Trying to get a startup business off the ground can be a scary endeavor. Apart from gathering the right people to help you fulfill your vision, gathering clientele and keeping them interested and engaged will take all of your time and effort; and because of the size of your company, every hit against your coffers has the potential to devastate your startup.
It is every entrepreneur’s dream to watch their startup become something large, lucrative, and a venture they could be proud of. In the quest to achieve this dream, there are tools that abound the interwebs that are there to help you improve the processes and operations in your organization. These tools assist you with your ideas for business, keep you on track, monitor your customer relations, keep your data safe and at the same time accessible to your employees, and help you keep an eye on your overhead.
Whether you are still trying to get your ideas in order, or have already started operations and are looking to monitor the flow of business, or even if you just need something to make sure that everyone is on the same page about your business, there is a tool out there for you.
We have compiled a list of tools below that will help you with your startup.
Tools to improve your startup
If you are just getting started and are pooling your ideas and trying to make a working business plan out of them, the tools below might be right up your alley.
Lean Stack offers a variety of products that will guide a budding entrepreneur in conceptualizing and building their startup with learning materials, business templates, coaching, boot camps, and master classes. They have business playbooks and the Continuous Innovation Framework that will help you learn as you go and practice what you learn, avoiding the pitfalls that usually plague the uninformed and unarmed when it comes to business.
Mindmeister is a mind mapping tool. It is a completely web-based tool that allows you to develop, capture, brainstorm, collaborate, and share your ideas with experts in real time.
It has its own project management app called MeisterTask. After using MindMeister for brainstorming, note-taking and planning, you can drag and drop your notes into MeisterTask and start setting goals and deadlines for your team. The best part is that their basic version is free. The basic version gives you up to 3 mind maps that you can store in your free account, email support, and real time collaboration.
If you have trouble coming up with concrete steps, germ.io might be the tool for you. This tool helps you develop your idea into a realistic goal.
They have best practices, tips for growth, templates for startup ideation, all the necessary things for a true beginner to start on their path to making their vision a reality.
You also get to collaborate with your team within the app itself, share ideas and notes, set up tasks and schedules, and monitor your progress all in one simple tool. You can get this tool at zero cost which can be very helpful when you’re just getting started and every cent counts.
Once you’ve reached the operations stage of your startup, you will need tools to help you run your business from day to day. These tools will mostly focus on daily tasks and knowledge management.
The success of your startup relies heavily on how you present, store, and disseminate knowledge within the company. This is where Slab comes in with its comprehensive templates for the core and vital aspects of your business, such as company culture and values, request for comment (RFC), user manual, and weekly team meetings, just to name a few. Slab is a great tool for both tech-savvy and tech-neophytes as it integrates well with your existing platforms and workflows, which is optimal as there would be no need for new instructions. Features such as Slab Topics create a user-friendly experience for every team member by organizing information and providing relevant context for every folder and tag used. Another functionality called Unified Search makes searching across different tools a breeze as Slab centralizes knowledge within your startup.
Slab is the knowledge management tool you need to jumpstart your business and keep your daily operations smooth-sailing. There’s also the Slab’s library, which features templates used by top companies — because why not benchmark on the best of the best, right?
If you and your team are working away from the office, Slack will be of great help to you. It is a platform where you can communicate and collaborate with your team all in one place. Slack uses channels to make sure that the right information gets to the right people.
Slack also offers messaging and voice and video calls for when you need to get in touch with your team members while working remotely. It keeps everything secure and can be accessed across devices, whether you have a Mac or a PC, Android or iOS.
Customer Relationship Management
The heart of a startups business is always its customers. Regardless of the size and nature of the business, customers keep your business afloat. Thus, it is important to use CRM tools and monitor customer relations in order to grow your business.
If you have an e-commerce website, Hotjar can help you understand customer behavior. This is a website behavior monitoring tool that allows you to observe the behavior of customers who visit your webpage.
This tool has a heat map that shows you which buttons are most clicked, which parts of your website are most accessed, and how far your customers scroll through your website.
You can also see your website through their eyes through visitor recordings. You can see your customer’s every click and mouse movement, and form an idea of how they use your website. This allows you to see any usability issues and address them easily, ensuring customer experience satisfaction.
HubSpot CRM for Startups
With Hubspot CRM, you can assign and track leads, monitor sales and customer interactions. It centralizes your contact lists, automatically logs your customer interactions, and generates information about potential customers from extracted data.
They offer tailored training and learning resources to startups, as well. It integrates with over 500 other platforms, which helps you extend your capabilities and run your operations smoothly. HubSpot CRM has a free basic version with unlimited users. If you need more than their basic services, you can pay for HubSpot add ons.
Starting your own company may be daunting, but exploring the tools mentioned above can ease a lot of your burden. From master classes to CRM tools that fit your budget, you have all the tools you need to make a success out of your startup.