Tools and Resources for Work From Home Businesses, Entrepreneurs and Marketers
Forbes – 15 Free Tools Every Entrepreneur Should Use
You can go broke fast as a new entrepreneur. Here are 15 free tools to help you get started and even grow a sizable business while preserving your funding for what really matters.
- Google Slides Tool – One of the great tools in Google’s suite. It’s the free way to create PowerPoints and pitch decks and to seamlessly collaborate on them with your team and consultants. Easy to create, update, and present as you go through your first funding rounds. Effortlessly integrates with Microsoft, and can be used to create videos of your presentations. For a winning deck, take a look at the pitch deck template created by Silicon Valley legend, Peter Thiel (see it here) that I recently covered.
- Canva – Canva offers a free suite of design tools for creating social media ads, PPC ads, infographics, beautiful slides, magazines and a lot more. Comes with plenty of free stock photography built-in. You can even use it to create custom and consistent filters for all your brand images. Great starting tool if you need design and you are trying to DIY it.
- Trello – This free project management tool is used by an enormous number of freelancers. So, you should have no problem finding a team who already has experience with it. Easy to use to-do lists, delegation tools and collaboration for remote teams.
- Google Trends Tool – A great first step to figuring out what’s hot and in demand out there. This is a very simple tool to find out what people are talking about and searching for online, whether interest in something is increasing or decreasing, and if there is enough web traffic to begin building an SEO campaign around.
- Mailchimp – There are so many email tools out there today. From Getresponse to AWeber to Infusionsoft, most do exactly the same things. Mailchimp will get you started with list building and automated follow up, for free. It even has web forms, popups, and a basic landing page builder. One of the best things is that it integrates with virtually everything else for free. You can always export your contact list to a new service if you want to upgrade to something more complicated later.
- Google Analytics – It’s crazy how few entrepreneurs and businesses use this powerful, free tool. It doesn’t matter how much of a genius you are and how creative you are, you need data to make sound business and financial decisions. Google Analytics will give you a quick overview or deep dive into who your customers really are, what they love about you, what is turning them off, and how to optimize for more conversions and spend your marketing money more wisely.
- Boomerang – Boomerang for Gmail enables you to schedule emails for later. This is perfect for giving yourself time to think before your response goes out, to time landing pitch emails to investors, and to target marketing messages to land at just the right time for your prospects. The Respondable feature aims to help you write better emails too. It does this by ranking your message on a variety of factors, including reading level, length, positivity level and staying on subject.
- LinkedIn – LinkedIn is a goldmine for startup entrepreneurs. It is a powerful platform for building an audience, targeted recruiting, networking and gaining direct access to angel investors. Make sure you’ve polished up your profile and publish to your feed regularly. Even though is free I find very useful the premium experience which gives you access to message people that are outside of your network.
- PayPal – In an age where banks fee you to death and are still catching up on technology for swiftly sending transfers, PayPal is powerful. It’s like a no-cost bank account, merchant account, and credit card processor, allows you to instantly and quickly take payments and give refunds. PayPal also now offers a variety of POS tools as well as small business loans and lines of credit.
- WordPress – There are a lot of DIY website builders and blogging tools out there today. WordPress still runs most of the web. It’s free to setup your own website or blog, still one of the easiest to use and comes with an enormous amount of plugins. A great starting point for testing your business idea and beginning to get traction.
- Medium – Medium is essentially a free blogging platform. You don’t need to mess with any design. Just start publishing clean content, getting the word out about your startup, updating investors on your progress, and attracting more customers.
- Skype – If you’re a highly mobile entrepreneur and are allergic to wild cell service roaming fees and ‘unlimited’ plans that really aren’t – then Skype is probably for you. Use it to make free calls, record podcasts, host meetings, and conduct video sessions. There are plenty of plugins to check out too.
- AngelList – Use AngelList to find a startup job, post a job, network with investors, see who is investing in what, and to invest in startups as well.
- Upwork – Post job openings for free on the world’s largest freelancing platform, and screen from the best experts for your needs in the world. Get just the work you need on-demand without taking on hefty overhead or salaries.
- Calendly – Use Calendly to schedule appointments, calls and investor meetings with ease. Integrates with Wix and Google Calendar.
Entrepreneur – 17 Essential Tools for Entrepreneurs
One of the biggest challenges we face as entrepreneurs is staying on top of everything. You have to respond to emails, make sure your website works perfectly, organize projects, keep in touch with your network, and avoid getting distracted by social media, cat videos, and tools that only make you less productive.
The Internet does not just enable procrastination. It also offers solutions to busy entrepreneurs: there is an abundance of tools and services that were created to help you organize your life and business, so you can focus on doing work that matters.
These resources were created by people who know what it’s like to have a to-do list that never seems to end. Many of them can be used for free, so there’s no reason not to give them a try.
- Trello – project management tool
- Google Docs
- Asana – Project management tool
- Dropbox – Storage
- Slack – chat app communication tool for teams and mastermind groups.
- Momentum – inspiring homepage replacement app
- Spotify – Music
- 7-Minute Workout
- Boomerang – Focus, archive email(s) back to your inbox at your chosen time.
- Voila Norbert It can be very frustrating and time-consuming to look for someone’s email address on their (company’s) websites. Voila Norbert finds the right email addresses, even when they’re not explicitly mentioned on a website. You just have to know the name of your contact person and the domain name of their company.
- Sidekick – Sidekick is a brilliant email add-on tells developed to tell you whether someone has opened an email you sent. It shows you when, how many times, and from where the recipient has opened your email. This can be very useful when you’re doing a round of cold emailing, trying out a new marketing campaign, or starting a newsletter. Observe people’s behavior and learn from it!
- 99 Designs – Logo, landing page, book cover.
- Canva – online graphic design platform.
- Fiverr – cheap outsourcing
- Clarity.FM – Want to get advice from an expert? Stop wasting your time browsing blogs. Clarity.FM connects you with a community of experts. You can look for professionals by name or by expertise, depending on the type of advice you’re looking for. Have a personal conversation with an experienced entrepreneur is the ultimate way to get the answers you need. Want to know what Brian Wong or Chris Brogan would do in your situation? Just ask them!
- Typeform – Surveys
- Hack the Entrepreneur: How to Stop Procrastinating, Build a Business, and Do Work That Matters – Are you stuck and don’t know what to do next? Do you want to control your destiny, do work that matters, and have the freedom to travel? Hack the Entrepreneur: The Book contains 50 hacks by brilliant entrepreneurs, who have turned their startups into successful businesses. Find out how to get started, deal with failure, and learn from your mistakes. Your business will thank you later.
Top 20 Small Business Tools for Online Entrepreneurs
- Accounting & Legal – YouNeedABudget.com
- Calendar Management – ScheduleOnce
- Communication & Meetings – Skype
- Content Creation (tie) – PicMonkey, Scrivener
- Customer Relationship Management – Infusionsoft
- Ecommerce & Payments (tie) – Gumroad,Shopify
- Education – Google
- Email – Rapportive
- Entertainment – Spotify
- File Sharing & Storage – Google Drive / Google Docs
- Health & Wellness – Gratitude Journal
- Marketing Tools – Moz
- Networking – Meetup
- News – Flipboard
- Outsourcing – Fiverr
- Productivity – Evernote
- Social Media – LinkedIn
- Team & Project Management – Asana
- Travel (tie) – Airbnb, AroundMe, TripIt
- Websites, Blogs & Podcasts – Entrepreneur on Fire
Source: Post Planner
Shopify – Business Tools and Resources
BPlans – The Small Business Toolkit