Understanding the tools, what they do and the core benefits helps owners make smart decisions about where to invest in business applications.
Here’s a closer look at six types of applications and how they can benefit your small business in 2024.
Project management tools such as jira templates app help small businesses set priorities, plot out project timelines, and create milestones and work plans. Project management apps automate tasks, help work teams coordinate and share work and have communication and collaboration tools that help projects stay on track.
For small businesses, project management apps help focus work and keep team members informed in each phase of the process. With apps to assist, businesses can keep those critical projects organized and get them over the finish line.
The best project management tools include communication tools, calendars and shared spaces that allow team members to work on, share, edit and comment on work. In addition, the programs allow project managers to assign tasks and remind staff, set deadlines and report on progress.
Trello, for example, uses boards to organize tasks and work. Each board includes sections on work to do, work in progress and completed tasks. Cards are used to indicate tasks and ideas, which can be moved across lists to indicate progress. Trello also allows for task automation and has intuitive templates that can be used to design projects. Power-ups and integrations seamlessly connect Trello to common workplace productivity apps.
One of the most important tasks for a small-business owner is to determine the right business structure. The business structure determines how owners are paid and taxed, the liability exposure they face and how their company is led.
A limited liability company (LLC) is one of the most popular business types. In this structure, the company is a separate legal entity that protects business owners from liability due to legal decisions or bankruptcy. With an LLC, profits and losses are passed through to the owners’ individual federal and state tax returns.
If an LLC is the right choice for your business, you need to register the company and choose a registered agent, which will accept state and legal documents on your behalf. Fortunately, there are business formation tools that will generate the necessary documents on your behalf quickly.
These applications ensure that your registration and formation documents are accurate and complete. Automatically filling out and filing them for you. You can save on legal fees and be confident that your company has been registered properly.
Tailor Brands is an example of a tool that can quickly register your business. Their online tool will ask in which state you will form your business and help you with key tasks, including:
● Registering your LLC
● Choosing a legal business name
● Obtaining an Employer Identification Number (EIN)
● Securing business licenses and sales tax permits
● Getting help with taxes and bookkeeping
If your business has an online presence, you’ll need to accept online payments. Online payment tools should be flexible, both in the number of payment methods they accept and where they can be used (on a website and in person).
Accepting online payments has many benefits for your business. They boost the customer experience and customer satisfaction by making it easy for them to check out their purchases. They help improve your company’s cash flow by giving your business multiple options to secure revenue. In addition, by using a proven payment system, you can ensure that transactions are secure.
Stripe allows your business to accept more than 100 payment types and can accept payments online or in person around the world. Stripe allows you to launch payments in multiple currencies in more than 190 countries while lowering the costs of working in multiple currencies. Machine-learning optimizations reduce fraud and boost authorization rates with compliance standards that ensure your website and checkout tools meet regulatory mandates.
PayPal also provides online, mobile and in-person payment solutions and offers a low-code API tool to help website managers to integrate the system. PayPal can integrate smoothly with third-party shopping cards or plugins and send payments to workers, freelancers and sellers worldwide. PayPal automates payment dispute management and provides transaction-level reports and insights. It also allows customers to log in to your website using their PayPal credentials.
Analytics tools can deliver insights from deep dives into data, providing owners with intelligence that leads to better-informed business decisions. With artificial intelligence, machine learning, automation and big-data tools, technologies can analyze massive data sets to interpret and identify trends. These tools provide insights on customers, products and services, sales, regions and markets, many of which could not be gleaned without advanced technology.
While intuition is helpful, hard data insights can lead to smarter decisions about the future of your company.
For online businesses. Google Analytics is a go-to solution that delivers exceptional insights. With Google Analytics, you can better understand your customers and their behavior and learn about your website’s performance. The platform provides insights at each stage of the customer lifecycle with easy-to-read charts and powerful modeling that delivers predictive models. Real-time reporting provides information on customer acquisition, engagement and monetization.
Other tools help you determine your ROI on your ad spend to help with budget allocations and how to attribute revenue. You can also design and present information in the way that best fits your business, with drag-and-drop features and segmentation, filtering and pathing that gives you more granular details.
Small businesses often need support to launch or expand their operations. With online loan providers, business owners can see rates and apply, with rapid decisions and dispersal of cash.
For example, OnDeck is an online business loan app that offers lines of credit up to $100,000 and term loan amounts up to $250,000. Both loan types come with flexible repayment plans of up to 24 months. OnDeck boasts fast loan decisions and no hard credit pulls that will affect your credit score.
The site’s minimum requirements are 1 year in business, a 625 personal FICO score, $100,000 in annual business revenue and a business checking account. To date, the site has loaned small businesses more than $15 billion.
In addition, there are tools like Lendio, which help identify online lenders that are best suited for your business. A simple online menu asks a set of questions, including how much of a loan you’re looking for, how long you’ve been in business, how much revenue you generate monthly, your personal credit score, your business type and industry. In seconds, you will receive a list of potential vendors.
Time management is a critical element of your small business, helping you prioritize and stay on schedule. These tools automate your calendar, send you reminders and help you reach out to prospects and customers to schedule time with you. Consider integrating the best second brain app into your workflow to enhance organization and productivity further. They are ideal to include as part of sales and marketing initiatives to connect and make it easy to get in front of people.
Calendly is a versatile calendar application that allows scheduling for individuals or teams and allows users to send reminders and follow-ups or connect details to their CRM, video conferencing or billing tools.
With smart choices, small-business owners can simplify their work every day with technologies that are easy to use, affordable and integrated with other technologies.