Running your own business is hard. But if you’re tearing your hair out over a particular task in your business, just know that ‘there is an app for that’.
Technology can help you to streamline your workflows and simplify your business, so you can get on with doing the things that you’re best at and that you enjoy.
Here’s a list of free business apps that you can use which will save you time, effort and stress.
1. Free communication apps
Slack is a powerful messaging platform that allows you to bring all of your team communication to one place and to reduce the amount of internal email being sent. It’s particularly useful if people are working remotely as you can see what’s going on within your team quickly and easily.
2. Free project management apps
Trello helps you to organise your projects into boards, cards, and lists that teammates can view and contribute to. You can upload documents and image attachments for better communication and easy access to crucial files – don’t have files stored in your own hard drive so that other team members can’t access it if you’re sick, on holidays or unable to access your computer.
3. Free employee management apps
With Findmyshift scheduling software, you can manage employees from anywhere. This platform includes free time-tracking software (including lunch breaks), a drag and drop scheduling platform, a payroll calculator, holiday time management, daily shift reminders, shift requests and cancellations, a messaging system for internal communication, and more.
Set management and staff up with an app for Android or iOS, and experience the simplest scheduling system you’ve ever used.
4. Free time-tracking apps
For time tracking, Toggl offers unlimited time tracking, projects and task management. The mobile app allows your employees to clock in from wherever they are, which leads to more accurate time tracking.
5. Free cloud storage apps
Create, store, and sort files into Google Drive, a secure, reliable cloud that is easy to use. It’s also where you can collaborate on Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, Forms, making for better document control. The mobile app allows for easy access, storage, and sharing of your files on-the-go.
If you’re using Microsoft Office then Microsoft OneDrive cloud storage app is best. If you have Microsoft 365, you’ll automatically get 1TB of space per user for free; otherwise, it’s 5GB.
Dropbox is another alternative but its free tier only provides 2GB of cloud storage.
6. Free video conferencing apps
With remote work becoming more prevalent, video conferencing apps are a business must-have.
7. Free Password Managers
1Password is a password manager with a comprehensive set of features, including remembering logins, automatic form-filling and secure password generation.
Another free alternative is LastPass. If you use Chrome as your browser there is also a native function that stores passwords.
8. Free Note-taking app
Don’t just write and store notes on your phone.
Evernote can be used for note taking and sharing, scanning documents, and inventory management, collecting ideas, creating checklists and reminders and sharing notes with team members.
9. Free scanning app
Scanner App lets you send documents and forms on the go. It photographs the document and converts it into a PDF or JPEG. You can take multiple photos and roll them into one document and even add a signature. Note the Scanner App is only available for iOS.
Genius Scan is another free app that acts as a scanner on your smartphone and it is available for iOS and Android.
10. Free graphic design and photo editing apps
Canva is a graphic design and photo editing app. It allows anyone to create beautiful designs, choosing from template layouts, stock photographs and illustrations. You can do all these with simple drag and drop tools.
PicMonkey is a free photo editing app that makes it easy for small business owners to have a social media presence with great photos. For instance, you can use it to crop photos for Instagram. You need no graphic design experience to edit photos on PicMonkey.
11. Free Travel organising app
Small business owners that take a lot of business trips will find TripIt a lifesaver. TripIt collects all your travel details and sends you alerts about flight changes. It can help you find a different flight and get the best seat.
Email your itineraries to TripIt and it updates your travel schedule on all your devices for you. You can also view your itinerary offline so you can avoid roaming when you’re out of the country.
12. Free live chat app
Tawk.to allows you to monitor and chat with the visitors on your website, respond to support tickets and create a help centre to empower customers to help themselves – all 100% free.