So you want to own a small business… No matter what the type of business is you need business management software. The most critical software you need is Accounting Software for your business. I have owned several small businesses and even if you are mildly successful it can be impossible to take care of everything without technology and software. Plus the lack of software can make the business inherently inefficient which will stop you from achieving levels of success you desire.
Your business could offer physical products, digital products, services and more.
Customer Relationship Software (CRM Software)
You will have customers. You may see them in person or it may be a relationship completely online – or a combination of the two. But how successful will you be if you don’t know if they are satisfied? We see attempts at this everywhere we go – surveys on the bottom of receipts, feedback requests etc… CSAT software will help you determine if your customers are HAPPY customers. Happy customers return – you cannot build a success business on one time only customers. You want them to come back to you, seek out your business AND hopefully tell others (tell the world!) and to achieve that you need to have testing software for quality assurance.
A website is essential for most small businesses. Sure you can rely on other major sites such as Amazon, Ebay etc… if you have that type of business but you can really build a brand and a name with your own site. I recommend WordPress rather than one of the free sites. WordPress is the most flexible and really the standard in the market. You will need hosting and I recommend Twenty70.com. I have tried others but found that the down time was not acceptable. One hosting company I was on had a catastrophe that had me down for more than two weeks. Down time is lost money.
We don’t all have an attorney at our disposal but that doesn’t mean you don’t need to handle things legally. Let the Contract Shop handle your legal needs as much as they can.
If you will have email newsletters and marketing materials (not all small businesses will or even should) then ConvertKit has you covered.
No matter what your business is, you will need to plan or it can all quickly unravel. To do lists are nice but they can be pushed off. Asana helps your To Do list become a reality and ties it to real actionable steps and deadlines.
This one is tricky because there are so many options out there. I have tried many of them including relying on spreadsheets and ditching them altogether. If you can afford it the industry standard seems to be Freshbooks – where you can also get invoice templates but there is a cost for that. If you are looking for a free option that may not have all the bells and whistles (most of us don’t need all that stuff) then Wave Accounting is for you. One of my favorite features is its ability to integrate with other major sites such as Paypal, Etsy etc… I love the ease and flexibility of this app/software and it has made a huge difference in my productivity.