Small businesses are often leaner than most since the most minute expense can make a difference to survival. As competition grows and costs creep up, maximizing value is at the top of everyone’s focus list.
Just because we’re smaller in scale doesn’t mean we need to cover fewer areas than larger businesses. Small businesses have similar needs from web hosting to invoicing to email marketing, with a fraction of the budget available at multi-billion dollar conglomerates.
To help address this uneven footing, increase your competitive power and not your expense, here are some of the best tools that help grow your small business.
Best Tools for Small Online Businesses
1. Grammarly: More Than Just A Grammar Checker
We can’t all be language experts, but our customers expect us to be professionals at everything. Imagine the scorn that typos would cause in marketing materials. That’s where Grammarly comes in handy for those who need someone looking over your shoulder as you type.
It gently guides, prods, or straight out marks your documents in bold red underline if you make mistakes. Grammarly even tells you what went wrong and suggests corrections if you sign up for a paid plan.
Grammarly ties in seamlessly wherever you go. It works with Microsoft Word, online text editors like Chrome, and even in your email applications.
FreshBooks is something I use as well, and it makes a big difference. I’m an accounting moron, but FreshBooks keeps me in line and brings everything I need together into one convenient space. Expense entries, for instance, allow you to attached digital receipts.
FreshBooks is something that will let you handle your accounts from A to Z. No more mistakes, no more outsourcing your bookkeeping, and you can even invite your auditors or accountant to look over your books online.
3. SE Ranking
Take a peek at SE Ranking for those who know how important SEO is but have no idea what to do. It’s an all-in-one solution designed to simplify the intricacies of this complex and extensive art. SE Ranking is meant to guide the uninitiated through unchartered waters.
Don’t worry though, the tool is very complete. It can handle everything from basic keyword research to offering comprehensive site audits to help you find out what’s happening behind the scenes. If you need help with SEO, SE Ranking can help.
Canva is one of the design tools that I love the most since I’m hopeless at art. With access to a whole stable of templates, images, and elements, anyone can use Canva to create professional, quirky, or otherwise customized designs.
Create images and videos quickly from any of their templates or start from scratch and let your imagination go wild. Canva is so easy to use you’ll wonder how you survived before getting on board with them.
Much of it is free, but I strongly recommend a Pro plan since it offers you a brand kit experience that will simply blow your mind.
For those looking to take creative content to the next level, InVideo helps you design, edit, format, or otherwise embellish video content. They’re constantly refreshing and updating content, so you have access to a growing library of enhancements.
This Cloud-based service will take the strain off your devices and let you render everything online. You can add intros, outros, build on templates, and much more. It even helps you custom modify videos to maximize potential on popular platforms like YouTube.
Need a meme to liven up the day? Not sure what video will work for a Facebook Audience? Want to turn a messy, complex shoot into a simple slideshow? Just use InVideo.
If you’re tired of looking at hundreds of tools and wondering if they’re usable in your case, why bother? Go for ManyPixels instead, a full-blown designer-as-a-service provider that lets you get real people to do the work for a fraction of the price.
It may cost a bit more than your average tool, but it’s the next best thing to taking a full-time designer on board. Their pricing also includes incidental image assets for your designs, and the most basic plan assures you of one full-time designer assigned to your project each day.
Remote work is so common today that we need to find new and interesting ways to collaborate. Now you can do so with video content, thanks to Motionbox. Think of it as the far more advanced version of a collaborative word processing tool like Google Docs.
You can create videos, add aminated text, slide in headings and subtitles, cut and adjust them, and do so much more. It’s an ideal all-in-one solution for those needing a cost-effective media manipulator for your marketing materials.
If you’re sick of being pointed towards Microsoft Word or Google Docs, there are many alternatives to creating better documents. Xtensio is one of the best, and it blends some of the most advanced characteristics of top applications into one neat package.
Take advantage of better document access with a Cloud-based editing system. Gain access to beautiful templates so that you don’t shock customers with lame design skills. Work together with your small team to build something that is the contribution of multiple areas of expertise.
Xtensio offers all these advantages and more. Stop worrying about how document workflow will be handled and focus on the content itself.
