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Five Reasons the Best Custom Software Development Services Are Local

August 10, 2017
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business-people-wordThanks to digital advances, it’s possible to do business with companies on the other side of the world. In this competitive market, however, local custom software development services still have a series of important advantages over remote competition. Despite technological advances, these local businesses can still provide superior products.

You Can Expect Collaboration


From your first interaction, you can expect face-to-face collaboration. This includes your initial interview, where you can discuss your long-term goals, short-term goals, and how the commissioned software would fit into these ambitions. The beginning of your professional relationship will set the tone for the rest of the project. Meeting face-to-face provides heightened accountability and better communication. It also makes it easier to learn firsthand about your business and the individual quirks that make it unique.

No overseas company can offer these kinds of services without dramatically increasing costs. Flying developers to meet with clients face-to-face on another continent is not a cheap endeavor. It also makes follow-up visits and the other local advantages on this tremendously impractical. To get true collaboration, you need to hire custom software development services locally.

Work On-Site


Obviously, your developer will have to go back to their offices to do the majority of their work. They need their specialized tools, just as your employees do. That doesn’t mean your custom software development service won’t be visiting again in person, however. They should come in person for additional meetings and further investigation. Although developers trust you to know your business inside and out, they also understand that they may see or hear something that will help them make a better piece of software. This isn’t an oversight on the business owner’s part, but simply another advantage of hiring local developers.

One of the most important things developers should do when they’re working on-site is interviewing stakeholders. How will the people who will use the software every day benefit? Do they have any insight into the problems their old system presented? These discussions can help developers build products better suited to meeting the goals you discussed in your very first interview.

Present for On-Site Testing


Testing is one of the trickiest parts of custom software development. Implementation could take several steps, and no matter how well you and your developer plan in advance, it’s always possible that something could go wrong. Even if you don’t face a major error, even a minor software glitch could cost your business money if it isn’t quickly resolved.

When you work with remote software development services, you again face the obstacle of time and cost to transport professionals to oversee on-site work. Local custom software development services, on the other hand, can easily come as often as necessary to ensure a smooth implementation and transition. Having an expert onsite is one of the best ways to reduce risk during implementation, and it could easily save your business thousands of dollars in the long run.

Receive Feedback through Discussions


This advantage is essentially the follow-up to one of our earlier points. Interviewing stakeholders as the software is developed helps ensure it is designed well the first time. However, that doesn’t mean there won’t be room for improvement. The entire point of custom software development is to create a tailored product that fits your business. This may require a few tests to ensure the program is just the right fit before final implementation. To gather feedback, developers need to discuss test performance with the client. Whether this feedback is positive or points out opportunities for further development, it still gives custom software development services vital information. Holding these discussions on-site makes it easier to demonstrate problems or point out unexplored potential.

Optimizing UX


Optimized user experience is a huge advantage of commissioning custom software. Every business has a different workflow and culture, and it’s impossible to find off the shelf solutions that will perfectly match your work habits and process. Building from the ground up is the best solution. Of course, user experience takes a lot of research and discussion to fine tune. Giving developers access to some of your best employees is a great way to ensure an optimized user experience that can speed up production and limit mistakes. Again, this is tricky to manage from across an ocean or a continent, but local developers can work around your business’s schedule to ensure you don’t lose valuable labor time in exchange for the perfect product.

The best custom software development services are found locally. Only the local advantage can give developers the insight, communication, and collaboration opportunities they need in order to do their best work. Because they are often on-site, they offer the best, safest on-site testing, and they’re the most help during final implementation. Although they are making software, face-to-face interaction with humans is what sets these developers and their products apart.

How Custom Software Can Save Your Business in an Emergency

August 3, 2017
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Business Finance Office Calculator AccountingThere are many advantages to commissioning custom software. Custom solutions boost your business by streamlining workflow, patching weaknesses in conflicting systems, and even reducing business’s labor needs. What many forget to mention in this list of benefits is the supporting role custom software and its developers play in an emergency. Technological disasters of some kind are unavoidable for modern businesses. Between the complex supply lines, ecommerce sites, and borderless enterprise structures that businesses utilize to stay competitive, there are many opportunities for problems to develop. Whether your data is compromised by a hack or you suffer a catastrophic software failure, you need the best support available. Custom software and custom software developers can provide that.

Added Protection


Cyber-crime is responsible for more and more business emergencies. One of the best ways custom software can help in such an emergency is to prevent it from happening. The more widely a particular piece of software is used, the more hackers it will attract. Just as legitimate businesses look for the maximum payout for an investment of time, hackers aim to infiltrate software and applications that will give them a backdoor into the most private computers and business networks.

Using custom software doesn’t necessarily make you immune to all cyber-attacks, but it does afford an extra layer of protection. This applies to more than the programs built from scratch. Even if you choose a custom solution that is built on open source products, it will still be different enough to dissuade many hackers. After all, if a hacker goes to the extra effort of cracking your unique system, their payout begins and ends with your data. Finding a weakness in off the shelf solutions will open many more doors.

Faster Service


If your system goes down, no matter the reason, speed is imperative. Every moment you have to sit and wait for technical support to help solve the problem could equate to thousands of dollars of lost profit. They key to rapid recovery from a technological crisis is to have your emergency tech support arranged in advance. If the team has a chance to examine your system before anything goes wrong, they can shave precious minutes and hours off of repair times.

A traditional technical support team is unlikely to visit your business in person before an emergency to study your system in-depth. Usually, they work off of basic knowledge about your primary systems. Custom software actually slows them down.

No one understands software like custom software developers. If you hire them to build software, they will spend time researching your infrastructure. This gives them the insight they need to make the best software possible. It also gives them a high level of expertise in your business’s inner workings. Of course, they also literally create part of that infrastructure.

Inclusive Backups


Custom software developers rarely limit their services to development. This is why they make such great emergency tech support teams. They can help prepare you for an emergency in other ways, however, that are just as important. Custom software developers are directly invested in the success of your infrastructure. This means they are proactive in offering support services that can help you get back on your feet faster.

Many custom software development companies offer emergency backup plans as part of their development packages. They guard your emergency backups so they will be ready whenever you need them. Again, this pairs well with emergency tech support services. Combining these two separate recovery steps saves you time, and it may also save money, which is important when you lose income due to technical failure. These custom software development companies usually offer a range of backup options. You should be able to find the right fit for the size and scale of your business. Since custom software development companies want you to return to them for upgrades in the future, their backup solutions are usually scalable.

Custom Software Developers Care as Much about Tech Disasters as You Do


As we mentioned above, custom software developers are directly invested in your success. Whether you have a catastrophic system failure, a data breach, or any other tech disaster, it’s in the custom software developers’ best interests to help you recover quickly. This makes them powerful allies when things go wrong. Your success supports theirs, so they are by far the most reliable and dedicated tech support available.

Having the right support is crucial for recovering from a disaster. Custom software can help you both before and after an emergency strikes. Custom products offer unique solutions to dissuade and defend against hackers. Emergency backups keep your most valuable data safe in case the worst happens. Custom software developers make the best tech support teams, too. In the end, it’s the developers’ commitment to your success that makes the difference. Custom products don’t just help you work better. They help you work safer.

 

What You Should Expect from Custom Software Development Services

July 27, 2017
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handshake-1513228_960_720Whether you’re ordering a dress or a piece of software, custom orders can be confusing. Since there is such fierce international competition for custom software development services, it’s especially difficult for businesses to choose wisely from all the available options. A few key services, however, will help you identify superior developers. Here is a short list of services you should expect from a custom software developer.

Commitment to Your Custom Needs


First of all, a custom software development company should be serious about the actual customization of their product. Unfortunately, there are still businesses who seek to take advantage of clients by modifying a handful of code to transform a regular product into a “customized” version. While customers do sometimes need popular programs to be customized through additional programming, these services are unique to the client.

Your developer’s primary concern should be your business needs. This is represented not only through the finished product, but through the steps the developer takes to make the commissioned software. Custom software development services should address your specific needs by asking questions and digging deeper than a checklist of features.

Face to Face Interviews


Part of accomplishing the goals in the previous section requires at least one face to face interview. Local companies are better at this than remote contractors. In order to make the best product possible, your developers need to actively seek out the elements that make your business special. These will inform their software development work.

While a phone interview has its uses, nothing beats face to face discussions. This allows for better communication, and it also gives developers a chance to see how your business works. What kind of work culture do you promote? What is your established workflow like? Are there secondary concerns that may influence the software you need? It’s easier to find these answers and develop further questions onsite.

Availability


The best custom software is a result of close collaboration between developers and clients. Although a face to face interview is an important place to start, that meeting should not represent the beginning and the end of your discussion. Clients will inevitably have questions, and their needs may shift slightly throughout the development process. A developer needs to be available in order to make sure the finished product still fits a business’s needs. Another face to face meeting may be in order, or the question may be resolved through a phone call. Either way, custom software development services that keep their developers in-office can address these concerns far more easily than a service that uses remote contractors.

If you need to speak to your developer during regular business hours, you should be able to reach them easily. Although many software development companies use separate customer service representatives, they are not as well versed in the project as the actual developer. They also slow down communication by adding an unnecessary intermediary between developer and client. If your developer isn’t available to communicate, then how can you collaborate successfully?

