11 Best Productivity Software for Small Businesses
According to an analysis by Deloitte, small businesses that utilize technology experienced a growth rate four times as high. They also earned twice as much revenue per employee and were almost thrice as likely to create jobs in the next year.
As a small business owner, you understand how running a business can be a complicated, stressful, and time-consuming endeavor. The task becomes even trickier if your business has transitioned to remote work.
Thankfully, productivity tools make it easier to:
- stay organized
- manage employees and projects
- manage distractions while working
- simplify collaboration
Basically, these tools help you stay sane through the endless onslaught of tasks. In turn, you get extra time to focus on growing your business.
There are hundreds of productivity apps, each designed to help you accomplish different purposes. Factors like your type of business and how the tool would benefit you, your employees, and your customers will influence your choice.
Some of the key things to consider when choosing productivity tools that work for small businesses include:
- Cost. As a small business, you’ll be working with a smaller budget compared to large corporations. This means you must opt for productivity tools with low cost or even free.
- Ease of use. The last thing you want is for your managers to become bogged down in administering these tools. Choose a tool that’s intuitive, has a simple user interface, and is easy to use.
- Easy to implement. When starting, you might not be able to afford complex software that requires full-on tech teams to implement. The best productivity tools for small businesses offer out-of-the-box options that you and your team can start using right away.
- Support for remote work. Considering remote work will continue to grow through 2023, you want an app that offers more value to your distributed teams.
Here are the best productivity apps on the market today to help you and your teams become more efficient at work.
Track time tracking app not only tracks the time you and your team spend on projects but also monitors what you do on company time. It records all the sites and apps you use while working to help you develop better working habits.
The tool has a clean, straightforward interface and lets you easily capture work hours on each task or project. Its simplicity is what makes it so appealing. What’s more, it automatically does the work in the background, without serving as a distraction.
All you have to do is start the timers, and you can add the project description. Once you're done, just hit Stop.
Why Choose Traqq?
- The free version offers unlimited premium features
- Time tracking with offline capabilities
- Smart reminders and notifications to keep tracking your work
- Online timesheets
- Detailed reports
- Premium Starter: Free for 3 seats, with access to all premium features
- Premium Teams: $6 per user per month, supports teams of up to 100
- Enterprise: Custom pricing
RescueTime, like Traqq, works in the background, quietly logging your work activities. It also monitors web and app usage to help you identify where you spend most of your time. The tool lets you set daily targets and automatically keeps track of your progress.
Why Choose RescueTime?
- Tracks time for your remote teams to understand time usage
- Blocks distractions to enable deep-focus work
- Works across multiple platforms, including mobile and ChromeOS
- Paid packages start from $6 per month
Basecamp is an enterprise-focused software that supports company-wide communication. It comes with built-in chat rooms known as “campfire”, where team members working on the same project can message each other and send files.
It also has a to-do list, a schedule, file storage options, and a message board. In addition, the software offers automatic project check-ins, effectively letting you know if the team is on track.
Why Choose Basecamp?
- Support for a wide variety of apps and services
- Provides dedicated tools to discuss and organize work, and give status updates
- Message with team members, share files and track task progress
- Increase employee accountability and collaboration
- Basecamp Personal: Free with limited features
- Basecamp Business: $99 per month flat price
Asana is another excellent task and project management tool for small and medium businesses. It helps teams create and manage project workflows seamlessly. The tool comes with the added advantage of being able to add notes, set task deadlines, and upload files.
Managers can create tasks, assign them to members of the team, and then manage the tasks at each step of the process.
Why Choose Asana?
- Manage all important tasks and goals on one platform
- Create different boards to shift tasks as they are completed and communicate with your team using threads under each task
- Easily collaborate with team members
- Basic plan: Free
- Premium: $10.99 per user per month
- Business: $24.99 per user per month
- Enterprise: Custom pricing
RingCentral combines team communication, cloud phone, and video conferencing features in one tool, to streamline company-wide communications. Whether teams work in an office or work from home, the software ensures you connect securely with your teams, clients, and customers over the internet.
Why Choose RingCentral?
- Integration with other useful apps, such as Salesforce, Slack, and Trello
- Integrated contact center for exceptional customer experience
- One platform for all your communication needs
- Essentials: $19.99 per user per month
- Standard: $27.99 per user per month
- Premium: $34.99 per user per month
- Ultimate: $49.99 per user per month
Slack is a popular team messaging app that minimizes reliance on internal emails. Users can create multiple channels within Slack and set each to public or private to make it accessible to select team members.
The tool comes with a rich collection of functionalities and is highly customizable.
Why Choose Slack?
- A library of apps that support any functionality you can think of
- Automatically saves attachments to Google Drive or Dropbox
- Supports video calling, voice, and screen sharing
- Free plan
- Pro: $6.67 per month
- Business+: $12.50 per month
- Enterprise Grid: Custom pricing
Evernote is one of the best note-taking apps available today. If you like to jot things down, Evernote offers a centralized platform to store your notes, images, and even documents. It syncs across all your devices so you can access all your material anywhere.
Why Choose Evernote?
- Take notes by typing or via voice-to-audio
- Clip information from web pages using its Chrome extension
- Add reminders to your notes
- Share notes with colleagues
- Free plan
- Personal: $7.99 per month
- Professional: $9.99 per month
- Evernote Teams: &14.99 per user per month
As a business owner, you’ll be doing lots of planning, and nothing helps you stay on top of things like Google Calendar. Apart from planning, this minimalist tool offers scheduling features and works on almost any device.
Why Choose Google Calendar?
- Create new events and invite others to your events
- Events are automatically created based on the emails you receive
- Automatically syncs across all your devices
- Integrates with multiple productivity apps
Music has been found to promote focus and alertness while working. Tide offers a variety of nature sounds, such as rain, to help calm the mind and keep you focused at work. It’s designed to regulate how long you take breaks, which can be a problem with remote work.
This allows you to stay productive throughout the day. The tool can also be used to improve your sleep, so you wake up refreshed and energetic.
Why Choose Tide?
- Calm your mind with nature sounds to stay focused
- Integrated with the Pomodoro technique
Zapier eliminates the need to switch between apps by connecting all your work apps. From Slack, Gmail, and Asana, to Shopify and thousands of others, the tool empowers you to improve workflows and processes.
Why Choose Zapier?
- Multi-task with Zapier by setting up automation for virtually any app you use
- Create a Zap with a designated action based on if/then logic, so it's only executed when a certain condition is met
- Free plan
- Starter: $19.99 per month
- Professional: $49 per month
With up to 60 percent of customer interactions happening online, Acuity Scheduling promises to ensure you never ask “What time works for you” ever again. With a customized scheduling page, clients can view your availability in real time and self-schedule.
You can manage multiple locations and team members, only allowing clients to see the calendar you want them to see.
Why Choose Acuity Scheduling?
- Get notified about new bookings
- Receive payment via PayPal, Stripe, and Square
- Send clients customized reminders to reduce no-shows
- Emerging: $14 per month
- Growing: $23 per month
- PowerHouse: $45 per month
With the digitization of the global market, small businesses that implement technology in their day-to-day operations gain a significant competitive advantage. With remote work taking center stage in the business world, streamlining communication and collaboration ensures employee happiness and customer satisfaction.
Leverage these productivity tools to help your business leapfrog revenue growth and overall business success.
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