The 17 Must Have Tools for Any Startup or Entrepreneur.

The life of a startup company or entrepreneur can have you feeling uncertain at times about the impending journey. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to create an amazing product, raise capital, implement a winning strategy, gain traction, and generate revenue. Seems simple enough right? Wrong! It can be scary but it can also be very rewarding and self-fulling.

Your success will be found in the decisions you make, both good and bad. To become one of the elites requires a little bit of luck and the right tools. It can be said, building a great team is very important but utilizing the right tools is equally important and will help you achieve your strategic goals. Finding the right tools to help optimize growth, increase team collaboration, boost customer acquisition & retention, and strengthen customer support will heighten your likelihood of success.

The good news is all startups have been in your shoes before. Here’s a list of tools, I highly recommend, to help you achieve your business goals and objectives.


Clerky
clerky.com

Incorporating a startup company can be expensive. Luckily, Clerky has a large assortment of affordable legal forms to take care of your business needs. Their library of comprehensive templates, created by attorneys and paralegals, consist of corporate structure plans, stock option plans, offer letters, consulting agreements, advisor agreements, standard stock option plans, non-disclosure agreements, and more. Clerky’s legal forms are sound and highly accredited.

Paid service


Strategyzer
strategyzer.com

A business plan is your roadmap to success but the traditional business plan concept is outdated as soon as you start your company because it doesn’t flex. Instead, you need a business model that flexes with the factors of your market. The Business Model Canvas is a strategic management template for developing new or documenting existing business models. It is a visual chart with elements describing a company’s value proposition, infrastructure, customers, and finances. What’s great about the Business Model Canvas is you can quickly create prototypes, process assumptions, implement strategies, analyze the results of your successes or failures, and reiterate the process until you find the business model that produces results that align with your company’s overall goals and objectives.

14-day free trial & Premium packages for additional services


Slidebean
slidebean.com

Need a stunning pitch deck for would be investors? What about a dynamic company intro presentation? If you answered yes, you need Slidebean. Slidebean is an affordable web-based presentation tool that lets you create powerful presentations with just a few clicks. They put the design element first. The software is a collection of design templates, premium fonts, and sophisticated color palettes that help make your presentations standout. The system is easy to use, allows online collaboration between teams, and you can share your presentations with anyone on any electronic device. Slidebean is a great alternative to PowerPoint and Keynote.

Paid Service


Asana
asana.com

Managing projects and team collaboration is a must to achieving great results. Asana is a simple to use project management tool for teams needing to work more closely together. With Asana, you can track work across your entire company while engaging the conversation from start to finish. Use cases include project management, workflow management, campaign management, event management & planning, new hire onboarding, and more. Asana integrates with Dropbox, Slack, Chrome, Github, and Google Drive.

Free & Premium packages for additional features


Slack
slack.com

Teams that communicate are more likely to finish projects quicker, share ideas, and work better as a collective unit. Slack is an instant messaging system that makes communication easier between coworkers and teams. In Slack, you can create open and private channels to organize conversations among your team. Some examples would be a channel for projects, topics, ideas – pretty much anything. You can direct message team members or coworkers for a more focused conversation and drag, drop, and share your files within Slack conversations. Slack integrates with Trello, Google Drive & Hangouts, HubSpot, Tettra, and more.

Free & Premium packages for additional features


Switchit
switchitapp.com

Every small business, startup, and entrepreneur need business cards but if you want to make a lasting impression, you want to use Switchit. Switchit is a powerful multimedia digital business card. You can share targeted content about your company, product, or service with interactive cards supporting video, audio, and branded graphics. Also, the app automatically saves the contact information of people you meet such as the person’s phone number, name, email address, and photo. Switchit is an innovative networking tool for professionals and teams looking to market what makes their company, product, or service unique, nurture leads, and build better customer relationships. Users can also log into the desktop app; providing 24/7 access to your contacts from any electronic device. Integrations include Microsoft Office, Google Calendar, and iCloud.

Free


Google Forms
google.com/forms/about

Need to conduct an online survey? If so, Google Forms is an ideal choice. Google’s suite of online forms is a great way to collect and organize information. With Google Forms, you can create online surveys, conduct quick polls, manage event registrations, collect email addresses for newsletters, and more. All forms are customizable, support images and videos, and enable administrators to track response info and charts in real time. One of the best factors that set Google Forms apart from similar providers such as SurveyMonkey, Survey Legend, Survey Gizmo, and others is the fact you can create unlimited forms for free.

Free


MailChimp
mailchimp.com

Newsletters are an extremely valuable marketing tool to attract new customers and retain existing ones. Mailchimp makes it easy to create stunning email campaigns that best suit your message. Whether you are looking to sell your products, share news, or tell a story about your brand, their campaign builder streamlines the entire process. MailChimp also provides rich analytics, allowing you to see the number of times subscribers opened your email, links clicked, and how your campaign compares to the industry average. Mailchimp integrates with a large assortment of CRM and online merchant platforms.

