Business start-up apps
Consider this notion: a start-up is like a sapling, in need of nurture. Technology is the water needed for growth. Technology turns almost everything into simpler systems, it saves time and streamlines. For a business in its infancy, this support is vital for success, as resource must be maximised at every opportunity.
Apps are technology, concentrated. And in their sheer abundance, they are immediate, intuitive and a go-to for small businesses. But with so many to choose between, how can you tell which ones will bolster your business? Hone in on the apps appropriate for your business. From number-crunching to note-taking, take a look at these free and apt apps for small business.
Social media support: Buffer
Social media is a powerful tool for any business, not least a start-up. A free way to communicate with prospective and existing customers in a creative and accessible way, social media is the go-to for SMEs. An app that can make this communication even simpler, therefore, is a winner. Welcome, Buffer, the app which aims to save businesses time on social media activity by using effective scheduling and analytics. Its vision is to ‘build the simplest and most powerful social media tool’ and like Moneypenny, ‘set the bar for great customer support’. Go to Buffer to drive traffic, increase engagement and ultimately save time on your social media.
Find a freelancer: Fiverr
Fiverr is the freelance, mobile marketplace helping businesses fill a missing piece in a project by sourcing people with the appropriate skill set. Building up a full team can seem a distant goal for many start-ups, with many founders or managers acting like a one-man-band, trying to be everyone and do everything. Fiverr helps you find the skill you need, and hire the service the freelancer provides like it’s a product. So, you can focus your skills on what you know best. With a focus on quality and providing customers with the best service rather than finding the cheapest option, Fiverr is win-win for freelancers and SMEs.
Get organised with Trello and say goodbye to excessive lists, documents and email threads. Lengthy back-and-to emails don’t scream wise time management so simplify project management with this handy app. From spreadsheets to software, Trello lets you see your whole project in one glance. With it you can create a ’board’ – essentially a list of lists – and share this with a team or use by yourself to catalogue progress in a project, document ideas and research, and eliminate unnecessary document-searching.
Money management: Mint
With so much on your to-do list as a start-up, tracking finances can be an unwanted added task. Mint is a free app that helps you simplify your finances, keeping them all in one place and helping you to track expenditure, establish budgets, be reminded of bills, and even receive customised tips for reducing fees and saving money. On a single page, you can spot where most of the budget goes, which day you spent the most, and on what. A handy weekly summary of spending helps you paint a picture of your pennies.
Word up: Evernote
A distraction-free app that supports clean working, Evernote enables users to create notes – whether that’s a piece of perfectly formatted text, a webpage, a photograph, a voice memo, or a ‘handwritten’ reminder. It provides users with one place they can write notes, to-do lists, and research ideas; clip ideas from the internet; share and discuss their work with others; then present your ideas from your notes without having to create pretty slides. Even better, the notes can be shared across all of your devices.
Admin on the go: Tiny Scanner
‘The little app that scans everything.’ Tiny Scanner enables your already multi-functional phone to become a portable scanner. Easily translate any document to a PDF. Your desk can become a hoarder’s dream of debris – namely letters from suppliers, tax documents, invoices – but with so many paperless systems now, it makes sense to automatically convert these documents to electronic documents and organise them in your computer files and desktop instead: from physical desktop to computer desktop. From photographs to receipts, scan and save until your heart’s content. Then go on to share via email, Dropbox, Evernote (see above), Google Drive – however you wish.