If you're trying to grow the ultimate garden in your backyard, you'll probably want to use more than just your bare hands. Just as gardening tools help a gardener grow delicious fruits and vegetables, there are plenty of online tools to help you grow your business.
The best part about these tools is that most of them have a free version to get you started without breaking the bank. We're going to be covering five of the online tools that make our life easier every day, hoping that they can do the same for you as well!
Who are these online tools designed for?
We picked five tools that are beneficial to pretty much any business owner with an online presence. These tools require a bit of initial learning to get started, but they have a fairly easy learning curve compared to more complex programs. There are plenty of free videos and tutorials online that can catch you up to speed in a short amount of time.
Let's take a look at the five online tools we recommend to every business owner!
We had to start things off with one of our personal favorites that we use every day - Canva! Founded in 2012, Canva is a graphic design tool website designed for both beginners and professionals.
You can use all of its features on its website, which means you don't need to download a program to use it. This makes things really convenient for sharing projects between team member.
Canva uses a drag and drop format that is much easier to use than Photoshop or Illustrator. Canva comes stocked with shapes, illustrations, photos, templates, and pretty much everything you need to create custom images for your brand.
Canva is excellent for creating social media graphics, posters, flyers, brochures, resumes, and any other graphic design needs you might have. Canva takes a little while to learn, but it's much better than having to pay a graphic designer for every custom image you need!
Another tool that we use every day, Grammarly is basically Microsoft Word's autocorrect on steroids. Found on the App Store and Chrome Store, Grammarly is a web browser plugin that corrects your spelling and grammar on anything you type while using that web browser. Whether you're typing an email, Facebook post, or blog article, Grammarly is there to save the day!
Grammarly also features a web app where you can create documents and share them with your team. We use this web app for blog articles and other written documents. Grammarly will then analyze your document, and give you recommendations on spelling, wording, and other improvements to your writing.
Scheduling your content on Facebook has always been pretty simple, but Instagram has been a whole new challenge for business owners. Luckily Planoly came along and provided an easy way to schedule your Instagram content.
Planoly comes in the form of an iPhone and Android app, as well as a web app for your computer/laptop. The apps allow you to upload photos/videos, write captions, add hashtags, schedule each post weeks/months in advance, plan Instagram Stories, and track your Instagram page/post data over time.
Planoly now includes an auto-post feature that allows your scheduled posts to publish without additional action on your phone!
Every business with more than one employee needs a way to delegate/organize tasks and projects in one place. We were using Asana for a while, but we felt like there were some features that it just couldn't provide us. After searching far and wide for a solution to our needs, we finally found Airtable!
Airtable features all of the capabilities of a database in the form of a spreadsheet. The web app allows you to create separate "bases" for each project, which are made up of separate "tables" (spreadsheets).
The ability to link between different spreadsheets is what makes Airtable so powerful. You can create separate tables for each employee and project and link them all together so everyone can see each other's progress. We can't recommend Airtable enough!
Last but not least, MailChimp is a marketing automation platform and email service designed to grow your business. MailChimp allows you to organize your email lists, create custom email campaigns, automate your email/marketing, analyze your data, and advertise on its integrated Facebook, Instagram, and Google platforms.