Top 10 Online Tools for Small Business Owners

By Alexia P. Bullard August 22, 2017 Articles and Editorials

The more your business grows, the more tools you rely on to get things done. This little guide will give a list of the ten more important online tools for small business owners.

Let’s get started.

access, close-up, computer

1: Google Docs / Google Drive

What It Is:

Google Docs is an online word processor that makes it easy to create a variety of different types of documents. These documents can be shared with your team through a shareable link or directly through email, with options to allow them to either just view it or to edit it. This makes collaboration simple and immediate, as everything is done in real-time. All changes are also saved immediately, and the documents are stored directly.

Google Drive is a lot like Dropbox in that it stores all of your Google documents (and any other files you wish to share) in one place. It also syncs all of your devices with the cloud for easy access, no matter where you are.

Considering how easy it is for systems to crash, or for files to accidentally be deleted from a computer, these tools are absolute must-haves for any business owner.

Pricing:

Google Docs is free, and Google Drive offers its users 15 GB of storage space for free.

2: Slack

What It Is:

Slack is a cloud-based collaboration tool that makes it possible to share messages, documents / files, and images with your team. It works on any device, so users are not restricted to just their phone or just their PC.

Rather than having to gather in a meeting room, spend hours playing “phone tag”, or waiting for important emails to arrive, business owners can collaborate with their team in real-time.

Pricing:

Small teams can use it for an unlimited amount of time for free. There are two upgrade packages available for $6.67 and $12.50.

Grayscale Photo of Computer Laptop Near White Notebook and Ceramic Mug on Table

3: Website Builders


What It Is:

Website builders are key online tools for small business owners, allowing them to create stunning websites without having to be a designer. Most of them are easy to use and affordable, with numerous design templates and options available. Whether you need a static page or are looking to build your eCommerce store, there are plenty of website builders available for every need, purpose, and industry.

Pricing:

Pricing varies considerably, as it depends on the company and the pricing package you choose. The link provided within this section will take you to an overview of some of the best website builders available, and each description includes pricing information.

4: Canva

What It Is:

Canva is an incredibly versatile online tool that makes it possible for users to create eye-catching images for their website, blog posts, social media posts, business cards, and any other type of marketing collateral.

Pricing:

The very basic plan is completely free for an unlimited amount of time. If you don’t need to create anything super fancy, this will work just fine. The next plan up allows users to collaborate on designs with their team, and this plan costs $12.95 per month. Finally, the most expensive package offers far more than the others do, but the prices are not listed on the website. Instead, users must contact Canva to get their quote. This is the best option for large businesses with large marketing teams.

5: Hootsuite

What It Is:


Hootsuite is one of the best social media management tools available, letting users manage all of their profiles from just one dashboard. Users can easily find and schedule content for their profiles, as well as use the built-in analytics to measure their ROI and other metrics. As a business owner, time is incredibly valuable. Hootsuite saves time.

Pricing:

The very basic plan is limited, but free. The others range from $19 per month to $99 per month, to $499 per month. There is also an Enterprise package but, like Canva, users must contact the company to receive a quote.

coaching, coders, coding

6: Google Analytics

What It Is:

If you’re serious about driving traffic to your business’ website, and want to know where your traffic is coming from, then Google Analytics is a must-have tool. It can be a bit overwhelming when you first use it, but it gets easier as you spend some time navigating around it. Through Google Analytics, you can see how many sessions your website has, where your traffic is coming from, and what your most popular content is. Additionally, you can set up milestones/goals and eCommerce tracking. This helps you focus on the channels or platforms that produce the best results.

Pricing:

Users who have fewer than 5 million impressions per month can use Google Analytics free of charge. This is typically not a problem for most small business owners, or for those who use it for a personal website. That monthly limit is removed if you have a current AdWords campaign running, assuming your AdWords account is neither suspended nor disabled.

7: Pardot

What It Is:

Pardot is a B2B marketing automation tool that strengthens the marketing efforts of small business owners and their marketing team. It offers a wide array of tools that help businesses establish meaningful and lasting connections with their customers and other companies within their industry, generate more pipeline, and helps the sales team to close more deals. Business owners can generate and nurture more leads, getting them through the pipeline quickly and efficiently.

Pricing:

Pardot has pricing plans that range from $50 per month/ per user to $300 per month / per 5 users, on up to $3,000 per month. No matter what your needs are, there is a pricing plan that fits your budget and brand.

8: Mailchimp

What It Is:

Mailchimp is one of the most trusted and widely used email marketing tools, used for sending out e-newsletters and promotions. It makes it possible to expand your business by sending out stunning emails, advertising, building your brand, and connecting with an eCommerce store.

Pricing

The most basic plan, intended for completely new users, is free. The upgrade starts at $10 per month, and the other plan is an additional $199 per month.

9: Intuit Quickbooks

What It Is:


Quickbooks by Intuit is an online accounting tool that organizes all of your finances in one place. It’s easy to navigate, makes the basic accounting tasks easier to complete, and offers advanced tools for when you need them. With this tool, business owners can send invoices that accept cards, take payments with free bank transfers, and set up invoices with payment notifications. Users can also record what they spend and what they earn, as well as separate earnings and expenses by categories for better records.

Pricing:

The most basic plan is $10 per month, the next one up is $24 per month, and the most expensive package is $35 per month.

10: Buzzsumo

What It Is:

A strong content marketing strategy is one of the most salient aspects of any small business, and Buzzsumo helps users create that. This tool helps you find trending content within your industry, as well as influencers who are most likely to share your content and increase its reach. It has analytics built in that shows how well your content is received and where it is being shared.

Pricing:

There is a free trial available, and then it costs $99 per month after that. It’s not cheap, but it’s definitely a must-have tool for strong content marketing.

What are your favorite online tools? Share in the comments below!

Alexia P. Bullard

Alexia P. Bullard Author

Alexia P. Bullard is an overly caffeinated freelance B2B/tech writer. She has worked with many businesses to help boost their online presence and demonstrate their brand value. If you’re interested in working with her, find her at www.alexiapbullard.com

About CMS Critic

CMS Critic is one of the top resources on the web for unbiased, honest reviews. Since 2008, we've provided a resource for readers worldwide to find information, get advice and discover the latest news about software, hardware and services such as Content Management Systems, Website Builders, Linux Distributions and much more. To learn how to contribute or work with us, drop us a line.

Follow Us