Sifting your way through 457 feature comparison threads (or even worse, trialling all the tools to figure out which feature is included in a plan!) isn’t a fun task to do, especially when your relationship with tech is rather complicated.
To save you the headache, we compiled a list of our most loved business tools and apps that’ll work for you, too, no matter if you’re starting out with your business or if you’re an established solopreneur who’s eager to tick off some big-ass goals.
We use the same tools in our own business every day, so you can be confident that they’re top of the line with a+-mazing customer service. And the best part: they don’t cost an arm and a leg.
Check out our Favourites below!
Some of the links on this page may be affiliate links, which means that if you click such a link, you’ll be redirected to another business's website. Should you purchase any of their offerings, we may get paid a commission at no cost to you.
Even though we highly recommend what they offer, we encourage you to do your own research before buying anything.
LET'S START WITH OUR TOP 10 BUSINESS TOOLS
LET'S START WITH THE
TOP 10 BUSINESS TOOLS
to build a solid foundation
// Business email, productivity & collaboration Tools
Google Workspace (formerly G Suite) allows you to create a custom business email, and it sweetens the deal with a cloud-based storage package plus a myriad of handy apps such as docs, sheets, slides, as well as a calendar, chat and video meeting functionality. It’s an all-in-one solution to run your business effectively and to collaborate with your clients without spending a bucket load of money. Oh, and did we mention how much you’ll love the user-friendly interface?
// email marketing, sales campaigns & automations
After switching email autoresponder providers a couple of times, we’re happy to say that ActiveCampaign is the best choice. It offers all the functionality you’d expect (and more!) to stay in touch with your audience at a very reasonable fee that grows with your subscriber count, which means that there’s no big monthly $-figure when you’re just starting out (yes, go with the ‘Lite’ plan). The best part: it integrates with lots of other tools so you can give your clients a seamless experience. Double thumbs up from us!
// Appointment scheduling platform
Calendly takes the administrative hassle out of booking appointments with clients. This app is a true nerve- and time-saver, and it’s super easy to set up. Once done, your clients can book a session or multiple ones online in a go without having a time zone converter next to them. By the way, it integrates with Zoom, so everyone has all the details to join the call at their fingertips. Win-Win! Psst: Go with the ‘Essential’ or, even better, the ‘Professional’ package as they include the oh-so-important reminder notifications to increase show-up rates.
// Workflow management tool for legal documents
You know that you should put an agreement in place before starting to work with a client, don’t you? But how do you handle all that in a digital world and make it airtight? Dropbox Sign (formerly HelloSign) is the tool for that. Upload your template, add the fields that need to be filled in, mark the space where your clients have to sign and send it. Your clients will receive the file, and they can sign it electronically. And should life come in-between, this nifty app will send automatic reminders.
// Video Communications Platform
This virtual event platform is easy to use, and the price is more than fair for what you get. Want to share slides? No problem. Conduct a workshop with break-out rooms? No worries. Or did you promise a recording of the session? Consider it done. We love how stable Zoom is, even when our data bandwidth is at the lower spectrum and the minimal delay—if at all—when having conversations. This is genuinely another 5-star tool we wouldn’t want to be without in our business.
// Shopping Cart Solution
After burning money on other shopping cart solutions, ThriveCart eventually ticked all the boxes for us without the pricey monthly fee. Its user-friendly interface allows you to set up one-on-one packages, group programs, training courses and so on in under 15 minutes (no kidding!). Equipped with all the marketing bells and whistles to create simple, professional-looking checkout pages, this business tool makes selling fun. If you can spare the extra bucks, definitely upgrade to ‘Pro’. But that’s not all... They’ve just added a learning management system. Say what?
// Payment Processing Platform
We applied for a merchant account at our local bank, and they had us jump through 1,001 hoops. Not so with Stripe. They offer an easy sign-up process with a fair and transparent fee structure, and they integrate with most shopping cart solutions and learning management systems. Plus, you can send out invoices and direct payment links for one-off or recurring payments straight from their platform and receive your money from clients in one click.
// Web Analytics Service
Do you want to learn more about your audience and how they interact with your marketing resources? No probs. Google Analytics offers a ton of valuable data and insights for free. Yep, pack away your credit card. Just link your website to their software and give them a bit of time to collect relevant stats. It’ll answer questions such as: Which platform sends you the most traffic? How long do they hang around? Do they click on anything? And the list goes on...
// Livestreaming app For Mac
This terrific app lets you stand out in a flood of poorly created live streams. Ecamm looks super professional (and it makes you look the same!), and it’s oh-so-versatile. Nowadays, we use it for live streaming, interviews, screen recording (bye-bye Camtasia and ScreenFlow!) and to create interactive tutorial-style videos. Hands-down, this is one of our most loved apps.