Additional Services


Developing a piece of custom software is different from installing it. Developing custom software is also very different from offering technical and emergency support later in the product’s life. However, even though these are separate services, the best custom software developers offer them. Ideally, custom software development services will care for your custom product from its inception to the day you upgrade. This means you should have access to the services listed above in addition to other common technical services.

The reason why is pretty simple. Your developer knows your software better than anyone. If the developer does the research needed to make a good product, they will also know the rest of your system reasonably well. This puts them in a unique position to deliver expedited tech support when things go wrong. A regular IT specialist would have to take time to study your custom software before pursuing the problem simply to avoid exacerbating it. Your software designer doesn’t face this obstacle.

A Fantastic Piece of Software


The most important thing you should expect from your custom software design services is, of course, a great piece of custom software. It should not only perform its designated function well, but it should support your ultimate company goals and blend in with your existing framework. Custom software should address a range of needs. These include immediate workflow problems and extend to future growth and expansions. Ultimately, you and your developer will decide which features your software needs. Keep in mind that one of the greatest advantages of a custom product is the opportunity for additions and expansions down the road.

Excellent custom software begins with excellent customer service. Demand at least one face to face meeting, and make sure the developer doesn’t just nod and accept your criteria. Custom software should be custom, and that requires a clear interest in how your business works and where the product will fit in. In the end, you should expect a truly fantastic piece of custom software.

 

The Importance of Customer Service in Custom Software Development

July 20, 2017
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handshake-2056023_960_720Good customer service is always pleasant, but when you’re seeking a custom product, it’s vital. Custom software development relies on engaging developers who investigate the motives and goals driving your custom software order. To make the best possible product, developers also need to spend significant time discussing and exploring the relevant elements of your business, such as workflow and culture. The best customer service is always face to face. If you have questions, you should be able to speak to your developer rather than just sending emails.

Custom Software Development Should Begin with an Interview


At the very beginning of your professional relationship, your custom software development firm should arrange for an interview with a developer or a team of developers. This is more than just superior customer service. This interview will give the developers the keys they need to make the ideal product for your business. Unlike a hiring interview, the developers should ask just as many, if not more, questions than you do. Developers have to do more than just say ‘yes’ your list of criteria. This initial conversation is critical to the development of your final product. Although you’ll have plenty of time to present your needs, it’s the developers’ responsibility to dig deeper.

First and foremost, developers need to know what questions to ask. If you say you need software to optimize HR’s workflow, the developers need to delve into more than just the technical concerns. Great developers should look into the goals, business priorities, and unique cultures that are driving your needs. Developers should demonstrate a clear interest in helping you reach your goals and not just selling a piece of software.

Developers Should See the Whole Picture


The best custom software development companies send developers to visit your business in person. While the initial interview helps map out an initial plan, developers need further research in order to create a truly tailored product. This means speaking with you in person and seeing your business with their own eyes. Even a simple office meeting reveals a lot about a business. What motivational materials do you use? How large is your operation, and how densely populated are your workstations? Are your company’s goals and policies displayed? A good developer will notice these things.

Visiting in person is especially important for certain types of software. A developer visiting your production area may see an opportunity for increased efficiency you haven’t noticed. They may also be able to suggest new or innovative tools that would work especially well with your unique workflow. These visits also give developers a chance to ask more questions. Seeing how you do business turns abstract ideas into concrete processes. There’s a huge difference between knowing what an assembly line is and seeing how a specific assembly line is arranged and staffed.

If possible, developers should also interview your employees, or have access to employee notes about problems with the existing system. These encourage further discussion and may trigger new questions developers hadn’t thought to ask during the initial interview. In short, developers should stay engaged and communicative throughout the custom software development process.

Your Developer Should Be Available


Not all custom software development companies use traditional staffing methods. Some employ long distance developers who receive their assignments and send in their work remotely. While there are many types of business that can benefit from this arrangement, custom software developers lose efficiency and quality under these circumstances. The best employees come into an office where they focus on work. This is not only more secure, but it’s better for customer service. After all, if your developer is supposed to keep in touch with you throughout the development process, they should be reachable. Good developers should speak to clients from their office, where they can look up answers quickly and turn to other professionals if they need additional input or suggestions.

Traditional offices promote vastly more efficient communication. This means your messages are far less likely to get lost in the shuffle. You should be able to speak with the developer assigned to your project during regular business hours. An office makes this possible. Employees tend to follow procedures more responsibly when they share a roof with their bosses, too, so traditionally staffed development companies typically provide better products overall.

The best way to build superior custom software is to ask a lot of questions. Every business and every need are slightly different, so the best developers must have advanced customer service skills. After all, custom software development isn’t about selling a product. It’s about building one to suit you and your business. The more the developer understands your business, the better they can do their job. Customer service and custom software development go hand in hand.

 

Is Custom Software Affordable

July 13, 2017
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1280px-Dollar_symbolWhenever custom software comes into a conversation, the first concern is that it’s simply too expensive for the average business. The truth is that custom software may be more affordable than you thought. Even if it costs more in the short term, its long term value exceeds any off-the-shelf product.

Custom Software Range

Unlike off-the-shelf solutions, custom software can be as large or small as you need. Whether you’re looking for a refined answer to a specific problem or a whole new workflow, custom software developers can create what you need. This means that prices are hugely varied. The larger and more complex the software program, the more expensive it will be. However, you may be able to pay significantly less for a small piece of custom work that you would have to pay for a full off-the-shelf program. Even larger programs may be more affordable than comparable off-the-shelf options. By cutting out a few unnecessary features that come with off-the-shelf programs, custom software can offer a tailor made and tailor priced solution.

What Are You Really Paying For?

If you’re buying software off the shelf, you’re buying generic solutions slightly tailored for your general industry. While there may be one or two unique features that give the software designers the right to slap your industry’s name on the cover, the software still caters to very few specialized needs. It certainly won’t address the unique problems your business faces. After all, businesses aren’t built on industry standards alone. They’re also built by their very specific clientele, their individual employees, and the natural workflow established by unique cultural and geographical influences. You cannot buy a perfect pre-made software solution.

What you’re really paying for is a handful of moderately useful features and a lot of branding. An established brand will stick with what has sold well in the past. Although they might customize software to allow specific industries to account for commission work, they aren’t interested in reinventing the wheel. It profits them to change little and sink more money into marketing. You are paying as much for the brand name as you supposedly are for the industry specific software.

Short Term vs. Long Term Costs

Even if the custom software development you’re considering would be more expensive than simply buying a program off the shelf, you may end up paying more. Short term and long term expenses for custom software and off-the-shelf products are extremely different. This stems from the fact that while custom software developers are happy to have your return business, they don’t base their business model on disposable products you will have to entirely replace in the future.

If your business is doing well, it will inevitably grow. This may mean you have a wider customer base, additional services, or even a new location. In any of these situations, you’ll need software that can keep up with increased demand. Unfortunately, off-the-shelf solutions do not stretch well. Once you reach storage, user number, or feature limits, you cannot bypass them. You will, typically, have to buy entirely new software. This means you will have to make the investment you made earlier all over again. This gives the software less time to earn back its value and reduces your overall profit.

Custom software doesn’t have the same limitations. When you start working with developers, it’s easy to explain that you want your software to grow with you. Developers can easily add routes for potential expansion to your custom software. You don’t have to pay for features and storage you don’t need when you first buy your custom software, and you won’t have to pay for an entirely new system down the line, either. All you’ll need to pay for are the additions, the doors to which developers have already embedded in your software.

Estimated Returns

An important point to consider when you examine custom software is its potential to generate profit. Custom software helps employees do their jobs better and more efficiently than off-the-shelf solutions. This represents immediate savings and an enhanced likelihood of profit. After all, if a single employee can finish more work, they have time to tackle new projects, which is key for expansion. Buying software off the shelf usually allows you to continue operating at your existing speed. It isn’t made to necessarily make your job easier, only to make your job possible. This limits off-the-shelf software’s ability to give you a return on your investment.

No one wants to pay more for a product today than they have to, but if you buy a lesser product today, you’ll be paying for it again and again in the future. Custom software gives you the tools to only buy what you need now, spend less for future developments, and improve your business. When you examine the cost of custom software, you should really be asking if it’s the competition that’s affordable.

 

How Web Design Sells Your Products

July 6, 2017
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responsive-web-design-conceptAny competitive business in the Twenty-First Century needs a web presence. E-commerce represents a huge portion of regular sales. Even businesses that don’t utilize shopping cart apps rely on the internet to reach new customers and clients. In order to reach your customers, however, you need a website worth visiting. This is where web design comes in. It makes the difference between a basic web presence and a thriving e-commerce site.

First Impressions


They say first impressions last forever, and this is certainly true of websites. If a customer clicks on your page only to find a website with a design scheme from the past decade, the chances of a purchase instantly fall. Informed businesses stay up to date. Even if you are on top of recent developments in your industry, customers can only judge by what they see. An antiquated online presence gives the impression that you’ve fallen behind recent advancements. Your products may not be trendy, useful, or fitting for the customer’s current needs. It’s possible to lose customers on the home page, and a clean, modern web design can put a stop to that loss.

