A smart entrepreneur is one who works with smart online tools
People tend to think that an out-of-the-box product and super Internet connectivity are enough to launch an online business. Whether you are an established entrepreneur or owner of a start-up, you will always need help. Access to important online tools can help you achieve your targets faster. Most of these online tools discussed below are either low-priced or free of cost.
This blog is based on the workshop I took at Seats2Meet, Den Bosch (Netherlands). You can also check the video to get more clarity.
So, here are all the tools you could need to be an efficient entrepreneur. ENJOY
Personal Assistant Tools
It is important and time efficient for entrepreneurs to have some very simple yet important personal assistant tools and when it comes to personal assistant tools, Google's tools are the best. Here are some of the tools which you should not miss to use.
Gmail has a very good UI/UX for both laptops and mobile phones and all the features which any matured email service should have. There are some very important features of Gmail, which you should not miss out using.
- Use Labels: If more than one person is using same Gmail, then this tool is a must to be used. Using this tool, anyone using the gmail can label any mail with appropriate labels like: 'Read by Mark', 'Replied by Elisah', 'Follow up by Ester' and so on. You can color code these labels as well. You can find Lable section on your gmail as shown below.
YouTube link to know learn labeling: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8CsuWPOFK8E
- Use 'Conversation Off' mode: You must always use your gmail in 'Conversation off mode' if you are using Gmail in a collaborative environment (used by more than one person). This will help all the emails in the same email chain, to be shown individually. This helps on using labels on individual e-mails. To use conversation off mode, you need to go into the settings and click the radio button to conversation off.
- Use 'Unread first' mode: It makes your life a lot easier when you can see only Unread mails on the top. This helps as you will always be able to see the unread mails which are even 10 days old. Normally they will go down to even next page and might get out of your vision. You have to do it in 'settings' section.
Google Drive / Dropbox
- Dropbox: a free online tool allows you to store data in the cloud and not your computer. It allows you to backup and transfer huge files, and also ensures your employees can access these when needed.
- Google Drive: a replacement for Dropbox that will store all Google documents and files in a single place. The files can be synchronized across all devices, accessed while on the go and even shared.
an online word processor which entrepreneurs can use for creating and formatting text documents in real time. It is a free web-based application where spreadsheets and documents can be created and stored online and accessed from any computer with web connectivity. Check: https://www.google.com/docs/about/
Perhaps the most popular platform for bloggers and site owners. The CMS is user-friendly and free of cost; it lets you add images and demands very basic computer skills.
a collaboration tool helps entrepreneurs organize projects as tasks on a board. So, you can find out the projects being worked upon and people working on those projects.
a mobile application which can help business owners to improve communications, collaboration and organization.
a team communication tool that enables real-time messages, archiving etc. This is an advanced messenger which can guarantee smooth team coordination. Check out https://slack.com/
Email Marketing Tools
a popular email marketing service that helps businesses design newsletters, manage automated messages, and targeted campaigns. It provides intuitive newsletter templates, marketing automation features and advanced list segmentation functions. Go to https://mailchimp.com/
lets you build, deploy and also track marketing campaigns across multiple channels. Entrepreneurs find it hard to understand client pathway to purchases and this tool offers solutions to digital marketing challenges. Check out https://www.emfluence.com/
Offers emails, event marketing and social media marketing features for expanding customer base. Entrepreneurs can create responsive emails customized to suit their brands and enjoy real-time tracking of email results. Go to https://www.constantcontact.com/
Digital Marketing & SEO Analytics Tools
A popular online tool that allows start-ups and entrepreneurs to track website traffic free of cost. It indicates keywords used to locates sites and other interesting information which can be used for improving site experience. Visit https://analytics.google.com/
Lead Tracking Tools
an inbound sales and marketing platform allowing entrepreneurs to attract more users and convert leads. There are tools for content management, email and media marketing, SEO and landing pages etc. Visit https://www.hubspot.com/what-is-hubspot
this tool helps you to get ideas and learn about trends, storing this information in a single accessible location. This is accessible by laptops, phones and tablets making this a great tool for storing content ideas. Check out https://evernote.com/
Social Media Promotional Tools
a popular social relationship tool allowing users to carry out social media strategies and enabling entrepreneurs to know public opinion about their brands. Users can track and manage various social-networking channels and respond instantly.
an online tool which allows offline group meetings across many localities in the globe. Entrepreneurs can interact with their peers in the same industry and region to understand the market trends better.
Riffle: it helps you to connect with Twitter influencers easily. You can get Twitter real time interests and analytics and this helps you to interact with influencers when they are active. Visit https://thenextweb.com/apps/2014/05/06/riffle-handy-chrome-extension-viewing-twitter-activity-across-various-platforms/#.tnw_tCvIZV07
this allows users to make use of the Internet and their computers to talk to others anywhere in the world free of cost. Entrepreneurs can even hold video conferences with clients and employees.
this shows entrepreneurs users for their products and allows them to communicate with these users easily. They can carry out live conversations and send targeted emails and in-app messages. Visit https://www.intercom.com/
Customer Relationship Management Tools:
- Salesforce: a secure CRM system which is cloud-based and allows entrepreneurs to track lead generation. It is customer-driven and ensures that sales teams can close deals quickly.
- Zoho: provides a collection of collaboration and business tools and productivity applications. It brings together many online applications like CRM and customer support, helping businesses to handle workloads at reduced costs. Check https://www.zoho.com/
- Google AdWords: using these advertisers can bid on specific keywords to get clickable ads to come in the search results. Google AdWords are the most effective online advertising tool and you can even get historical statistics for the keywords to see how these perform.
- Shopify: a robust and secure ecommerce tool which lets you sell online by offering entrepreneurs and start-ups everything they need for creating an online business. It offers payment solutions for accepting credit card payments across encrypted servers and is designed to boost retail sales. Visit https://www.shopify.in/
- Woocommerce :
- CRM: Customer Relationship Management is a must-have tool for entrepreneurs that let businesses interact with clients, customers and sales prospects. Besides basic data like buyer contact details, this tools server like a roadmap helping businesses track psychographic data, monitoring follow-ups, converting leads etc. Visit https://www.salesforce.com/in/crm/what-is-crm.jsp