Running a small business isn’t easy. Unless you’re one of the fortunate business people who can stand to go out on a limb, you’ll need to precisely survey any critical choices your group makes. Almost every business has to integrate software in their business operations. In the current digital world, software plays a critical role in improving business efficiency.
Software choices vary depending on the nature of the business. However, in most cases common software can be used across different businesses. Some of the popular software programs for small business are:
1. Google Drive
Google drive offers more than just a backup for your business files and documents. It offers a document processing platform making it possible to open, create and edit files similar to Microsoft Word and excel. Google drive offers the services for free compare to other platforms which charge for their software. Better yet cloud hosting enables a business to access and edit the files remotely from any internet connected device.
2. Join.me – Video Conferencing
This platform offers video conferencing services. Although it is not the top player in the space, it is highly recommended due to its affordable aspect. The platform supports video conferencing for up to 10 users free of charge. Additional features include screen sharing capabilities and the option to integrate up to five different video feeds.
3. Wave – Accounting Software
Accounts processing is a key segment for any business, Wave offers a simple and very affordable solution. With the basic free version, the platform enables a small business perform the basic accounting processes including invoice processing, payroll, utilities processing and balance sheet services. For advanced services such as automated payments you may be required to upgrade to a premium option.
4. Hootsuite – Social Media Management
This software provides a one-stop social media management tool. It enables businesses manage their social media activities including posts scheduling and followers interactions. The free version offers the basic services which may be sufficient for any small business. The user has the option for upgrading to access premium features such as user demographics, post reach data analysis and the ability to schedule posts for posting in multiple platforms.
5. MailChimp – Email Marketing
This platform provides an easy way of collecting, analyzing and sorting emails from a business subscription website. The platform also enables content marketing in the basic version while the premium version offers advanced user targeting with the option of user personalization in each email. Their data analysis tools are quite detailed making it possible for any small business to effectively deploy a marketing campaign at a very affordable rate.
6. Zoho Desk – Customer Service
This platform is integrated in a business website enabling a small business to receive customer feedback or questions. The platform aggregates different customer data and relays that to the relevant department making it possible for different organs within the company to receive independent feedback and respond to the customers effectively.
There are numerous software platforms available free or at a reasonable price designed specifically to improve efficiency for small businesses. If you don’t have the time to look into some of these options yourself, consider working with an external IT consultant such as http://www.itma.com.au/services/consulting who will be able to manage this aspect of business for you.