Showcasing Merchandise


Art students learn how to lead a viewer’s eye through their work, and web design professionals also learn how to guide users’ eyes. If there are particular products you need to put front and center, the right web design makes all the difference. While clients still enjoy the thrill of discovery, they don’t like to work for it, especially not online. A wise web developer can lead your customers to the big ticket items you are trying to move through a clearance event. The same developers can showcase best sellers and top rated merchandise. The very best do this without leaving visitors to your website, feeling like they’re flipping through a catalog.

Not all web design is meant to lead to e-commerce. However, the website is still responsible for the launch of a new sale. Builders, artists, and other providers of large scale custom work cannot use a shopping cart application to bring in sales. Web design is even more important for these types of businesses. Through your website, customers will see what they can expect from you and get a taste of your work. Good design is an essential presentation aid. No matter how good the roofing work in your photos is, if they aren’t presented well, customers may take their business elsewhere. Think of your web design as the first step in a sales pitch to a customer. A professional leaflet or booklet will win a lot more work than a handful of nice snapshots with a little writing on the back.

Ease of Use


If a website doesn’t make a customer’s desires readily apparent, the customer will leave. Ease of use is all about intuitive design. This shows most clearly in web design through navigation. While it’s fun to add unique buttons and what you think may be clever pathways to products, customers usually want something much simpler. If they click on a link advertising your weekly ad, they shouldn’t need to go through three or more screens to get to there. Popular items, services, and features shouldn’t be buried in back pages. Most importantly, customers want layouts they understand and menus that offer them what they want.

Web design gives your website a logical progression. For instance, someone ordering a cake from your bakery shouldn’t need to jump through ten different pages to get to the order form. Lists of options should follow what customers expect. It makes little sense to figure out what kind of decorations someone wants on a cake if they haven’t even determined the size yet. There may or may not be room. Or maybe you don’t make such advanced decorations for such small orders. The order is important.

Potential for Return Sales


Web design doesn’t just help customers stay on your website. It can actually pull them back for more orders. Using your landing page to advertising upcoming sales and tease future releases is a great way to plant a seed in viewers’ minds. Web design can give viewers options to get instant savings by joining your mailing list or buyers’ club, too. Great web design allows for user feedback, too, which will bring customers back to your website to leave reviews and ask questions after making a purchase. Once they’re back on your site, you have the opportunity to tempt them with additional products and fresh deals.

From the moment a customer comes to your landing page to the day they leave their final product review, their impressions of your business will be largely founded on web design. The right design leads them through the purchase process like a well-trained associate. It also gives them the best possible first impression while fostering return sales. Web design does the work of storefront, associate, and customer service representative to sell your products in an online market.

 

Why Your Business Needs Custom Software

June 29, 2017
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puzzle-1721465_960_720It’s always wise to second guess and thoroughly scrutinize a potential investment. Some don’t hold up to the examination, but custom software becomes more valuable the more you investigate. These custom products are among the best investments your business can make. Not only are they superior to the competition, but they enable you to take advantage of your business’s unique opportunities while protecting your most vulnerable points.

Off-The-Shelf Inefficiencies

The first reason your business needs custom software is because custom products are innately superior to off-the-shelf solutions. For instance, custom software developers build products based on the client’s needs from start to finish. Conversely, mass produced software only provides general solutions to simplified problems. Custom software considers an individual business and off-the-shelf solutions use a single product to address an entire industry. These generic solutions do not actually solve many problems. In fact, they may create stumbling blocks in your day to day workflow.

Good custom software comes as the result of detailed study of your business and your associated business needs. Developers not only listen to your input, but they actively observe how you do business. This gives them an opportunity to bring up inefficiencies they could potentially fix. Many of these come from off-the-shelf solutions. No single program will allow your employees to do their jobs. A single task may require application hopping, which drains time and resources. You may also have software that loses data when it updates, or software with updates that interfere with other programs.

Expansion complicates these issues. Most off-the-shelf software is built with pre-existing limitations. If your business needs more storage space, additional users, or even integrated solutions for a new location, off-the-shelf solutions will either fail or demand a hefty new fee. Usually, off-the-shelf developers design their products to force expanding companies to buy all new products to meet their expanding needs. On the other hand, custom software comes with built-in backdoors for future expansion, which cuts down on future cost and frustration.

Security Concerns

If you run off-the-shelf solutions, you face the threat of every hacker with access to that software. You also make yourself a more profitable target. After all, if a hacker manages to break through a popular off-the-shelf system’s security, then every business that runs that software is vulnerable. If you use custom software, hacking you won’t necessarily help the criminal hack any other business. It’s a matter of time investment and potential reward.

If you know of especially vulnerable points in your system, such as remote points of sale and wireless networks, then you can give custom software developers advanced notice. With this information, they then build special layers of protection for any software that comes into contact with these vulnerable points. Every business has slightly different weaknesses. Even the most expensive off-the-shelf software can’t address your specific risks as well as custom software developers.

Missed Opportunities

The best businesses are capable of taking rapid action. They also streamline interior workings to make it easier to turn a profit quickly. If you are wasting time and money on inefficient, vulnerable software, you are also wasting opportunities. Custom software offers more advantages than just waste prevention, however.

Athletes use tailored gear to enhance their performance. Artisans and craftspeople do, too. These tools help them do their work at not only a faster speed, but also with improved quality. If you have software that can combine everything you need for associates to handle a customer complaint on a single screen, how much better will your customer satisfaction score become? If your software allows employees to multitask or combine processes, won’t you be better prepared for new initiatives? Custom software gives you the ability to make your own opportunities. You can also use the development process to take advantage of new ideas and technology that will help you meet major goals.

Example of Industry Leaders

One of the best ways to tell if a particular product or tool is really worthwhile is to see how it works for industry leaders. Every industry can benefit from custom software, and the range of companies to benefit from such products reflects that. One of the world’s biggest aerospace and defense companies, Boeing, uses custom software solutions. Medical care company ADX and medical technology leaders like Drager and Siemens also benefit from custom software. Even RAM Products has custom software in use.

If you want your business to grow and expand, custom software development is an essential investment. It won’t hold you back or make you reinvest all over again for better storage space. Custom software keeps you safe, and it allows you to grow in unique directions. If the potential benefits don’t win you over, you just have to look at all the industry leading companies who have already received concrete benefits from their investment.

 

Bridging the Gap with E-Commerce through Custom Software

June 22, 2017
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ecommerce-1992280_960_720Launching an e-commerce platform is an exciting challenge, but the challenge part grows exponentially as the Internet expands. Competition increases daily. Customers expect bigger, better, and more uniform shopping experiences. Worst of all, your security is never guaranteed. Custom software can bring the excitement back to e-commerce. With unique solutions and integrative options, custom solutions can do things off the shelf options simply can’t match. Custom software is the best option for customer satisfaction, ease of use, multi-channel selling, and security concerns.

Improving the Multi-channel Experience


Multi-channel customers are the best customers. They spend more, pay close attention to your promotions and mailers, and they’re most likely to discuss your business with friends and family in a positive light. It takes a lot of work to win these customers, though, and a lot rides on the software behind your website. Multi-channel shoppers expect the same experience, whether they’re shopping through your web app or your brick and mortar storefront.

Custom software gives you a lot of advantages right out of the gate. First of all, you don’t have to try twisting an off the shelf solution to provide the kind of options customers would have in the store. Whatever you give your customers in the store, you can offer online. Do you provide free samples in the store? Offer them in connection with a mailer full of future discounts through your web app. This ties in nicely with newsletters. The right custom software can fill the void left by helpful sales associates, too.

Your software can help you with the details behind the scenes that impact customer experience, too. For example, if your software provides real-time updates on available merchandise, and you link that with your in-store manifests. Then online shoppers won’t suffer the frustration of selecting an item only to discover it’s out of stock at checkout. What shoppers see on the shelves, whether they’re physical or digital, is what’s actually available. This builds the kind of long-term trust multi-channel shoppers need.

Going Mobile


Mobile shoppers are an entirely different demographic than multi-channel shoppers, but custom software can still help you reach them. Custom software developers help you build a mobile app that offers everything your store and web app provide. They even back it up with integrative software solutions. The same connections that are so vital for online, multi-channel shoppers turn mobile shoppers into customers. Keep in mind mobile sites are technically just another channel for buyers. Since prefabricated mobile site formats are just as static as their web equivalents, choosing a custom approach is the only way to ensure uniformity.

Mobile sales are all about speed, and many shoppers make same day purchases. Mobile shoppers have the fastest average conversion times, so streamlining that funnel is imperative. Custom software creates the fastest shopper funnels and the best buyer experiences.

Connecting Revenue Streams


No one likes to talk about accounting, bookkeeping, and the wonderful world of business number games. Unfortunately, e-commerce makes that chore all the more important. It also makes it vastly more complicated. Custom software offers solutions that extremely few off the shelf products can match. For example, by linking revenue streams to flow into the same bookkeeping program, you’d save a lot of costly labor time. By addressing shopping cart application design, you can save a lot of steps down the road. You can also ensure the system matches your established accounting and bookkeeping workflow instead of complicating it.

