Photo Credit: iStock.com/Artist's BrianAJackson
Do you have the slightest idea how 2016 will turn for startups? Well, that can only be answered as the year progress forward. But if recent trends in Smart technology and new funding sources are any indication, it seems like the small business sector has a pretty good start to the New Year. These predictions will help you hone your SMB goals for 2016 and safeguard the future of your business and startups.
We all are going gaga about virtual reality being here, but is it here to stay? Some experts like to think so. Facebook bought Oculus for a whopping $2 billion in 2014. Mark Zuckerberg plans to “…make Oculus a platform for many other experiences.” Some startups have already stepped into the realms of the virtual reality themselves. Take virtual reality startup 8i as an example. The New Zealand based venture announced that it had raised over NZ$20 million from big names like Dolby Family Ventures and Samsung Ventures. Even celebrity like Ashton Kutcher laud their success –
Congrats to @8iReality on closing this round of funding. Get ready for an entirely new entertainment medium
— ashton kutcher (@aplusk) October 14, 2015
Of course, it isn’t all sunshine and rainbows. The age of digital communication now allows consumers to examine and critique each offering immediately. This gives sway to customers who are pickier as compared to clients past. Startups know that consistent ROI can make the difference between success and failure. CEO of PeopleClaim, Mark Deuitch explains the demand well, “Business owners will have to run their businesses as if their mother were looking over their shoulder, because she likely will be.”
According to a post on Forbes, startups are “…making a name for themselves in the $1 billion wearables market.” As a result, it is expected that the wearable technology market will gross almost $2 billion in revenue. Some believe that the tech will transform the way we live some startups are cashing in on the promising trend. Small businesses like Jawbone that specializes in health and fitness wearable gadgets are a case in point.
In a world that is dominated by apps, startup owners need to gear their marketing efforts towards young adults who are highly dependent on mobile tech like Smartphone technologies. A growing number of savvy online shoppers demand services that can accommodate this new demand with a wider range of offerings. A few startups have already gotten into the game and have come up with creative ways to facilitate the demand. For example, ecommerce startup Fooji allows customers to tweet emojis of the food that they would like to eat and that will be delivered to them.
Gone are the days when investments were only limited to the big guns in funding. Crowdfunding allows regular consumers to fund projects that, they think, have potential. This is why entrepreneurs are now looking towards this new breed of investors to support their vision. And thanks to recent laws regarding equity crowdfunding, the small business of today can easily raise a lot of money online by selling part of their ventures to anyone who has the interest and funds to invest in them.
The year 2015 was remarkable for innovation, without a doubt. Modern technologies have turned a lot of new ventures into reality and it seems that 2016 will exceed the hype. If trends continue as they are now, similar innovations, in fact better, may continue to grow in the future. But what is your gut feeling about all this? Share your views and ideas.