Top 10 Business Trends for 2014

Business in 2014 is bound to be more vibrant, connected and tech savvy. Here’s how things are set to be in the year to come:

business trends 2014

1. Visual Explosion

Pictures can speak a thousand words and they are really more effective in communicating ideas and messages. This is probably why platforms like Pinterest and Instagram have become platforms and vehicles for those who’d like to tell a story with their products and services. The super duper success of YouTube perhaps is why we have a phenomenon called Vine today. More power to images which in turn propel businesses to a new level.

2. Social Media Intensity

Social media marketing has become more of a necessity. It’s no longer an option which is why the intensity of social media marketing efforts is only likely to grow in 2014. Good times ahead for marketers on Facebook and Twitter.

3. Web Based Businesses Grow

With platforms like Wix, it is now really simple to set up a website for your business. If you are willing to map out a small budget then you can even sell online without spreading yourself too thin. Powered by this change web based businesses are poised to grow.

Besides that options like KickStoro let you set up a Facebook store in a few simple steps allowing you to sell straight from your Facebook page. For just a few dollars a month you have the option to sell anywhere in the world without investing in a website, payment gateway and shopping cart. Now that’s all set to get better in 2014!

4. Online Marketplaces Burgeon

The success of Etsy has spurred many an ecommerce entrepreneur to launch an online marketplace. Being a facilitator was never so easy and profitable as it is today and still to be in times to come.

5. Green Alternatives

Reading about a company called Whiteknife, set up by a 22 year old design student who looked for an alternative to ivory while zeroing in o a green business idea showed me what a huge potential there is for green businesses. They do not have to be boring and predictable, you can build something green for the luxury segment and cash in on a niche.

6. Portfolio Careers

It’s increasingly clear the traditional career path is no longer available to most folks. Today, more people are creating new career paths through two calculated moves (1) moving back and forth between traditional employment and self-employment; and, (2) creating multiple sources of income from different activities (part-time jobs, freelancing, etc.) One job is pass√© multiple roles are in.

7. Robust Investment Climate

If you have an idea, don’t let the lack of investment deter you. Angel investors and venture capitalists are filling in that gap for you. A robust investment climate with crowd funding platforms and networks like Kiva are helping folks realize their entrepreneurial ambitions.

8. The Convergence of Mobile, Cloud, Data and Analytics

Each of these is important and powerful on its own however, the growing convergence of these technologies is multiplying their impact and fundamentally changing how business is done. The result? New forms of technology-based competition with more small businesses using capabilities developed through the convergence of these technologies to out maneuver competitors.

9. More People Diving in to Unconventional Business

Bankers quitting high flying careers to write bestsellers, advertising professionals diving in to newborn photography and corporate climbers turning designer; a spurt in the number of people trying their hands at unconventional businesses is all around.

10. Outsourcing Grows

Paucity of time has lead to a surge outsourcing of everything we do, it has also led to a growth of businesses that help you clean your home, relocate and move without you getting involved are just some examples of the spurt in outsourcing.

So, how about you? Did you spot a growing trend or two which could be big in 2014? Please share yours!

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