Making Transactions Secure


Security is a greater concern than it’s ever been before, especially for businesses involved in e-commerce. Getting hacked is no longer a risk; it’s a guarantee. In order to protect your business and your customers, you have to plan ahead and take a proactive approach to your web apps’ security. This involves a lot of simple tasks, like changing passwords and using secure connections. It also takes a new approach to security, and that’s where custom software development comes in.

The harder hackers have to work to get into your system, the less likely they are to finish the job. It becomes a matter of profit. Also, hacking a unique security system that differs from every other e-commerce websites’ makes you a less appealing target. After all, what’s the point of forcing your way into a single business when you could spend the same amount of time securing the keys to dozens of others in one go?

Custom software offers solutions to every e-commerce frustration from bookkeeping complications to security. It’s the best choice for customers as well. Not only does it make multichannel selling vastly less complicated, but it provides the kinds of options and services you need to grow your customer base. When you decide to go mobile, the same developers will have your back. It’s the smart way to move into e-commerce.

 

Five Reasons Distributors Need Custom Software Development

June 15, 2017
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distribution-center-1136510_960_720Distributors keep the modern world of commerce moving, and they need software that can keep up. While many programs seek to address the major concerns of the industry, nothing works as well as custom software. Custom software development addresses the individual business rather than industry principles, making it an invaluable tool.

Time Efficiency


Distributors are always busy. While time is of the essence for any business, distributors face unique pressures due to the nature of their services. Moving product in and shipping it back out again is the backbone of the distribution industry, and that backbone relies on efficiency to stay strong. Losing even ten seconds per order quickly builds up. If employees only handled a single order per work day, the loss would still be reasonable. However, distribution employees typically handle hundreds of orders per shift. Within a month, you’re looking at a loss of hours, or even days’ worth of labor. That lost time represents unfulfilled orders. At the least, your inefficiencies are costing you profit. In the worst case, however, you could be disappointing contracted clients and customers.

Custom software development addresses the exact causes of those precious ten second lapses in efficiency. While off the shelf solutions try to provide a blanket solution that may shave the time loss down to six or seven seconds, you deserve better. Custom software addresses individual issues directly.

Cost Efficiency


First, custom software saves you money through time efficiency. If you aren’t paying for wasted hours, then that money becomes profit. If you aren’t wasting time, you also have the chance to handle more clients, which also boosts profit. At the very least, you aren’t paying for wasted time.

Custom software development also gives distributors a better return on their investment. If you pay for off the shelf software solutions, you’re paying for the time and research that went into making a product that answers problems you don’t have. You pay for partial solutions to your own issues. Off the shelf software also inevitably comes with entire features that simply aren’t very useful in your particular niche of the industry. Blanket solutions come with blanket costs. Meanwhile, custom software gives you exactly what you need without extra bells and whistles to drain your resources. You pay for exactly what you need. This is better than handing over your investment in exchange for developments and insights that help your competition as much as they help you.

Security


Cyber security is a rising concern for consumers, producers, and every other entity in today’s market. Criminals with the right tools and experience can hack just about anything, or so it seems. The sad reality is that the more common a program is, the more likely it is to be hacked. Widely used software solutions give hackers a greater return for their crimes. By breaking past a popular software system’s firewall, they have the opportunity to attack multiple businesses and customers from within. Custom software offers custom security measures. No two pieces of custom software are exactly the same, and if you want to keep your business safe, custom solutions are often your best bet.

Support


If something goes wrong, you need support you can rely on. Again, wasted time is wasted money, and if a distributor fails to deliver, they lose critical customer confidence. Distributors rely on the support behind their software, which is something off the shelf products fail to provide. Most off the shelf software developers only offer limited customer service hours. There is no way to guarantee the quality of the service you will receive.

Conversely, custom software development teams usually train their own customer service representatives, or double as repair personnel themselves. Rather than trusting a stranger with a script, you can trust the best custom software development services to stand behind their products. Custom developers have more to lose and more to gain by providing good customer service. Their superior insight into what exactly makes your software tick also makes them the best for the job. They know what other programs you run, how your business is conducted, and can find solutions faster.

Room to Expand


Custom software development doesn’t give you a cookie-cutter program. When you discuss your needs with developers, it’s very easy to ask them to give you room to expand. Developers then build in spaces for potential add-ons. This scalability is an incredibly valuable asset to any new, developing, or expanding distributor. You can pay for what you need now and rest easy knowing you can pay for additions rather than entirely new programs down the road.

Custom software development is vital for distributors looking to get ahead of the competition. Your business is unique, and you deserve software to match. Custom software solutions save time and money, keep your business secure and running, and leave room for growth.

 

The Importance of Custom Application Development in the Age of Big Data

June 8, 2017
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11396380473_26f323b1e4_bBig data has changed the way the world does business. It has also changed how businesses analyze customers, their own internal affairs, and the market at large. This burden of information changed how customers interact with businesses, too, and what level of service they expect. Web applications utilize this wealth of information to give customers the best experience possible. The same data can give businesses the best possible profits. Not all web applications are created equal, however. Not all will perfectly suit your business needs or your customer base. Custom application development gives you the most refined data collection tools. It simultaneously uses big data to improve customer experience. Most importantly, custom applications help you stand out in a growing crowd.

Integrated Data Collection


You might be wondering the best customer information your business needs. For instance, you need more than credit card information and the other data required for shopping cart applications. You also need to know what your customers are looking for. Collecting data is part of today’s business world, and it’s a vital part of custom application development. Building in these functions often boosts vital BI functions down the line. Moreover, they help more immediately with customer service. For example, a customer who sends in a complaint about how complicated or confusing your website is no longer has to remember exactly how they navigated the site in order to be useful. You can very simply track where the customer went, analyze where they lost themselves, and build new ideas based on your results.

Integrated data collection allows you to give customers more options, too. For example, many shopping cart applications come with options for email lists, coupon texts, and other promotions. The system simply takes the information provided for the purchase and asks which, if any, extra services the customer desires. Customers have the option to sign up for free services and add-on purchases as part of their final checkout process. This saves your employees time, limits customer frustration from unwanted emails, and improves overall conversions.

Getting the Right Results to the Right Customer


This point is essentially the opposite of the first. While data collection is important for business intelligence, planning, and customer service, applications have to access big data to provide the right customer experience, too. Defining what data your application needs in order to perform a specific function is vital to a developing a customer-friendly system. To make sure your application balances speed and efficient data practices, developers need to know about your business and your customers.

If your business caters almost exclusively to elderly patrons, for example, you know that they’ll appreciate a simple experience. These customers may lack the online presence that younger generations build up as well. Techniques that use social media to suggest the best products work well for millennials, but not for the vast majority of customers in their 80’s or 90’s.

This ties into the above point again. Using customer information for multiple purposes is a clever application development. However, getting the right additional options to the right customer is more complicated than it sounds. Big data allows applications to consider the customer’s previous behaviors, demographic information, and even third-party details before offering add-on purchase suggestions. The wrong suggestions leave customers feeling like you’re pushing too hard, but the right suggestions feel like a considerate offer.

Standing Out in an Over-Saturated Market


Custom application development allows you to be different. The entire reason big data is such an integral part of today’s business culture is that so many merchants, vendors, corporations, governments, and individuals around the world contribute to it. It grows every day, and it will continue to grow through the foreseeable future. This creates so many web applications and sites that the average customer has to fight to find their ideal product. Even search engines today are hampered by the sheer volume of options available. In order to compete, you can’t just jump in. You have to stand out.

Custom application development builds a unique application from the ground up. Customers can enjoy entirely unique experiences through your application. Paired with original design services, custom application development not only behaves differently, but actually looks different. Together, these services ensure your application hooks browsing visitors and leaves a lasting impression, which is the first step towards repeat business.

Every business is fighting for a place in an ocean of competition, and the tools each uses to stay afloat will make all the difference. Big data is simultaneously the greatest challenge and greatest asset of web apps, and it takes custom work to sway the burden in your favor. Whether you need to stand out, do a better job servicing customers, or simply want to harness the vast pool of available data, custom work has a fitting solution. It takes custom application development to turn big data into your advantage.

 

Custom Software Development: The Software Investment You Need

May 30, 2017
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As a business owner, you always look for ways to boost your bottom line and guarantee a successful return on your software investment. Everyone knows that custom software development often requires a significant investment, and waiting for the long-term results can be stressful. However, with the right custom software, you can boost your bottom line in both the short term and long term. Advantages that cross industry lines make your business appeal to a broader range of customers. Uniquely specific benefits of this type of software investment help you meet your specific goals and plans. In the end, each of these aspects help to boost your revenue.

Custom Software Development Wins Customers


There are a number of reasons your business benefits from a software investment in custom software. One reason is that commissioning custom tools demonstrates a business’s positions. It shows a good, steady income along with reserves. This leaves customers feeling more secure when they invest money in the company’s products and services. In the mind of most consumers, steady businesses build reliable products. At the very least, they view a steady business as more trustworthy. To most customers, a firm, settled business is less likely to lie in order to move a product.

