Finding the right tools for your small business can improve your productivity, help you be more efficient, and save you valuable time. Cloud-based programs are flexible and allow you to easily give access to single users, or your whole team, who can access from various devices and locations.
Here we take a quick look at five of the best tools on the market to help you get started.
1. Project Management and Team Collaboration
Working with multiple teams on projects can become a bit chaotic, especially when you are trying to communicate via email, chats, file storage sites, and various other locations.
With Basecamp, all your communication, tasks, schedules and goals are in one place.
One area can be designated for companywide communications and calendars, while others can be devoted just for special projects and teams. For a steady team collaboration and effective project management, you can also try MS Protect and Teams by O365CloudExperts.
2. Small Business Financial Software
Depending on the size of your small business, you need an accounting platform that can grow with you.
Quickbooks works with any size business and allows you to track income and expenses, create monthly reports, write invoices, and even print checks if needed. QuickBooks Desktop also supports a multi-user environment when loaded on cloud-based PCs of Apps4Rent.com.
You can also connect with multiple checking accounts for easy reconciliation and online invoicing allows your customers to pay online, which saves a lot of staff hours.
3. Email List Management
In the world of Social Media, you might be forgiven for thinking that email marketing is dead, but nothing could be further from the truth.
Email marketing should still be a critical part of your small business growth strategy and MailerLite is perfect for this as it is simple to use and cost-effective for smaller businesses.
It allows you to create a variety of email campaigns, generate website popups to gather vital details about your leads or run surveys to gain feedback.
One email campaign might go to those who click on your call to action that sits on your website, while another might send out a newsletter to keep your current customers in the know.
No more trying to keep track of your contacts on a spreadsheet!
4. Leave Management System
As your company grows it becomes increasingly difficult to plan and track staff time off.
There are so many reasons why people might not be at work, including vacations, sick leave, personal days, holidays and TOIL (time off in lieu).
Keeping track of it all is essential for your business to run efficiently. Leave Dates is a leave management system that can track your staff leave time while also reducing administration hours.
It ensures that no-one takes more than their allowed time off, and highlights when staff is off at the same time – eliminating those moments when everyone is off on the same day!
It also saves your staff time by offering automated request and approval workflows, so staff only need to take action when they are notified. There are also apps for iOS, Android and Slack, making it nice and convenient to use.
5. Social Media Scheduler
Small business marketing includes posting to the social channels where your ideal customers are engaging, but with so many social networks to choose from, this can become overwhelming. This is where Hootsuite comes in handy.
Their platform allows you to create posts for different channels and schedule them to go out at determined times.
Your marketing team can post a month’s worth of content at a time, making more efficient use of time.
All these tools will save your small business valuable time that can be spent elsewhere, like focusing on more important value-adding tasks.
Every tool recommended here has a free trial or free version available so you can try before you buy. Once you have tried them for free, you can decide whether it makes sense to upgrade to a paid plan.
All of these tools are aimed at small businesses and have pricing plans which scale with your business.