On the 10th July 2017 Microsoft announced at their Partner Conference ‘Inspire’, three new tools to accompany the Office 365 Business SKUs that will support small businesses. These three new tools are Microsoft Connections, Microsoft Invoicing and Microsoft Listings. Let’s take a look at what we know so far.
Microsoft Connections is a new tool which can assist you with your email marketing. Microsoft recognise that email marketing can be overwhelming and while there are a variety of tools available in the marketplace such as Mailchimp, which could be considered as a market leader in terms of email marketing. Microsoft wants a piece of this market and has tied their new Microsoft Connections tool in with your already familiar Office 365 suite, making it an appealing option for smaller businesses on a budget.
Arriving this winter, Microsoft Connections will be accessible via the Web, as well as Android and iOS. Microsoft Connections will also come with many familiar features straight out of the box, giving you the ability to create campaigns, manage subscribers and monitor the performance of any active email marketing campaigns.
Next, we have Microsoft Invoicing a new service enabling small businesses to create invoices. Information is a little sparse at this stage from Microsoft, however what we have learnt is that it should be able to integrate into PayPal, which should suit a lot of small businesses who use PayPal to process payments either online or via devices like Square.
There is also a connector for QuickBooks enabling businesses to connect to their accounting software quickly and easily. Here at Gradwell, we’re very impressed by Microsoft Invoicing. Allowing small business to use one log in connected to other key software products to enable their business to run smoothly will be a powerful new addition.
The final new product released at Inspire 2017 is Microsoft Listings, a tool which will allow you to manage your business listings across multiple platforms such as Facebook, Google and Yelp. Eager business owners can keep an eye on online views, business reviews, whilst updating recent news to keep customers in the loop. I know what you’re thinking… there are already tools available that can deliver this. However, having everything under the Office 365 ‘roof’ and having a single subscription will be very appealing to some..
Microsoft also confirmed that these three new tools will be added at no extra cost and will be available for general availability this winter.
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