Many startups neglect the importance of business tools. Having a business idea is not enough to guarantee success especially if you are just starting up your business structure. You need more than an idea to get your business off the ground.
Business startup costs may be too high for you to afford, but there is a way to work around it. One way to do that is by leveraging on free business apps and software.
We will explicitly discuss some free business tools you can use to kick-start your new business with ease.
This is one of the popular business tools for startups. It is the best choice if you want to build an interesting, simple, and customizable website for your business. It is also free to use with extra applications. You can also use it to create your content management strategy. The business world is competitive, and to stand a chance, you must optimize a digital strategy.
Amazon Web Services
Peradventure WordPress doesn’t give you what you want for your business, you can also consider Amazon Web services. It is popularly called AWS. It is a web hosting platform pioneered by the ecommerce boss — Amazon. Currently one of the best trustworthy web platform. Amazon Web Services is simple, ductile, and resizeable. It also offers more than 80 services including content delivery, database management, and other amazing characteristics.
After considering your choice of website, you can start gathering email addresses of professional contacts and fellow business colleagues you would like to reach out to. Hunter is one of the best free business tools for this purpose. It works well with marketing.
Your marketing team can use it to connect easily with your desired contacts. It also has a free version where you can filter your searches based on organization. You can also find specific patterns in emails to check their legitimacy. It is good for multitasking, that is, you can send close to 100 requests at a time.
As a startup, you may not need to send too many emails, so now you have no issue. After you have compiled your list of email addresses, you can start reaching out to them with MailChimp. It will help you ease the stress of sending them messages one-by-one.
You can reach out to about 2,000 subscribers and send up to 12,000 emails monthly. You can also create custom email campaigns, pop-up forms, landing pages, and Facebook and Instagram ads. Including marketing automations.
The list of business tools will be incomplete if it is void of Hootsuite. This tool is very beneficial as it can aid you in the management of multiple social media networks. With Hootsuite, you can manage over 35 popular social media networks from one dashboard.
As a beginner, it is advisable to include Hootsuite in your business tools especially in your social media management mix. It will also give you an edge in the competitive market. In other words, Hootsuite gives free solution for startups who have interest in social media platforms while they optimize their overall strategy.
Also, with Hootsuite, agents can have useful reports and metrics. This will help them know which the success of each post. The free plan also allows one user to manage more than one social media profiles.
Many startups finding it difficult to increase their market leads can leverage on this software. It ensures better sales management through the use of built-in phone functionalities and AI-powered lead assessment. It makes work easier for your marketing team.
This is one of the best advertised business tools that has CEM software solutions for businesses. It is used for monitoring sales, marketing, and overall business service. Also, it is suitable for startups that require little of everything with little or no charges. It also has a free live chat software which you can use strengthen communication within your team. You can use it to gain more sales, and help customer service representatives to resolve ticket issues.
Amongst other business tools, what Bitrix24 can’t do is very little. With Bitrix24, startups can have CRM, project management, website, contact center and communication solutions. It has everything properly organized on an easy-to-use dashboard that makes sure information doesn’t become a load for startups. Also, it has a free version with cloud feature and 5 GB storage, which saves every information of the business.
This business tool contains multiple free automations that startups can leverage for better productivity. There are so many time-consuming jobs that away time for more crucial tasks. With this tool, you can create automations within the mobile app of your agents. This will help increase professional abilities to function throughout multiple platforms. In other words, you are creating an “omnichannel” strategy for your business.
This is also one of the best business tools that helps simplify sales for startups. If your business gets a sale, square helps your new customer to finalize the purchase. It simplifies the sales procedure by optimizing your POS system. Which makes the difference between a successful startup and a failed startup.
If your customers are not able to complete their purchases easily, then that is a big problem for your business. With Square, you don’t have to pay any fee, and you will also get equal rate for all credit cards.
Your startup is expected to have a good accounting system that will help you keep record of everything including profits and losses. While you need to account for all your purchases and income, you need a precise software to help you with that. You don’t have to shoulder all your accounting responsibilities, that’s why you can use Wave.
Amongst other businesses tools, Wave can manage your accounting issues accurately. It is a free accounting software that provides you with expense tracking features, invoice management and receipt scanning features. Also, with Wave, you don’t necessarily need to hire an account manager as that will be extra cost since your business is just starting up. It is advisable to get familiar with this software even as an entrepreneur.
