Small and midsize businesses (SMBs) tend to work with smaller teams and move around more limited budgets. Just because you are an owner of a small business doesn’t mean your processes need to be small!
The key is to work with whatever tools are available; sometimes, they take work to find. Some may require hefty subscription fees, while others are for bigger teams. However, if you’re an SMB, paying for these may not be the wisest investment now, so what is the safest and most accessible route? Free small business apps!
10 Free Tools for SMBs
Everybody loves free apps. They make processes organized and efficient. Furthermore, they come with super cool features. If you’re curious about apps for productivity, accounting, HR, time management, and even tax assistance, keep reading to find out!
What it’s for: Email Marketing
SMBs work hard for their leads and customers. It’s only proper to keep in touch with them via email marketing efforts regularly. MailChimp is one of the most extensive email marketing tools out there. Enjoy up to 12,000 emails monthly through MailChimp’s Free plan.
Of course, they offer various subscription plans for different business sizes. However, if you are an SMB, you won’t need all that jazz. You will enjoy built-in signup forms for potential web subscribers. You may also use their easy-to-use email templates for punchy email copies and formats—not bad for a free plan.
What it’s for: Social Media
The golden rule in marketing is to know your customers very well. One way to do this is through social media listening. Hootsuite is the perfect platform for this; the best part is they are free!
You can schedule posts, manage numerous social networks, and communicate with your followers using HootSuite Free. You can also keep tabs on how many followers your social media accounts have and which posts gather the most engagement. Knowing these data can help you further strategize your following marketing materials.
3. Apptivo CRM
What it’s for Customer Relationship Management
Customer data may seem simple when one first hears of it. However, because people are complex, their buying decisions are also difficult. Apptivo CRM makes customer relationship management a notch simpler with its free starter plan that limits up to three users.
Their starter plan comes with 500 MB of data, up-to-date and detailed reports, milestone tracking, finance management, and much more.
What it’s for: Website Building
Every business is different, but they share one similarity: they can increase their success chances by building an effective website. Not every business owner has a team of experienced programmers, and it can be costly to hire one.
Applications like Wix allows SMBs to build a complete and mobile-friendly website with their free plan. You may also maximize your online sales methods through an effective web presence. The possibilities are endless when you have a website to work with.
What it’s for: HR
Micromanaging is a no-no for every manager because some employees dislike close supervision. Let’s say you’ve just hired a promising talent, and they underwent training, evaluations, and other tests. Deputy lets you track their progress without making them uncomfortable with your close supervision. However, the catch is that Deputy is not free, but it costs only $1 per employee.
What it’s for: Endpoint Protection
The internet is a great place to sell goods and services, but it is also a horrible place to experience phishing scams, viruses, and other ill-intentioned hacker activities. Avast’s free endpoint protection lets you enjoy malware blocking, rescue disk functionality, security scanning, and other helpful features.
If this is not enough, you can always upgrade to premium plans for affordable packages. They offer firewall protection, data shredding, and other advanced protection features worth every penny.
What it’s for: Project Management
Project management tools are necessary for every business, especially ones with overseas/distant team members. It keeps tasks organized and shows a straightforward view of every team member’s progress.
Wrike is the best project management tool for starting businesses with less than five members. It lets you access free 2 GB storage and allows unlimited collaborators. As you grow your business and hire more team members, you may move to a paid plan with more advanced features.
8. Evernote Scannable
What it’s for: Document Scanning
Plenty of documents are digital. However, some documents, like IDs, receipts, and passports, are inherently printed. Not every small business owns a scanner, and not all cameras capture a high-resolution copy of important printed documents.
Fortunately, the Evernote mobile app released a feature where you can easily snap shots of documents, turning them into a document file for you.
9. Survey Gizmo
What it’s for: Surveys
Surveys are classic, fool-proof ways to gain customer and market insight. Free tools like Google forms can give a basic feedback data system, but if you wish to take it up five notches, SurveyGizmo is a perfect choice.
SurveyGizmo’s free plan is limited in managing surveys, questions, and responses. You will also access seamless data visualization features, 25 question types, and more.
What it’s for: Accounting
Accounting and bookkeeping are among many businesses’ least exciting yet crucial tasks. Wave can save you time and mental space from rent and subscription payments to salary payouts. The free version of Wave offers account and reporting features; you can scan and create invoices and upload receipts directly to your system.
A free version of Wave may only answer some of your bookkeeping or other financial concerns. However, their app allows you to get most of what you did not pay for.
Smaller Teams Call For Smarter Solutions
There are many ways to scale your business more, and you can start by adapting with smart applications like those mentioned above. It’s not the size of your business that determines its potential; the process, efficiency, organization, and willingness to think bigger will drive growth.
Hopefully, these SMB tools made you want to improve your business and provide better processes. Feel free to spread the word and help your fellow SMB owners today!