The Best Free Small Business and Startup Tools

February 20, 2024
11
minutes to read
by
Michael Nuciforo
Contents

When operating your own business, you’re always on the lookout for that little edge to help you run things that little bit better. Australian business owners work longer hours than regular employees as it obviously takes that extra effort to start and run your own venture. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t find ways to do things smarter, right?

In our recent survey of 180 SMEs across Australia, 70% of respondents said they were keen to find new ways to improve efficiency. Who wouldn’t want to do things faster and easier?  So this got us thinking;  what are the best free tools for small businesses and startups to use to save time? We compiled this handy list of the best free, freemium or free trial tools out there today. We did this to, well, save you some time! Enjoy...

Productivity

Need help getting organised and connecting with your team, then try these handy tools:

Notion: All-in-one workspace to track projects (Freemium) ★★★★★

Slack: Great communication tool between teams (Freemium) ★★★★★

Teams: Chat, calling, video and collaboration (Free Trial) ★★★★★

eCommerce

Starting an online business has never been easier with these excellent online tools:

Elliot: The new kid on the block, Elliot offers a simple eCommerce experience (Free Trial) ★★★☆☆

Shopify: One platform with all the eCommerce and payment features to start and run your business (Free Trial) ★★★★★

WooCommerce: Open-source eCommerce plugin for WordPress that allows you to sell online easily (Free Trial) ★★★★☆

Website Builders

These tools allow you to easily create and host a beautiful website:

Webflow: Platform that allows you to easily build and host responsive websites (Free Trial) ★★★★☆

WordPress: One of the original website builder and still one of the best (Freemium) ★★★★☆

Wix: Fast growing website builder that delivers a very polished experience (Freemium) ★★★★★

Landing Pages

Taking your users to your homepage is old-school! Set up targeted landing pages so that you can put relevant messages for your targeted audiences.

LaunchRock: Create landing pages within a short time and collect interest, increase sharing, and build your audience (Free Trial) ★★★★☆

PageWiz: Scale up your paid marketing campaigns with straightforward landing page setup (Free Trial) ★★★★☆

Unbounce: Build, publish and AB test landing pages without any code (Free Trial) ★★★★★

Lead Generation

Getting the word out to your prospective customers is the lifeblood of most B2B businesses, use these tools to speed up the process:

Hunter: Allows you to find the right email for the right person that you need to speak to (Freemium) ★★★★☆

Find Emails: Helps you easily connect with decision makers at the businesses you want to connect with (Free Trial) ★★★★☆

Live Chat

Speaking to customers has never been more important and these chat tools help you get the job done:

Crisp: Simple and affordable live chat for your site and it’s free for up to 2 users (Free) ★★★★☆

Freshworks: Very feature rich tool offering a wide variety of services. Works in apps and includes FAQs (Freemium) ★★★★☆

Tawk: The totally live chat service that’s completely free forever (Free) ★★★★★

VideoAsk: Integrate real video chat into your experience to offer something unique (Freemium) ★★★★☆

Analytics

If you don’t track it, you can’t improve it, that’s our motto at Thriday. So here are some handy tools you can use:

AppAnnie: One of the best app tracking tools as you can easily compare your performance with those of your competitors (Freemium) ★★★★☆

AppFollow: Tracks your app store reviews, trend and monitor update performance (Free Trial) ★★★★☆

Google Analytics: (Free) ★★★★★

Heap: Automatically captures every user action in your web or app and lets you measure performance(Freemium) ★★★★☆

Mixpanel: Considered by tech geeks to be the most advanced analytics tool in the market (Freemium) ★★★★★

Yandex: Similar to Google Analytics (Freemium) ★★★★☆

Content Marketing

Audiences are always looking for the latest and greatest content to read, these tools help you generate must-read content to boost your SEO.

AddThis: Simple plugin that helps you share your content via various platforms (Freemium) ★★★★☆

BuzzSumo: Easily analyse what content works best for any topic or competitors (Free Trial) ★★★★☆

Feedly: Helps you easily organise all your news, important topics and interesting posts (Freemium) ★★★★☆

Google Alerts: Simple enter the key terms or competitors you’re interested in and get notified when news about them gets published (Free) ★★★★★

Grammarly: Great tool to help you write good copy and to avoid grammatical and spelling mistakes (Freemium)  ★★★★★

Hemingway: This cool tool helps you write bold and clear copy for your blogs and site (Freemium)  ★★★★☆

SEO

Outranking your competition on Google is such a huge advantage, it’s almost priceless. These tools will help you get to the top of the SEO pack.

LinkMiner: Simple backlink finder that evaluates link strength and helps improve your SEO (Free Trial) ★★★★☆

Nibbler: Tests your website in seconds for SEO, social and responsiveness (Freemium) ★★★★★

Rank Signals: Uncover the SEO backlinks and traffic sources of your competitors for free! (Free) ★★★★★

SimilarWeb: Analyse website traffic for competitors and see how you compare (Free Trial) ★★★★☆

Graphic Design

Customers form immediate impressions of your site and if it doesn’t look professional then you’ve already lost the battle. These tools will help you create a compelling design with no fuss!

Canva: Australian founded online graphic editor making it easy to create polished graphics (Freemium) ★★★★★

Icon Store: Delivery compelling icons with free icon packs by first-class designers (Freemium) ★★★★★

Infogr.am: Create amazing infographics in minutes (Freemium) ★★★★☆

Pablo: Design engaging images for your social media posts in under 30 seconds (Freemium) ★★★★☆

PicMonkey: Online photo editing and design service what can be accessed from a web browser (Freemium) ★★★★☆

Conversion Rate Optimisation

Don’t let all your marketing efforts fall flat once someone visits your site. Use these handy tools to convert them once they arrive.

Crazy Egg: Great tool that helps businesses use monitor heatmaps, user session recordings, and run AB tests (Freemium) ★★★★★

SumoMe: Get proven sales and marketing strategies set up on your website in less than a minute (Free Trial) ★★★★☆

Hotjar: Watch recordings of real users on your site and identify improvements to increase conversion (Free Trial) ★★★★★

Nimble: A simple CRM for teams that use Office 365 and G Suite (Free Trial) ★★★★☆

The best part is, with Thriday, if you use these tools and you move away from the free tier service, you can track all these expenses automatically and make sure you are sticking to a clear budget. It’s very easy to lose track of all your costs and also to get duplicate costs for essentially the same service. So sign up to Thriday here, to be one of the first to get access.

In a post COVID-19 world, small businesses are required to change. They will need to emerge more digital, more connected, and more efficient with how they operate. Given this, business owners are increasingly realising that to avoid getting swamped, they need to leverage new digital solutions that can address these significant pain points, reduce repetitive, time consuming tasks and also provide insight for a deeper understanding of their business.


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