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Throughout my time as an entrepreneur I have gone through so many different tools and platforms both free and paid. There are so many to choose from and it can take some trial and error to find what works best for you.
It’s important to invest in your business. Just like when you are looking to improve your skills or take your business to the next level, typically by enrolling in a new course or hiring a business coach. These investments allow your business to grow and flourish over time.
I’ve learned that the same goes for the systems and tools I put in place to help me run my business efficiently. The best part is many of these tools are free, or at least have a free version you can try out for as long as needed to make sure it’s the right fit.
Below are my Top 6 Systems & Tools I use everyday to run my business.
I started out using the free version of each of these tools until I felt comfortable knowing that this system would work best for me. I now use the paid version for most of these while some work just fine with the free version.
These are six of my top tools, programs and resources to help organize and grow any business:
Let’s talk design and creating consistent brand content. Canva is a great online graphic design program that includes hundreds of ready to use templates or the ability to create your own content. Choose your design size for Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest and regular print products and start designing today! This is a great option for business owners looking to create marketing material without breaking their budget and is very user friendly.
While the free version can be more than enough for most business owners, I found the paid version allowed me access to every feature I didn’t know I needed. Especially once I started doing design work for other clients.
I use Canva everyday for ad creation, social media posts, and all my marketing materials!
Sign up for Canva today by clicking here.
I tried so many other social media schedulers, especially those that allow you to post to multiple platforms and I still kept coming back to Planoly. Though they only allow you to connect your Instagram account, there is the option to also connect your Facebook Business Page and send those scheduled posts there as well.
I found it very overwhelming to try and be on every social media platform available. So my focus has stayed primarily on Instagram and Facebook, especially since I am in the business of running paid ads on both platforms, it only makes sense!
Planoly is fantastic! Especially the paid version. While the free version will allow you get the feel for how the system works and looks, the paid version opens up some bonus features that make life easier. Easily view your grid and drag and drop posts to find the best aesthetic, create hashtag clouds (and define by subject or content pillar), add hashtags as a first comment, and see a full analysis and report of how your Instagram account is performing.
Sign up and give it a try, click here!
I don’t know what I did before I had Clickup! This is probably one of the best project management tools out there for online entrepreneurs. I only started using Clickup earlier this year and have never felt so organized in my business before.
It’s easy to use and fully customizable, wrapping up all the features of other project management tools into one. The option to toggle between different views (List, board, calendar and so much more) at any time has been super helpful to view projects from a different perspective and ensure nothing is missed.
You can add your team and clients to the workspace of your choosing, locking them out of other areas as needed. They are also given the capabilities to change the view to suit their preferences.
It also integrates seamlessly with a whole host of other systems I use to really make things run as smoothly as possible.
Go try Clickup now and see for yourself how awesome this system can be! Click here.
Dubsado I’m not going to lie, has a bit of a learning curve, but I can totally see why this has become a favourite CRM Platform among virtual assistants and online entrepreneurs. The automations, templates and capabilities of this platform are truly awesome!
I use Dubsado for everything client related. Proposals, contracts, invoicing, canned emails, workflows, scheduling and questionnaires are just a few of the main features I use to make sure nothing falls through the cracks and my clients have a seamless on-boarding and off-boarding experience.
I have even integrated Dubsado with my Clickup account so as soon as a new client is brought on a workspace is automatically created for us in Clickup so we can start working with them instantly with little manual preparation needed.
Grab 20% OFF your first month or year by signing up for Dubsado using Simplicity Virtual Co.’s link: dubsado.com/?c=simplicityvirtualco
Whether you work hourly or on retainer I think it's incredibly important to track your time and understand how long it takes you to complete tasks. If you work for yourself or on a team Toggl is a great free program that allows you to track your time.
You can separate projects based on clients, or by task and you can export and send reports to your clients so they see a clear picture of how you spend your time. There is a Chrome extension as well, for even easier tracking.
Zoom is an online video conference meeting software and is super simple to use and set up for everyone. You can share your screen, have multiple people join, schedule meetings in advance and record the meeting. It can also be used to create and host webinars.
I also have Zoom integrated with my Dubsado scheduler so a virtual meeting is automatically set up in Zoom and on my iCal the second someone books a call!
Every single one of these tools and systems has both positives and negatives. It’s just about finding what works for you and your needs. Use the free versions and try them out for yourself, if these don’t work there are so many other similar systems out there that may be a better fit for you and your business.
The most important thing is just to pick something and get started so you can start booking those clients and bringing in that revenue!