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25 must-have technologies for SMBs

Jeff Vance | April 30, 2013
Running a small business isn't easy. I know. I run one. As a freelance writer, I’ve learned that you need to run your writing career as if you were running a business.

Boosting Online Performance

Since pretty much every business has an online presence, it's important to make sure the online component of your business is a sail, not an anchor. Yet most small businesses lack the resources and expertise to properly maintain and secure their sites. Enter 22) CloudFlare. This service protects sites from spambots and malicious distributed DoS attacks and helps boost site performance.

CloudFlare features a "learning network," which means that new attacks on any website are automatically detected and blocked for both the website under attack and the entire community. Thus, as more and more sites sign up for CloudFlare, the network grows smarter and protection gets better. You can get started with CloudFlare for free.

23) SiteApps is a service that taps into Google Analytics to make recommendations for how you can improve your website. For instance, I launched a new site, Startup50, at the end of January. I ran SiteApps and learned that a significant number of readers access my site from tablets. SiteApps recommended a tool that would create a mobile optimized version of my site which I had actually already done through the WordPress plugin Jetpack. It also found that users were spending less time on my site than in they were a few weeks ago. SiteApps pointed out that it was probably a faulty Google Analytics measurement and showed me how to correct it.Other apps that may be recommended to you include lead-capture forms, social media widgets, user segmentation surveys, etc. You can get started with SiteApps for free.


Small businesses looking to boost their mobile presence can use 24) Bizness Apps to develop, edit and manage mobile apps without having to learn any coding. Business owners start the process with a mobile template, customize it to match their business needs and then Bizness Apps turns them into native apps and distributes them to the iOS and Android markets.

Pricing starts at $29 per month for an optimized mobile website and runs $59 per month for mobile app creation, analysis and management.

If you are a small business with fleet vehicles (caterers, taxi companies, landscapers, etc.), you should look into the service from 25) Fleetmatics. Using GPS, business owners can track fleet vehicles in real-time and help them avoid congested routes, prevent unauthorized trips and even eliminate time sheet fraud.

San Francisco-based customer Atlas Towing says that it is on track to save $16,000 in fuel costs this year through improved routing and the elimination of excessive idling.


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