Citi Goes Zoom Free On Fridays…And Other Small Business Tech News – Forbes


Here are five things in technology that happened this past week and how they affect your business. Did you miss them?

1 —Citi has declared ‘Zoom-free Fridays’ amid pandemic work fatigue.

With more and more companies looking to create a healthier work-life balance during the coronavirus pandemic, Citi recently announced that it will begin implementing “Zoom-Free Fridays” as well as employee days off beginning in May. With many remote employees dealing with ‘Zoom Fatigue’, Citi listened to employees and made the decision in an effort to stop workdays from becoming non-stop due to video meetings. The company also stressed that calls and meetings will not be permitted to be scheduled on weekends or outside of the standard work hours that existed prior to the pandemic. (Source: Yahoo)

Why this is important for your business:

This is not exactly the kind of benefit we would’ve considered offering a year ago but, well, here we are. Your employees have likely been glued to Zoom, Teams, Meet or other virtual communication platforms and as essential as they’ve been during the pandemic, they also do create fatigue and stress. So maybe this is an idea worth considering for your small business. And with more people working from home going forward, it may be a benefit for the long term.

2 —Yahoo is jumping into the eCommerce fray with a new online marketplace.   

It was announced this past week that Yahoo will be joining the eCommerce trend with its new marketplace called Yahoo Shops. The new marketplace will have a storefront that users can personalize and will also provide a short onboarding process where individuals can share their preferences and likes in order to be given an individualized “digital mall” containing products and brands that go along with what they are interested in. Although it is not live yet, users are allowed to sign up for Yahoo Shops in order to receive a notification when it launches. (Source: Retail Touchpoints)

Why this is important for your business:

E-commerce is all about audience. Where are your customers? How can your products receive the most eyeballs? Of course, Amazon is the leader here. But getting your products in front of people is challenging there, as well as other online marketplaces like eBay and Etsy. Yahoo may be an opportunity for you to get in at the ground level and, even though there’s less traffic at first, you may still get more views…and sales.

3 — GoDaddy is launching Instagram integration for SMB users.         

GoDaddy shared that it will be launching a new product for Instagram in order to help users engage with and attract customers on various digital and social media platforms. GoDaddy has been making several updates to help small businesses reengage and connect with customers they may have lost touch with or track of over the last year due to COVID-19. (Source: Street Fight Mag)

Why this is important for your business:

According to GoDaddy, the newest integration with Instagram will allow businesses to more easily monitor, administer, and schedule using Instagram accounts. “We want to make it easier than ever for small business owners to scale their marketing efforts,” the company’s Director of Product Management told Street Fight Mag. “For example, when there is an important message to share on multiple platforms, GoDaddy offers a centralized way to post not only on Instagram, but also on Facebook, Twitter, and Google My Business. This saves time and allows business owners to focus on what matters most to them: running their business.” According to the report, the new integration will allow GoDaddy’s business users “to preview and post images directly to Instagram, as well as share products for sale within Instagram posts. They’ll also be able to keep track of Instagram comments and views and schedule posts for the future.”

4 — The Fed chief is warning the public of Bitcoin and cryptocurrency risks.   

This past week Jerome Powell—the Federal Reserve Chairman—shared his concerns and warnings of the dangers that come along with Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Powell explained that—due to it being highly volatile—Bitcoin is not a realistic or useful as a way to pay but more of an asset that— in some ways—is more comparable as a gold substitute rather than an exact substitute for the dollar. Powell added that the Federal Reserve is exploring potentially creating its own central bank with cryptocurrencies but that they are merely talking about policy and experimental technologies at this stage. (Source: The Hill)

Why this is important for your business:

Bitcoin is growing in value – and popularity. Payments giant PayPal is now accepting digital currencies like it and Tesla will sell you a car in exchange for it. It’s becoming less volatile, and more of an option for many customers looking to buy products – online and in-store. Will this be a form of payment you accept in the future?

5—Google Chrome’s real-time captions are now available on PC and Mac.  

After testing its Live Captions feature for desktop on Chrome since last year, Google recently announced that all using Chrome on PC will now be able to utilize the real-time captioning feature. After installing version 89 of Chrome users will be able to access a toggle to enable Live Captions, allowing them to see subtitles for all videos or audio that is played through Chrome. The feature will work even if audio is muted, although languages other than English are not yet recognized. (Source: Engadget)

Why this is important for your business:

A very useful feature. Besides the obvious benefits for the hearing impaired, your employees (and you) can leave these on to read while watching videos and not disturbing anyone else. You can also recommend to your own video audience to do the same.



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