The entrepreneurial spirit is more widespread than ever, and it’s no surprise. Being your own boss gives you a sense of freedom that slaves to (and fans of) the nine-to-five can only dream of. However, when the office workers and civil servants clock out and forget work for the weekend, we small business owners risk our heads spinning. There are deadlines, paperwork, invoices, expense claims, and the imperative strong social media presence, not to mention the content of the business itself! Avoid business-related headaches by employing some of these indispensable time-saving tools.
1A Time-Saving Social Media Management App
Whatever the nature of your business, it’s highly likely that you’ll benefit from a strong online presence. That could mean many hours spent during the working day, evenings and weekends creating posts, hash-tagging and generating interest in the business. Hootsuite is the ultimate social media management app, and you can get it for free for up to three social media accounts, which means it’s great for individuals and small businesses. If you do need to manage more accounts, you take a 30-day free trial and then upgrade for $29 a month if you wish. It allows you to minimize time spent on social media and even eliminates the need for employing or contracting a social media management specialist, a savvy option for smaller businesses and start-ups.
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2A Foolproof Content-Creation App Like Canva
If you really want to not only build your brand but future-proof it by targeting the younger generations, install Canva on your smartphone. It’s a content-creation app that allows you to be the designer. This drag-and-drop app is so intuitive that you need no experience of graphic design to create beautifully individual graphics including social media posts, infographics, business cards, logos, presentations, and much more. You can get snap-happy and use your own photos or choose from a range of stock photos in their library. In my experience, the desktop site has a few glitches, but the Android and iPhone apps have proven their worth.
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3An Affordable and Reliable Smartphone
When your content creation and social media are taken care of, you’ll want to make sure that your phone and network are reliable. You could consider the iPhone 7 plus from a carrier like T-Mobile. There are many advantages of the iPhone 7 over more recent models such as its range of colors, more wallet-friendly price tag, and durability. Using the T-Mobile network is probably your best option at present, considering that it has been deemed the fastest network in the U.S. this year. According to BGR, T-Mobile overtook its competitors last year, who were “treading water” in comparison.
4Access-Anywhere Accounting Software
The boring-but-crucial part of many businesses is the accounting. Instead of leaving it until the end of the month, quarter, or even year to backtrack and figure out your numbers, why not invest in accounting software such as QuickBooks? Whether you have an accountant or bookkeeper or not, you can use QuickBooks for all your business accounting needs. You can manage your books from anywhere, meaning that you can leave that laptop and memory stick at home when on business trips. According to Kaufman Rossin, it allows you to give hourly paid employees and contractors access to timesheets only, reducing security risks. Better still, there’s no software to download, no updates and your data is backed up and secure on Intuit servers. Accounting made simple!
5A Decent Bluetooth Earpiece
It may sound outdated, but don’t be fooled. A Bluetooth headset or earpiece can save you a lot of time. Multitask like a pro wearing quality earpieces. Safely take business calls in your car, record your to-do list while walking the dog or practice your second language on the cross trainer. As you know, time is always money.
With so many tasks to juggle, being creative with newly available tools and keeping up to date with technology is often just not a business owner’s priority. It’s safe to say that these tools, once up and running, will save you time, energy and a whole lot of stress in the long run when used on the right device with the peace of mind of using a reliable network provider.