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Free lunch is served

Top 9 apps to boost your business

The Russians say the only free cheese is in a mousetrap. But not with these!

First up, let’s clarify there’s nothing suspicious about the price here. As Chris Reed of Restless Communication explains, “Many start ups would kick off with the free versions only to find that they’re so valuable and they scale so well, that as the company scales, they stick with them.”

It’s in their best interest to make the freebie versions indispensable – and in yours to squeeze every drop of goodness out of them. So here’s our pick of the most useful tools for small businesses:

Slack

Slack.com

First up, a brilliant messaging app. Not only does Slack make collaboration easy, it’s highly searchable and you can highlight ideas for follow up. Making your chats a lot more productive.

Great for: File sharing, teams in multiple locations.

Trello

trello.com

Another collaboration tool, Trello organises your projects into boards. So you see at a glance what stage everything’s up to. It’s as satisfying as moving Post-its around a desk (and infinitely more organised).

Great for: Managing projects

Airtable

Airtable.com

Like Excel but sharable. You can collaborate on spreadsheets, which you can fill with anything (from images to barcodes) and it’s all updated in real time.

Great for: Crunching numbers and getting everyone organised

Evernote

evernote.com

A digital filing cabinet and project management system – it’s one container that can store everything from social to snaps and receipts to ideas – all catalogued.

Great for: People with lots to remember

Hootsuite

hootsuite.com

Lets you manage all your social platforms in one place. Schedule posts in advance and analyse the content that’s working best.

Great for: Taking control of social (especially if it’s just you doing it)

Answer the public

answerthepublic.com

Not only is this handy, it’s fun to use too. Type in a relevant subject and ‘The Searcher’ creates a lovely chart of clickable areas to explore.

Great for: Generating content ideas

Followerwonk

https://moz.com/followerwonk/

This Twitter analytics tool lets you find out more about your followers, identify influencers and (perhaps even more importantly) find people who share your passions.

Great for: Talking to the right people

MailChimp

mailchimp.com

Use their templates to create email campaigns and send to your subscribers (up to 2,000? It’s free). And they’ll be optimised for all devices too.

Great for: Keeping in touch with your customers

SurveyMonkey

surverymonkey.com

You can never know too much about your customers and the best way to find out what they think is to ask them. There’s gold in those email addresses – and one quick survey could change your business. Well, it’s worth asking isn’t it?

Great for: Getting customer feedback

 

 

So there you have it, a bunch of great apps that won’t cost you a penny (and might save you a few).

To explore other ways to digitally transform your business go here.

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