As a startup, you will have to design catchy headers, ads, fliers and blog graphics to increase your audience. Even your website will need photos or images that illustrates your content. Instead of hiring a graphics designer, you can get familiar with Canva. It is one of the best business tools for graphic designs.
Creating images with Canvas is very easy using the drag-and-drop feature. You can have the basic account at no cost but you will have to pay for the premium account. Payment shouldn’t be an issue as it is affordable even for startups. You can also use extra photos and graphics by freelance designers for $1 each. You can use this tool pending when you can afford to hire a designer if you want to.
You will need a hardware for communication, and purchasing a phone can be extra charge since your business is a startup. Dialpad Free is a business tool that provides a remedy to the issue of communication. You can have one business number, five extensions, virtual receptionist, modern business voicemail, and conference calling with Dialpad Free. Also, VoIP phone systems helps to reduce cost drastically when it works over the internet rather than traditional phone lines — especially when there is no cost attached.
One of the best collaboration tools, and it is also good for startups. In cases where you have to communicate to your clients or customers via video, you can use Zoom. There are other options for video-calling except Skype because it not ideal for businesses. Do not include it in your business tools. Zoom allows you to engage over 50 participants.
You can also host one-on-one meetings when necessary. Zoom is in form of an app and it is suitable for both smartphones and laptops. With Zoom, you necessarily do not need the physical presence of your staffs (if you have any) when you want to hold meetings. You can also use it good collaboration as anyone can connect from anywhere in the world.
As a startup, have it in mind that team collaboration is a necessity for productivity in your business. If your team members can’t he healthy collaboration, then it is a problem. However, Trello can offer you a solution. It facilitates internal communication and effective task management.
This is also an alternative to Trello. It is one of the business tools startups can use to build a more traditional layout but with the similar collaboration features. With this software, startups can build gateways for several departments, and delegate jobs to one another. It also contains a calendar feature, an inbox that allows email notifications when something significant happens. There is also a mobile app that connects virtual workers. So, if you don’t fancy the features of Trello, you can opt for Asana. You will love it.
Some business tools are limited to location but Slack isn’t. Just like Trello, it is a software that facilitates internal communication. With a simple Slack message, one can understand how to proceed with a certain task. Also, it uses chatbots as a reminder, which can comfortably integrate with Asana. If you have virtual staffs that hardly take phone calls or reply to emails, you can use Slack to stay connected.
To improve your customer experience, you must maintain communication with them. That is what most startups fail to do, and they end up failing. You can use live chat to treat your improve your customer experience. It also uses a free version of its software. This software notifies users of messages, and has a mobile app for messaging with ease.
To have necessary knowledge about your buyer’s journey, it is wise to conduct a survey. SurveyMonkey is also amongst the free business tools. If you want to know more about your customers and how to optimize your business, this should be your choice. You can include more than 5 persons in a survey, view over 50 responses per survey, optimize surveys, gather replies from social media, and trail email responses at no cost.
If you don’t want to use Canva, this is also a good option to get nice images. The importance of quality images cannot be overemphasized. You need it to engage your audience. StockSnap offers quality images at no cost. However, if you want extra and you are willing to pay a reasonable amount, you can also go for ShutterStock.
If you are having issues managing customer support, then Freshdesk is the best option for you. This is one of the easy-to-use business tools that can help you resolve customer issues. One juicy thing about Freshdesk is that it offers startups a 30-day free trial void of credit card details.
It helps you resolve ticket issues and provide answers to FAQs. It is also a multichannel helpdesk that handles automation, reports and analytics for sales and admin.
Any startup that doesn’t know about this platform is being disadvantaged. This is a must-have business tool for every startup because it helps to connect startups with potential investors. Your business growth can also be determined by your investments and investors.
With AngelList, you can be lucky to work with an investor while you still run your business. Unlike other job platforms, startups don’t need a middle man to connect to investors. Even investors leverage on this platform to connect with startups that they can invest in for extra income. AngelList should not be missing amongst your business tools as a startup.
Like we earlier said in the introduction, a business idea is not enough to grow your business. Running a business is tasking. Many entrepreneurs who are just new in the business world worry about the expenses needed to run their business.
However, you must get all the help you need as technology has made things easier. You do not have to break the bank before you can use the business tools mentioned above. You can compete with other established businesses by just using these business tools. Their prices are very much affordable, and they have extra features you can leverage on. Quit lamenting and get on to build your business.