The 5 Essential Tools Every Small Business Should Be Using

Running a small business is hard work, time-consuming, and can often be unpredictable. However, these facts are widely known and recognized and have compelled many to develop products and services to help small businesses perform more efficiently and complete more tasks with ease.

  1. A Tool for Communication: Skype for Business

With several moving parts and sometimes several employees to stay connected with, it’s imperative that your small business have a simple, reliable way to communicate both in-house and with clients. Skype, a channel through which users can make free video calls, has made a name for itself because of its convenience and availability. Skype for Business is just as convenient and takes things a step up by offering the ability to have meetings with up to 250 people and by integrating with Microsoft Office. For a few dollars more than its standard $2 fee per month, you can make HD video calls and record meetings.

  1. A Tool for Keeping Your Books: QuickBooks Online

Chances are that your small business is either already using QuickBooks or at least has knowledge that the software exists. QuickBooks Online offers the same functions as QuickBooks for the most part, but allows the user to access the service from all devices and connect to cloud-based apps. QuickBooks Online tracks expenses, puts together custom invoices and stores employee work hours among many other things, cutting down time spent on must-do tasks like payroll, tax preparations and expense reporting.

  1. A Tool for Finding a Brandable Domain Name: Shopify

For most businesses, the internet is a major contributor to their overall success. Building a strong online presence starts with a memorable, relevant, and brandable domain name that doesn’t limit your business. If for example you wanted to run a children’s clothing boutique, choosing a domain name like bestwomensclothes.com would be confusing to potential customers. With the Shopify domain name suggestion tool, you can search for available domain names based upon your brand name or keyword. It will then return a list of available domains that you can register. There is nothing worse than spending hours coming up with the perfect domain name idea online to find out it isn’t available.

  1. A Tool for Payments: PayPal Here

On top of PayPal’s abilities to allow customers to pay your business from their banking account, credit or debit card, PayPal Here also has the ability to accept customer payments via swiping debit and credit cards. The cards are swiped through a card reader that is used in connection with your handheld device of choice. With PayPal Here, you can also  process checks and invoices from a customer’s existing PayPal account.

  1. A Tool for Marketing: Facebook

All businesses need to market themselves, and today, that oftentimes means through social media accounts. Facebook is particularly useful for businesses because a business’s Facebook page not only contains a feed of content, but also has a clearly defined place for the hours and location of the business, as well as a space for customer reviews.

For those seeking immediate exposure, Facebook advertising is easy to setup, allows you to clearly define your audience, and is generally cheaper than Adwords. As a small business owner it can be tough to keep up with multiple platforms, FB is one of the easiest to use and the quickest to learn, especially since many of us use it already.

If your small business needs some help with organization, efficiency and promotion, there is an abundance of tools readily available to give assistance. With their help, you can be sure to streamline and simplify, therefore making you more money and giving you more time.

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