Managing a company, whether it is just a start-up that is trying to stand strong on its feet or a long-established sustainable business, requires a lot of time and effort. And even the most successful business owner with excellent time management skills and memory, like a supercomputer, cannot simultaneously control each of the hundreds of business processes.
Well, no worries. The market has thousands of applications that allow planning the course of events, communicating with clients and colleagues, setting specific tasks for the team, and tracking their implementation to come to the rescue. Let’s talk about the best and practically useful tools for small businesses.
13 best tools for business growth
Few people will refuse a personal assistant who can be entrusted with the organization and control of important projects. Demand creates supply: there are many business automation applications on the market today. They differ in cost (from simple and free to premium IT products), interface (from laconic to loaded with visual details), as well as in basic functionality, that is, a set of options for optimizing business tasks.
By the principle of functionality, useful business applications can be divided into:
#1. Task managers
The service is aimed at small startups and teams with a limited number of participants in the project. But it has everything for the organization of management and internal interaction. Web-version, iOS, and Android apps, API integration – Trello implementation won’t be a problem.
Perfect for Kanban management system. Both personalized and group tasks are put on a board with cards. And finally, Trello is smoothly integrated with Google Drive, Dropbox, OneDrive, and other third-party services.
Fast and dynamic application for personal and team projects. The task manager is designed in such a way that the main functions are best suited to the specifics of the individual workflow.
Here you can view projects in a calendar mode or use separate boards, attach files, and automatically write scripts on boards. Tasks and subtasks are distributed according to importance. Also, Weeek can be easily integrated with Google Docs, Google Sheets, Figma, Miro, and other important services.
A convenient online service that is suitable both for organizing teamwork and for personal self-organization. Supports file sharing within the system, creating to-do lists, and other tasks. Available in desktop and mobile versions.
Also, it should be noted that Asana is easily controlled with the help of “hot” keys.
The original task manager, in which Kanban boards are used simultaneously with Scrum technology. This allows you to cover the maximum number of project participants performing a variety of tasks that have different significance within its framework. There is a possibility of reverse organization of the process: the employee plans the project, and the authorized manager checks and directs its implementation.
#2. Remote access services
TeamViewer is undoubtedly one of the leaders among PC remote access services. TeamViewer establishes a connection to any PC or server in the world in just a few seconds.
You can remotely control your partner’s computer as if you were sitting at it. All that is required is to download the TeamViewer client module and launch it.
LogMeIn is one of the popular apps for remote access to the PC. The application is very easy to install and there is a 100% free version for use, which includes, among other things, an application for remote access to your PC from any iPad/iPhone. And, what is more important, the free version uses 256-bit SSL encryption, just like the paid one.
#3. Accounting software
QuickBooks is a leader in accounting software. More than 5 million people worldwide trust Quickbooks for their accounting needs.
You can sync QuickBooks with your bank. Thus, the program will automatically import and classify transaction data. The app also allows you to maximize tax deductions, track expenses and income, manage contractors, prepare reports, and bill clients.
Xero is doing a great job of simplifying the accounting process for small business owners. It supports all the basic functionality you’d expect in small and medium business accounting like sales, expenses, inventory, and payroll. You can even manage purchase orders, offers, and invoices for your customers and suppliers.
#4. Marketing tools
- Google Analytics
A service from Google that allows you to analyze user behavior on the website. Among the information collected are data on traffic (the number of pages visited by the user; the number of sessions; the number of visitors who viewed this website at a certain time; the number of new users), the geographic distribution of the audience and activity, as well as
the sources from which users came to this website and the most popular pages on the site.
Service for creating pictures, illustrations, infographics for posts and articles. The service is very simple, easy to understand: even a person who doesn’t work with graphic editors and design programs can do what they need. There is a huge set of templates and blanks. The free version doesn’t have a lot of icons and pictures, but for simple images or banners, this is enough.
HootSuite is one of the best small business marketing tools that you need to manage multiple social media profiles from one interface. The free version offers a connection of 3 profiles. It supports some popular social networks like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+. There is an opportunity to manage content, you can get statistical data, assess audience engagement, monitor an advertising campaign.
#5. Communication and collaboration
It features fast work, simple design, and focuses on scheduling meetings (integration with calendars allows you to automatically send invitations to all participants). Perfect for communication within the company as well as outside contacts. In the free version, you can hold conferences for up to 100 people with a limit of 40 minutes, unlimited one-on-one conferences. Besides, HD videos, separate virtual chat rooms, many functions for conducting demonstrations and facilitating meetings are available.
Bonus tip: be sure to master screen recorder for Mac or Windows as it is impossible to assimilate all the information in a business call at once, especially when it is long. In order not to miss anything, record a video of the meeting, if the caller permits.
Slack is one of the most popular online communication solutions among businesses and teams. The service includes instant messaging. You can create both private and public channels (sort of like chat rooms) for teams and projects.
You can also share files such as pictures, documents, and videos from your computer or Google Drive. It’s also possible to communicate with colleagues using an audio or video call, demonstrate and share the screen.
Many business tasks can be simplified with business applications and digital tools. Their assortment on the market today is really impressive. Do your own research and find the best ones for your needs. We hope this article was helpful to you.