Apr 21

10 Apps and Tools to Make Your Small Business Better and More Efficient

When you don’t have the resources to build custom solutions, you can rely on these affordable (or free) fixes.

For many startups, achieving meaningful growth — the kind that gets the attention of investors and potential buyers — means having the right tools. While larger companies can usually afford to build their own custom solutions, smaller businesses tend to rely on outside vendors. Fortunately, plenty of companies out there cater to the specific needs of smaller enterprises and early-stage startups, and the tools they provide are often as affordable as they are effective.

From customer relationship management platforms to project management programs, here are ten of the best and most widely used tools on the market today. The best part? Some of them are absolutely free.

1. Hatchbuck

This all-in-one sales and marketing automation platform was built specifically for smaller businesses. Hatchbuck enables you to manage your contacts, automatically follow up with leads and track deals through each stage of the sales funnel. With everything organized and automated, it’s easy to communicate with prospects and customers so you can squeeze more revenue out of your sales pipeline and prevent important conversations from falling through the cracks. Hatchbuck provides core sales and marketing functions and leaves out extraneous features that make larger customer relationship managements (CRMs) like Salesforce too expensive and complicated for smaller businesses.

2. The Whether by Better Weekdays

The Whether — essentially the HubSpot for the hiring world — is an inbound recruiting platform that helps companies attract, nurture and hire millennial talent. The app gives companies and university career advisors a look at the job-seeking process while boosting engagement. This helps students and recent graduates find careers aligned with their strengths and values.

3. FreshBooks

For companies entering a growth phase, keeping track of finances is imperative. FreshBooks is a cloud-based accounting software platform also designed specifically for small businesses. It doesn’t have many of the overwhelming and unnecessary features of its larger competitor, QuickBooks, so you don’t have to be an accountant to understand how to use it.

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