Getting traffic to your website is a significant challenge, but even if you do, there’s no guarantee of converting visitors to paying customers. That’s where Plerdy Tools come in; to track, analyze, and help you convert traffic into dollars more effectively.
Plerdy can work with any website, and installation is effortless. It’s light enough not to slow down your website but brings so much to the table. Plerdy can inspect the traffic from every element on your site and offer the best suggestions on tweaking things for better conversion.
Need to track an event? How about carrying out a design audit? Perhaps you need to boost sales performance; regardless of where you need conversions to happen, Plerdy has you covered.
If you need to customize each sale, then you know how big a difference your proposal makes. Living in the digital age means not staying bound by tedious paperwork and boring two-dimensional text content.
Convert your proposals into living, breathing excitement that will have your potential buyers stunned and impressed. Qwilr offers the exact things you’ll need to do this. It helps you turn proposals into jaw-dropping, interactive website format to deliver more information without boring your buyers.
Why settle for couriers and paperwork when you can remove those costs while upping your sales potential? Take Qwilr’s Document Generator for a free spin today and see how much it can do for you.
Email marketing can help increase your reach significantly, but you’ll be aware of the challenges if you’ve done it before. It can be awkward for small business owners to grasp the intricacies of building the perfect marketing email without help.
That’s where Moosend steps in and offers extensive email marketing assistance with an easy-to-use drag-and-drop interface, lots of design tools, and a comprehensive analytics system to ensure you get the correct information to improve your marketing game.
It’s packaged neatly into a single integrated system you won’t even need to run on your own devices. Sign up, start building, then improve your email marketing quickly with Moosend.
If you’re looking for a platform that will cover more than traditional email marketing, then Omnisend is a ripe candidate. It breaks past the barrier and extends your reach towards alternative channels, including SMS and even web push notifications.
Best of all, it keeps workflow simplified thanks to automation. Once you have the process set up and customized the way you want, Omnisend takes care of itself. You even get access to comprehensive testing and reporting tools to help fine-tune the process.
Omnisend is email marketing with a twist yet omits none of the performance enhancements that have this tools segment so hot.
13. Buddy Punch
Keeping track of employees is more critical than ever, thanks to a growing penchant for remote work. Using Buddy Punch, you can easily assign, schedule, and otherwise manage tasks to your workers worldwide.
Sure, you can use it to clock them in so that you know who’s at work or not. Yet Buddy Punch is so much more that it would be neanderthal to use it simply for that. It also works across various devices, so there’s no excuse not to be up to speed – from anywhere.
Email marketing may be an established industry, but in all honesty, there’s no one-size-fits-all. For those who aren’t happy with what you’ve seen so far, check out Automizy. They sell hard on effectiveness, and that’s always a good thing in email marketing.
Automize gives you the platform to create attractive emails, automate the sending process, and analyze your results. From there, you can optimize performance for better open rates. It’s not rocket science, but Automizy’s focus on automation is a solid reason to choose them.
15. Time Doctor
If you need to manage a small team of workers and want to do it efficiently, then take a look at Time Doctor. Aptly named since those who constantly find themselves short on time often need a cure for the disease.
Time Doctor lets you track, control, and improve productivity by making sure time isn’t getting wasted. As an employer, you know what should take how long, on average, so why let things stretch on without a cause?
It also offers distraction control pop-ups, payroll capabilities and works well with numerous integration with third-party apps.
Outgrow is an exciting proposition and addresses the change in times. Audiences today are far more demanding and have dynamic needs. Because of that, traditional marketing can be a formidable challenge.
Moving past that restriction, Outgrow helps you build interactive content that works to captivate your audience. Since it’s so difficult to keep their attention, get them involved, and they won’t be able to get away.
You can build calculators, quizzes, surveys, and more, plus retain the benefits of traditional marketing analytics and reports.
I haven’t addressed this sufficiently in this list, but I believe online privacy and security go way past mere antivirus solutions. Enter the world of Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) with Surfshark, one of the most cost-effective solutions in the market.
Connecting to one of their secure serves ensures that your private data doesn’t get lost (or stolen) somewhere in between. It’s the new age of confidentiality and an absolute must if you connect to remote business servers.
Why take the risk when you can blanket protect your entire Internet connection anywhere, anytime.