Operating a small business online can be just as taxing as operating a brick-and-mortar store.
However, given the right tools you can make the process go much more easily. We’ve listed a few of these tools to add to your entrepreneur’s toolbox.
Google Apps has been a life saver. These free applications allow you to keep your online business organised in one central location. They offer the following applications:
- Google Docs (spreadsheets, documents, presentations, survey forms)
- Websites and group wikis
Google Docs is by far one of the best online sharing applications. What is best about this application is that it auto-saves your work so you never have to worry about losing your information. As well, you can access your data anywhere at any time (given you have internet access, of course).
Last Pass is a password management and form filler system. It automatically stores all your online passwords, so you never have to worry about forgetting them. It will also automatically generate passwords for you if you choose to do so. For security purposes your information is encrypted on your PC, and only you have the password to access your account.
As with Google Docs, you can access Last Pass anywhere where the internet is readily available. Simply log into your account and you will be able to view all sites you have saved passwords for; no need to save your passwords to your laptop or a hard drive.
Don't have Skype yet? What are you waiting for? Skype has come a long way from just an application that you can use to call friends and family for free, as well as do live video chats.
This tool has become a must have for many entrepreneurs to regularly contact associates, clients and potential prospects. We are also beginning to see it being used more and more by entrepreneurs who wish to create podcast and video interviews.
To do video interviews, you will need additional software. You can check out free software called Vodburner (will have a watermark unless you upgrade to their Advanced option) or for a premium version check out Replay Telecorder.
It is time to put that $60 camera down and start looking for professional images for your website and copy on IStockPhoto.
Don't get us wrong; candid, real-life shots are great. But if you want to be taken seriously, then will you need to use professional looking photos for your website. For an average of $1-$2, you can get an amazing image to be used as you wish!
99designs allows you to post a graphic design contest where multiple designers compete for the winning bid. Here's the best part, if you don't like it, you don't have to pay; although, they have a remarkable reputation so I doubt that would ever be the case.
There's going to be a point in time when you will need to start outsourcing some of the trivial day-to-day tasks so that you can concentrate your efforts on what's really important -- marketing and sales.
Hire My mum allows you to hire out mums who have put their careers on hold to raise their families. mum professionals are screened, so you can rest assured that you will get top quality assistance.
Are you at all curious to see how your website is doing? And in comparison to your competitors? Well if you are not, you should be! How else are you to determine where your website needs improvement?
Website Grader is a free tool offered by Hubspot.com that grades your website and gives you pointers on how to optimise it. This is an invaluable tool that can give you a wealth of information on how and where to make website improvements.
Both applications allow you to manage all your major social networking profiles in one interface. The only difference is that TweetDeck is desktop based; that is, you can only access the dashboard on the desktop on which you installed the software. HootSuite is web-based, so it can be accessed anywhere, anytime that has internet access.
Social networking has become an integral part of most online businesses and these applications are top-notch, powerful tools to help you along in managing your major social mediums.
There you have it, 7 9 tools that you can add to your entrepreneurs toolbox. Although, whether or not you choose to use them won't make or break your online business; they will allow you to operate your business with a bit more ease. And who doesn't want that?
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