This column is by Raj Bhatt, Digital Marketing Manager PromptCloud
When you run a startup or a small business, you want things to function effectively. Besides having an amazing team to support your endeavour, you also need apps that make your life easier and help you do everything from keeping a to-do list to delegate tasks to employees & stay on top of your business expenses.
There are thousands of apps out there that can help you in everyday tasks and be ahead of all the new barriers coming your way. For your ease, we have shortlisted the best apps from various categories like Finance, Time Management & Communication etc, have a look.
FreshBooks is an easy-to-use option that offers a lot of functionality on the go. It can be used to track hours, log receipts, and send invoices from your smartphone or tablet. Tools are highly visual and intuitive, and the service integrates with several others including Basecamp, PayPal, Google Apps, and ZenPayroll.
FreshBooks offers some of the most competitive pricing models for accounting software, making it an affordable option for small businesses. The base plan starts at $9.95 a month, and allows management of up to 5 clients. More fully featured versions allow unlimited clients for up to $79.95 a month.
With Slack’s instant messaging platform, you can organize your team’s conversations into separate private or public channels or send a direct message. The app also makes it easy to drag, drop and share images, PDFs and other files. It also automatically indexes and archives any message, notification or file. There’s no limit to how many users your business can add.
The best part is that basic Slack is free for an unlimited number of users. More advanced features, including unlimited searches and app integration, start at $6.67 per user per month.
This app automatically tracks time you’ve spent on applications and websites and sends you detailed reports based on your activity, giving you an accurate picture of how you spent your day. It works for Mac, PC, Android and Linux.
RescueTime Lite is free; the premium version comes with added features including alerts, the ability to block websites, more detailed reports and costs $72 per year.
This is the app for syncing notes across mobile and desktop devices. With Evernote, you can clip bits and pieces of information from the web, tag them for easy searching, and alter any of them by adding to it, condensing it, or embedding pictures, tables, audio, video, and the like. You can also use Evernote for organic notes and journaling, to-do lists, recipes, contacts, and even storage for tweets or emails that you want to keep handy.
All of that is free in the basic version. Evernote also has a business version that costs $12 per user, per month with several added features including administrator controls and unlimited space for uploads.
Skype is by far the most effective and popular app to transmit photos and files of any size, share your computer screen, call a group of people and send text messages. However, Skype for Business offers meetings with up to 250 people, integration with Microsoft Office, chat, file transfer, and more.
Pricing starts at $2 per month per user. For $5.50 a month, you can add features including meeting recording and remote control of other’s computer desktops. If you don’t need all that, Skype-to-Skype video or voice calls are completely free for up to 25 people.
This convenient platform lets you link your credit, debit and other bank accounts to your PayPal account, making paying people and getting paid quick and painless. Paypal have created an app that lets businesses attach PayPal’s card reader to a tablet or other device and use it as a portable register.
PayPal’s standard merchant service plan is free and allows you to accept credit cards and PayPal on your site and in store. The Pro plan costs $30 per month and comes with added features, including the ability to host and customize online checkout.
Trello is an easy-to-use project management app that tracks your team’s workflow. Each card you create on a Trello board represents an assignment or task. You can add members, comments, attachments from Google Drive, Dropbox or your computer checklists, due dates and labels and stickers to make the cards as descriptive as possible. And whenever you change a card, Trello notifies each member via email and on mobile devices.
The app is free to use for iOS and Android devices. The business version costs $9.99 per user per month, and comes with extra features, including integration with apps such as Slack and Evernote.
Dropbox is the most popular platform on which to store and share files on the cloud. It’s especially useful for companies that need a reliable way to share information with telecommuters.
Dropbox offers a free, basic plan for individuals and a pro plan for $8.25 per user per month. Teams with more than five employees can buy the business plan for $12.50 per user per month.
Mailchimp helps you build and manage your mailing lists, and easily create and send newsletters. You can also build and customize email templates and view performance reports about your emails. This information can help you send your customers more relevant emails.
MailChimp’s pricing depends on the number of subscribers you have. It’s free to send up to 12,000 emails per month if you have up to 2,000 subscribers.
If you’re a Startup or an SME, we think it’s worth checking out all of the apps above. But this list is far from exhaustive. Every business is different, and there are plenty of other great cloud applications out there to match your organisation’s needs. If I have missed your favorites, don’t hesitate to add them in the comments below, I am always open to hear your suggestions and ideas!