(This post contains affiliate links, all marked) Since running my own business, I’ve found that routine is most important to me. It ensures that I’m working how I want to be. In fact, I’ve rounded up my top 8 business owner essentials, those websites, products, companies and apps that I reach for or use at least weekly when running a business. All of them help with getting organised!
It needs to be said that as business owners, we can’t do everything. Even if we are a one-person machine, we need some shortcuts and virtual helping hands along the way. That’s why I’m always looking for those programmes and websites that might help me out! So without further adieu, here are my top 8 business owner essentials! (Obviously, my laptop, mobile and internet connection are needed too.)
Business bank account
Currently, I bank with Monzo Business. I love that there is an app and a website for the account as I like to check my account on the app. However, I also like a PDF file of my accounts every month to file away, which I download from the website.
The notifications on the account are super helpful too so you know when an expense has been paid or income has come in. I had some teething problems to begin with but their customer service sorted me out in no time!
At 27, I’ve only ever paid into one pension before. Considering I was only at that job for six months means there was very little in it anyway! In September when I went full-time self-employed, I knew I had to start thinking about the future. Not just 1-5 years from now but 40!
I signed up with Penfold (affiliate link), it took me five minutes and my pension was set up! I set up a direct debit for the start of every month for a set amount to go in. It’s not a huge amount but it’s better than nothing!
I’m no graphic design or photography whizz so Canva is a lifesaver when it comes to both! I was using the free version for the longest time but upgraded at the start of the year. You get so much more on Canva Pro and it’s so much easier to create images. I’m still no expert but it’s fun to play around and experiment with new designs every so often!
When it comes to social media, I want it to be as easy amd seamless as possible; this is where Later (affiliate link) comes in. I use it to schedule all Instagram and Facebook posts for my business and personal blog. I’ve tried other scheduling tools for social media (Buffer and Hootsuite are good for Twitter) but for what I need right now, Later does just fine!
I decided against renewing my Microsoft Office package when I got a new laptop because Google Drive does everything I need! I’ve found that the word count is sometimes off so I simply download the articles and double check them on the free Microsoft Word programme.
I only really use Sheets and Docs for what I need and it’s just so easy to use! You can share documents with clients or employees whilst all working on one document. I use Sheets for keeping track on my invoices, both in and out of my business, as I don’t feel that I need accounting software just yet!
Whilst I do prefer a paper diary/planner, Google Calendar is just easy to see everything in one place. I use different colours for different categories so I can easily spot what I have on that particular day or week. It’s so easy to move blocks around too, just in case something urgent crops up!
I try to plan my week out on there first, time blocking anything that’s most important, before using my paper diary to break down any tasks. I prefer general time blocks on my calendar (such as content writing, schedule social media) before listing smaller tasks on my to-do list!
Having a website, blog and personalised email address are all essentials for me as a business owner. This website is where potential customers will go to and a personalised email address just looks more professional. It was one of the first things I set up when I bought my domain! Krystal is so easy to use, the interface is simple to navigate around and if you use the code BD0AA2FE at checkout (affiliate link), we can both get £10!
I use Asana predominantly for content planning. I have seperate projects for my personal blog and business website and use a content calendar for each on there. This is also where I keep my content bank, a running list of any ideas I might have. I have a desk notepad where I jot them down during the day. Then I simply transfer them to their relevant Asana lists.
I’d never really tried Asana before owning a business but my friend, Kellie, is the guru when it comes to all things Asana so I was inspired! I still don’t utilise it as much as I probably should, with paper still being my go-to. However, it’s good to be able to move ideas around without having to use Tippex on a page!
Do you have anything in common with my top 8 business owner essentials or is there an app/programme that I need to know about?