My Top 5 Must-Have Business Tools & Software as a Service Provider

https://madeatdawn.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/12/cropped-Made-at-Dawn-Logo.png

Published on March 7, 2022

As a business owner and service provider, there are some tools that I cannot live without and play an essential role in my daily life and business.

Today, I want to share my top five must-have business tools that I always keep handy in my business as a service provider. I’ll also be sharing a quick sneak peek of what it looks like for each tool.

The five tools mentioned today or software that we’ve tried & tested as a team for at least six months to a year. And while we use many more tools inside our business, we use these to run our business daily.

ClickUp

I started using ClickUp in early 2018 when I first discovered it. While I had used other project management tools like Asana before, I didn’t have much experience in online project management in general, so it was incredibly overwhelming at first.

However, I soon realized how powerful the tool is and immediately implemented my personal tasks into the tool. Around the same time, a client of mine migrated her entire project management system into ClickUp, so I started using it more extensively.

clickup dasboard

ClickUp now is a tool I use for almost everything in our team and business. We manage our recurring tasks, different projects, one-off tasks and even started building our team hub in ClickUp docs.

Toby

I don’t exactly recall when I first started using Toby, but I remember I started using it and never went back.

Toby is a Chrome extension that you can add and use for free. It’s a website bookmarking tool that you can divide into organizations, workspaces, and collections. This is incredibly useful for me to collect client information and links and create a Workspace for each client with different collections for different things.

We could have a collection for website inspiration that clients have sent, a collection of documents that the client sent for the website copy, etc.

Toby dashboard

At this time, I haven’t started using Toby with my team just yet because of how vast I have everything organized right now. While it would be great to have a shared workspace so that my team can have quick links to access like me, it’s a long-term project in the works. Also, while I love using Toby, some of my team members are entirely new to the product, and I don’t want to add another tool to learn on their list at this time.

Airtable

Airtable is actually the tool I am using to draft this blog post at this exact moment. As a database tool, Airtable functions a much bigger purpose than a glorified spreadsheet. Aside from the visual aesthetics that make it more approachable than a regular Google spreadsheet, it gives us quick access to apps that can be used without complex code.

We have an entire editorial system built on Airtable, and we use ClickUp to simply manage the tasks and deadlines as ClickUp is our primary task management tool. Combined, we’re building out a pretty solid system.

Airtable dashboard

Wise

I discovered Wise around 2019 when I heard it from a friend. Until then, we paid our contractors and team members through PayPal, which was costly at times for international contractors. One of our core team members for client management is located in Korea, so we were looking for a good solution at that time.

Today, Wise is such a well-known tool, but I just had to include it in this list because of how easy it is to use and how reliable it is.

Wise dashboard

Thrivecart

Thrivecart is the most recent purchase out of this list. I was at first incredibly hesitant to invest in a checkout page software, even though I’ve used it for client work and others for the past two to three years. When we were launching a new semi-custom website service, we had a few internal discussions about whether we should use a custom process for invoicing each client or create a checkout page that allows our clients to use it whenever they want.

We ultimately opted to use a checkout page software to streamline our processes. With a checkout page software, we could pre-write emails and insert links to the page instead of receiving an inquiry and manually following up with those interested.

Wrapping Up

There are hundreds of business tools available online, even one with multiple use-purposes. To discover new products, I always follow the Product Hunt website and test things out when I have time. From there, if the software or tool is something we could use long-term or replace a current tool that we are struggling to utilize, I tag my team in Slack and get feedback from my team.

It’s always exciting to find a new tool to try out or implement, but these five tools are what we now have as a stable resource inside our business.