One of the most valuable tools in a small business owner’s arsenal is likely sitting within your reach right now. With the advent of the smartphone, it is even easier to stay connected and conduct your business on the go. But with this constant connectivity it becomes very easy to slide into disorganization and let things slip through the cracks. Fortunately, there are many apps that can help you stay on top of it all, from communication to finances to marketing. Take a look at these 5 apps that are essential to small business owners.
Hearing the phrase “expense report” can make any small business owner or employee cringe. Expensify uses an app to make expense accounts and reporting smooth and simple. Automatically loading credit card expenses, SmartScanning of receipt details, and GPS mileage tracking features work together to simplify the expense process. No need to keep track of pesky receipts again! This app is particularly useful if you travel a lot or if your employees are using their personal credit cards for expenses.
Trying to keep an email inbox organized can feel like a full-time job in and of itself. Cut back on the excess email chatter through Slack. This app is a tool that streamlines communication between your team members. You can create conversations based on teams, projects, or any other category you choose. Conversations can be public or private, and Slack makes it simple to share files back and forth as well. Best of all, pricing starts at the low, low price of free! If you want some of the more advanced features such as larger storage or app integration you will have to opt for one of the paid plans.
One of the least expensive ways to reach customers and prospects is via e-mail marketing. Mailchimp makes this process simple and easy. With drag and drop tools, you can create a campaign that fits your style, or you can choose from one of many available templates. Perhaps most importantly, Mailchimp provides you with endless amounts of analytics and feedback, so you can see how your emails are performing. Armed with these details, you can tailor your emails in the future so that you see a better success rate. Mailchimp is free if your list has less than 2,000 subscribers.
As a small business owner, you never know when inspiration may strike. Whether you’re browsing the internet or out and about town, you’re never truly off the clock. Make sure you don’t lose any of your bright ideas by using Evernote. This is a notes app on steroids that allows you to make “clippings” from web pages, create notes, and have all of this information sync across your devices. Evernote’s basic features are free, but its premium features only cost $49.99/yr and unlock the ability to do much more.
Looking for a better way to keep track of customer relationships? If you utilize Gmail or Google Apps, Streak is a CRM that is built into your email inbox. Streak organizes your inbox based on where you are in your business relationship and provides collaboration tools to communicate with the rest of your team. But Streak is more than a CRM, providing such features as mail merge, send later, and other useful email features. This app also starts at $0/month with more plans available depending on your needs.
Tired of logging in and out of Facebook, twitter, instagram, LinkedIn, etc., when posting to social media? Save yourself a lot of time by using the free features of Hootsuite. Through this app, you can control all of your social media channels through your phone. No more logging in and out or forgetting to post to one of your channels. On top of that, you can use this app to schedule posts or view analytics to make your social media efforts more targeted and profitable.