Small businesses — companies with 500 employees or fewer — make up an enormous 99.7 percent all employers in the U.S.
Despite this, only one in two small businesses survives beyond their first five years, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
That’s where the wonders of the Internet come in. Whether you’re trying to simplify your lead generation efforts or source and image, you need online business tools that help you do a lot with a little.
Speaking of lead generation, if you’re building a business with a strong web presence, acquiring a healthy email list is a must.
ConvertKit simplifies the process of the generating leads with a rich array of web forms and landing page templates. It’s easy to set up and they’re designed to help you automate your entire lead gathering pipeline.
Using a workflow designed around eight different “triggers” that can cause seven separate “actions” around users’ use of your site. This helps automatically send and re-send emails that can get them back into your system and converting.
These are must-have online business tools for anyone who does promotions and sales. Well worth the $29 a month.
Boomerang for Gmail takes some of the work of a personal assistant (though you’ll still need someone to process your paystubs) and delivers it to your inbox.
Boomerang’s chief benefit is its ability to allow a user to schedule emails for later. Write them when they’re top of mind, but send them at an appropriate interval.
What’s really great about the service, however, is its redelivery option. Instead of having to organize and remember a certain email, you can use Boomerang to re-deliver relevant messages to your inbox right when you need them.
That way, the right info is always top of mind.
SurveyMonkey does what it says on the tin. It’s one of the top free services for creating simple surveys on the web.
That might not sound like one of the most robust online businesses tools, but it’s great for developing a quick feedback form to ensure client satisfaction. It can also help you get information from your potential audience on how to improve your service and marketing.
4. Adobe Spark
The makers of Photoshop outdid themselves with Adobe Spark.
This free image creator makes even the biggest digital art novice look like a graphic designer. What the app lacks in flexibility it makes up for in usability.
Use it to create beautiful posters, Instagram posts, brochures, banner ads, and more. It’s powerful professional design in the palm of your hands.
If you need to quickly collaborate with a team that’s not necessarily in the same office all day, Slack is the app to use.
Since it hit the market, there are a number of imitators, but this group messaging app meets bulletin board is still the king of the mountain.
It can take a minute to get your whole team comfortable using it (it has quirks and is not entirely intuitive). Once you do, however, it makes creative teamwork across long distances seem small. And it can help make deciding critical decisions a snap.
What it Takes Beyond Online Business Tools
These tools are great, but tools are only part of the equation. Great ideas, hard work, good organization, and a little luck are also necessary to succeed in those first few rough years of new business.
It’s a long, hard road ahead. You need to prepare yourself with patience, fortitude, and learning to banish fear and worry from your head.
Learn more with our article on five challenges you’ll face even when you do achieve personal success.