Howdy, fellow entrepreneurs and startup owners!
I just wanted to share a few services & sites that have helped me manage my sole proprietorship(s). Even if you don't have an ecommerce business, these could still be helpful. Just wanted to pass on some good karma :-)
(1) www.freelancer.com - should be pretty well-known by now. It’s like eBay but for your projects and not your old furniture. If you have one-time projects or even regular tasks to complete, place it on this site and workers around the globe will bid on it, stating for which price they'd be willing to complete the task.
(2) http://www.office24.co.uk – is a handy call answering service (based in the UK, but there are some in the US such as www.virtualassistsolutionsmn.com) that lends a professional air to small businesses and at the same time is a life-saver for after-business hours, bank holidays and other times when we can’t get to the phone. Let’s face it – a missed call is a missed contract. My competition is just a click away, and I can’t risk losing valuable business! Call answering services and virtual secretaries are much more affordable than hiring full-time staff, as well. (And no, I don’t employ anyone from India – it costs less because the work is aggregated.)
(3) www.wordpress.com – I can’t recommend this site enough. To create a blog is completely free, and the templates look quite professional as well. For just $18 per year you can register a .com domain; creating content, uploading media, etc. is all quite user-friendly. There’s hardly a profession or an industry I can think of that doesn’t need a web presence in this modern age!
(4) Choose open source software. I’m really quite happy with OpenOffice (replacing MS Office), Thunderbird Mail, Mailchimp CRM Software (for max. 2,500 mailing list recipients, beyond that there’s a price scheme), Google Drive to back up my files…
I know I tend to concentrate a lot on technology and software, but it seems that computers are inevitable in the workplace these days! If you have any tips for saving money or saving time, I would sure appreciate the comment below!