Small business owners have enough obstacles to overcome without making life more difficult by failing to exploit the wealth of online software resources available. New software solutions to help small businesses are being developed all the time and old ones are always being improved. Whether you need help with marketing, SEO, accounting or organisation, you can be certain that some software has been specifically developed to help you out.
Very often these online software solutions fill a niche that would normally be occupied by a more expensive agency; software, therefore, presents a more economically viable alternative for small businesses. That’s why SME’s should pay particularly close attention to the opportunities that are out there in terms of software and apps; you can be sure your competitors will if you don’t. Here are our top five picks of the best software to help small business owners. Some of them, such as QuickBooks are useful for everyone, while others are only relevant to specific kinds of businesses.
Online Software #1 Method.me
This great customer relationship management software brings all your sales, marketing and support information into one place. It is fully approved by Intuit and integrated with QuickBooks accounting software so that sales or support teams can see existing customer accounts and give up to date pricing information or provide support with full knowledge of the customer history. You can improve customer service by integrating financial data, such as purchase histories and invoices, with customer data such as contact information. Improved customer service means stronger relationships with your customers.
Online Software #2 QuickBooks
Intuit’s QuickBooks accounting software was chosen as Business News Daily’s best accounting software for small businesses earlier this year. Our software was the winner due to a combination of best price, ease of use and best customer service. QuickBooks is like your own personal assistant and accountant in one. This finance management system comes either in a desktop version or as a cloud based solution. Management of accounts, payroll, expenses, inventory and bills are made easier by bringing them all into one place, accessed through a user-friendly dashboard. You can sign up to trial QuickBooks here, for 30 days.
Online Software # 3 Booking bug
This event booking software is ideal for businesses that make reservations or bookings and sell tickets for events of all kinds. They actually have an online booking system catered specifically for SME’s. It can be used for personal appointments, conferences, multi-person classes and recurring courses and events. BookingBug supports all kinds of businesses and allows them to receive bookings 24/7 and receive payments and deposits through the simple system. It also makes staying on top of your bookings much easier with its automated SMS and email messaging system.
Many business models depend on a booking system but why pay more to reinvent the wheel and implement your own system when you can use an integrated system like Booking Bug?
Online Software #4 Sheer SEO
Search marketing is an essential part of effective modern business. You need to keep track of keywords, inbound links, monitor your competitors and bid for the right words before they do or you won’t rank highly on Google. SheerSEO makes all this much easier by automating your rank tracking and link building. It also lets you track activity relating to your site on social networks like Twitter and Facebook. If you can’t afford to hire an SEO agency, then this software is essential for helping you to keep on top of your digital marketing strategy.
Online Software #5 Evernote
It’s easy to forget things when you don’t have a personal assistant or secretary to help with all the numerous tasks related to running a business. But this easy to use notation app can help you out; it lets you scan and file all kinds of documents, business cards and photos using your camera’s phone. You can then access and share them from multiple devices.
Evernote is a well-established app that works on all kinds of smartphones and makes organising your work life simpler. You can collect articles and photos online and convert them into easily readable notes which can be shared just like the documents you scan with the camera-phone. Wherever the notes come from, they are all formatted to be easily read from the device you are using. You can also use Evernote as an efficient way to share information with employees, as long as they use the app too.
For more on planning and growing your organisation, visit the Small Business Centre.
Information may be abridged and therefore incomplete. This document/information does not constitute, and should not be considered a substitute for, legal or financial advice. Each financial situation is different, the advice provided is intended to be general. Please contact your financial or legal advisors for information specific to your situation.
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