If you are on this blog, you probably know where Blockchain comes from: invented in 2008, its only purpose was serving as a public, encrypted ledger for bitcoin transactions. However, because of its immutable nature and intrinsic security, Blockchain applications multiplied, and we are witnessing the use of Blockchain for small business and many other purposes.
More and more companies are jumping onto the metaphorical boat to gather all the advantages of this new technology in order to optimise speed, management, productivity, public reputation, security, and so on.
We know that this subject is particularly intricate, and to many entrepreneurs, it sounds like something that only big companies with organised R&D departments are able to afford and experiment, but this is definitely not the truth. Blockchain is no rocket science, and even small businesses can benefit from it.
Just think about the increased transparency: Blockchain is based on an open and public ledger, there is nothing more transparent than this. The whole supply chain of a business can be traced, recorded, and documented. With Blockchain, customers of any company are able to know where the products they buy come from, and this is a great opportunity for a company to improve its reputation and get a competitive advantage on its competitors.
And we just started. Let’s see some of the most important benefits of Blockchain for small business.
There are a lot of businesses out there, of any size, in need of contracts, either for selling goods and services or for buying them.
Blockchain is well-known for supporting smart contracts, which are basically self-executing contracts, allowing small businesses to avoid solicitors fees and potential mistakes in the execution: a smart contract, in fact, is only executed when certain conditions previously set by the parties have been met. Actually, parties do not even have to meet personally to perform the transaction.
At the same time, traceability and security are guaranteed. Although some jurisdictions are not particularly open to smart contracts, because there are a lot of potential regulatory vacuums to fill and regulators are always slower than innovation, many regulators are working towards full compliance of smart contracts with the actual laws.
This is the most natural application of Blockchain for small business: the ability to trace the provenance of every single product that ends up on a shelf in a store. It is working in the fashion industry to oppose the growing counterfeit goods market and in the food industry, especially for Italian food makers trying to put an end to the trading of Italian sounding foods.
There are various benefits a Blockchain-based supply chain can give to small businesses:
- Increased transparency for a better reputation;
- Reduced chances of frauds;
- A better-managed inventory;
- Tools to tackle counterfeit goods market.
Costs and risks lowered with one single implementation.
It might sound costly to implement a private blockchain, but there are no side effects in using public blockchains and still providing clarity.
Small businesses have a good opportunity to fill the gap between them and bigger companies, here. They often deal with cash, in a world that is moving towards a total digitalisation of transactions.
Accepting cryptocurrency payments as an alternative to cash could fire small businesses from the line between the past and the present straight to the future: cryptocurrencies are already used to pay for online purchased goods: according to SEMRush, Bitcoin payments are on the rise in Italy, where they are used more than American Express and other credit cards.
All businesses need to store files: from brand logos to invoices, storing data is one of the main concerns for any company: computers can break, but the World Wide Web is safe.
Cloud storage services such as Amazon, Google Drive, Oracle Cloud, and so on, provide safe storage, but no transparency, nor security: although they are highly controlled, hacking attacks and disruptions can happen at any time.
A distributed ledger solution is a cheaper and more secure option than centralised platforms.
Blockchain for small business: how to get it
We provide consulting services to any company willing to implement Blockchain. We offer a free introductory consultation to those who are interested. Blockchain for small business is real, and it is a train you can’t miss.