Tools That Every Entrepreneur Should Know and Use
The right tool helps you get the job done, the wrong tool can complicate a simple process.
Every entrepreneur has to rely on adequate tools to perform successfully and keep the business afloat. So here we present some of the best tools we’ve found and even most of which we use ourselves!
Tools for Software entrepreneursTools for Software entrepreneurs
1. The need to have a website
* Wix, Squarespace, or Instapage
Those days of pulling out the yellow pages or flipping through the classified ads are gone. Instead, Internet searches with keywords are the norm. So, if you are not on the internet, you don’t exist.
Having a website is equivalent to existing in the market. It is safe to say that if you are not on the internet, your efforts to get customers will largely go unnoticed and your results will be very limited.
The Internet, for many years, has been the largest market out there, and websites are indispensably the best tools to have a presence in this online market.
Some of them will include the hosting and domain service, while others even help you with the design and give you some templates.
2. The need to organize and manage your team’s tasks
* Trello or any Workflow Tool
Workflow tools are necessary and essential. Using them will allow you to have the opportunity to control, manage, and have a better distribution of time, activities, responsibilities, and every process you desire.
For entrepreneurs, this kind of tool can help to improve efficiency and effectiveness. Also, it helps to increase team productivity and organization, as well as assist with many other tasks relating to running a business.
We recommend Trello, one of the most famous entrepreneur tools in the world. There, you can create, share and edit dashboards, enabling you to organize everything you need, from your day-to-day to your next family vacation, as well as where all activities, descriptions, processes, responsibilities and the complete information of each method is stored. Both mobile and web versions are available, so you or any member of your team can collaborate by creating tasks and lists; upon completion of an activity, they can eliminate or mark the event as solved, from the palm of their hand.
In this sense, when finishing each and every activity, you or any member of the team can change the status of such activity upon completion. This is the main working principle of the app.
If you are developing a software product, you need it, similar to how humans need oxygen, because without sufficient organization, even the software development process is not linear and your project will go through hell. Every step must be documented, and these tools for managing a software project will help make documentation easier.
The good thing about using Trello or another Workflow tool and the respective documentation of every step and phase of your software development process, is that anyone that comes and participates in the process or comes to review what the team has developed, will find it easier to access and view this information on the dashboard. So, know it, use it and take advantage of it.
* The Estimate App
Estimate is a web app that helps you to estimate the time you will use to develop your software.
If it is a web app, an Android App or an iOS app; the UI, UX and every detail you want to include in the project, this software will calculate the investment your app can take. This helps to be with feet on earth, and will allow you to plan what, when and how to do the essentials in the future.
3. The need to communicate with each other
* Slack or a communication tool
Communication is essential for every interaction in this world: relations, partnerships, teams, processes and all things related to human interactions. That is why you have to improve it within your team, not only in person or e-mail.
You have to think about tools for video conferences, meetings, corporative chats (private and public) and many actions that involve communication inside of your team, and with external personnel. Slack is one example of these tools that incorporates all of that functionality. It has a paid and free version, and is a tool that has become popular over the last few years across the world. We use it, and we recommend it.
Alternatives include Facebook Workplace, and Microsoft Teams.
* Google is your best friend
Google is not only a powerful company, but as an entrepreneur, trust us; this technology giant also will be your best friend.
They are known for their excellent products and services. The founders were initially young entrepreneurs and now they still continue to develop a lot of tools ideal for software entrepreneurs as them.
- Google Drive: Cloud storage for all your files that you can easily access from anywhere and collaborate in real time with the rest of your team
- Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides: A free “Office” alternative that works perfectly in the web with a full suite of options, and easily shareable with teammates and external collaborators
- Google Calendar: Syncs perfectly with your gmail and you’ll be able to easily access it on your phone, web, or even desktop. If you wish it can also read your invitations from your e-mail or events such as trips or meet-ups and adds them to your calendar automatically.
- Other Google Apps: Chat, Video Hangouts, Contacts Manager, and more.
