A list of tools entrepreneurs need to have or should have in order to build their startup.
7 Tools That Will Change They Way You Do Business
Finding the right tool to aid your journey in building a successful startup isn’t easy.
With hundreds if not thousands of tools and applications out there how could you possibly decide on one?
Luckily you’re not alone in this quest. Reading this article with set your team on the path to startup success. We have curated a list of inexpensive and free tools that are easy to learn and make a huge impact on your team’s productivity.
Communicating Effectively: Slack
Slack advertises itself an email killer. While it doesn’t completely get rid of email it drastically cuts it down. In fact users can see on average a 48% reduction in email.
Email is definitely a distraction to many startups but Slack has many more added benefits than reducing the amount of email you get.
For one it reduces interruptions. Have a quick question for your designer? Shoot a message over in Slack rather than interrupting them. Once they hit a stopping point they will naturally open up Slack and get back to you.
Have an announcement for the whole team? Forget the meeting and make the announcement over Slack.
Slack definitely saves time but it also helps with keeping a log of all your team’s conversation which is sorted by channel (think, project). Each one of these channels is searchable so getting up to speed on a project or bringing on a new team member is easy. They have a wealth of information that is neatly organized and searchable.
The best part is Slack is free up to 10,000 messages which is perfect for a bootstrapped entrepreneur or startup. From there the pricing tier is very reasonable at only $8 per user a month.
Create A Workflow and Start Delegating: Asana
Asana is a popular project management tool that integrates with your favorite tools and keeps your team on task. While Slack is great for communicating, Asana is great for creating project tasks, assigning when the task is due, and who all is responsible for doing so.
With Asana you can meet deadlines and help hold your team accountable for their piece of the project.
The best part is each team member can comment on current tasks and share files within tasks to keep everything together in one place that’s easily accessible by everyone.
Asana is fully functional and free up to 15 members. From there $10 a month per member is a small price to pay for such a powerful project management tool.
Stay On The Same Page: Google Suite (Gmail, Drive)
No list is complete without mentioning the powerhouse suite of tools that is the Google Suite.
From Gmail to Google Drive, Google is renowned for making simple to use products that exceed expectations.
Google Docs and Google Sheets are invaluable to creating documents and easily accessing them from anywhere. They are easily shared and much simpler than their Microsoft counterparts.
Google Suite for businesses is $5 per user a month and gives you Gmail account that you can use with your personal websites URL. Your team gets 30GB of space on the Google Driver per user (double that of a personal account).
Get Paid Without The Fuss: Stripe
As discussed in our Crash Course in Entrepreneurship, getting paid should be a top priority for any new business. You don’t want to pay crazy processing fees and you don’t want the headache that comes with some of the larger processing companies.
Stripe is simple to use and integrates into the platforms you already use like WordPress and Shopify making it easier than ever to collect payments.
Stripe has no monthly cost or startup fees. You just pay 2.9% + 30¢ per transaction which makes taking payments from day one easier and cheaper.
Keep Everything Accountable: Xero
Xero has pushed aside Quickbooks in is rapidly gaining traction among thousands of businesses and accounting firms. Your startup needs systems in place to track expenses, make payroll, send invoices, and track inventory.
Xero fills all those roles and with unlimited users and multiple platforms your entire team can work from anywhere. Most CPAs know Xero well and will applaud you for making tax season a breeze.
At about $7 a month Xero is very affordable for any startup. And when your company needs more features the next level up is only about $21 a month.
Build Your Presence With Ease: WordPress
WordPress now powers over 26% of the websites on the internet. And when it comes to content management systems WordPress is largely the front runner at almost 60% market share.
Why is that good for a startup? Because that means more options.
- More plugins to build your site to your specifications
- More support to troubleshoot problems and find solutions
- More designers and programmers to choose from
WordPress has a very simple interface that just about anyone can learn in short period of time.
WordPress is free but forking over some cash for a premium theme can make all the difference. A good route to go is Genesis or Divi which can get you up and running for under $100. This can make your website look better on mobile devices, make it easier to design, and often convert better overall.
Stay In Front Of Your Fans: Mailchimp
Slack is great for communicating with you team. But what about communicating with your customers?
Meet MailChimp. With almost 20 years of sending email, MailChimp is the industry leader when it comes to email newsletters and email marketing.
MailChimp integrates with your favorite apps and social media platforms to capture contact information from your fans and potential customers. Then with the click of a button you can send email blasts out to everyone on your list.
Announcing a new product offering, the launch of your new app, sending surveys, or even coupon codes is very simple with MailChimp.
For many businesses their free version is plenty but their service is competitively priced if you wanted added features like automation and more in depth analytics.
There’s no doubt that these tools will definitely take your startup to the next level. Many of them have free trials and tons of great tutorials so you jump right in and start seeing results.
If you find other invaluable tools along the way please share them in the comments below. Tell us how they have helped you build your startup and why you c