Starting your own business is an exciting time for any entrepreneur, however, the capital needed to successfully take-off can be the main pain point. In other words, when companies start small, there are tons of responsibilities for everyone, before new people start joining in. Moreover, the days tend to get hectic and keeping track of tasks, tickets and priorities, easily turns into a hot mess. I have taken the liberty of creating a shortlist of useful apps and tools that will certainly come in handy, regardless of the industry or at least 80% of the cases.
Typically, you would want to create a website for your company from the very start, and today that is not such a high expense anymore. Tools like WordPress, or Wix, or Squarespace, allow you to get the website up and running rather quickly, using pre-existing templates.
You might want to opt for a custom website down the line, mainly to stand out of the crowd and show that you no longer rely on startup tools. However, you don’t have to, it’s really up to you and your business model. If you are an online store it could be a good idea to have a website with all sorts of algorithms that bolster the user experience, but if it only serves as a business card and showing people you are legit, there is no need.
Capsule or Nimble (CRM)
Managing leads, sales pipeline, client tickets, tracking tasks, analyzing data, and creating a comprehensive knowledge base. All of these things may seem daunting, and yet they are crucial regardless of whether you are a startup or not. It is for that reason that you should get a decent CRM system sooner rather than later. Capsule and Nimble are both highly praised CRM tools, so it would be good to get a demo or snapshot of how they work or any other similar CRM for that matter. The key thing to remember is to find the one that corresponds to your needs and that is within the budget capacity.
If you cannot afford a full CRM system, you can use free tools like Trello for project management, and Google spreadsheets for keeping track of leads. Furthermore, you can use both of these for ticket assignment and description, the only problem is that it won’t be as automated as with CRM.
Let’s not forget about social media marketing, as it is pretty much a must these days. Using Hootsuite, you can manage your profiles or social marketing campaigns across multiple platforms. Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, and others that are less general are all included in Hootsuite, and it is a tool that’s really popular among startups. Find out how people react to your posts, what has a better impact, and when it makes sense for you to post things in order to grab the attention of your users.
If your users are not predominantly on social networks, then they are surely using an email, so focus your efforts there as well. With MailChimp you can organize email marketing campaigns with ease, and ensure that your clients are always up to date with the latest products, sales, discounts, and incentives.