As a startup, you may feel overwhelmed by the constant stream of things you need to get done. Paying for the tools and resources required to run your venture smoothly may be a major worry. How about if we tell you that there are many free business tools for startups that you can use and scale your business?
These free (or economic) business tools not only minimize your startup costs and save time to focus on other, more critical aspects of your business. These tools available on the internet for free or for a nominal price help you get most of your tasks done quickly and efficiently and allow you to grow your business fast.
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Here are 9 Free Business Tools For Startups
1. Calendly for Schedule Management
As an entrepreneur, your calendar is likely to be always packed. You must stick to a routine and keep things running on time while spending time with customers, investors, partners, and influencers.
One of our favorite free business tools for startups is Calendly, formerly TimeBridge, allowing users to set up an online calendar of their own. The calendars can also be shared with clients, customers, partners, and employees to request meetings. This online scheduling software integrates directly with Google Calendar, so everything is automatically synced.
If you use Gmail or Google Calendar, we highly recommend trying out Calendly!
This tool has helped hundreds of startups streamline communication between their team members, partners, and clients. Its basic plan is free! However, you can pick one of its premium plans to get features like integrations with Google Calendar, Slack, and Evernote and customization choices.
You can even have multiple team members manage appointments together in one place.
2. Moosend for Marketing Automation
The importance of marketing automation can’t be understated. Automation allows you to run your business with less input and gives you spare time to focus on other essential aspects of running a company.
It’s an email marketing automation program that makes email marketing more automated and hassle-free than ever. Thus, it’s one tool that every new entrepreneur should check out.
Moosend offers everything from tracking to drip campaigns, allowing you to easily send emails at certain times or when conditions are met. It even integrates with MailChimp, AWeber, Constant Contact, and other tools.
If someone visits your website but doesn’t purchase anything within three days, you can set up an email campaign that reminds them about your product or service and encourages them to complete the transaction! If they don’t respond to that email, you could send another one in two weeks—and so on.
That kind of follow-up ensures that no potential customer slips through your fingers.
Once you have a budget, you can hire digital marketing experts to take your business to the next level.
3. BrandCrowd for Logo Design
While starting a business requires a unique logo that sets you apart from your competition. Logos provide that brand that customers will recognize. Therefore, the logo design should take center stage in startup planning. They get little thought and a tiny share from your startup budget.
BrandCrowd is an online logo maker tool that lets you create awesome logos. You can customize colors, layouts, fonts, and other aspects to create beautiful logos within seconds and start sharing them with the world.
The online logo maker tool also offers many customizable social media design templates. If your’s is an early-stage business, you need to be active on social media and keep creating multiple posts. You can easily tweak BrandCrowd templates to suit your brand message.
It’s also impressive that the templates are automatically customized with the colors from your logo, allowing you to send a consistent brand message across all platforms.
4. Trello for Project Management
Getting started with a project management tool like Trello can help you prioritize your workload and streamline collaboration. Since Trello is free and easy to use, there’s no reason not to give it a shot.
Whether you’re managing a small business or planning an event, here are some of our favorite uses of Trello:
Project Management: Whether working on a freelance gig or launching your startup, organizing all your tasks in one place will ensure nothing falls through the cracks.
Communication: When everyone on your team has access to see what everyone else is working on, communication becomes streamlined and more efficient. If you need to share documents or photos related to a specific task, attach them directly from within Trello so that other people on your team don’t have to navigate outside their workflow.
Collaboration: If you’re working with other people remotely (or even if they work in another part of your office), adding comments and using @mentions makes it easy for everyone involved to stay up-to-date on any given tasks without having to follow up constantly via email.
Milestones: While many project management tools let you set due dates for individual tasks, it’s easier to break down big projects into smaller milestones and track them. For example, if you’re hosting an event, you might want to create separate to-do lists for each step, such as booking the venue, sending invitations, and ordering food. It keeps you from getting bogged down by too much detail.
5. Zoom for Video Conferencing
If you’re looking for a quick and easy way to hold video meetings with your employees or, for that matter, any audience – Zoom is the tool for you. It’s the top-rated service of choice for video conferencing and currently has more than 300 million users worldwide.
Trusted websites like Trust Radius, G2, and Gartner have rated it A+.
Zoom is compatible with all major operating systems, and you can use it on a smartphone, tablet, and computer. The platform is secure, so your data is protected from hackers. And with excellent customer service and an easy-to-use interface, Zoom will get you up and running in no time.
The video conferencing tool can even host meetings without installing software—just log into your account and share files as needed. If you want to try it out before making a purchase, they offer a 14-day free trial!