// Video Messaging
Loom makes it a breeze to record and send video messages. And should you have a bad hair day, just turn the camera off while a gorgeous headshot of yours does the job. We use this app all the time to explain things in more detail or to walk clients through a resource shown on our screen. The quality is stellar, it’s easy to use, and it makes interactions a tad bit more special.
tools to create a website
(that wows your prospects!)
// Web Hosting
After some false starts with the big guns, we gave SiteGround a shot to host our WordPress website. Their customer support is outstanding, and their prices are reasonable - especially when you sign up for a longer period with them. Looking back, we’d have saved so much money (and nerves!) if we had known about those folks from the get-go.
// Themes & Plug-ins
After 7+ years, we’re still amazed by Thrive Themes customer service. Their all-in-one Thrive Suite offers more than just pretty WordPress themes that load fast; you’ll receive customisable design templates plus conversion-focused plug-ins that let you generate leads, create quizzes, collect testimonials, manage courses and much more.
// SEO Tool
Since multiple of our pages got ranked on page 1 on Google (hello, organic leads!), we’re head over heels into SEO. Ubersuggest is a keyword research and SEO optimisation tool. It’s a great addition to your toolkit as you can use it, for example, to plan a click-worthy topic for your next content piece or to optimise the ranking of your existing posts.
What about tools for social media, project management & video optimisation?
we've got you COVERED. They're right here!
// Scheduler & Analytics Tool
If you want to grow your Pinterest or Instagram account, you need to consistently publish fresh quality content that your audience loves to engage with. But who has the time to do that manually every single day? Thanks to Tailwind, you can put your creative pieces out there on autopilot. Once scheduled, your pins or posts will be pushed out while you work on other things.
// URL SHortener Solution
Ever wondered how you could get a branded link that’s super short and doesn’t start with a spammy prefix? Rebrandly can help. No matter which plan you choose, you can create a branded domain - including a tailored slug - that redirects your traffic to where you want it to go. We love to use short links in ads, social media bios and during lives as the links are easy to remember.
// ALL-IN-ONE Project management tool
The newer kid on the block, ClickUp combines multiple project management tools and methodologies into one good-looking and easy-to-navigate app. What we love most about it are the templates that we can use for a multitude of projects. Whether you want to track your SEO efforts, tick off steps in your blog post creation workflow or progress according to plan, you can feed this one tool everything without the need to stick to one layout.
// PROJECT ORGANISATION & COLLABORATION TOOL
Project management tools are great, but sometimes they’re overkill for what you want to do. Trello helps us collect and organise our thoughts and workflows into easy-to-access boards and tables. We also use it when we work with clients to keep them on track. No matter if you want to create a checklist, assign a deadline to tasks or see where a project is at, the clean interface offers a drag-and-drop solution that makes planning and tracking fun.
// CHANNEL & VIDEO OPTIMISATION TOOLKIT
Creating videos is a lot of work. Luckily, TubeBuddy is your best mate when it comes to planning, creating, managing and optimising your videos for the best exposure possible. It provides you with valuable suggestions on content ideas / trends, gives you a peek behind the scenes of your competitors, and lets you schedule your videos as well as change tags or thumbnails. And should you just be starting out, they offer a discount until you hit 1,000 subs.
// AUDIENCE DEVELOPMENT & MANAGEMENT SUITE
Time to get serious about YouTube? Then you won’t get around vidIQ. The insights this well-thought-through tool provides are incredible. It helps you decide on a video topic that rakes in views (and subs!) in no time. You can check out trends, your competition, the best keywords, and so much more. And should you feel stuck when uploading your masterpiece, this tool walks you through everything to set up your brand-new video for success.
Ready to level up your brand?
Here are our favourite creative resources...
Canva’s easy to use drag-and-drop solution helps you create stunning graphics and design beautiful resources without the need to have a master’s degree in design.
Creative Market is a one-stop shop that has everything you need to give your brand a make-over. It’s full of affordable templates and beautiful designs that are easy to customise.
Whether the clock works against you or your skillset lies somewhere else, we bet there’s a freelancer on Fiverr who can lend you a hand and complete that task in no time. Psst: Fiverr’s talents are incredible and an excellent choice for many business-related services.
Say good-bye to spelling errors and bad grammar with Grammarly. This clever writing app improves your creative copy and helps make your texts clear, easy-to-read and engaging. A must-have for everyone!
...and for everything else that needs to get SORTED,
WE USE THESE APPS:
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