The metaverse is here, and it’s bringing a lot of buzz. Big retailers have already started experimenting with the technology: a simulated digital environment that incorporates aspects of social media, blockchain and augmented and virtual reality to create spaces that mimic the real world.
Fast-fashion brand Forever 21, for example, has partnered with gaming platform Roblox on an experience in which users can own and manage personal stores, as well as buy and sell Forever 21 merchandise. Meanwhile, Ikea and Wayfair have developed AR apps that allow customers to visualize how furniture and decor would look in their homes, and Mac and Maybelline have released technology that enables users to virtually try on products.
Small businesses stand to benefit, too. Online platforms have started unveiling tools to help small businesses offer virtual experiences, writes Forbes Contributor Catherine Erdly. Though the prospect of diving headfirst into the metaverse may seem overwhelming to small business owners, Lindsey Mazza, global retail supply chain domain leader at Capgemini, says not to rush in. “Don’t jump in with creating digital products straight away—test this market by creating environments to hang out,” she says. “Let’s make it a location where your customers feel comfortable, can ask questions, where they’re able to purchase physical products. Stick with the thing that you’re really good at, the thing that you know—the products that you sell.”
This VC Firm Run By Israeli High School Pals Raised $35 Million To Invest In Startups ‘At Incorporation’
For his first-ever lead investment, At.inc/ founder Nadav Eylath wrote a $775,000 check for cloud computing company Netlify. Today, it’s valued at $2 billion—a 100 times return on his investment. To keep making risky bets, he has closed a second $35 million fund for At.inc/.
Key quote: “We’re not waiting to see traction. We just want to connect to the founders and their vision on what can change in the world. If it’s too early, it’s probably a fit for us.” —Nadav Eylath, Founder, At.inc/
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Inflation is a top concern of small businesses, according to a MetLife and U.S. Chamber of Commerce report. To cope, 67% of small businesses have raised prices, 41% decreased staff and 39% have taken out a loan in the past year. Here’s how inflation and interest rate hikes negatively impact small businesses.
As the president and CEO of the National Minority Supplier Development Council, Ying McGuire leads efforts to advance business opportunities for certified minority business enterprises and connects them to corporate members. She discusses the organization’s future plans as well as the challenges that business owners from underrepresented groups face in launching and maintaining a company.
Is your company’s cybersecurity up to snuff? Small businesses are three times more likely to be targeted by cybercriminals than larger companies, according to a report from cloud security company Barracuda Networks. That’s why it’s important that business leaders follow these tips to make sure company security protocols and policies are up-to-date to prevent cyberattacks.
Starting up can be intimidating, but joining an entrepreneurial community can help quell self-doubt. Here’s how joining one will benefit you and your business.
Formerly known as BackOffice, online accounting startup Finally has raised $95 million. The capital will be used to help expand the organization’s workforce and implement a corporate charge card for small and medium-sized businesses. Here’s more small business tech news you should know.