In our digital age – starting a business has become incredibly affordable and much easier with a huge availability of business tools and resources to help get the job done.
Even if you are completely new to an industry or have no experience as an entrepreneur, you can find nearly everything you need with just your fingertips and a laptop!
Don’t know anything about SEO? Look it up!
Not sure how to create a decent website? Use a website builder!
Technology and access to information have opened entrepreneurship as a viable career path with 100s of new businesses starting every day.
To help you kick off your new (or old!) business – we’ve gathered a few awesome and totally free tools that will make your life easier!
1. Hubspot Invoice Generator
Generating invoices has never been easier. Hubspot has created an incredible useful invoice generator. Let the app hold your hand as you type in all the details that you could need to include. Then, choose a professional-looking invoice template from the selection offered to you by the app.
There are plenty of designs and colors to choose from, so it should be easy enough to find that matches your brand. Once you’re done, you can download the app as a PDF and fire it off to your clients.
Eye-catching images are crucial to capturing the attention of potential online customers, whether they’re already on your website or scrolling their social media feeds.
There’s no need to pay a professional designer to create these images though. Canva is a fantastic free platform with hundreds of templates, fonts and images making it simple to create professional-looking images yourself.
Among the dozens of templates are ‘Facebook Post’ ‘Twitter Post‘ ‘Menu’ ‘Flyer’ and Ebook Cover’.
The templates will be perfectly sized for the platform you choose and features hundreds of professional-looking designs.
As you can see, it’s easy to edit and customise to promote whatever type of content you’ve recently created.
Doodle makes it so simple to plan meetings with staff, clients or potential customers. This free software allows you to select a range of potential dates and times for your meeting, send the suggestions to participants and allow them to check off which of the times are most suitable for them.
Best of all, it syncs with your calendar apps like Google or Outlook Calendar, so you can add the best time to schedule without fuss. This is ideal when scheduling meetings with several people in different companies with different calendar scheduling tools.
Slack is the new messenger app, revolutionising the way that business colleagues communicate with each other.
If you’re working remotely, or your running an online business where some of your staff or clients aren’t based in the same area as you, it’s useful to have a simple way to message them all.
This group chat feature on Slack is far more comprehensive than mobile apps such as WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger.
It’s incredibly intuitive on both desktop and mobile and contains several useful business features, like the ability to set email notifications or set reminders to yourself. Remote working has never been easier.
With this website, outsourcing small areas of your business has never been easier. There are thousands of freelancers offering business services, with prices starting from as little as $5.
The minimalist home page asks what service you’re after. My search for ‘business logo design’ brought up hundreds of options.
By clicking on a job, you can learn more details about the freelancer, the different packages on offer and reviews from previous customers.
There’s a buyer protection similar to eBay so you can avoid scammers. Fiverr will take a fee from seller’s earnings, again in a very similar method to eBay.
6. LinkedIn Sales Navigator
LinkedIn Sales Navigator is a must-download Gmail plug-in that makes networking simpler than ever.
With this app installed, you’ll receive the LinkedIn details of every person that contacts you via Gmail alongside the email they send.
Without having to scour the less-than-reliable LinkedIn search engine, you’ll receive details of their website, their career history and your mutual connections.
You’ll instantly be able to make a decision on whether a cold emailer is worth networking with. The paid version of this plug-in gives you plenty of additional features on LinkedIn, including the ability to scour the web for an individual’s email address.
Just download the app from the Chrome Web store and it’ll pop up on the right-hand side of your Gmail automatically.
Create brief makes it quick and simple to send a professional looking design brief to designers across the web. You start from the home page by titling your design and giving some basic instructions.
You can then select a colour palette and use these handy toggles to explain what sort of brand image you’re trying to convey.
Within minutes, you’ll have a professional looking brief with its own URL, which you send to designers using Share button or by copying the web address into an email.
Online business has never been so easy
If you want to start a successful online business, you will only need a tiny bit of capital to get started. It doesn’t take a fortune to launch and if you are smart with how you apply your money – you can do a lot with a little.
However, before jumping in to any new business – make sure to do your research. Put together a list of resources that you will need and then see how you can cut those costs. If you are smart and complete in-depth searches, you can usually find a cheap alternative to any major business cost.
You can always upgrade when you have the revenue to support your efforts!
Hopefully some of these tools help get you started.
Do you have a favourite free business tool to share? Leave a comment below and let us know!