Although starting a small business is undoubtedly challenging, keeping it in tip-top shape is twice as hard. There are just so many factors to take care of, especially in the beginning stages. A new business will need plenty of time and resources to figure out its own system, but most of us might not be able to afford this settling-in period. After all, as part of your daily operations, you need to consider time tracking, accounting, project management, and other essential aspects to running a business. Luckily, there’s an easy solution: software tools. In 2021, the software as a service (SaaS) market is estimated to be worth approximately 145.5 billion U.S. dollars. SaaS applications are run in the cloud and usually accessible through desktops and mobile applications, as well as through a web interface. This post will discuss what types of business software can be used for your business as well as the best software for small business.
What Types Of Software Are Helpful For Small Businesses?
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In today’s modern world, there are various software tools created to improve specific aspects of your business operation. These computer programs can help you perform what would otherwise be complex calculations when done by hand.
Whether it’s accounting, shift management, or budgeting, there are lots of different software out there that you can use to help you do things that, in the past, would’ve taken a team of experts to do.
For example, let’s take time tracking. Without a shift manager, your employees’ shifts can easily become a jumble of informal, half-understood agreements. Luckily, you can now get a software tool that uses innovative coding to perform the task of a shift manager, saving you money on additional labor costs.
This is just one example, and there are plenty of other types of software that you can use for your small business.
In the next section, we’ll discuss the best programs for small businesses for the following categories:
- Time tracking
- Project management
- Email marketing
- HR and payroll
What Is The Best Software For A Small Business?
The best software for a small business depends mainly on the specific needs of the business. In this section, we’ve listed down the best software for each aspect of your business.
1. Best Time Tracking Software: Everhour
Time tracking software is one of the most important aspects of owning a business. It doesn’t matter if you have a brick-and-mortar shop or a fully remote online store –– as long as you have employees, you shouldn’t neglect time tracking.
Time tracking is not just critical software for efficient billing. Employers and small business owners also need accurate time tracking to measure business metrics and performance.
These days, one of the best time tracking software that you can use is Everhour.
Everhour can easily integrate into any project management software, which means that you can use Everhour to track your time regardless of what your small business is and what software you use for your business.
More than that, it also has a variety of powerful features that complement its time tracking features, such as:
- 👭 Collaboration. The Everhour dashboard allows you to manage your team and collaborate on tasks, with features such as time logging, task visualizations, resource availability, and template creation.
- 💰 Billing and budgeting. Time tracking is an essential part of billing. Everhour gives you access to resource management, billing, and invoicing features to make it easier.
- 💻 Automations. This app can automate reports and integrate with other automation platforms like Zapier.
With Everhour as a browser extension or an integrated software, all you have to do is press a couple of buttons to start tracking your time.
2. Best Project Management Software: Asana
One of the most necessary small business tools that you can have is project management software. Project management software gives you access to features that will help you manage your small business, regardless of the type of operations you’re running. So, what is the best small business software for project management?
There are plenty of project management methods and tools out there, but if you’re looking for something simple and sophisticated for your small business, few choices are better than Asana.
Asana’s features are just enough to be functional without being overwhelming, making it one of the best software for running a small business.
Here are just some of the things Asana offers:
- ⏳ Task tracking. Asana is primarily made for task tracking. It has robust task management tools, multiple workflow views, and strong collaboration functionalities.
- 📎 Context-creation. One of the best functions that Asana has is the ability to attach documents and media to tasks, giving your team additional context regarding the assignment on hand.
- 🤸 Flexibility. Asana is fully customizable. Although it’s good enough for small-scale management, it can also be integrated with other tools for heavier projects.
3. Best Accounting Software: Freshbooks
Numbers govern your small business. Expenses, profits, budgets, contingency plans, margins – all of these things are decided by the numbers that you can see in your books.
Accounting is a crucial aspect of your small business venture. If you want excellent accounting practices right off the bat, consider subscribing to Freshbooks – one of the best accounting software for small businesses today.
Freshbooks is cloud-based small business software for accounting that gives you a wide range of functionality to elevate your business’s accounting practices without any fuss. Some of its best features include:
- 🖥️ Business compatibility. Freshbooks has multiple templates for freelancers, self-employed professionals, businesses with contractors, and businesses with employees.
- 📒 Compliance-ready accounting. Its robust toolbox includes accountant access, general ledgers, chart of accounts, journal entries, and more.
- 🗘 Seamless integration. Plenty of accounting software can organize your books and give you compliance-ready reports. Still, they don’t have the same level of integrations that Freshbooks has for online platforms and e-commerce spaces like Shopify, Squarespace, and even Zoom.
4. Best eCommerce Software: Shopify
Going online is the next logical step for small businesses that want to expand their reach. To make it easier and simpler, you can use eCommerce platforms.
These platforms come equipped with everything you need to sell online without becoming too technical. Their main aim is to give you a high level of functionality without having to delve into the complex codes behind running a website.
Shopify is one of the best e-commerce software for small businesses. This platform gives you access to powerful features that you can use intuitively, making it perfect for beginners.
Its main offerings include:
- 🌐 Website building. Shopify lets you build a website where you can post your products, take orders, and handle payment methods without being complicated.
- 📈 Reports and analytics. Shopify gives you insight into how your efforts are performing automatically using data gathered from your marketing. You can use these collected data to improve your business.
- 🛎️ Customer support. Shopify proudly sports a robust customer support network, including a wide selection of eCommerce templates, app stores, and the like.
