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March 5, 2014

The Top 12 Business Startup Tools You Need Now

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Entrepreneurs literally have to shoulder the world. Starting a new business is daunting, all-consuming, and depending on your niche, extremely expensive. There’s an endless list of to-do’s, huge decisions to make every day, and a herculean list of needs to get the vision launched and thriving.

Thank goodness for the myriad of free tips and tools available all across the web. If you’re in the starting stages of launching a brand new business, feast your eyes on this invaluable list of completely free tools to make the process easier.

1) Business Startup Kits from Entrepreneur.com

For business owners still contemplating the type of business they’d like to launch, these startup kits from Entrepreneur are fantastic. They divulge the ins and outs of many major business categories, and give complete overviews of what it takes to achieve success.

2) Get a Reality Check

Before you invest loads of time and money, visit BizFilings’ Startup section to see if you really have what it takes to be an online business owner. BizFilings offers a host of resources for the aspiring entrepreneur, including a valuable guide listing all the steps to take on before you start your business.

3) Free Online Business eBook

Author Jennifer Laycock has been involved in launching online businesses since 1995, virtually since the practice debuted. She generously penned this comprehensive startup ebook and offers it for free by download to budding entrepreneurs. Titled “Zero Dollars, a Little Talent, and Thirty Days“, the book explores all kinds of successful tactics, including affiliate marketing, SEO, viral marketing campaigns, and savvy networking.

4) Solidify Your Vision, Visually

The Startup Toolkit is a unique and terrific free tool that aids entrepreneurs in the process of visually defining their business idea. As your hypothesis evolves, the Startup Toolkit helps you to make sense of all the complexities in a very pictorial fashion, which can help you see gaps and special areas of focus more clearly.

5) Impressive Suite of Free Business Tools

Looking for the most comprehensive collection of must-have business tools, like email, chat, bug tracking, instant messaging, collaboration tools, and customer retention management (CRM), all free of charge? Zoho to the rescue. Zoho offers free versions of dozens of applications to individuals just starting out, including calendar tools, project management, meeting software, and all kinds of reports. Subscription fees apply as your business grows, but you can get what you need without spending a dime through your entire launch phase.

6) Best Free Destination to Get Educated

This is one heck of a competitive world, so once you focus on your niche, it’s crucial to be educated about all the nuances of your business realm. The BizInfoLibrary is an outstanding resource loaded with free information for any entrepreneur. You’ll learn everything you need to know about topics like governance, legalities, marketing tactics, risk management, HR, and financial management.

7) Build the Perfect Business Plan

Communicating your vision to would-be investors and partners is an integral part of launching a new company. If you’re ready to take the plunge into penning a business plan, check out the wonderful free resources at Bplans. You’ll find an endless array of valuable tips and templates, outlines, sample content, and related advice.

8) Guide to a Magnificent Visual Presentation

Once you have a well-crafted business plan, visit PlanCruncher for the finishing touches and a step-by-step guide to the ideal visual presentation. Words alone won’t sway the investors and partners you need to make your business a success, and this free, no-registration tool can help you take your plan to the next eye-popping level.

9) Startup SEO Tools

If you’re launching an online business, setting up stellar organic SEO strategies on day one is essential to success. SEOBook has created an awesome suite of free SEO tools for business owners that are must-haves at launch. Offerings include SEO toolbars, a rank checker to keep tabs on your search placement, keyword suggestion tools, and a meta tag generator.

10) List of Free Press Release Distribution Sites

Once you are ready to alert the world that your company is live, visit Mashable’s list of free press release distribution sites. You’ll be able to submit press releases to a myriad of services and start sounding the alarm that you are open for business.

11) Learn the Ropes from the Pros

If online courses are more your style, MyOwnBusiness will make you cheer. They offer a completely free and very robust online course that covers nearly everything you need to know about launching a new business. Additionally, the site has courses for folks looking to expand an existing business too.

12) Manage Your Finances for Free

Once you are tracking sales and expenses, queue the very necessary assistance of FreshBooks. The tool is free to business startups with three or less clients. FreshBooks lets you track online invoicing and payment processing, and will even assign a free business consultant to assist you in making the most out of every feature.

What business tools would you recommend? Share your favorites in the Comments section.