More importantly, custom software development is known for offering better security. As cyber crimes rise and more consumers have to deal with problems like the identity theft, security is a greater and greater consideration. When major retail chains are vulnerable to cyber crimes, consumers know everyone is at risk. By not only using but publicizing custom software, businesses can maximize the return on their investment. Such software boosts a business’s reputation, which attracts more customers, which in turn boosts income. The fact that it also limits your risk is a further advantage. Cyber attacks worry customers, but they cost businesses much more.

Addressing Specific Issues


In the business world, there’s always room for improvement. Shifts could be tightened up, office supplies used more sparingly, and teams made more productive. While custom software development can’t solve all of these issues, it can make a world of difference in problems related to workflow. It also helps solve various IT struggles and helps to improve customer service.

It’s almost impossible to find off-the-shelf software that will answer every need your business develops. Most businesses have to use a patchwork of systems in order to perform regular functions, and this inevitably slows productivity. These ungainly systems boost error rates and make employees dread booting up the computer.

Not only do employees lose precious minutes and hours flipping between screens and sources, but these convoluted systems put a high demand on your hardware. IT teams will lose a lot of time handling crashed computers when that time could be better invested elsewhere. It’s wasted opportunity. Since your IT team offers some of the most valuable innovations and developments, spending extra time on unnecessary repairs and patches is even more costly.

Moreover, custom software development helps your customers, even if the software isn’t a part of your front of house services. When an employee juggles multiple systems while trying to provide information to customers over the phone, delays and frustration are inevitable. In these cases, customers feel they haven’t been treated well, even if your associates are doing their best. Good customer service is a key to customer retention. It’s also a vital part of boosting your bottom line.

Aiming for Opportunities


Although all businesses aim to grow and advance, those changes look different for every storefront, office, or fabricator. Not only is there dramatic differences in goals between industries, but each unique business has different opportunities that best suit their goals and plans. For this reason, a software investment is vital, and custom software development is the best way to support those goals.

You need to focus on customer service to build a stronger local reputation. The best custom software gives you advanced options designed for your particular services. For instance, restaurants need software aimed to support new, third party delivery services. However, they may plan on developing their own delivery options. Since customers often prefer to order in advance for pick-up, each restaurant needs highly customized ordering software that allows for customization. After all, customers expect the same service online that they get in person.

In other industries, manufacturers face unique technical programming challenges. Moreover, stock advisors need software that allows for maximum customer profile customization, while simultaneously delivering real-time stock numbers. Opportunities for integration and ease of use pave the way for any type of business to meet specific goals faster.

The Bottom Line of a Software Investment

Make a software investment in custom software development. It helps to boost your bottom line in both the near and distant future. It’s a high set of expectations. However, working with the right custom software development team helps you build your ideal tools. In turn, these help you with everything from winning new customers to cultivating their continued loyalty. Custom software is safer and more efficient.  These systems address immediate concerns and goals by tailoring a program to match your existing workflow. All of these benefits combine to make a powerful software investment that boosts your revenue. Custom software not only brings in returns but supports how you do business.

 

The Value of Custom Database Development Services

May 23, 2017
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In this age of data and information, you need software that helps you capture and analyze data used to improve your business. However, with so many different types of software and database development packages it can be difficult to know which package proves to be the best for your company. What if instead of trying to pick and choose the things you need and don’t need in a basic package, you could develop your own custom software?

This is where custom database development services come to the rescue. They make the perfect software programs for your business. Having unique software programs is what takes businesses to a whole new playing field. It makes the difference between becoming stagnant and expanding. Some businesses could not function at nearly of high of a level without their own custom database development. For this reason, the ever growing business world holds custom database development services as a valuable resource. They can be specifically altered to fit the client wants and needs, they allow for future modifications, and they help discover and prevent unforeseen problems in the future.

Specific to the Client

Custom database development services are specific to each client. These services don’t focus on only one type of business. They cover a wide range of businesses and are capable of building an array of applications to fit anyone’s business objectives. Custom database development services do not discriminate on the type of business. They can work with hospitals or trucking companies, or even construction companies. If it’s a business with clients, custom database development services can create software specific to their business objectives.

Custom database development services are more personal. They work with the client to develop a database that will help companies thrive instead of fail. Larger companies use the service of custom software development for critical functions such as content management, inventory management, customer management, and human resource management. These are crucial to any company that software packages simply don’t cover. Custom database development services will tailor your software to appeal to your target market instead of the general market like most software packages do. Appealing to your business’s target group, in turn, brings in more customers and helps grow your business.

Allow for Future Modifications

A growing company is a changing company. Along with a growing business comes several changes, especially in software. A business can fall behind when they should be growing because their database cannot keep up. This is where custom database development services become extremely valuable. With a customized database, you always have room for modification, allowing for future changes to occur. However, the custom software usually requires the source code prior to adding future modifications to the system. Because your business is bound to grow or change, you need your software to reflect that in order to be successful. You want software that changes and evolves with your company.

Having a solid database leads to greater efficiency and better customer service; two critical components of a successful business. Software packages possess the capability to allow for modification and often have to. This ends up costing the client far more than a custom database would have cost. It also costs having great efficiency and customer service because the database is not up to par. Having a custom database also allows for modification to focus on their target market. This is because a custom database changes as much as your business does. If your target group shifts, so will the database. It can be easily modified to always target your businesses market and not just the general market. This custom database development a valuable asset to your business.

Helps Prevent Possible Future Problems

Things quickly spiral out of control when problems are not dealt with properly. Client information is crucial to your business. Thankfully, custom database development services help to keep this information safe and businesses running smoothly. This is because making successful and efficient custom software is very meticulous. They run several tests and scenarios in order to work out any future problems that could occur. This prevents future setbacks and in turn is excellent for the success of a business. You simply don’t get that with software packages. However, with software packages, information becomes more likely to cause problems. These packages aren’t specifically tailored to fit your business needs, which leads to more problems with information and data. For this reason, custom database services add value to your business.

Software packages may be cheaper and convenient, but they cost more in the end. Custom software treats each business separately. Each custom software is unique to the different businesses. This is why having custom software instead of a software package brings so many benefits to a business. Custom database development services are specific to the client, allow for future modifications, and they help to prevent possible future problems. The value of custom database development is unprecedented. By choosing custom database development you are choosing to grow!

How to Maximize Employee Performance through Custom Software

May 18, 2017
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maximize employee performance

Employees are some of your most valuable assets, but handling a diverse workforce leads to inevitable wastes of time and funds. Outdated or needlessly complex software causes much of this waste, especially in office environments. Custom software development, however, has your solution. This article shows you how custom software development helps you maximize employee performance.

Custom Software Development Offers the Ultimate Intuitive Controls


You want to maximize employee performance, and intuitive controls are one way to do just that. Intuitive controls have become a bit of a fad phase in marketing, and just about every piece of software on the market claims to have them. In reality, intuitive controls are best when they are customized. The more specific the customization, the better they will function. A general intuitive design helps users figure out how to enter and exit software efficiently. Alternatively, most software utilizes complex features that cannot be so easily displayed.

Custom software development designs intuitive controls based on your business’s unique work and pace. You may need specialized controls for handling clients, for example. Dashboards and tabs could divide client-oriented work into more specific work tracks. This would shave off time digging through layers of organization to find a specific function. Designs that follow the day to day patterns of your business mean you can spend less time training your employees, and you can waste fewer labor hours.

Embrace the Dashboard Experience


Embracing the dashboard is another way to maximize employee performance. One of the best advances in the world of software development has been the popularizing of dashboard controls. With dashboards, you can easily collect various functions onto a communal screen. This makes it easy to work through an entire process without flipping between various programs. Everything you need is in one place. This technology offers advantages for essentially any industry, and rudimentary versions are commonplace in most leading software.

However, while most off-the-shelf software features some form of dashboards, they aren’t always customizable. Even if they are, your customization options are limited by the developer’s ideas about the industry’s needs at large. While a few of the available options may work well for your individual business, custom software development would provide dashboards that addressed your workflow and primary needs directly. Since dashboards are meant to save time, it’s important for them to adhere to your specific requirements. Unfortunately, basic customization options only take you so far because the original designer’s expectations control their limits.

Wield Employee Input


Custom software development offers the chance to maximize some of your greatest assets, your employees. When employees struggle with their tools at work, they have to drain time and resources from IT. If this happens often enough, even if the employee is otherwise doing excellent work, the employee could easily become frustrated. Such employees often feel underappreciated and underutilized at work. This leads to low workplace satisfaction for your top performers. That, in turn, often leads them to seek a new position. There’s a way to harness this frustration for the advancement of the company, however.

If you ask your employees what aspects of your company’s existing software holds them back, they’ll be quick to answer. Careful analysis of the most commonly reported stumbling blocks will give you the raw data you need to make a superior system. Of course, that feedback won’t help you if you’re simply buying off-the-shelf software. However, custom software developers work with you from the beginning and are eager for your input. Offering employee feedback gives them priceless insight into your goals and struggles. With the aid of software that helps rather than hinders their daily workflows, employees are able to achieve higher standards and production volumes. As an added bonus, those frustrated, high performing employees receive the acknowledgment they need. By taking employee input into consideration, you reinforce your employees’ value and encourage long-term loyalty from your top performers.

