Useful apps that will make small business life easier
As a small business owner, you are well aware of how hectic life can get and how easy it is to lose sight of important tasks throughout the day. There are thousands of apps at your disposal to assist you in managing day-to-day small business operations. We’ve researched and found some of the most beneficial apps for small business owners – check them out!
To start off, Microsoft 365 and Google’s suite of tools are some of the best for word processing, reporting, and presentation creation. These apps can be downloaded and used cross-device – meaning you could be chatting in Teams and seamlessly leave your desktop to continue the chat on your mobile device. A tremendous benefit as you may be in a business where you can’t sit at the computer all day. Apps like these make it possible for you to be more accessible to those who need you.
Apps for accounting and finance
Let’s face it unless you’re in the accounting or finance world, does anyone really enjoy working with numbers all day? Maybe. However, for those who may need a bit of help and guidance in this area, here are some of the best apps to use:
QuickBooks Online Advanced
This is a complete management and assessment tool that allows small business owners to coordinate their entire financial portfolio. You can easily view inbound and outbound sales, track inventory, manage payroll, process tax payments, coordinate distribution, and more.
With this app you can categorize receipts and automatically submit business expenses for approval and reimbursement. It comes complete with features like corporate card reconciliation, multi-level approval workflows, and direct syncs with all major accounting programs. This app frees up time for business owners.
Apps for keeping track of your inventory and stock
Here are some of the most popular apps to aid in keeping track of stock and inventory. These apps are especially helpful for those in retail, food services, salons, etc. Basically, if you have products on-hand in your place of work, you’ll want to keep an eye on the inventory.
This app was built with QuickBooks in mind. It works hand-in-hand to deliver you the best inventory platform for your small business. It does an incredible job of expanding the capabilities of QuickBooks. Plus, you can use this intuitive app on any device, so you have inventory info at your fingertips no matter where you are.
This visual, photo-based inventory management and asset tracking app was created specifically with small businesses in mind. Its robust features will help you keep track of and organize inventory and supplies.
Apps for payment
Accepting payment is an area that touches nearly every business – regardless of size! These apps have been designed to streamline payment acceptance. Some can be integrated into a website as well as used as point-of-sale systems. Some of these apps make invoicing easier as well. These are great for consultants, allowing them to use an invoice template suited to their business.
This app has been downloaded and used by hundreds of thousands of companies and makes accepting payments easier for small businesses. They have a suite of tools available from point of sale to invoicing and even inventory management.
PayPal offers a suite of apps that small business owners can take advantage of. The PayPal Business app gives users the ability to accept payments as well as track expenses when the account is used to make purchases for the business, making it a great way to keep track of the finances of your business. Another option is PayPal Here, which is more of a Point of Sale system to integrate into your business.
This payment app offers flexible ways to get paid for any job. Whether online or on-site, card or e-check, with this app you’ll always have just the right way to let customers pay, regardless of how or where you work.
Apps for creating imagery
Don’t have a graphic designer on staff (or the budget for one in the near future)? Here are a couple of apps that can help you create some beautiful marketing to help get the word out about your business and services offered. You can easily save your creations to be either printed or shared on social media. There are free and paid versions, and like any app, the amount of bells and whistles each has depends on whether you’re paying for the service or not!
If you’re in need of some eye-catching creatives to market your business with, Canva can help! This app has been around since 2013 and has made it easy to become your own graphic designer (with some practice).
This app is really focused on making mobile-friendly designs. Easily use pre-made templates and simply drop in your photos (or choose from a number of royalty-free stock images) and add your own custom text. Photofy makes it a breeze to create professional, crisp marketing creatives, fast.
Apps for project management
For tasks large and small, here are some choice apps to keep progress flowing for your small business.
This app allows users to collaborate using real-time chat features. In addition you can import data from other productivity apps (like Jira, Slack, Salesforce, and more) and even track progress and goals for each project.
This app will give you the ability to manage projects ranging from simple to complex and everything in between. You can view progress, goals, timelines, and more and work seamlessly on a desktop and mobile device. Information syncs up so you have what you need, when you need it.
Trello is a seasoned app, having been around for a while, and as their tagline suggests, it helps you keep moving your team forward. You can organize your tasks whether it be planning a website design overhaul, weekly meetings, or perhaps even simple onboarding of new hires. You can customize the tools offered in this app to fit the needs of your small business.
Customer relationship management (CRM) and loyalty apps
If you work with customers on an ongoing basis, you may find some real value in having a CRM to organize your customer list. A CRM makes it easy to not only market to your audience, but to keep track of their buying habits, any issues they may have had with a product or service you offer, create loyalty programs, etc. These apps are some of the top in the CRM field, so check them out:
If you’re looking for a loyalty app to help retain customers, Belly For Business is a great option. The app lets you create and define loyalty programs on a points-based setup. It allows you to create campaigns and keep track of your customers. This is a paid app, and there’s no free option.
This app gives small business owners the opportunity to deliver a true omnichannel experience for customers. You can create personalized programs, unique with visits, points, surprise & delight, pay with points, points banking, and more. Then you can activate an in-store customer-facing tablet to provide rich media and branded content. It brings your digital and brick-and-mortar worlds together.
A scaled down version of the enterprise product, Salesforce Essentials is geared toward small businesses. This cloud-based solution allows users to manage leads, opportunities, sales pipelines, support requests, and more. A smart addition to your small business toolbelt.
Apps for Communication
Communication apps are what kept most businesses going during the pandemic and are vital tools that continue to be a valuable part of day-to-day business operations. These apps are not just necessary for staff, but also for consultants, telehealth professionals, and really any business that can be conducted virtually.
At this point, most are very familiar with Zoom! This scalable cloud-based video conferencing and web conferencing platform enables online meetings, webinars, file sharing, instant messaging, and more. It’s one of the top-rated video conferencing tools for businesses of all sizes.
This chat-based workspace within Microsoft 365 allows users to view and collaborate on documents directly within the application, conduct and participate in voice and video conference calls, view full conversation histories, and more. If you’re using Microsoft 365 in your small business, don’t overlook this amazing tool.
Integrating Webex into your small business will give you voice and video calling, video conferencing with messaging features within the video conference, all in a seamless, engaging, inclusive and intelligent experience. The cross-device functionality means you can be on a conference call on your desktop and easily connect on your mobile device should you need to step away for a moment.
Social media apps
At this point in time, these social apps shouldn’t be surprising. Most are already using these social tools in their personal lives. However, are you representing your small business socially? You may be leaving potential leads on the table by not being present. Do a little competitive research to see where businesses similar to yours are appearing. You may find different platforms attract different audiences. If you’re a tradesman or woman, you may want to join local neighborhood groups socially so you can see when recommendations for services your small business offers may be asked for. A great way to get new business without it costing you to do so. Some of the most popular social apps to consider are Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Tiktok, Twitter, and YouTube.
We’re living in a technological renaissance. New apps are being created daily to help solve life’s daily tasks. Keeping up-to-date with new technology and apps is the best way to stay ahead of your competition. If there’s a new tool that can help ease the workload of a small business owner, take advantage of it. Your new inventory app could be saving your hours of time a month that can be spent on new acquisition campaigns, finding new products, or spending more time with customers. Also, these apps can help you establish a more reasonable work-life balance (something most small business owners struggle to align on)!
As you get yourself setup with the perfect apps to help run your business smoothly, don’t forget to choose the right insurance plan to keep your business safeguarded from the unexpected. In addition to liability coverage, consider cyber insurance. Learn more or get a quote today to protect your business from cyber attacks, claims, and lawsuits.