A tech stack is the collective term we use to talk about a bunch of different apps used together. Any kind of software or applications your business uses on a daily basis is all part of your tech stack.

Things like Teams, a group chat and collaboration platform, would be part of your tech stack. They’re often called software solutions or platforms but it really just means any fancy technology you use to run your business.

Here, we’ll be looking at tech stacks with small businesses in mind. We’ll be mentioning what you can include, as well as some general advice on how to decide. 

Specifically, we’ll be mentioning some advice on how to build your tech stack by thinking about these key ideas:

  • Your business needs
  • Integration and scaling
  • Building your stack slowly

Then we’ll take a look at some specific software solutions that are great options for small business owners:

  • CRM software
  • Accounting Software
  • Collaboration Platforms
  • Automation Software
  • Integration Software

There are loads of software solutions out there promising incredible things, so it can be quite confusing. But don’t worry, just take your time and eventually you’ll have the perfect tech stack for your small business. 

What are your business needs?

The best way to start building your stack is by figuring out your business’ needs. If you’re a sole trader, you probably won’t be in need of any kind of team collaboration software because you’re on your own. 

Think about the kind of thing you do every day. Particularly, the kind things that seem inefficient, tedious, or take more time than they should. 

Tech is here to make your life easier, after all. It’s up to you to know what part of your work life is in need of an upgrade.

If you’re not sure, or you’re just starting your own business, try asking your peers what they’ve found useful and start there. 

Integration and scaling

When choosing which apps and software to include in your stack, find out how well the apps integrate well with one another. 

In practice, it’ll just make your life a whole lot smoother. If you get an update from a customer on your CRM, you could get an email, or phone alert, about the update. 

This will become more important as your tech stack grows. If they don’t integrate, then you’ll find yourself jumping back and forth between a bunch of different applications, having to transfer figures and data between them. 

Build your stack slowly

There are a lot of software solutions out there that promise to revolutionise the way your business operates, but don’t go subscribing to everything just yet. 

New software takes a bit of time to get used to, so throwing yourself and your team in the deep end with a whole bunch of new systems to learn will just confuse everybody. 

So start with one that you need like CRM software, and get used to its features. If you have a team, ask them how they’re feeling about it – if they think it’s making life easier. 

If it’s a success, then start thinking about the next level of your tech stack. 

What you could include in your tech stack

Nowadays, figuring out what applications and software to use is just another vital part of running your business. But there are so many different solutions out there claiming to do all kinds of wonderful things, it can be difficult to know what to include in your tech stack.

CRM (Customer Relationship Management) software

CRM software is probably the best place to start for small businesses.

It acts as a kind of common ground between you and your customers. It’s a shared platform on which you can communicate, share work, and collaborate with one another, instead of sporadically emailing each other with clunky attachments. 

Using a good CRM will also give your small business a professional feeling, inspiring confidence in your customers when they see your fancy new work platform. 

Accounting Software

Accounting software is a great idea for businesses of all sizes. It will help you record income and expenses, give you insight into long term projections, and can generate invoices for your clients. 

It’s particularly useful when tax season comes around. You or your accountant will have easy access to all the information you need. 

Some business current accounts, like Countingup, come with accounting software built in. So if you’re going to set up a business account anyway, might as well get one that’ll help manage your finances. 

Collaboration platforms

Maybe not necessary for sole traders, but a solid choice for small businesses with a growing staff. 

Collaboration software will act as a shared platform for you and your staff where you can all share and contribute ideas as seamlessly as possible. 

It’s a great resource for improving productivity, and will become increasingly useful as your business grows and your team grows. 

Automation software

Sometimes called RPA (Robotic Process Automation) software can be programmed to automate a lot of time consuming tasks for your business. 

If you’ve ever had an automatic email response from a business, or a security check phone call from your bank, it’s RPA software that’s doing it. 

It can be really handy for a lot of those tedious bits of running a business. You can send automated replies, post things on social media, or even send promotions at pre-programmed times. 

Integration software

API (Application Programming Interface) software is used to help applications communicate with one another.

It’s a strange one in your tech stack because it doesn’t really do anything on its own, but it can be incredibly useful. 

API software can integrate all your other software solutions so they work well together, allowing you to easily share information between them without losing any time or progress. 

Financial APIs, specifically, are often used to build payment portals for businesses. It can get a little confusing how this works, but a good financial API will allow quick and seamless payments to and from customers all over the world using different currencies. 

Save time on business admin with a simple tool

The Countingup business current account makes it easy to manage all your financial data in one simple app. 

The app comes with free built-in accounting software that automates the time-consuming aspects of bookkeeping and taxes. You’ll receive real-time insights into your cash flow, profit and loss reports, tax estimates, and the ability to create invoices in seconds. 

You can also share your bookkeeping with your accountant instantly without worrying about duplication errors, data lags or inaccuracies. Seamless, simple, and straightforward.

Find out more here.