As the old adage says “your time is money.” With so many mobile apps out there, how do small businesses select the best ones that will save them both? Online and mobile apps are growing in popularity and I thought I could help you identify some of the best apps that are helping small businesses today.
Best Online Presence App – LocalVox
According to digital marketing contributor, Ilya Pozin, for Forbes, LocalVox is a “web marketing app that allows brick and mortar businesses to build their brands online.” It helps small businesses to easily track the visibility of their brand on social media channels, how many people are reading their content, and how many people they can reach through LocalVox. It also includes tools for automatic emails to customers; Facebook and website updates; the ability to publish content across a network of publishers; and the option of updating listing information on about 100 different directories.
Pricing – Check their site online for pricing on the package that fits your business needs.
Best Networking App – LinkedIn
LinkedIn is a great way for you to share pertinent information about your business, position yourself or staff as thought leaders or find the perfect hire. It also can give you the opportunity to connect with potential clients and partners. It doesn’t matter what industry you’re in — if you do business with other professionals, then sharing ideas, answering questions and engaging on LinkedIn is a great way to build and solidify relationships, perhaps drive leads and increase your presence online.
Pricing – Depending on how you set up a profile, personal or business, will affect pricing. Baseline LinkedIn is free but there are premium subscriptions offered as well, which could help you connect easier to new customers. Getting an account set up is easy but be prepared to spend a bit of time making sure your profile or your company profile is fully filled out.
But Wait, There’s More
Here are a few apps worth mentioning because of their ability to help small business owners get organized, manage their money, plan projects and more.
Best Organizational App – Evernote
Evernote is the ultimate “To-Do” app. You can simply save all your to-do lists, ideas and notes across every mobile device you own. In addition, you can also record voice reminders and upload photos. This will make it easier for you to add notes on your computer and access them from your mobile devices while on the road or visiting clients.
Pricing – Evernote is a free app; however, if you want to upload very large files (over 1GB), work together with a colleague, or be able to lock your app for extra security, there is a premium version of the app, which costs $5 per month or $45 per year.
Best Bookkeeping App – Mint
Not only is this app great for your personal finances but it’s an ace-in-the-whole for small businesses as well. Mint is well organized and will help you to set up multiple budgets and identify all the accounts tied to your business, even investment accounts. It also has bill reminders that are sent as text messages to your smartphone so you’ll never miss a bill. Just like Evernote, you can access it across multiple devices.
Pricing – Mint is a 100% free app. It is quick and easy to sign up, super secure and easy to navigate.
Best Billable by Hour App – OfficeTime
Ideal for anyone who bills by the hour or project, OfficeTime makes recording and tracking time and expenses simple. The iPhone and iPad versions focus on ease-of-use, recognizing that if time tracking is simple to do, users will be more likely to take the time to do it.
Pricing –The PC and Mac versions of OfficeTime can be purchased at OfficeTime.net for $47.00 USD while the iPhone and iPad versions are available in the iTunes App Store for $7.99 USD (one-time pricing). OfficeTime does not require a monthly subscription fee.
Best Project Management App – Basecamp
This cool app is a web-based project management tool you may wish you had on your last major project. The easy-to-use dashboard easily lets you and your team members identify new projects, assign tasks, schedule calendars, attach relevant emails and files and much more. This app makes managing projects and staying organized a breeze for small businesses.
Pricing – Basecamp is free for the first 60 days and pricing starts at $20 a month, depending on how much space you use. Set up is easy and the customer service is excellent.
Business owners wear many hats at any given time; human resources, payroll, sales person, CEO. It can be difficult to find the best tools that will help you stay ahead without wasting your time. Hopefully these apps will give you the tools you need to make wearing all these hats a little easier.
What apps do you use and why? Let us know, we’d love to hear from you.
Note: The recommendations and opinions in this article are of the author’s alone and do not reflect the opinions or endorsements of Dex Media.