The Best Small Business Apps of 2018

The best apps out there to help you run your business.

If you own a small business, it’s likely you’re on the go a lot. So it’s crucial to have mobile apps that can help you stay on top of things. Here are a few immensely helpful small business apps to have in regular rotation as a small business owner.

Small business apps for accounting, billing and payments

Square Point of Sale

Square Point of Sale allows you to accept payments wherever your business takes you. Essentially, you can turn any iPhone, iPad or major Android device into a mobile POS that accepts credit and debit cards (including contactless cards) and mobile payments like Apple Pay. The Square Point of Sale app is free to download and you can use it as either a mobile POS on a smartphone or on a tablet at your counter. With Square Point of Sale, just swipe a payment and see money in your account in two business days or less. Users love that they get paid quickly. Square Readers are just £39, and once you start swiping, payment processing fees are only 1.75% of each transaction for all major credit cards.

Monthly fees: None (pay 1.75% of each in-person transaction)

Available here on iOS and Android

Xero

Xero’s accounting app helps with taking care of bills and expenses, paying your employees and managing your purchase orders. Your data is saved in the cloud, so you can access it from your phone, tablet or laptop; that also means that if any of your devices are ever lost or stolen, you won’t lose any of your information. Xero’s accounting app helps busy business owners handle expenses quickly and easily, even letting them see their cash flow in real time. Users call it a life-saving accounting app and love that it’s easy to use. Xero offers its app for small businesses free for the first 30 days.

Monthly fees: £10 per month to reconcile up to 20 bank transactions, up to £27.50 per month for the premium plan.

Available here on iOS and Android

Zoho Books

Zoho Books manages invoices and quotes, tracks payments and allows you to upload expense receipts right from your phone or tablet. Users appreciate that the program is simple to use and doesn’t require any training. Plus, you can easily track time and bill from your device, and access business invoices. Business owners will benefit from the app’s real-time updates which let their multilocation workers can see the same info all the time, reducing communication errors. The friendly user interface makes it easy to build an estimate and convert to an invoice with one click.

Monthly Fee: £6.00/month/organisation for up to two users; up to £18/month/organisation for unlimited users.

Available here on iOS and Android

Square Invoices

With Square Invoices, you can create and send invoices directly from your mobile device, as well as track the status of invoices. There are many benefits that come with mobile invoicing. Customers can pay securely online with a credit or debit card, and you can record the transaction even if they pay with cash or a cheque. Invoices are always free to send — pay only 2.5% for each invoice paid online. You can access this free invoice app by selecting Invoices in the main menu of your Square Point of Sale app.

Monthly fees: There is no fee to send an invoice; pay 2.5% for each invoice paid.

Available here on iOS and Android (same as Square Point of Sale)

Small business apps for documents and pictures

Dropbox

Dropbox keeps all your business files (like documents and images) safe, synced and easy to share. It’s an excellent organisational and collaborative tool for teams. It only downloads files when you need to access them, so it won’t eat up all your storage. More than 500 million businesses use Dropbox to store and share files for their business. This includes the more than 150,000 businesses, like Pinterest, Intuit and Hyatt Hotels, that use their paid service.

Monthly fees: Basic accounts are free and offer 2GB of space; the Dropbox Business options start at £12 per month for 2TB of space and the option for 3 users, up to Enterprise packages for larger companies which can be custom made for your business.

Available here on iOS and Android

PicMonkey

You can use PicMonkey, a photo editing app, for things like designing cards, working on website images or quickly cropping photos for social media imagery (Pinterest, Instagram, etc). The tools are intuitive and simple to use, so you don’t need a graphic design background to edit photos. Users say the app’s features make it really simple to edit a picture quickly and make it look professional, and they get amazing results.

Monthly fees: The basic app is free and paid plans start at £9.00/month for PicMonkey Premium Monthly, or £54.00 per year.

Available here on iOS and Android

Google Drive

Another storage and file sharing option, Google Drive, lets you keep all files related to your business in one place that you can access from your laptop, tablet or phone. You can also set sharing permissions to allow people to view, comment or edit documents and you can view files offline. Documents are accessible from any device, and business owners love that they can collaborate safely with clients anywhere.

Monthly fees: Get 15 GB free. Prices start at £1.59/month for 100 GB, while 1 TB costs £7.99/month.

Available here on iOS and Android

Small business apps for inventory and shipping

Shopventory

Shopventory is an easy-to-use and advanced inventory management system for small- to medium-size businesses. You can see profit margins, compare multiple locations, and spot sales trends. For example, Shopventory can identify the items that aren’t selling well, so you know what you should discount — and not restock. It can also help you pinpoint when or where theft might be happening. Shopventroy integrates with Square and users love that the app helps them stay up to speed, even when they’re not in the office.

Available here on iOS and Android

Weengs

Avoid unnecessary trips to the post office with the Weengs app. The company’s couriers come to your door to pick up what you need to send out to your customers. Weengs will pick up your items, package them in perfectly tailored boxes that help cut down on the extra dimensions that affect delivery costs, and then use their algorithms to find the best-priced shipping method.

Monthly fees: Prices are calculated per delivery.

Available here on Android

Small business apps for communication and employee management

Deputy

With Deputy, you can build an employee schedule in seconds, track your team’s hours and manage your labour costs in real time. The app also allows managers to message employees, employees to chat with coworkers in real time or leave messaging threads to be read and commented on later, where they can request time off or trade shifts. Geolocation ensures employees are where they need to be when they need to be there. It’s also convenient for employees, since it gives them better access to schedules, shift trades, shift covers, time off requests and availability.

Monthly fees: The starter plan is £1 per user, per month and the Premium plan is £2 per user, per month

Available here on iOS and Android

Slack

Reduce email back-and-forth (and thus improve productivity) with Slack, a real-time messaging, archiving and collaborative tool for teams. It’s especially helpful when everyone’s not in one place. Slack’s business app offers a variety of messaging options, including direct messaging, group chats and private channels that cannot be joined or viewed by others. It also allows you to drag and drop files, so you can seamlessly share information without having to switch to email. Current users love that you can divide by topics, and that it’s easy to utilise on the go.

Available here on iOS and Android

Concur

Concur makes employee expense reports less of a drag (and a time drain). To record an expense, you just take a picture of a receipt with your phone and the app reads the receipt and creates the expense. Managers can approve reports online and reimburse directly to a connected bank account.

Available here on iOS and Android

Small business apps for organisation

Evernote

Evernote is a great tool for organising all those notes you’re jotting down about your business — as well as your to-do lists. Evernote automatically syncs your data across both mobile and desktop devices, for quick, easy access. Evernote’s business app also makes it easy to store additional media, letting you quickly scan or clip web articles and images. Users appreciate that you can access it or work on your mobile devices even when you’re not online.

Monthly fees: Evernote for Business is £10 per user per month

Available here on iOS and Android

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