In my article listing the top five pieces of advice for running a business from home, I wrote about the importance of staying connected and organized using technology. Small business owners can keep working wherever they are thanks to a wide variety of apps. These applications will help you manage your time, your inventory, be ready for tax season, and so much more. Here are some of the best apps for small business and makers.
Best Apps for Small Business:
The old school checklist is still the easiest, best way to keep track of things. Take your “to do” list out of your head and off all those little scraps of paper and put them in one place. That’s what Todoist does. You can take your list with you anywhere and add to it whenever you need to, wherever you are.
Basecamp is a very popular project management app. You can use this with a team or for yourself to add projects, create checklists, attach files, and track your progress. You can also create calendars to help monitor deadlines and other important dates.
If you are working with a team and need to get everyone on the same page, Asana has an app that will help with that. Track projects from start to finish by assigning responsibilities and monitoring progress via the app.
If you find yourself getting distracted by other online pursuits (Facebook, Twitter, and online shopping, for example), this app will help you be more accountable. RescueTime runs in the background while you work online to break down where you spend your time. It will analyze which sites you spend your time on and will help you set goals to increase your productivity. This is one of the best apps for small business because many home business owners claim time management is one of the biggest struggles they face.
Toggl calls itself “hassle free time tracking”. If you need to log billable hours, this app will help you track how much time is spent on a project. It can track multiple projects at a time. If you have employees you can use this service with them, as well.
If you use Gmail or Google apps for your small business, Streak integrates with both of these to help you organize your customers. This app is great for keeping e-mails organized and for keeping track of where you are in a business relationship.
Nimble is a tool to help you manage business relationships without needing to input data. The app automatically updates itself with relevant customer information using a variety of sources, including social media.
If you have been in business for a while you probably already use Square. If you are just starting out, Square can be a lifesaver for collecting point of sale purchases. Plug a small card reader into your smartphone or tablet, and then you can swipe credit cards and process payments on the spot. You can use e-mail or text messages to send receipts, and there is an option for letting customers leave tips.
Similar to Square, Paypal Here uses a small card reader attached to your device to let you collect payments at the point of service. The added aspects of this service are the ability to process checks, electronic invoices, and payments from a customer’s existing PayPal account.
You may already be using QuickBooks for your business, and the app makes it possible to work on the go. You can run your business from wherever you are. QuickBooks Online lets you send invoices, view balances, approve estimates, and link to many other apps and services that you use to run your business.
Freshbooks is another invoice and accounting program that will make it easier to spend less time accounting and more time making. Track your hours, log receipts, and send invoices using your smartphone or tablet. The service integrates with other apps listed above, such as Basecamp, PayPal, and more.
There are many different apps that will help you create cool graphics, logos, and social media images, and the list is always growing and changing. A few apps that you may want to check out to use for creating branded images are: LogoScopic Studio – Logo Maker, Makr Custom Designs and Logo, and DesignMantic.
Let us know what you think the best apps for small business are!