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Forever-Free Resources for Growing Your Small Business

They say you have to spend money to make money. That’s generally true, but we’ll let you in on a little secret: Numerous resources out there can help you grow your small business … but don’t cost a penny!

Some of these tools may require you a few hours to get the hang of. However, if you’re at the point where outside help isn’t at the top of your spending priorities, and if you still have a small team, then these free resources are for you. After all, what better way is there to learn the nitty gritty of your small business than doing the dirty work yourself?

Wave

For most of us, accounting is one of the most boring facets of running a small business. At the same time, it’s also one of the most stressful — especially if you don’t do it right.

Wave provides free income tracking, expense tracking and invoicing. It also has a nifty feature that lets you take pictures of your receipts, which then auto-fills much of the data.

Alternative: If you’re already getting paid through PayPal, you can also use it to issue invoices to your clients.

Trello

It’s the gig economy, which means there’s a good chance that a lot of your employees are working remotely. How exactly do you manage a team that’s likely scattered around the world?

With Trello, easily. The intuitive interface lets you create task lists for every member of your team, which can then be checked off as soon as they’re completed. You can add comments, set priorities and deadlines, transfer responsibilities by simply dragging and dropping, and more.

Alternatives: Asana and Wrike also let you create shared task lists with your team, plus other task management features.

Hubspot

How well do you know your target market? More and more, it’s no longer enough to have a great product — you also need to provide an excellent, personalized experience. A customer relationship management software will be invaluable in this case.

Hubspot’s CRM doesn’t just keep a list of your customers and their contact details, it also keeps track of your past interactions, what stage of the buying process they’re in, deals you’ve made, tasks for a particular client and more. Imagine having all that information on hand before giving your prospects a call. They don’t call information power for nothing.

Alternatives: Although Hubspot is considered by many to be the leader in CRM, there are other free softwares out there worth trying, including Zoho CRM, InStream, AgileCRM and more.

MailChimp

We know, we know: We talk about MailChimp so much, they should be paying us. We can’t help it — it’s really one of the most indispensable tools you’ll ever come across if you use email campaigns at all for your small business (which you should).

Are you low on coding skills, but still want to send out beautiful, professional-looking emails? MailChimp has you covered. What else? You can keep track of how many and exactly which people opened your emails and clicked on the links inside. You can keep track of your campaigns to see which ones performed best.

Perhaps even more important is all the advice and best practice tips they provide in their Knowledge Base. You’ll learn how to create high-converting emails, manage your mailing lists and keep your domain from being blacklisted by email servers.

There are times when you just have to buckle down and do the work yourself, but there are also times when it makes more sense to have someone else do it (and leave you free to run your small business). Need help with any aspect of small business marketing? Give Mischa Communications a call today!

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