There are myriad variables that are necessary to manage and grow a business. You need to excel in every facet of entrepreneurship for business sustainability and a competitive edge in your niche. These aspects include productive communication, effective customer management, successful digital marketing, stable financial health, enhanced team management and task automation to name a few.
As a startup entrepreneur, you have to juggle many responsibilities yourself. To top that startup success rate is not very promising with more than half of them failing in the first four years. One of the leading reasons for startup failures is the lack of managerial experience, which stands at 30%.
Therefore, to run your startup endeavour successfully, you need to employ the proliferation of web-based applications that have become a prerequisite for well-managed organizations.
We have compiled a modest list of the most effective tools (startup toolbox) that are free of cost and thus, perfect for your limited budget:
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Lumen5 turns text into stunning social media videos in minutes. It does this automatically by analyzing the text through AI and putting the best music, video, and images together accordingly.
Evernote is the 21st century medium for note taking and archiving. It has a great suite of products that enables you to jot down your essential thoughts and peruse them later. What makes Evernote a smart addition to your startup toolkit is ease of enhancing your notes with links, checklists, tables and audio recording. The Web Clipper add-on helps you capture a variety of content from web browsers and store it in different formats.
Most importantly, the free web-based service helps you organize all your scribbled thoughts and best ideas on an interactive platform. You can also find your notes easily and quickly.
Customers’ buying behavior and market requirements are ever-changing. Therefore, you need to morph your online presence according to the changing digital environment to achieve the optimum results.
Optimizely is an A/B testing tool that enables the startups to procure the greatest results from their user influx while mitigating bounce rate. It allows you to comprehend how the changes to your business website affect the users’ behavior. You can implement the version of your web page that performed better and gain the most revenues out of your current inbound user traffic.
Email marketing is a perfect platform to gain a targeted audience. It is also more efficient as the customers initiate engagement and thus, are more likely to convert.
MailChimp allows you to connect with your loyal and potential customers by creating and sending out visually appealing emails. You can personalize the template to generate brand awareness and depict an organized business front. Email marketing automation allows you to welcome new leads, and re-engage or follow up on previous clients automatically, thereby reducing your to-do list. Furthermore, the analytics reports inform you about the performance of your emails; what aspects worked and what needs improvements.
Hence, MailChimp is an intuitive email marketing tool that is easy to maintain and use.
Salesmate is one of the leading CRM pipeline management software. It enables you to track and plan your sales activities, organize relevant sales and customer data for easy accessibility, remain in-sync with your team and manage your clients effectively to forge long-lasting relationships.
The smart Reporting feature evaluates and notifies you about all the critical aspects of lead generation and customer retention. You can customize the CRM dashboard, for seamless navigation, according to your requirements and enhance it as your business grows.
You can also integrate Salesmate with numerous other third-party apps to streamline your business transactions, and import and export crucial customer details.
Social media has become a crucial marketing tool. Majorities of startups expand their outreach and brand awareness through social media.
HootSuite is one of the best social media management tools. It allows you to manage your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other social media accounts from a single dashboard. You can set up alerts, auto-schedule your posts and Tweets, and curate compelling content through keyword or hashtag search. In addition, comprehensive reporting allows you to analyze the impact of your social media campaign, by measuring ROI and conversion rate through social channels.
7. Google analytics
To become an entrepreneurial success story, you have to begin by getting on the first page of search engine results. Google is the most powerful search engine with over 77% usage. Therefore, you need to use Google analytics for efficient search engine optimization.
Google’s Keyword Planner helps you analyze the most searched words, which generate the most traffic. You can embed the relevant keywords in your content to facilitate the chances of your web page’s retrieval for the related search query. It also tells you about the competition around the keyword and the number of users searching it.
Google’s behavioral analytics allows you to understand and track which marketing methods are generating the most traffic and what are the most accessed parts of your website.
Startup owners are often stumped for time to maintain a thriving blog and an active website. On the other hand, content generation has become a prerequisite for effective digital marketing.
Portent’s content idea generator is a handy tool that produces relevant ideas for blogs and enables you to create valuable content continually. It allows you to skip the exhausting procedure of coming up with ideas and dive right into the creative process of creating a blog post.
EngageBay is a simple, affordable, integrated, all-in-one marketing, sales and service automation platform with a free CRM, built to grow small businesses and startups. EngageBay’s email marketing platform helps you grow your business with intelligent, powerful email marketing.
The marketing automation suite helps you save time, nurture your audience and automate routine, manual tasks. With the free CRM and sales automation, you can organize all your email contacts, track deals and the sales pipeline to grow your sales. Further, you can build meaningful customer relationships that stay for life. And finally, with the free live chat and helpdesk features, provide real-time assistance to convert visitors to happy customers. Track, prioritize and solve customer support tickets in minutes.
Startups often have limited resources and a shoestring budget. Therefore, it is important to keep all your financial matters organized and transparent.
Wave is an intelligent tool that helps small businesses link to their bank accounts and automate invoicing, transactions, etc. With automatic billing and reporting feature, you can easily manage cumbersome finances and keep track of your expenses. You can also manually update your monetary records and add your incomes.
Generating leads for any marketing purpose is tough, but it’s doubly challenging in the B2B sphere. Therefore, effective lead generation in B2B is all about identifying your prospects and using that data to create better pitches and relationships.
Albacross is a B2B Lead Generation Network which takes care of discovering who your website visitors are. This lead generation tool helps you to identify and monitor the unknown companies that are interested in your business including their size, revenue, industry, demographics, and contact details of their decision-makers.
Albacross comes with a Zapier integration feature which makes it possible for you to connect your site with 1000+ different apps and streamline your sales.
Indy is a comprehensive project management software that includes everything you need to stay on top of your projects, from marketing to management to billing.
You can keep track of different tasks for multiple projects by assigning filters or moving tasks from one project to another. The tasks tool also allows you to assign tags, making it easy to see at a glance which project has the most tasks remaining. The deadline and reminders feature ensures you also deliver your work on time. At the end of the week or month, you can link your hours to an invoice by adding your hourly rate before sending the document to a client.
In the technologically driven era, there are numerous tools available to supplement every aspect of your business management requirements. These free and practical tools make your business model more resourceful and allow you to organize every facet of your startup companies, easily.
Optimize the startup toolbox by leaving a comment about your favourite business management application.
ABOUT Erica Silva
Erica Silva is a blogger who loves to discover and explore the world around her. She writes on everything from marketing to technology, science and brain health. She enjoys sharing her discoveries and experiences with readers and believes her blogs can make the world a better place. Find her on Twitter: @ericadsilva1