If you’ve ever asked yourself “where did the day go” then this is for you. There’s no question that time is a hot commodity. Generally, we’re overrun, overworked and on a hustle mindset 24/7. While I have mixed feelings about the word hustle (let’s just hustle smart, not hard), I do agree that we could all use more hours in the day.
Confession: As tech driven as my work is, I am a complete skeptic to new technology. I wait, and wait, and wait, then study the reviews and competitors, then do a test run. If it doesn’t perform magic in the first 10 seconds, it’s gone. So trust me when I say the small business apps on this list are total life savers. I promise they will boost your efficiency, focus, and productivity.
This is my favorite app for creating a peaceful Monday. Over the weekend, I write follow up emails, and status updates and schedule them to be sent bright and early Monday morning. My busy email list is crossed off before I even make my first cup of coffee, and your recipients think your off to an amazingly productive week. Click here to add the Boomerang extension to your gmail >
Hello project management! I’m slightly obsessed with crossing things off a to do list, and this free cloud-based app keeps all my projects in sync and moving along with assignments, deadlines, checklists, attachments, you name it. I used Trello for a couple of years and made the switch to Asana for all my client workflows and personal to do lists. You can even save your boards so creating a new project is a snap. Click here to try Asana for free >
I can’t tell you how many hours this app has saved me. Gone are the days of word and excel for invoicing and tracking payments. Set up recurring or one-off invoices and let them work behind the scenes. Get paid online, track expenses, create proposals (and signatures upon approval- score), and even track your hours. With end of the year reports, tax season looks much less intimidating. If you’re self-employed, this is such a no-brainer. Click here to try Freshbooks free for 30 days >
Let’s face it, ideas come and go quickly, regardless of your proximity to a computer. Evernote stores everything in one place from random notes, to books. No kidding, I have a client using this to write a book one free minute at a time. Personally, I use it to jot down social media captions before yoga class. Anything that’s on my mind gets digitally scribbled down, where I can look at it later from my desktop. Click here to check out the free Evernote app >
When you’re just not that happy with how an all-in-one social media planning tool manages Instagram, this is the answer. Just add your images to shuffle them into the perfect grid, add captions, add saved hashtags and save it for a schedule notification. If you’re like me, save more time by not reading or judging yourself too much when it’s time to post. Just approve and go. Try Plann >
This tool has been a total game changer in my business. Within the first month, Tailwind helped Pinterest become my #1 source of traffic to my website (like 85% of my traffic). That’s some serious action. The user dashboard is complex-looking at first, but with a little effort and help from the video tutorials, you can get up and running in an afternoon. Use it to create a pinning schedule, bulk upload pins, create smartloops to keep your great content recycling, join tribes to share and submit pins, track your analytics, and more. Get a free trial to see in action and be prepared to be amazed. Click here to try Tailwind >
Customer experience is important. Rather than sending bulking emails with attachments that tend to get lost, I organize a dropbox folder to share files. Branding clients love this because everything is neatly organized, no questions needed. Plus, if there’s a revision to be made, you can replace the file so there’s no duplicates or confusion. It’s also great for working with team members to share large files. Click here to try Dropbox for free >
As a designer, I spend most of my time on Adobe programs, like Photoshop and InDesign, but I’ve been using Canva more and more to create easy-to-edit templates for clients. It’s a completely free cloud-based app where you can create great-looking graphics and share them online (or print out). Start with a blank slate or choose a design (free and paid options available). I’ve even started included Canva formats for templates in my own shop. No fancy designer skills needed – just open and start editing. Click here to try Canva for free >
Want to see all the resources I love? Click here for my full list of trusted can’t-live-without apps and resources I use everyday. What about you? What are the apps you can’t live without?