Web StrategyFriday, 02 November 2012 15:03
Five handy web tools I can't live without
Make your life easier and your business more productive by using these handy web tools. They are all ‘cloud based’ which means you can access them from anywhere with an internet connection.
To make this list, they also had to be easy to use on your smartphone, since we’re often out on the road.
Here are five business web tools I use every day and couldn’t live without:
1. Google Reader
Google Reader is a free tool I use to keep across nearly 50 blogs that I love. The real value for me is that I can save it to my iPhone home screen and check my blog feed throughout the day and make the most of ‘dead-time’.
Those times like when you’re waiting for a meeting, a taxi or a flight are perfect to be getting up to speed with news from your favourite bloggers.
Writing a blog is a lot easier when you can sit down to write and you already have a framework in place.
It’s pretty normal to have your best ideas when you’re not at your computer so Evernote is the app you need to jot down ideas on the run. You can also take photographs and record voice memos and attach them to notes.
Evernote syncs your notes to your computer, so when it’s time to write, you just have to flesh out the ideas you’ve jotted down all week. It’s free and a sure-fire cure for those dreaded mental blanks!
3. Sprout Social
Sprout Social gives you Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn all in one simple tool. I like to check my social networks regularly to see what’s new and to connect with people.
Again this is another super handy tool to maximise your dead-time when you’d otherwise be flicking through a magazine or twiddling your thumbs. It’s a paid tool that starts from $39 per month.
WooBoard is a fairly new, paid web tool that allows you to recognise the efforts of your team. When someone does something good, you simply post a ‘Woo’ on a virtual scoreboard and you can acknowledge your star performers in front of their peers.
This is just as useful for a remote team of contractors as it is for colleagues sitting in the same room and you can do it from your phone! Recognition from your peers is one of the main reasons people stay with an organisation, yet it is so frequently overlooked by business owners. This product is only $10 per month.
Hubspot is inbound marketing software that allows people to download your premium content and opt-in to receive more information from you. It track visitors to your site, conversion rates of who’s downloading content and it allows you to drill down to see which marketing activity is performing best.
As a marketer and business owner, I keep track of these stats so I always know what’s working and what’s not. Hubspot starts from $200 per month.
What are your favourites?
These are five business web tools I use every day in my business. In the comments, I’d be keen to read about what you use.
I have released a free Business Cloud Planning Template that shows which other web tools you can use in marketing, sales, HR, customer service, operations and finance.
Adam Franklin is a social media speaker and marketing manager of Bluewire Media – a web strategy firm in Sydney and Brisbane. Feel free to download the Web Strategy Planning Template – it's one of many free tools available to you.
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