5. Best Email Marketing Software: MailChimp
If you’re still not doing email marketing, you’re seriously missing out on some of its key benefits.
Millions of people check their emails multiple times a day, which makes it a great way to engage with your customers. However, regularly sending mass emails can sound like a daunting task to anyone, let alone a small business with limited time and resources.
That’s where MailChimp comes in. MailChimp is an email marketing software that promises to make email marketing less painful and even exciting.
Here are some of its key features:
- 📧 Email blasts. MailChimp allows you to send regular communication to your subscribers much more quickly than if you were to do it yourself. It offers automated and targeted email sequences, campaigns, and more.
- 🧪 A/B testing. You can test out every aspect of your email marketing platform to see which ones work best with your subscribers.
- 📉 Reporting and analytics. MailChimp gathers data and uses it to show you valuable insights, allowing you to peer into your subscriber’s habits. This is a powerful function that will enable you to refine your business processes.
6. Best Pricing Software For Small Business: Prisync
Pricing optimization software uses customer data and advanced analytics to help you figure out the most profitable way to price your goods.
These tools also give you a much broader perspective on your pricing because it gives you dynamic information such as average market prices and competitor prices.
Prisync is one of the most highly-rated pricing software for small businesses. It offers powerful tools such as:
- 💲 Price management. Features such as price checking, matching, scraping, and more allow you to manage your products much better than when you’re doing it alone.
- 🏷️ Dynamic pricing. Prisync’s features like MAP monitoring and price matching can help you stand out from the competition.
- 🛎️ Stellar customer service. Prisync is also known for its top-notch, proactive customer service support staff. If you encounter any issues, you can contact Prisync, and they’ll help you in any way they can.
7. Best Collaboration Tool: Slack
Organized collaboration is critical for both remote businesses and physical stores. If you want to manage your daily operations more smoothly, you need an effective way to collaborate with your employees.
Although you can communicate on the usual personal messaging apps like Messenger or WhatsApp, these platforms aren’t optimized for business use. If you want to enhance your communication effectiveness, you need collaboration tools.
Currently, one of the best collaboration tools that you can use for your small business is Slack.
Slack is a team messaging platform that’s specifically optimized for business endeavors. Here are some of Slack’s best points.
- 🔔 Alerts. With Slack, you can customize almost all aspects of your messaging alerts. For instance, you can set it to only notify you when a certain word or username is mentioned on a channel.
- 🗘 Integrations. Since Slack wasn’t made to be a complete business software, it features a robust integration ecosystem. You can use it with almost any major tool out there, like Asana, Everhour, and Zapier.
- 🖍️ Customizability. You can finetune your Slack platform to function specifically for your team’s workflow. Despite the breadth and depth of its features, the platform still remains beginner-friendly and straightforward.
8. Best Human Resources/Payroll Software: Workful
Making sure your employees are promptly paid their due is one of the most vital aspects of running a small business.
Using HR or payroll software for this function solves the most common inefficiencies of legacy-based HR systems. Human errors, payslip delays, and time-consuming tasks can easily cause problems. With HR software, the crucial task of releasing payments becomes easier and faster to do.
One of the best HR/payroll software you can use in your small business today is Workful. Although this app is not the most feature-heavy option out there, it’s the best for small businesses for the following reasons:
- 🖥️ Easy to use interface. Workful is designed to be used by beginners. It has an intuitive interface that even the most technologically averse business owners can use with just a little bit of help.
- 👍 No bells and whistles. A small business doesn’t need complex mechanisms that adorn more in-depth solutions. Workful gives you only what you need so that you don’t waste time learning complex functions you won’t use anyway.
- 💲 Affordable price. Because Workful doesn’t have any unnecessary features, it can afford to keep the price down.
9. Best Customer Service Software: Zoho Desk
One of the things that characterizes a good small business is its ability to give stellar customer support. However, this task can become complicated if you’re doing everything manually.
Customer service software is the way to go. These tools leverage AI to help you assist your clients better.
One such tool is Zoho Desk. It’s a web-based customer service platform that promises small businesses the ability to manage their customer support activities more efficiently.
Here are some of the reasons why you should use Zoho Desk for your small business:
- 👍 Feature-rich. This software has all the features you can possibly need in customer service software and more.
- 📊 Excellent analytics and reporting. Zoho Desk offers a highly customizable reporting tool to tailor your reporting output according to your specifications.
- 💲 Affordable subscription price. Despite all its features, Zoho Desk remains one of the cheapest customer service software in the market.
10. Best e-Signature Tool: Adobe Sign
Nowadays, it’s practically impossible to use physical signatures for all the formal documents that you have to sign.
If you want to preserve your security and still leave a high-quality signature simultaneously, you need to use an e-signature tool.
Adobe Sign is one of the best e-Signature tools out there in the market today. The Adobe brand name guarantees high-quality features, which includes the following:
- 💲 Friendly pricing. This app offers a free trial as well as discounts for small businesses.
- 📋 Compliance ready. All features of Adobe Sign meet regulatory requirements.
- 👍 Comprehensive features. Adobe Sign is packed with handy features such as signature requests, automated notifications and reminders, bulk signatures, signable forms, and more.
Best Small Business Software: Wrap-Up
Running a small business is no cakewalk. However, the best small business software listed in this article can give you unique functionalities that make your daily operations a little bit easier.
Let these modern tools do the heavy lifting for you so that you can focus on making your business grow!
Everhour is one of the fastest growing time tracking software that integrates with any project management software and helps small businesses track time of employees in an easy and efficient manner.
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