Running a small business with cloud services and a smartphone is easier than ever, and many services have truly stepped up in ambition and quality. With these five popular apps, you’ll have some of the tools you need to succeed in a cost-efficient and lean manner.
Evernote – collect, connect, share and present
With Evernote, you can sync all your notes, keep track of your ideas and collaborate with your colleagues on many different projects. The premium version allows you to turn notes into presentations with just one click, as well as scan and digitize all the business cards that are lying around your office.
Xero – do the books on the go
With Xero, you can do bookkeeping, accounting, send out invoices, manage payroll and produce inventory reports. And you don’t have to be stuck with Excel or ugly interface ERP systems or accounting software. With Xero’s simple and clever design features you can save a lot of precious time.
iZettle − a complete point of sale in your pocket
Originally an easy way to accept credit cards on a street market or vintage sale, iZettle has become a real one-stop-shop for small businesses when it comes to payment solutions. The real beauty of iZettle lies in the point-of-sale system, which allows you to digitize receipts, collect valuable customer information and gather sales data into helpful reports.
Hootsuite − all your social media channels in one place
If you manage more than one social media account, you know it can be a hassle. With Hootsuite you can add three accounts, and if you upgrade to premium, you get a hundred. You can schedule your posts to optimize the impact. Now you can even include Instagram in your Hootsuite streams, to monitor and comment from multiple accounts.
Yelp − put your business on the map
Encouraging digital reviews of your business and engaging with your customers may be the single most cost-efficient way of strengthening your market presence. Just make sure you put some effort into updating your Yelp profile with all the possible information and contact details. Engage with customers – especially the disatisfied.
Now you have light versions of the many different systems that large organizations pay millions for − systems that often are old, messy and difficult to use. Use the small start-up size to your advantage and keep your business truly scalable. And remember: all these apps are developed for multiple platforms, so you can use iPads and laptops as well. You have to put your phone down once in a while.
Copyright © 2015 Erwan Derlyn of iZettle (@iZettleUK)
So, you had a great idea, you turned it into a business and now you are well on your way. Brilliant! But wouldn’t you like to make running your new business even easier? Your tablet device could provide the answer.
A mere few years ago we didn’t have access to handy tech devices such as tablets, but now there is an app for pretty much anything you can think of – including time management and marketing.
Marketing is an integral part of any business, as you’ve probably already found out, but often it’s something that can fall by the wayside because of a lack of time. Thanks to tablet devices, your start up doesn’t have to suffer. You can give your marketing strategies some attention, even while you’re on the move, thanks to these fantastic tablet apps:
Raven Tools boasts an array of tools and add-ons that allow you to manage your marketing campaigns, as well as some impressive features that work well with industry profession API’s [application programming interface], including SEOmoz and WordTracker.
Raven Tools is brilliant for allowing you to tailor exportable PDFs and custom reports to your brand, handy for adding a professional touch to your reporting. Offering two different price packages, as well as optional add-ons, Raven Tools is the app that allows you to tailor absolutely everything. No wonder it’s so popular.
Wildfire By Google
A social marketing app, Wildfire offers solutions for all of your social marketing needs. Boasting a recently upgraded marketing suite, this app allows you to mix and match your products until you find the best solution for your business.
Using the app you can promote single or multiple campaigns, including sweepstakes, ads and promotions to your customers via the main social networking sites – this allows you to get your message across to large audience, quickly. Comprehensive analytics are also offered with this app.
A clever app that will help you to grow your online and social presence, thanks to good old ‘word-of-mouth’. Much like Wildfire, Payvment allows you to easily create a virtual storefront on their Facebook fan page that allows customers to buy directly from Facebook, using PayPal to complete their transaction. There have been mixed reviews from businesses for this app, but it is a free tool, so give it a go.
This free app allows people to connect with their favourite venues, brands, and stores, as well as rewarding shoppers when they make a purchase via the app. Small businesses can create a virtual shop window, upload photos and provide information and updates, as well as invite customers to rate them.
The Elephanti app allows you, as a business, to have a direct point of contact with your customers, enabling you to find out what they like and want. The app is brilliant for letting potential customers know about your business and when a customer ‘checks in’ to your store you can communicate with them about every aspect of your business.