Resources

There are a lot of great resources online for small business owners. Tools to increase productivity, to help you remember things, to organize your thoughts, your tasks, your finances. You can use these on your own, or you can use them to enhance the way you work with others (say, for example, your fabulous Virtual Assistant). Many of them are free, or free to try. Even if they cost something, you might find that they save you so much time that they pay for themselves, often many times over. (I’m not being paid to endorse any of these services; they made the list because I think they’re useful. Simple as that.)

Here are some of my favorites:

Bitly: Shorten long links (for free!) so they’re easier to use in your blog or social media posts

Calibre: Manage your ebook library and create your own ebooks

Canva: Free image-editing program with built-in templates for social media posts, business cards, and much more.

Carbonite: Back up your files, programs, and operating system using this cloud-based service.

Delicious: Free tool for saving links. Better than bookmarking, because you can categorize them with tags and access them from anywhere.

DropBox: Use this free file-sharing site to organize documents and share them securely with others.

FedEx Print Online: Upload your documents and print them, then pick them up at your local FedEx location or have them shipped to you.

Evernote: Keep your notes, ideas, and tasks organized, and even share them with others using this free tool.

FreeImages: Access thousands of free images to use for personal or business use (just be sure to check the specific usage requirements for each image)

Freshbooks: Integrated expense tracking, time tracking, invoicing, and payment processing service. Very reasonable monthly fee.

GoToMyPC and LogMeIn: Access your computer – your files, programs, email – from another computer.

LastPass: Free password management tool. Set strong passwords and let LastPass remember them for you. You can also use this to share passwords with a co-worker or VA without having to actually reveal the passwords.

Mint: Free tool that helps you view and organize your finances and set financial goals.

Mail Chimp: Create and manage your customer list, newsletter, and autoresponders

Mobipocket: Find thousands of ebooks or create your own

Morguefile: More free images to use for personal or business use (just be sure to check the specific usage requirements for each image)

PicMonkey: Another great free image editing program; upgrade to a paid membership to access premium features.

SnagIt: Capture images and videos from your computer screen

Spreadsheet Page: John Walkenbach, the ultimate Excel expert, shares tips, downloads, and many great Excel resources

Unroll.me: Easily consolidate, view, and unsubscribe from marketing emails. For use with all of the major web-based email programs

Unsplash: Sign up to receive 10 new photos every 10 days that you can use however you want with no permission or attribution required

Vista Print: Design and print just about every promotional item imaginable, from business cards to T-shirts