Track Progress for Rewards


No one likes to feel like Big Brother is watching over their shoulders, even at work, but in order to get the data you need to efficiently run your business, you need access to detailed reports about employee activity. Many businesses use complex, multi-step logins that waste time and start employees’ work days with frustration.

There are better ways to track and reward progress. By including such functions in custom software development from the onset of production, you save your employees stress. You also get more accurate data. After all, managers get to waste even more time under the familiar multi-login system. Whenever an employee forgets one of their logins, they have to make an official report. The manager must then use their report to correct multiple systems. These include hour tracking, employee time cards, etc.

Daily workflow is a complex system of minor and major functions. The right software can turn it from a chore into a productive cycle. Custom software development gives you the keys to solve existing issues, minimize time losses, and encourage loyalty from your best workers. It’s a lot to expect from a single investment, but custom software development should always be exceptional.

 

Custom Application Development: Does Your Infrastructure Need a Mobile App

May 15, 2017
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While it’s easy to assume all mobile apps are for customers, each app possesses an entirely different set of functions behind the scenes. Mobile apps can focus on infrastructure or they can focus on being customer driven. For this reason, custom application development is a useful infrastructure tool. While infrastructure-oriented applications generate less revenue than customer-oriented applications, they make a tremendous difference in productivity, effectiveness, and budget management. Let’s look at reasons why your business infrastructure needs a mobile app.

Are You Struggling to Communicate Effectively?


Mobile applications are, of course, designed for smartphones. However, not every business issues smartphones to employees. Still, it’s safe to assume that the majority of your workforce already owns and regularly operates a smart device. By investing in a custom application development with a mobile-friendly design, you can take advantage of this. Improve your infrastructure with employee preparedness. Additionally, this negates the need for new hardware, and is much easier than relying on walkie-talkies. For instance, they often suffer from a limited range. Moreover, it vastly outperforms reaching employees through email.

Business communication spans everything from emergency calls off from work to day to day management concerns. Depending on your needs, your mobile may allow a simplified schedule-maintenance system for your employees. This system allows for rapid response to sudden requests for leave. This gives scheduling managers the rapid notice they need in order to shift schedules. It could conceivably help bring in replacement labor, as well.

Interior communication on-site is no easier. Forcing employees to check email multiple times a day when their functions do not depend on this system lowers productivity. It also leaves employees feeling paranoid and uncertain about upcoming team meetings, schedule shifts, or other critical events. Employees who depend on their email for crucial operations face an even greater need for a mobile application. While email is an invaluable tool, it isn’t the best or most effective way to communicate rapidly about sudden client needs, rush jobs, or other typical emergencies. A mobile app geared toward departmental communication helps bypass the muck of a cluttered inbox.

Are You Losing Time?


Humans aren’t perfect, but the vast majority of employees could do their jobs more effectively. Minutes and hours slip through the cracks as employees struggle to stay up to date and perform their roles simultaneously. Many small businesses still have to deal with pens, paper, and data re-entry down the road. No one wants to waste their employees’ time by forcing them to physically write out an inventory sheet that they must later type into their desktop computer. A mobile application gives businesses the option to assign a tablet, smartphone, or another portable device for tasks like these. The reason for this is that they require extensive movement away from the computer.

Do You Struggle to Meet Demand?


A mobile app helps employees move faster. Custom application development may allow your employees to make on-site assessments and offer bids for work while they’re out of the office. Mobile checkout applications have grown increasingly popular for small businesses, particularly restaurants. Servers can function as cashiers as they visit their assigned tables, literally bringing the register with them as they go. It saves you time and helps customers avoid standing in line to pay their bill. By giving your employees the ability to literally carry the tools of their trade along with them as they work, you can help them move faster. This cuts down on wasted trips to and from the office or register. It saves time for the most important front-of-house activity, serving customers.

Have You Considered the Advantages of Custom Application Development?


Perhaps mobile applications have won you over. However, you want that the investment in a custom product is worth the extra cost. Custom application development may not cost as little as previous years’ clearance software, but it’s surprisingly affordable compared to today’s top off-the-shelf products. Custom mobile applications also enjoy a longer lifespan than the competition. Other benefits include more immediate returns than mass produced solutions. You won’t have to reinvest in software as quickly, and you’ll see better results.

Custom applications simply get the job done better. Since custom application development begins and ends with your business’s unique needs and goals in mind, the final product is always the best option. Mass produced software addresses industry concerns. Custom applications focus on your individual business.

Adjusting infrastructure is never comfortable, but it’s necessary for any growing business. There will always be room for improvement. Mobile applications can help you take advantage of those opportunities. They strengthen and simplify communication, eliminate repetitive functions, and ease the time restrictions that make customer service such a strain. Few software products offer such a dynamic range of benefits. If you want a sharper, more efficient infrastructure, a mobile app is a highly rewarding and cost-effective option. It harnesses today’s smartphone culture and transforms time-wasters into time-savers.

 

Ten Things Every Consumer App Needs

May 2, 2017
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Consumer apps have shaped the e-commerce landscape, and they’re only growing more popular. In order to keep up, top businesses are choosing custom application development. Custom or not, however, there are some things every consumer app needs.

Eye-Catching Design


Before you make a sale, you have to grab customers’ attention. App users are visually motivated, and having an aesthetically pleasing and unique app will draw in users. Unappealing apps don’t feel as fun, no matter how useful they may be. In order to secure regular users, your app should appeal to current design preferences and use both color and line to spark viewers’ interest.

Intuitive Structure


If they like what they see, customers will need to actually use the app. New users don’t want to take a tutorial. They’ve used many applications, and they expect certain features and patterns. For instance, app-logic dictates that the company logo at the top of the screen should always lead back to the main menu. First-time users should be able to use your dazzling new app as easily as an app they’ve used for years. Custom application development may bring in new features, but customers should be able to use them without a walk-through.

Excellent Search Functions


Get your customers where they need to go as quickly as possible. This is especially important for businesses with multiple locations or a wide variety of products. A search bar is essential for any app, but the more helpful the search function is, the more at ease customers will feel with your business. Try incorporating auto-complete options, similar product suggestions, and other assist functions. No one wants to feel stupid, and pulling up a search that gets no results is frustrating.

Interactive Options


An app is a tool, but the best apps always feel like a game. If a customer wants to order a pizza, let them use drop down menus and tabs to create a virtual pizza. Let them see what they’re making as they order. The more hands-on a customer’s app experience is, the more tangible the memory of your business and product will be. This is a major advantage of custom application development, which gives you an unlimited range of possibilities for interactive menus and screens.

Seamless Shopping Experience


Many businesses today are strictly limited to e-commerce. If you use both a storefront and an e-commerce system, it’s imperative to create a seamless shopping experience. The look of your website should match the décor of your store and vice versa. Options and services available in the physical store should also be available online. This goes beyond selling the same products. If your customers have questions they could get an associate to answer in a store. Online chat or query options should be clearly marked in the application.

Mobile Compatibility


This point shouldn’t surprise anyone. Although web apps are still on the rise, mobile applications dominate the market. If you design a web application for your e-commerce site, it absolutely has to be compatible with mobile devices. Customers will expect your web services to work on their phones and tablets. Failing to meet this expectation will result in lost revenue and disappointed customers.

Suggested Products


E-commerce sales strategies aren’t very different from storefront techniques. Rather than training employees to use these techniques, however, apps must be coded in advance to push additional sales. Offering a menu bar of suggested products is a simple way to encourage additional sales, but custom software development allows a tremendous range of creative sales strategies.

Customer Retention Features


A sale is great, but a returning customer is better. To keep your shoppers’ attention, you need to offer something beyond a series of menus and a shopping cart. Use your app to invite customers to join newsletters with exclusive sales and discounts. Encourage and reward feedback. Use your app to not just make sales, but to interact with customers.

Speed


Without speed and efficiency, all of the other points on this list are useless. Your app must work well with a range of devices, and work quickly, in order to make sales. When a customer comes to your app, they should be able to go from the main screen to the final checkout confirmation effortlessly. E-commerce shoppers want efficiency and ease of use as much or more than they want your actual product.

Support from the Custom Application Development Team


Last but not least, use a custom application development service you can turn to if things go wrong. Services that offer emergency support and regular maintenance can make all the difference. After all, a downed application only costs you money.

Building a consumer application is a lot of work, but if the job is done well, customers will barely notice. That’s how it should be. Customers should move through the app quickly, enjoy the shopping experience, and remember your business for future use.

 

Five Key Traits of Excellent Custom Software Developers

April 25, 2017
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custom software

To get the best custom software, you need the best custom software development services. It sounds simple, but with such a broad market, many potential clients have trouble finding the services that will actually provide what they need. Excellent developers have several key traits that set them apart. These superior options will demonstrate exceptional communication habits and provide a variety of services to diverse clients. Developers should prove their reliability through engagement and a record of success. Most importantly, they will provide genuine custom software development services.