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Conscious online marketer, web executive, and multi-faceted writer Tina Courtney has been creating and fostering online innovations since 1996. Tina has assisted many clients in maximizing online production and marketing efforts, and is a staff writer for SiteProNews, one of the Web’s foremost webmaster and tech news blogs. She’s produced and marketed innovative content for major players like Disney and JDate, as well as boutique startups galore, with fortes including social media, SEO, influencer marketing, community management, lead generation, and project management. Tina is also a certified Reiki practitioner, herbalist, and accomplished life coach.  Learn more on LinkedIn, Facebook and Google+.

17 Responses to “The Top 12 Business Startup Tools You Need Now

    avatar saad says:

    Start-up guide is very important in every business if you want to build your business properly.

    avatar Rob says:

    Great Article as usual!
    Just to add, If you are a new Startup Business or expanding Business in UK, the best place to go for your Business Telecoms Requirements is Telecoms Supermarket.
    Britain’s first B2B Telecoms comparison website Click Here

    avatar SAK says:

    Where ARE SITE Development and Management FREE/PREMIUM TOOLS, now a site is not merely a site, A SITE IS INDEED YOUR BUSINESS.

    Thanks for the great tips some very useful information.

    On point 12 some people think they have to use a powerful accounts package that usually does so much more than they need when they a simple spreadsheet is usually just as effective. Of course it depends on the size of the business but for small businesses they are usually not needed.

    Great list of resources for start-ups, Tina.

    For UK-based businesses, there’s a low cost and fairly unique credit management package available from the payontime campaign people:
    http://payontime.co.uk/terms-and-conditions/get-paid-terms-and-conditions-for-your-business
    It’s designed to help protect businesses against late-paying and non-paying clients.
    Regards

    avatar Jordan says:

    These tools are much helpful to grow any business.. for online protestation there some more SEO tools that helps to convert traffic as business leads

    avatar Indian says:

    This compilation is just superb as the author has provided tools which can provide a real overview which is important whether one succeeds or not. Knowing one’s limitations is most important to be successful in any venture. Commendable effort.

    avatar Shironaam says:

    These tools are very important for a new Start up Business. Thanks for the tips it’s very useful information as a Start-up guide.

    Excellent article, thank you! Starting a business is not an easy undertaking today and one that requires thought and careful planning. These tools can be very helpful in doing so.

    As a business consultant, I have helped many start-ups, from sophisticated software developments creating a suite of integrated products to the local plumber and wedding photographer. Each required different types of tools and assistance, but the common thread was that they all needed external resources like those you listed.

    Another new tool that is very effective and economical, both in directly marketing a business as well as in achieving positive SEO results, is BrainBox. It enables intsant distribution of video content across a wide network of content sites (youtube, vimeo, etc.) with a single entry and upload.

    Business Start-ups need all of the help they can get, as they are the primary future jobs growth engine of our economy. Only a small percentage of new company owners have the business experience and knowledge to understand all that needs to be done and the tools to do it.

    Please keep more articles like this one coming!

    avatar Bryan Grandy says:

    I enjoyed the article. I went to the link for Free SEO tools and on that page it took me to a link that had 20 web sites that offered free press releases. I ALSO did not realize how many free tools SEOBOOK have. i’ve just alwayss been too busy doing work to take the time and check out the site more. Thanks for the blog post!

    Bryan Grandy
    Blue Hyperlink Web Marketing,
    a Division of Grandy and Associates

    avatar Ed says:

    As an entrepreneur with 50 years of business experience, I say “WOW!”. You have provided a wonderful list of resources for the startup guy OR gal and even for those with operations already underway. It is VERY tough to do small business nowadays and your list of resources is an excellent gift. On behalf of all small business owners, thank you! Ed Palmer

    avatar Francis Beardsell says:

    Thank you Tina for this list, and also, thanks to everyone else who’s chipped in with other ideas/suggestions – particularly those focused on the UK market.

    This is certainly a page I’ve bookmarked, and one that I’ll most certainly return to if, later on in the year, I decide to take the leap into starting up on my own.

    avatar Jerry says:

    Wow.. Great Ideas you are sharing.. this is a terrific list of Tools. Awesome Thanks

    avatar Invity says:

    Very Informative Information. I am Happy to Saw this post.. Great Tools for startsup my My Business. Good Job.,.

    avatar Steve says:

    Such a wonderful article. I am impressed. Thanks for sharing.

    avatar Mich says:

    This is interesting Great wonderful information Thanks..

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