Zoom also has a free plan that allows you to host up to 100 participants at a time, plus you get unlimited one-on-one meetings which may be all your business requires at the early stage.
6. Hootsuite for Social Media Management
Hootsuite is an easy-to-use dashboard that lets you manage multiple social accounts from one place, including your company’s Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google+. You can schedule posts in advance and see what your followers are saying in real-time. Plus, it’s free! Use Hootsuite to get organized today.
Key benefits of Hootsuite
- Schedule and track posts, monitor keywords and mentions, view analytics, and analyze data
- Collaborate with your team members on projects from any location and measure your ROI
- Available for download on iOS, Android, and Windows phones
If you are serious about expanding your social media presence, then Hootsuite is worth checking out. Download it and create an account by connecting your social media profiles (you can add up to three). Once connected, you can access your messages and updates, post updates directly from Hootsuite and add links or photos to post through your social media profile(s).
You can choose which updates appear on each profile to avoid duplicate content across platforms. Additionally, this platform lets you set up notifications and sends alerts when someone mentions your brand name or uses certain hashtags.
Hootsuite has been designed with businesses in mind and offers many features that allow companies to organize their social media marketing efforts. Later, as your business grows, you can hire SMO experts to implement better social media campaigns.
7. MailChimp for Email Marketing
Most early startups struggle to keep their products or services in the minds of their prospects. And there is no denying that email marketing does the job better than most other marketing tools.
An efficient email marketing platform enables you to connect with your customers and grow your business; therefore, we highly recommend MailChimp!
Mailchimp has many useful features and an interface that makes sending email newsletters fun and effective. All you need is to create a free account on their website, and you will be ready to create lists, design your newsletter template and start connecting with your audience.
Key benefits of Mailchimps
- Integrates seamlessly with WordPress
- Easy to manage your subscribers from within your WP dashboard
- Integrated A/B testing feature
- An interesting interface that makes sending newsletters easy and effective
If you need help setting up your newsletter template or using any of its features, MailChimp has a great documentation page and lots of resources for learning more about its platform.
They also have a live support team that helps you with any trouble with a specific element of your email campaign or integration into WordPress.
8. Intercom for Live Chat
Intercom helps scale early-stage startups with ease. Its user-friendly products and features let you acquire, onboard, engage and support your clients in a personalized manner.
An engagement OS, Intercom can significantly improve your website conversions through targeted visitor messages and live chat. You can also send behavior-based push and email notifications to engage and draw new clients and track and segmentize them based on their personas and actions on your website or the product page.
The platform lets you announce new features through personalized in-app messages, and its email and messaging features ensure quicker responses, faster resolutions, and satisfied customers. Intercom is an excellent choice for startups looking for an easy-to-use marketing automation tool.
Though Intercom isn’t a free tool, early-stage startups can use it by paying a nominal monthly or annual fee.
9. Cloudways For Website Hosting
Cloudways enables business owners to focus on their core tasks by handling the web hosting hassles. A cloud-based hosting platform for developers and startups, it provides users with essential features, including automatic backups, server optimization features, and a one-click script installer.
If you are just starting and need an easy, cost-effective way to deploy a website online – try Cloudways. Once your brand grows and becomes more complex, upgrade to one of the premium plans, ranging from $12 per month to $96 per month, depending on your specific needs.
On A Final Note
As your startup grows, you’ll need to invest in more sophisticated tools and hire professionals. However, the Free business tools for startups we’ve listed here help you get started and continue to grow your business. Have you tried any of these free business tools for startups? Do let us know about your experience in the comments below.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q1- How do I choose between free and paid business tools?
Free is not always a bargain! Before signing up for any service or tool, you should decide if it will be an integral part of your business growth strategy. Think of the free resources as tactics that can help you when they’re implemented alongside other services or tactics (many of which may be paid). For example, Google Analytics is free but doesn’t provide in-depth data about visitor behavior. So while you can use Google Analytics with its basic features, opting for its premium plans allows you to get more value by providing detailed information about how visitors interact with your website.
Q2- What are some of the best free marketing tools for startups?
Some great free marketing tools for startups include:
- Online marketing and SEO tools like Google AdWords and Moz
- Content management systems like WordPress
- Email marketing platforms like MailChimp
- Analytics tools like Google Analytics
Q3- Is Calendly better than Google Calendar?
Calendly, unlike Google Calendar, isn’t a traditional calendar tool. The business tool works with your existing calendar application to automate and streamline the often frustrating process of scheduling meetings. It lets your clients and employees schedule appointments with you on your terms. If you upgrade to a professional plan, Calendly also offers features such as chat support and live online training.