When your time is money, you'll want to streamline as much of your excess work as possible. Being a small business owner means you have a lot of hats to wear. From providing the service that you know best, managing your day to day schedule, to creating legal documents, a savvy social media marketer, creative writer and designer, it's not easy to do it all.
Enter amazing and affordable software services created for small businesses to make your life easier and ensure your professionalism. Diving into the world of software for business is overwhelming, and we don't suggest that you need all of these tools all the time. But, it's important to understand where you can get help and how you can do it efficiently and well. What works for an e-commerce store might not work for a personal trainer, consultant, tarot card reader or other. So, for all of the service based businesses out there, here are the best software services for you.
Accounting: Managing your budget; from profits, overhead, cost of service, marketing, and more, an accounting tool is your new best friend. Of course it's important to forecast and as much as it's necessary to keep track of payments in a detailed way for your quarterly taxes.
Legal: Depending on the service you provide, it's important to have access to legal documentation, contracts, and more at an affordable price. Utilizing a legal tool like DocuSign or Rocket Lawyer is a great way to have a secure and legal relationship with clients, without breaking the bank.
E-commerce & Payments: One of the most important pieces of your business puzzle is, what payment type do you accept, how do you process it, and how do get your money into your bank account?
Virtual Meetings: As the world gets more and more used to virtual meetings, online conferences, and remote learning, it's important to work with a virtual meeting software that is secure, and easy for both you and your customers.
Social Media: Social media is a must-do for businesses today, but it doesn't have to be as time consuming as you think. Create a few posts at a time, schedule them, and continue on with your day. There are a lot of social management tools out there, here are a few affordable and easy to use ones.
Content (blog and video): Including long form writing and engaging video content to your website, social media or email newsletters is a tried and true way of exerting your expertise and personality. Check out these free tools.
Website Builder: In today's online world, a website can sometimes fall by the wayside as businesses accentuate their social media profiles. However, owning a piece of online real estate with a custom domain name for you and your business is an important step in insuring your brand as both searchable and professional.
Email Newsletter: Email marketing is a huge strategy for re-engagement of customers and enticing interested prospectives to make contact. From newsletter to seasonal offerings, you can achieve success at a low price point.
Design Tools: In this scenario, we feel that this is not an either or choice, there are some truly excellent design tools available and useful for many situations. The design of your brand, be it the imagery on social media, your logo, your website, and even the documents you use with customers - make a good first impression!
Schedule Management: When your time makes money, managing your schedule is amongst the most important thing. With dreams of a full schedule, and easy management, automated reminders, and more, consider these class and appointment tools.
Customer Management: As you get more customers, it's important to be able to keep track of them easily, from their credit card payments, address, appointment history and more, consider a "CRM" customer relationship management tool.
Hiring Freelancers: Sometimes, you simply can't do it all. In that case, you can dive into these marketplaces to find freelancers or contract workers to help alleviate some of the work you need to do.
File Sharing: Ideally you wouldn't spend any money on a file sharing tool, as there are some excellent free services out there. However, depending on the volume that you need to create and share documents, you may have to pay.
Project Management: While you may not need a project management tool as an individual (for instance, who relies of to-do lists and post-it notes!?), as your team grows from 2 to 10, it may become time to invest in a project management tool to keep everyone organized and on track to hit milestones and due dates.