A positive aspect of this tool is that it has a free and a paid version, and both of them are good. Also, it provides you the opportunity to choose if a personal option works for you or if you need G-Suite to be able to better collaborate as a business.
3. The need to analyze and connect
* Ads and Analytics Platforms
We can’t forget to mention Google Analytics.
We agree with that. Even if your product or business is not related to software or technology, you must be online, and you have to work at being the first or one of the first.
This goal is achieved with different web positioning techniques. The most well known free technique is called SEO (Search Engine Optimization), and it’s paid counterpart is SEM (Search Engine Marketing), where many paid advertising tools, and ads campaigns are included.
This is also possible with information. It provides analytics of the performance of different web platforms, to know what people like most, what users are interacting with more and thus, enable you to optimize your web presence and improve your positioning.
Google has developed many tools that offer support with this issue, such as the Google Marketing Platform and Google Ad Manager, among others. However, the most popular analytics tool in the market is Google Analytics, where even in real-time, you can evaluate, measure and track the performance of your website or many other digital platforms.
In this sense, we consider that it is a tool that should not be missing in your entrepreneurial toolbox, because it will help you maintain and improve your website reputation providing keywords and information about metrics in the internet environment.
* Do not forget Social Media Platforms
Social media platforms are part of our daily life. That is not an exception for businesses or entrepreneurs. The goal of your business must be to reach people, customers who will use your product; and those people are on social media. These tools are not fully necessary in the first stages of your project, but they will be significant later when you release your software product.
Think of your app name as early as you can, because you have to check for its availability on social media platforms, for the domain, etc. That would be a way of securing social media presence from the moment of the product conception.
When you have to think about where you will present and offer your software product, it will be necessary to know the social media platforms that you can use to reach your potential customers and choose what you will use based on this.
4. The need to manage your applications data
* Another excellent Google Tool for software entrepreneurs themselves is Firebase
With this tool, you can create mobile or web applications without having to manage the infrastructure (servers, etc.).
This is a server-less platform, a technology that’s here to stay in the software development industry, because it makes it much easier to integrate the back-end with the front-end, so easy it can be managed by a front developer. Why is it ideal for entrepreneurs? Because you will most likely need less human resources, and it will allow you to develop your product in Google’s infrastructure making it more adaptive.
Even large applications are currently using it. It is one of the most used tools in the market today, and therefore, should not be missing from your entrepreneurial toolbox.
With Firebase, you can have analytics, databases, messaging and crash reporting. Making it easier for you to focus on your users, and making a product that fulfills their needs.
5. The need to design and to have a visual style
Canvas or any design tool
Part of the work done in the development of a software application is the design. The design system you pick will be representative of your brand in everything from the website all the way to the User Interface. To do this, you will need designers to support you with the theme, but also the right tools.
There are many in the market. Among them, the Adobe Suite, Canvas or any other software that helps you with the design theme. The difference between the first option and the second is that the first is 100% proprietary software, and not so accessible if you are trying to maintain a budget, but really you can pay to get the advantages. Canvas is paid, but it has a free version as well.
We selected Canvas with the theme, because not only has it just become a unicorn, but it also has a free version that is also very easy to use. Accessible, intuitive and available as a mobile version or on the web.
6. The need to hire freelancers or to form a development team
Platforms such as Upwork, Workana ‘and’ Fiverr, are available for this need
Creating a team is not easy work. It requires looking for the right people and collaborating with them correctly.
To achieve the first goal, we recommend you attend networking events regularly or places where you know the experts you are looking for are present daily.
However, this is not the only way. Several platforms work as a professional marketplaces, and you can find the right people there to structure your team, even a software company website can help you to achieve this goal.
For the second one, you need to develop and improve other abilities, as the leader, we recommend you check out this blog on Leadership Development
We’ve now completed your entrepreneurship toolbox with all the tools you need to know and use to help you form your idea, manage your work, communicate better, design, and most importantly develop your software application.