Free & Premium packages for additional features


Ryze
ryzeapp.co

People we meet sometimes fall through the cracks. We forget to call them or forget about them all together. We’ve all done it but in order to grow relationships, you have to first establish a relationship. Ryze is a personal CRM designed to help you follow up with all the people in your life. Inside the app, you can keep notes, create custom groups for people, and set recurring reminders to stay on top of your relationships. This is a great tool to help you stay focused on people and move relationships forward. Ryze integrates with your email and calendars, providing you a powerful personal CRM tool.

Free


HubSpot
hubspot.com

HubSpot is an inbound marketing and sales platform that helps companies attract visitors, convert leads, and close deals. Their CRM platform aligns sales and marketing, so you can manage your pipeline of prospective leads and nurture existing customers. The system is great for creating lead capture forms, automated email follow-ups, lead grading, and more. These powerful insights provide a comprehensive overview of every customer’s journey as they pass through your sales funnel. HubSpot integrates with a large assortment of 3rd party software.

Free & Premium packages for additional features


ScribblePost
scribblepost.com

The life of an entrepreneur is burdened with a long list of daily to-dos. There never seems to be enough time in a day, right. Well, ScribblePost has solved the problem of to-dos. ScribblePost is a fast way to take notes and track important priorities, allowing you the freedom to stay focus on getting the right things done. With ScribblePost you can task to-do items with hashtags, set priority dates to remind you of the impending tasks, and check them off once completed. They also provide a desktop app to help manage your work at scale. You can view all your tasks organized by schedule, priority, or workflow. ScribblePost is a great tool for people on the go looking to optimize their daily productivity.

Free


Olark
olark.com

Answering the questions your customers may have is very important. When browsing online today, most people would rather chat with a real person when we have a question as opposed to filling out a contact form. Olark provides live chat software that integrates with your website. The technology allows you to chat with customers, in real time, while they are on your site’s page. You are notified when people visit your website and you are able to see the pages they’re on. When you’re not available, visitors can leave a message which is delivered to the email address associated with your account. Installing Olark on your website is quick and simple, not to mention they have outstanding customer support. Olark integrates with most CRM and analytic software.

Free & Premium packages for additional features


Canva
canva.com

Design is key to building awareness around your brand. Canva makes design simple. With Canva’s easy-to-use features, you can create designs for web or print such as blog graphics, presentations, social media covers, flyers, posters, invitations, and more. The platform has an extensive library of layouts, stock photographs, vectors, illustrations, icons, and shapes. You can even upload your own images. Canva is a great option for people needing a simple platform to drag, drop, and create amazing graphics.

Free & Premium packages for additional features


Hootsuite
hootsuite.com

Social media plays an integral role in building awareness around your brand and communicating directly with your customers. Plain and simple, it is a must. To better manage your multiple social media accounts, theirs Hootsuite. Hootsuite is a Social Media Management tool that helps you track and manage your social media channels. What’s great about Hootsuite is the ability to monitor what people are saying about your brand, schedule post for multiple social media accounts, and monitor how people interact with your social media channels. Managing multiple social media accounts is a simple task with Hootsuite.

Free & Premium packages for additional features


Zapier
zapier.com

Who doesn’t want to do more in less time? If this is you, try Zapier. Zapier lets you create connections to push data from one app to another. Using triggers, actions, and just a few clicks, information is passed between your apps through workflows called Zaps. Zapier helps you be more productive by automating basic tasks such as sending a post via RSS to your social media sites or building and maintaining your email list. The possibilities are endless. What’s great about Zapier is creating Zaps doesn’t require any code, so anyone can do it. Zapier is a great tool for sales & marketing teams looking to curate content and better manage their unstructured data. You can integrate your Zaps with over 750+ web apps.

Free & Premium packages for additional features


Google Analytics
analytics.google.com/analytics/web

Tracking the success of your online campaigns, online presence, and web traffic is critical to the success of any startup company or small business. Google Analytics provides a robust assortment of metrics and analytics to closely monitor conversion rates, web traffic, user experience, terms searched, page performance, and more. These assessments are key to measuring your advertising ROI and identifying how people interact with your website, social media pages, and online campaigns.

Free


Localytics
localytics.com

User insights around your mobile app are very important. Knowing how users interact with your mobile app is key to developing a great product. Localytics helps you discover what makes your users tick. Optimize your marketing efforts by engaging users with personalized messages. The software’s targeting engine is perfect for push notifications and in-app messages – helping you improve the mobile app experience for your users. Also, their analytic tools show you exactly how customers use your app and how they engage with your marketing campaigns. Localytics software is easy to use and integrates seamlessly with your app’s API.

Free & Premium packages for additional features

Bonus: Startup Advice
Everyone needs advice from time to time.

The tools recommended are tools we use daily at Switchit. There are thousands of free products and software tools to help your startup company or small business thrive. I also suggest researching and creating a Marketing Stack, if you don’t already have one in place, to help you execute, analyze, and improve your marketing activities. If you have any recommendations of technologies you use, Tweet them to us at @Switchitapp or add your favorites in the comments section below.

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