Communication


In order to provide superior custom software, developers need to have excellent communication skills. They should, at the very least, respond rapidly to email and text messages, maintain a regular correspondence with clients, and handle their phones professionally. Excellent custom software developers should surpass these basic skills, though. They need the practical ability to interact frequently and directly with their clients. Ideally, developers meet with clients in person. This is why many of the best custom software developers are local. Having an office in the client’s region allows developers to arrange face-to-face meetings from the beginning of their working relationship through the conclusion of the custom software project. Without the advantage of proximity, collaboration and cooperation become vastly more challenging and expensive. This is why local custom software development services always provide superior communication.

Service Variety


Not all developers offer integration. The best custom software development services go beyond basic development, however. They even go beyond integration for their own products. Excellent developers offer a number of different services that ought to cover development, maintenance, and integration. Integration has obvious uses, and no one will understand how potential acquisitions will work with your system better than the people who built it. Maintenance is important for the same reasons. Having a knowledgeable, local source of support is invaluable in times of crisis.

Variety goes beyond types of service. An excellent developer should have experience working with many different industries. This flexibility is an essential criterion for determining a developer’s ability to understand new systems, work environments, and goals. Custom software development services revolve around the client, and working with diverse clients proves developers are not limited to a single trick or system.

Reliability


When you need help, or you want an update, your developer should answer the call. Reliability goes beyond following laws and meeting deadlines. Custom software development is an intensely collaborative project, or at least it should be. That requires easy communication and a great deal of trust. The best developers demonstrate their reliability through engagement.

Custom software developers shouldn’t just sit back and wait for your list of needs. The best developers look for areas that could be improved, ask questions, and use your ideas to spark more involved conversations. Since the best developers also follow collaborative practices, clients know what’s being done at each stage of development. However, by asking questions and looking for new opportunities, developers can take the project in surprising and improved directions.

Record of Success


The best developers present the record of their success up front. It should appear on their promotional material, and it should include at least a few client names. This allows potential clients to do their own research before committing to a new developer. The names also provide concrete evidence of several of the qualities listed above. A variety of customers and services should be immediately clear. If possible, ask for the approximate dates of when developers worked with clients. You can often judge how well developers have maintained their skills over time, based on the number and prestige of recent and current clients.

True Custom Software Development Services


The best custom software is truly custom. From time to time, a developer will resell solutions created for a previous client that only loosely fit the needs of the current client. Even if these products do a better job than off the shelf options, they could still do better. If developers sell these products, they should clarify the difference between customized software and custom built software. Only one of these is unique to your business. While there is certainly nothing wrong with selling or buying customized software, it isn’t exactly the same product, and it may cost less than custom software development services.

The best developers communicate directly, demonstrate their reliability, provide a range of services to diverse clients, and have the records to prove it. Custom software development services don’t usually come cheap, and they’re an investment that requires a lot of pre-screening. Developers balance technical talent with interpersonal skill. The best developers will give your business a boost to the next stage of growth, and they’ll be waiting in the wings should you need their services again. It’s a hard mix to find, but the results are always well worth the effort.

 

Top Five Reasons to Choose Custom Software Development from Ayoka

April 18, 2017
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Choosing the right partner for custom software development may seem challenging, but it doesn’t have to be. Perhaps, finding the right company to partner with for custom software development, regular maintenance, and even integration seems daunting. However, it is as simple as reviewing the developer’s process, standards, and track record. Fortunately, Ayoka stands above the competition on all fronts. With local offices conveniently located, they work with some of the largest U.S. companies. Even better, they always put the customer first. While there are many great reasons to choose Ayoka, we narrowed them down to the top five for this article.

Ayoka is Local


One of Ayoka’s biggest advantages is their multiple, local offices. These give developers the ability to meet clients for one-on-one discussions. Custom software development from remote developers lacks the insight of personal involvement and direct experience with your company. This opens a direct line of communication from day one. That direct communication continues throughout development. Ayoka’s developers don’t want to just fill out a checklist of a client’s basic needs. They seek to engage the client in a cooperative effort in order to produce the best possible software for their business.

Ayoka’s location also makes them more reliable. Unfortunately, it’s hard to do more than leave damaging reviews of slow, inefficient, or fraudulent developers from overseas. However, Ayoka must abide by the same laws and codes you operate by. As mentioned earlier, local offices make it easy to schedule one-on-one meetings. Thankfully, this also takes a lot of the confusion and frustration out of regular updates.

The third great advantage of working with local developers is insight. Not only do Ayoka’s developers meet with their clients, they also understand the consumer culture their clients cater to. They recognize customer expectations and are better equipped to help clients meet those demands.

Ayoka Gets to Know Your Business


Since Ayoka’s offices are nearby, their developers make a point of exploring, discussing, and understanding client’s businesses as a whole. This means clients get to know their developers’ faces because those developers work with them in person. Developers do on-site research, hold multiple meetings with clients, and take the time to inspect problems directly. With this insight, they develop custom software that isn’t just tweaked to suit the client.  They fully develop the software to suit the client’s work culture, future needs, and business goals. Extremely few developers have this opportunity, which is due to both Ayoka’s location and business standards.

Ayoka’s Service Go Beyond Custom Software Development


Although Ayoka is best known for custom software development, their expertise goes beyond building software and applications. Ayoka offers full technical and emergency support services. Moreover, their developers possess the most intimate understanding of your software and operating system. This helps them solve your problems faster and more efficiently than a vast majority of third party IT crews.

Integration, due diligence, and data management solutions ensure that Ayoka continues to help you well into the future. Your growing business inevitably faces needs for these services, and Ayoka aims to take the hassle and worry out of it. Since their developers understand your system so well, they are the best choice for examining potential software and application acquisitions. Of course, it’s always less stressful to trust a proven company with delicate tasks like integration. With Ayoka’s diverse range of services, they always work to support and improve your business infrastructure.

Ayoka has a Proven Track Record


Examining previous client feedback is always a crucial step in finding a developer. Ayoka has an extensive history with clients of various sizes from many different industries. Massive industrial pioneers like Boeing use Ayoka’s services, as do medical services like ADX. Airports, data centers, and textile services all called on Ayoka’s developers, and are happy to list themselves as previous clients. Very few developers have this kind of track record, and it stands as evidence of the company’s high service and performance standards.

Ayoka’s Developers are Ready to Prove Themselves


Ayoka’s work history is only the beginning. Developers seek to constantly improve their skills, and they treat each client, regardless of size, as a unique and engaging opportunity. Prior experience helps them spot the root of common problems quickly, but their solutions will always be tailored to meet individual business goals and systems. No two businesses are exactly alike, and no two pieces of custom software are ever truly identical. Custom software development demands the most of its developers while offering the most to clients.

Everything from location to experience demonstrates Ayoka’s superior standards and performance. The company’s range of services allows them to readily assist clients with essentially any development, maintenance, or integration need. From the very beginning, the client comes first. Developers visit in person and keep clients involved throughout the development process. Ayoka is reliable, customer-oriented, and has the track record to prove it. These top five reasons to choose Ayoka represent a fraction of the services and features that set this developer apart.

 

Keeping Pace with Custom Software Development

April 11, 2017
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The business world is not kind to off the shelf software. These regular software programs often deal with key business issues and address expectation based on the previous year’s numbers. They’re poorly prepared for the world of trending products, e-commerce, and international trade shifts. No matter how large or small a business may be, their software is the key to business growth. Off the shelf solutions demand frequent re-investment for an average product. Custom software development, however, helps businesses keep pace with today’s business world while preparing for the future.

Custom Software Development Helps Evaluate Your Business


Before developers write a single line of code, they thoroughly investigate your business. They consider everything from revenue streams to the employee culture. Initial conversations should focus on your goals, your business directives, and the purpose the custom software would serve. Only then do you and the developers begin to consider obstacles and problems. Because they spend time getting to know your business from the inside out, developers have a unique perspective on the health of your enterprise as a whole.

Custom software development teams depend on advanced cooperation techniques, and it wouldn’t be difficult to incorporate a report on the state of your business during development. Fully understanding the state of your businesses is essential, but it’s only the first step. This data provides you with the insight needed to not only complete the project, but plan for future improvements. The best part is, you can address quite a few of the issues you discuss with developers through the custom software itself.

Custom Software Stands Out for Customers


Business growth depends on customers, and even if they can’t see what software you’re running behind the scenes, they’ll recognize increased efficiency. Customers experience software inefficiencies through extended delays, slow service, and order or service errors. Growing businesses often struggle with these issues even more as they outpace their current software’s capacity. Layering systems to compensate for one cheap system’s flaws is an invitation for data loss, confusion, and frustrated customers.

Since custom software doesn’t stuff your business’s workflow and data in a preconceived mold, it allows greater freedom and ease of access. Custom software doesn’t create extra hurdles when your employees are focused on customer service. It also aids behind the scenes workflow, which helps businesses meet commission and order deadlines. Most importantly, software designed to perfectly streamline your established business culture and habits. This leaves you with more time to spend with your customers, with is infinitely more useful than spending the afternoon on the phone with IT.

Custom Software Boosts Productivity


Software inefficiencies are the overhead of labor. Even the best employees are only as productive as their software options allow them to be. The more systems they have to juggle, the lower their production rates will drop. Only custom software can perfectly meet your business’s needs, because off the shelf programs are designed for the widest possible market. Regular software’s broad design makes specialization within a business extremely difficult. Using multiple systems to complete a single task soon becomes unavoidable.

