Starting a business is no longer a case of putting pen to paper, but of utilising all those industry-standard tools that have been honed over recent years in order to ensure that a new generation of entrepreneurs and creatives are supported in every possible way by the technology we now have at our fingertips.
And, while we are all aware that right now represents a better time to embark on a business venture than ever before – at least with regards to the sheer benefit technology can offer at every step of the journey, that is – actually implementing it within our daily lives is another story. Sometimes, it feels as though muddling along with the tools and practices we utilised in the very beginning – back we were growing our business as a one-person-show – is easier than taking the time to learn what, deep down, we know we need to learn.
Of course, we all know this is the worst thing we could possibly decide to do. So, to help you out, we have put together a list of 3 essential online tools for new business owners – and why you should bookmark them in your browser sooner, rather than later.
1. An Integrated Website Builder
Over the past few years, website builders have become almost synonymous with the broader concept of web design. Sites created using a strong and cohesive platform stand as testament to quite how professional and unique
For instance, the website builder Wix offers a free landing page builder that integrates smoothly within the rest of their creation platform. What this means is that every aspect of running, maintaining and developing your website takes place within the same platform – rather than forcing you to work on manually amalgamating a long list of disconnected features and processes.
Not only will this make the process of building a strong and cohesive website much simpler, but it will also help in the long run, making scaling up much simpler and ensuring that you are always growing from a single, solid digital foundation. For those who have attempted to do without these resources, this will put you in an incredibly enviable position within even the most competitive industry going forward.
2. A Project Management Platform
It may just be you a core group of full- or part-time employees to begin with, but every business needs to be primed and ready for growth. Of course, the only way to ensure that you are ready for growth as and when it comes is to implement procedures and processes that lend themselves to an increased demand, rather than only suiting you at this specific moment in time.
There are many different project management platforms out there, and finding the right one to suit your unique approach to running a team of people will require a certain amount of trial and error. Not only will this trial and error prove to be an invaluable decision as the business’s workload spreads across a larger workforce, but doing it sooner rather than later is the only way you can go into this next stage of growth with confidence.
3. Finance and Budget Software
In the very early days of running a business, even the most numerically-shy business owners – those of us who spent Math classes staring out the window, or writing and re-writing the date – are more than capable of keeping track of their expenses. As a result, it is very easy to get a little (for lack of a better term) complacent when it comes to keeping track of our expanses as the business begins to grow, and the stakes continue to reach new highs.
It is, of course, the nature of a successful business that, as the amount of time we have to spend on tasks such as tracking incomings and outgoings gets smaller and smaller, the importance of dedicating ample time to them each week gets more and more significant.
As such, even when it feels a little excessive, getting your head around a business-ready finance and budgeting software will pay dividends in the future. Preparing for growth and development is the only way to ensure growth and development, and the best way to do that is to get to know the tools you will need, before you necessarily need them.
Of course, while this list features what are, arguably, the most important online tools for anyone raising a profitable and healthy business from the ground up, it is not exhaustive, and running your own growing business will be a case of acquiring, learning, and implementing an incredibly wide range of tools that are capable of meeting with the unique requirements of your business.
From building a professional website to utilising scalable management software, prioritise navigating the waters of online business tools before your business outgrows your initial practices and procedures.