businesses, Xero has the power and capabilities to handle enterprise accounting companies as well. It features tools to make accounting quick and easy, including cost capturing, invoicing, bank reconciliation, and payment processing.
With its Xero Workpapers feature, enterprise owners use the platform to automate compliance processes. Users of Xero enjoy its robust analytics and reporting capabilities that give them valuable information about client cash flows.
5. Acumatica Cloud ERP
For enterprises with multiple entities, Acumatica Cloud ERP is a highly recommended accounting software. Its users love how it can centralize their enterprise’s financial data and processes across different locations. It is capable of handling project-based accounting, managing billing, and budgeting, aside from its basic accounting capabilities.
You can customize workflows for accounting automation and many financial management processes. In addition to its multi-entity accounting, Acumatica helps with currency, tax, and payroll management.
If your enterprise deals with customers the world over, FinancialForce is the accounting software for you. Aside from the core tools for accounting, it also has global-grade solutions such as multi-currency and multi-language capabilities. It is built on the popular CRM platform Salesforce, so you’ll know you’re in good hands.
FinancialForce uses SalesForce’s Einstein, giving you insightful and intelligent financial data. It
also has built-in compliance reports and financial statement template features.
Providing enterprises with complete financial management, SAP is an industry leader in ERPs. Its SAP Billing and Revenue Innovation Management allows businesses to automate their billing and invoicing processes. Alongside its basic accounting tools, this software helps you with concerns about governance, risk, and compliance (GRC).
It has been proven excellent in simplifying financial closing through its automated workflows. It also provides support for subscription and usage-based billing and accounts receivable.
8. Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance
Sporting a trusted name in the tech industry, Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance is an excellent choice for an accounting software. It offers automated vendor invoice processing, financial reporting capabilities, built-in tax calculation tools for tax compliance, and many more.
It seamlessly integrates with other Microsoft platforms, including Dynamics 365 Sales and Dynamics 365 Commerce. It is a powerful tool that helps you monitor many financial operations.
The Best POS Systems for Small Businesses
There are many hurdles to running a small business. More often than not, you are working with meager resources and even more limited staffing. Because of this, you need an efficient set of tools to help you manage everyday operations.
And one of the most critical suites to any retail business is a point of sale (POS) system. This tool allows business owners to cater to various payment options, whether online or in-person. Another great thing about POS systems is that they come with practical business features, depending on your industry.
Here are the ten best POS system for small businesses today:
If you need a POS system for your small business right now, Clover can get it done for you. It has essential credit card processing tools and more. Users can link Clover with third-party apps for other functions like managing payroll. Clover Go, which works on Android and iOS tablets, is the best option for small business owners.
The suite’s virtual terminal allows owners to accept payments via a smart device. But the most appealing feature of Clover is its ease of use. Their terminals come pre-configured, so onboarding is mostly a smooth process.
Square has good overall features, making it a top option for general retailers. Users can get barcode printing tools, sales reports, and stock management. Apart from that, though, it also has specific features and tools designed for individual contractors and restaurants.
Another plus is that Square accounts come with a built-in e-commerce store. Finally, POS users can expect speedy payments and buy now, pay later charges via Afterpay.
On the other hand, Chase has various hardware and virtual solutions that accept payments from multiple platforms. Users can expect to get physical tablets and standalone terminals for brick-and-mortar shops. And users can even make contactless payments and wireless credit card payment processing with the Chase Smart Terminal.
Aside from that, Chase also has e-commerce integrations for online stores. Because of these features, Chase is ideal for e-commerce shops and general retailers.
Shopify is the best mobile POS system for small businesses because it makes it easier for owners to start and complete payments in the same place. It’s also the best POS system for retailers that are on multiple channels. It has easy to use interface that online businesses can easily use.
Plus, it has advanced tools that help with inventory and customer relations. Finally, Shopify lets users integrate with Apple and Facebook for better customer support.
Toast offers POS systems for small businesses free of charge. Apart from this, they also have a good starter POS promo that’s ideal for businesses just starting out. Otherwise, they have pay-as-you-go and standard plans that lock users in for two years.
The system is great for restaurants because of its many valuable features. These include QR code payments, delivery tools, a table check splitting tool, and more. Toast also has a staff and inventory management tool.
On the other hand, companies that need superb inventory tools can try Lightspeed. It has a matrix system to manage your stock and create smooth data visualization. Here, you can draw up matrixes of product variants to see which items need restocking.
Lightspeed works even when it’s offline. This POS system for small businesses is best if you are in the food and beverage industry, as well as physical retailers and restaurants.
7. Revel Systems
The best POS system for retail shops and restaurant is Revel Systems. Whether a general store or a busy retailer, you can count on Revel Systems’ hardware tools to finish payments.
Revel has iPad-based terminals that track stocks, orders, and deliveries for groceries and restaurants. In fact, its restaurant features include tracking tips, building menus, and managing tables. Meanwhile, its grocery tools include discount, loyalty, and gift card tools.
On the other hand, ITRetail is a POS system for small business that’s best for groceries and small markets. For one, it has strong and flexible checkout options. Customers can pay via debit, credit card, gift cards, or e-wallet. It also has a host of options should people need to self-checkout.
Apart from that, you can manage your stock via their mobile app. Users can customize CRM tools to monitor and track loyalty and rewards programs.
KORONA is a POS suite that is best for high-risk enterprises. This refers to liquor, vape, and even cannabis stores. However, KORONA can also support brick-and-mortar shops and ticketed venues. Most online reviews deem KORONA one of the most flexible POS because it links with major payment processors.
Aside from that, it’s also a top choice because of its stock tracking tools. It even has a ticketing function, making it a great event option.
Tips for picking a POS system
When you think about the qualities of a great POS system, it can seem like an unnecessary expense. However, a POS system can be a game-changer for a small business. Here are a few tips on picking a system to make sure that it will be a worthy investment.
Hardware and Software Compatibility
The first thing to look for when picking a POS system is whether it will be compatible with your hardware and software. Check if your POS system supports your computer operating system (like Windows or Mac). You also want to check if it works with your network and your printer or scanners. You don’t want to invest in a product that can’t work with your current systems. Keep in mind that POS systems come in various levels of functionality, so you can find one compatible with your existing technology.
Ease of Use
Another important thing to consider when picking a POS system for your small business is its easy use. The less time you spend on training your staff, the better. You want to find a POS system with an intuitive interface, making it easy for everyone from your office manager to your cashier.
Another important thing to consider when picking a POS system is its security features. You want a system that is protected against fraud and theft.
Lastly, don’t forget about the budget when picking a POS system. You don’t have to overspend to get a great product. A good rule of thumb is to look for a system in the middle of the price range for your industry.