While many businesses use off the shelf solutions to handle everything from company newsletters to customer order management, these products restrict their ability to serve customers and meet changing demand. Businesses using off the shelf solutions also have to tailor their practices and workflow to suit the software. This arrangement should be vice versa. It’s impossible for employees to meet their full potential under these conditions.

Custom software supports employees rather than challenging them. With software designed for their specific roles, designed to solve regular issues and circumvent frequent errors, employees can get far more work done in a much shorter period. It’s always better to fix a problem once by choosing custom software, than it is to ask your employees to compensate for that problem every time they work an order.

Custom Software Prepares You for the Future


One of the greatest benefits of custom software is that it doesn’t just solve today’s problems. It gives you an advantage for the future. Working directly with developers allows businesses to choose exactly how flexible they want their new software to be. The more flexible it is, the better the software can compensate for expanding customer databases and additional services.

Keeping pace in the racing business world means streamlining your business, and the best way to maximize your speed and productivity is to choose the best tools. Custom software development is an easy way to boost business growth. It helps you better understand your business and immediately addresses major obstacles and inefficiencies. The same software improves your customers’ experience. It also helps your employees smash previous production standards. Most importantly, custom software development prepares your business for the future, and the only thing better than keeping pace is pulling ahead of the pack.

 

Is Your Infrastructure Leaking Funds?

April 4, 2017
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Inefficiencies, errors, and wasted work hours lurk in every business infrastructure. Recognizing these problems, however, is only the first step. They may seem unavoidable, but the truth is that custom software development services have ready solutions to a huge range of infrastructure leaks. Although they require an initial investment, custom software development services offer the surest way to stop leaking funds.

Custom software development services begin by examining the situation. Rather than just upgrading demonstrably inefficient programs, custom software allows you to address the problem at its root. Once developers have a good understanding of your business infrastructure and the gaps money falls through, they can begin putting together your ideal software solution. This basic approach can solve issues ranging from time management to communication gaps in the chain of command.

Employee Time Management


Even the best employees have trouble perfectly managing their time. When employees are dealing with outdated or substandard software, their performance rate drops even further. Between these two situations, you may find you’re losing hundreds of dollars each month to inefficient workflow and employee confusion.

Your custom software can actually be designed to work with rather than against your employees’ workflow. During their initial investigation, custom software developers can see how employees spend their time, thereby identifying points of strength and the leaky aspects of your current system. This allows them to build software that plays off your business culture’s best attributes. The same custom software can erase regular obstacles and smooth over rough transitions.

System Inefficiencies


If you or your employees must run multiple programs in order to accomplish a single, repeated task, you are wasting hundreds of labor hours every month. Off the shelf solutions that attempt to consolidate data can be just as bad. Patchwork systems that attempt to compensate for outdated programs often fail to carry over all the data or app functions from the original programs. Attempting to combine databases or indirectly link access for different departments makes regular processes unnecessarily complicated.

Custom software development services aim to build intuitive, easy to use systems. Imagine a single piece of software that allows employees to work through a task from beginning to end. It’s the most efficient production model, and it’s the least prone to errors.

How Many Links Are in Your Chain of Command?


Do your decision makers have access to the tools they need, or do they have to relegate much of their own work? It may seem strange, but sometimes the greatest leaks in business infrastructure appear between links in the chain of command. Often, a chain of command involves cutting out practical information that managers, partners, and CEOs absolutely need to know. In order to make informed decisions, leaders need data. They also need insight into their employees’ daily workflow. Passing research and work to other employees with more knowledge interrupts the productivity of the burdened employee. This may throw off other areas of production in a chain reaction.

Custom software gives decision makers the opportunity to discuss with developers exactly what they need. Whether they need custom applications in order to rapidly search through data, access to a greater range of programs, or simply a streamlined command system, custom software has the solution. Each leader is different, and custom software allows each one to secure the tools they need without wasting resources.

Paying Many Times for the Same Service


Software is a necessary part of essentially any business, but as time goes one, software applications grow more and more streamlined to perform particular tasks. The number of tasks has not diminished, however. This leads to a situation where your business is pressured into buying new software to augment programs they already run. Many of these programs have crossover data sets or functions, which leads to gross inefficiencies and frequent errors. It’s also an incredible waste of time.

Custom software development services identify these issues early on in the development process. Whether you are building a replacement system, or a dashboard program that can handle data sets from various applications, your new custom software can solve this issue. A central point of reference allows employees to work faster, and numbers to add up more smoothly. Most importantly, a single system is a much cheaper option than paying for the same process from three or four different software products.

It isn’t easy to pinpoint all the little leaks that cost your business, but custom software development services can help you through the process of plugging them up. Even the best business infrastructure has room for improvement. Nothing provides a better return on its initial investment than custom software. It saves time and money while laying the foundations for future growth. The ability of custom software developers to study and address your unique problems makes their products so valuable. Unlike off the shelf software, custom products pay for themselves.

Make More with Custom E-Commerce Solutions

March 28, 2017
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Today, custom e-commerce solutions offer industrial companies the opportunity to make more capital, and at a faster rate than relying on what distributors or third party sales people could hope to match. The most expensive domains and applications require only a fraction of overhead cost. Especially, when compared to the overhead demanded by royalty agreements or a physical warehouse. Moreover, it allows industrial businesses to directly sell to their clients at much lower costs. This also means they are more likely to turn a profit, especially if your software can suggest products and monitor inventory levels from your ERP. Of course, this all depends on your e-commerce applications.

Like many business organizations, you’re tempted to start at the lowest, cheapest levels of e-commerce.  This means using pre-made applications and do-it-yourself models. However, these often cut down your potential sales if you’re selling machinery, chemicals or other non-consumer goods. Custom application development that supports your business processes, from purchase order management to compliance reporting is still, vastly cheaper than hiring more staff. Moreover, the returns almost always outweigh any initial investment. To get the most out of e-commerce for business to business systems, you need custom solutions.

E-Commerce Demands


Running an e-commerce platform is entirely different from running a physical storefront. First of all, consumers approach e-commerce applications with a different set of standards. In addition, they also expect your app to provide service at a speed no employee could match. For example, when someone visits your website, they are looking for clear, concise information with plenty of relevant images. They want to enjoy their experience through new features, but they also want to feel confident using your app’s functions. E-commerce should lead customers down an easy path, from the landing page to their final purchase confirmation. It’s a lot to ask of a single application. However, custom application development helps with each of these issues and more.

Keep Visitors’ Interest


Online shoppers and potential clients expect two things the second the click on your link. First, they expect something fresh and interesting. Second, they expect that fresh design to follow intuitive patterns of use. Essentially, they want something that is both new and familiar at the same time. This goes beyond pretty backgrounds and simple fonts. An engaging website or app needs to be built from the ground up. Custom application development gives you an advantage from the start. The right developers keep you involved throughout the process. This is the best way to ensure the final product meets your needs while appealing to customers.

Easing Customers through Searches


Obviously, every customer wants a smooth shopping experience. However, e-commerce shoppers take this demand to a new level. Speed and ease decide their shopping habits. If customers can’t find what they’re looking for on your website within the first few moments, they typically move on to a different provider. A key to getting customers where they want to go quickly is by honing your search features.

In addition to a well-organized menu with clear options and subcategories, you need to invest some time in your search functions. Does your search box have auto complete? Does it suggest popular items from your site based on the first letters? If users misspell an item’s name, will your search box list potential matches with similar spelling? Anything that shortens the time between a customer’s first click and their final purchase will increase the chances of return sales.

Shopping Carts to Match Your Products


Premade shopping cart apps don’t always work well for small or developing businesses. Many businesses rely on customization and a range of unique feature choices to help sell their products. The same goes for businesses offering service packages. A premade shopping cart app has limited options designed for basic orders. Even systems like those used by major crafting platforms, like Etsy, have serious flaws. They limit user’s ability to accurately describe their products. Unfortunately, these problems only compound when a business offers customization and unique commissions. Custom application development prevents these situations from becoming problems. Instead, developers gain a chance to incorporate the necessary range of tools and features from the project’s inception.

Technical Support


If an e-commerce application goes down, the profit loss is instantaneous. To prevent significant losses, it’s important to have reliable tech support with working knowledge of your system on speed dial. Custom application development requires a special kind of commitment to customer service, and any developers worth their salt will offer technical support and emergency response services. Custom work requires detailed knowledge of not only the new application, but the system into which it fits. More importantly, keeping their own product up, running, and making money is essential for developers. They are as invested in your custom application’s success as you are.

E-commerce gives businesses the chance to quick-start their sales, and nothing boosts initial sales and customer loyalty like a tailor-made application. Custom e-commerce solutions can walk the fine line between sparking interest with a new feature and ensuring customers don’t struggle to use it. A custom application can help customers find what they need faster, and a custom shopping cart ensures you present your product accurately. Best of all, custom e-commerce solutions will introduce you to your ideal tech support team. Together, these features boost sales and drive return business. It’s a smart way to get ahead of the vast competition in the world of e-commerce.

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