Businesses that use LinkedIn got some unexpected news this week when Microsoft announced plans to purchase the professional networking site. In addition, Google announced a new YouTube app this week that could help brands create their own video ads. These headlines and more are included in this week’s Small Business Trends news and information roundup.
Wow! Microsoft Plans to Acquire LinkedIn
Some big news to start off the week: Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) and LinkedIn Corporation (NYSE: LNKD) will soon be joining forces. Microsoft Plans to Be the New Owner of LinkedIn via Acquisition Microsoft announced today that it plans to purchase LinkedIn for $196 per share in an all-cash transaction valued at $26.2 billion, which includes LinkedIn’s net cash.
New YouTube App Makes Video Ad Creation Easier, Google Says
People spend loads of time watching YouTube videos, whether to discover something new or just as a way to pass the time. The site has claimed a 50 percent growth in watch time annually for the last three consecutive years. That makes YouTube a prime venue for small businesses to consider running video ads, and many do.
Healthcare Jobs in Demand Right Now by Small Businesses
The June jobs report disappointed and surprised many, with the U.S. economy only gaining 38,000 jobs in May. One of the few bright spots was the strength of the healthcare sector, which added more jobs than any other industry. And before you think that healthcare jobs are likely more in demand at bigger companies but you’d be mistaken.
Etsy Brings Together Small Designers, Big Retailers With “Open Call”
What if you could pitch your products to a dream retailer like Nordstrom? Etsy (NASDAQ: ETSY), known for being an innovative online marketplace for consumers to source handmade and other items from independent designers for their homes, wardrobes and more, is set to help members of its Etsy Whesale community do just that.
Flag Puts Targeted Ads on the Back of Photo Prints
If you have been looking for a new, cheap and unique way to advertise your business then you will be happy to learn about Flag. Basically, Flag is a photo printing app that allows businesses, advertisers and marketers to advertise their products on the back of customized photo prints.
Bing Announces News PubHub to Get News Sites Listed
Bing, Microsoft’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) search engine, recently announced it has launched a news portal named Bing News PubHub found at pubhub.bing.com. The news portal is designed to make it easier for more content publishers to share their stories and have the stories discovered by more readers.
Survey Identifies Five Big Obstacles to Online Success
Most businesses need to maintain an online presence today. But achieving online success in this increasingly competitive space is a huge challenge, a new study has found. The survey conducted by GoDaddy and Alignable reveals five top obstacles to a business’s online success. Here is a look at each in a bit more depth.
Study: Avid Online Shoppers Make Over Half Their Purchases On Web
The Web’s most devoted shoppers are undeniably shaking up the ecommerce experience and redefining the store experience. For the first time, UPS’ “Pulse of the Online Shopper” survey revealed that the average consumer who purchases two to three items online over a three week period now makes more than half of his or her purchases there.
Design Brochures, Fliers, More from Your Phone with Sprightly
Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) is taking on startups such as Canva and Adobe Spark Post with a new app called Sprightly. The app allows you to instantly create professional-looking fliers, detailed catalogs, and beautiful posters right from your iPhone. You no longer need a designer or any designing experience to create eye-catching content for your business.
Small Biz Spotlight
Spotlight: 360 Degree Technosoft Creates Apps in India
Mobile technology is becoming increasingly important for businesses. Whether it’s a dedicated mobile app or a website that works on a variety of devices, businesses need to be able to interact with mobile customers. That’s a big part of what 360 Degree Technosoft does. The company, which is based in India, designs and develops websites and apps for a variety of platforms.
Small Business Operations
Zenefits App Lets Staff Request Vacation, Access Benefits Via Mobile
A new mobile application for iOS released by human resources (HR) tech company Zenefits puts key HR capabilities in employees’ pockets, allowing them to request time off, check health insurance information, access pay stubs and more while on-the-go.
Alignable Launches Main Street Insights Content Hub
Online business community Alignable has expanded its digital resource base with the launch of a dynamic new content hub.
Amplitude Raises $15 Million for Better Customer Analytics
The one analytics tool used by more organizations than any other is offered for free by the largest search engine in the world: Google. This has given the company a clear advantage, but if Google Analytics doesn’t offer the metrics you need, there are still other options.
Attorney and Entrepreneur Seeks to Uberize Legal Services
Over the past couple of years, scores of maverick entrepreneurs have been working tirelessly to take the low-cost efficiency demonstrated by taxi service-disrupting upstart Uber and reapply it to a whole host of starkly contrasting industries.
Small Businesses Adopt New Technology But Rely on Tried-and-True, Survey Says
Small businesses are between the old school approach and the cloud when it comes to adopting new technology trends and business practices in the workplace, reports a survey released (PDF) today from Brother International, a global supplier of a variety of office equipment including printers. Technology Adoption Survey The survey, conducted by Wakefield Research, of 509 U.S.
Comfy Raises $12M to Stop Office Fights Over the Thermostat
Picture this: you head into work early everyday with only one thought in mind. Your goal is specifically to get there before your co-workers who like to set the temperature especially hot or cold. You set the thermostat to a comfortable temperature. But throughout the day, that doesn’t stop others from heading over to change it to fit their specific preferences.
Study: 23 Percent Abandon Apps After Single Use
Small business owners are often told they need a mobile app to drive sales, boost brand visibility or just bring potential customers into the door of a brick and mortar store. But do apps really serve their purpose for the majority of businesses? It’s a question that should be on every business owner’s mind as a new study emerges creating a much more nuanced picture of app use.
New Robotic 360 Degree Camera Dolly Keeps You Out of the Picture
Creating 360-degree videos and images can help your business create a completely immersive experience for your customers. Especially with the growing prevalence of virtual reality, there are plenty of potential business applications for 360 filmmakers.
Forget Activity Tracking! The Zenta Wearable is an Emotion Tracker
Imagine owning a cutting-edge accessory that gives you a holistic view of your overall wellbeing and prompts you to become the best version of yourself. Well, you don’t have to imagine anymore. Zenta — an innovative, design-led biometric wrist band created by London-based technology design studio and research lab Vinaya — claims it can keep track of your emotions.
Galaxy S7 Active Can Survive Drops and Days of Continuous Use
The new Galaxy S7 Active is the ruggedized and way more durable version of Samsung’s flagship Galaxy S7. It’s a possible solution for on-the-go business people who can’t afford to be out of touch just because of a minor mishap.
Google Daydream Aims to Make Virtual Reality Mobile
The challenge of making virtual reality as universal as smartphones is being tackled by virtually (no pun intended) every tech company in the world.
Moto Z Modular Cell Phone Can Be Projector, Miniature Sound System, More
There is no denying the features in smartphones are impressive, but the human brain being what it is, there is always a need for more. As Points-of-Parity (POP) between smartphone manufacturers become more common with the same or very similar hardware and software components, the Points-of-Difference (POD) have to be more dramatic.
Lenovo Phab 2 Pro Brings Mobile Augmented Reality to Small Businesses
At the company’s TechWord event in San Francisco recently, the new Lenovo Phab 2 Pro was unveiled. Along with a boatload of other high-tech features, the phablet also brings affordable augmented reality within reach of many small businesses.
Lenovo Demos Wacky Bendable Phone, Tablet with Meghan McCarthy
Flexible computing technology has been the fodder for countless Sci-Fi movies, but when it comes to the real world, most of the complex electronics components we currently use are not flexible. To achieve some flexibility, manufacturers strategically place the rigid materials amongst the flexible components.
Image: LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman