The modern business owner has a lot on their plate, and thousands of business productivity tools exist to help save time and money while getting things done. But researching and testing those products to find the best ones for your business can take a lot of time and effort busy entrepreneurs just don’t have.
Smith.ai compiled our top business productivity software by category to easily find the best on the market and help you start your productivity journey today.
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Most businesses use a variety of tools to help them get their work done efficiently and effectively. Unfortunately, not all those tools play nice with one another. Automation and integration tools help your devices, apps, and tools talk to one another, streamlining your work and giving you more time to focus on your business.
IFTTT is an integration software connecting all your apps and devices with low-code applets. IFTTT stands for “If this, then that” automations that a business can create to automate the transfer of data from one app to another.
Best Features: Manage everything from your cell phone
Zapier is an integration software that allows you to automate your workflow without any coding knowledge. Simply choose the app where the trigger occurs and the app where the action occurs, and you’re up and running.
Best Features: Integrates with more than 4,000 tools and apps, making streamlining quick and painless
Make collecting payments as painless for your customers (and you!) as possible with these billing tools.
With 392 million active users, PayPal is one of the biggest billing tools in the world, making it a convenient option your customers may already use. It’s popular for a reason: It’s easy to use and you can do everything from creating invoices to collecting payments directly to your account.
Best Features: Protects your business and customers with fraud protection and data security
Whether you’re selling online or in person, Square offers the right solution. Set up online payment integrations, enter payments manually, or use their point of sale hardware for easy and secure payment processing.
Best Features: Integrates with QuickBooks Online for easy sales data analysis
Stripe integrates with the tools you already use, and Stripe Checkout automatically adapts to your customer’s location to easily calculate tax rates. You can accept in-person payments using one of their Stripe Terminals or online via their mobile app. You can also create invoices and create payment pages with shareable links to send to customers.
Best Features: Manage your costs and avoid hidden feeds with pay-as-you-go pricing
No matter the size of your team or whether you're remote or in person, these collaboration tools save time by making teamwork and communication intuitive and fun.
Formerly G Suite, Google Workspace includes all the Google features you need for success: Gmail, Calendar, Docs, Slides, and more. The cloud-based platform allows your employees to access everything no matter where they are or what device they use.
Best Features: Helps your employees save time with features like Google Assistant and Smart Compose
Slack is a workplace chat app for direct messaging between colleagues. Quickly communicate with entire teams through their channel feature, direct message a colleague, or do a quick video chat. Due to its robust app integrations, Slack also allows you to share files and maximize productivity.
Best Features: Connects to your team’s calendar to easily see a colleague's availability
Zoom became a household name during the pandemic, and as a result, it’s become one of the most widely used video conferencing programs with 3.3 trillion annual meeting minutes. It’s easy to use, has great video quality, and allows for screen sharing and remote control during meetings.
Best Features: Integrates with the tools you’re already using for file sharing and other actions
Customer relationship management (CRM) tools track all the data on current and potential customers easily and efficiently. As a result, you can better manage tasks and communication to help you close sales and impress with customer service.
ClickUp is one of the fastest-growing tools on the market, thanks to its intuitive platform that allows you to manage tasks, collaborate, and keep track of customer interactions. It does the job of several different apps and services in one place.
Best Features: Offers customizable CRM templates for account management, customer service, invoices, and more
HubSpot CRM is one of the biggest and most popular CRM programs available — for good reason. The free plan allows you to manage every customer interaction, and the add-on features make that data even more powerful.
Best Features: Setup and navigate the tool easily with plenty of online support from other users
Initially developed as a project management tool, Monday understands the importance of staying organized. They applied that understanding to CRM, making it easy to do everything from capturing leads to managing customer data for easy collaboration.
Best Features: Provides expansive library of customizable templates to make scaling your business easy
The average person receives 121 business emails a day, which doesn’t include all the spam and personal emails you receive. Stay on top of your inbox with these email management tools.
SaneBox’s AI technology quickly learns which of your emails are important and which aren’t, sorting them into appropriate inboxes. The program integrates with your current email client so you won’t need to get a new email address.
Best Features: Use the Do Not Disturb feature to avoid notifications and send away messages
Superhuman is fast, smart, and beautiful. Easily triage your emails so the important ones are always seen quickly, set follow-up reminders, and see read statuses.
Best Features: Use Undo Send to pull back emails you didn’t mean to send
Sales teams and marketers need the right emails to contact decision-makers, and UpLead finds only verified emails, phone numbers, and social media information. Save time with bulk email look-ups and export the results to your CRM.
Best Features: Offers a 95% accuracy guarantee and won’t charge for incorrect emails
Sometimes it’s hard to shut out all the world’s noise and focus on work. These focus tools can help you put down your phone, block distractions, and get things done.
Focus@Will combines neuroscience and music to create audio tracks that engage the brain without distracting it, allowing you to focus for longer and better retain information. Their research suggests their users are more productive for longer than those who don’t use their science-backed approach.
Best Features: Take their Focus Quiz for audio tracks personalized to your focus needs
Freedom blocks distractions across all your devices. Program a daily or weekly schedule, or set distractions as needed. Simply select the devices, sites, and apps you wish to block and start the timer.
Best Features: Track the time you spend on sites to find your biggest productivity suckers
The PomoDoneApp breaks your day into focus sessions with breaks, which science suggests is the most effective way to be productive. Stick to the recommended 25/5 focus/break ratio, or customize your own.
Best Features: Integrate with your current task management tool so you don’t have to create to-do lists
Onboarding new employees can get overwhelming and time-consuming, especially with people constantly asking questions. These knowledge base and training tools ensure your employees can easily find resources while keeping onboarding a scalable task.
Scale onboarding and training with SAP Litmos. Use their learning management system to create and distribute training materials and automate key onboarding tasks.
Best Features: Increase employee engagement with their gamification capabilities
Create a company wiki with Notion to give employees easy access to company policies, training documents, and more. Use their templates to communicate with the entire team and keep all the most important information in one place so everyone is on the same page.
Best Features: Integrates with the tools you’re already using to make automated updates a breeze
Marketers have a lot to juggle, from creating websites to nurturing leads to studying data. These tools make it feel easy.
Create content, automate workflows, and analyze marketing data with ease with HubSpot Marketing Hub, no matter the size of your business. HubSpot knows what marketers need to succeed, and everything you need is in one place.
Best Features: Combine HubSpot Marketing Hub with their free CRM tool
Smith.ai Outreach Campaigns allows you to outsource outreach so your in-house team can handle the more nuanced work needed to convert warm leads into paying customers. Simply provide us with a spreadsheet of contacts to call, and we’ll do the rest.
Best Features: Pay per lead (or call recipient) with no annual contracts
Jot down development ideas, client notes, follow-up questions during meetings, and anything else that comes to mind with some of our favorite note-taking tools.
Keep all your notes in one place and access them from any device with Evernote. Whether your notes are typed, written using a stylus, recorded as audio or video files, or even images and “clips” from the web, Evernote lets you easily share them with others.
Best Features: Sync with your Google Calendar to connect calendar events to notes
Google Keep syncs with all other Google Workspace products, making it available no matter what tool you’re using. It’s built into Gmail and Drive, or you can use the app on your phone. Easily create checklists, set reminders, and organize all your thoughts without getting overwhelmed.
Best Features: Dictate a note or pull text directly from images into editable notes
Microsoft OneNote is a digital notebook for all your notes. You can organize and search your notes easily, use multiple media for notes, and save content from the web.
Best Features: Use the Sticky Notes app to add information and reminders to your notebook pages
While social media has moved a lot of customer interactions online, the phone is still the go-to communication tool for most people, whether it’s a landline or a cell phone.
Whether you’re looking for someone to answer calls after hours or a full-time virtual receptionist, Smith.ai handles client intake, lead qualification, payment collection, appointment setting, outbound calls, and spam call blocking.
Best Features: Bills by the call and doesn’t charge for spam calls
Nextiva offers VoIP services with video, SMS, chat, and video features for unlimited calling in the U.S. and Canada. The essential plan integrates with Outlook and Google Contacts, but higher-tier plans also work with popular platforms such as Salesforce and HubSpot, making CRM a breeze.
Best Features: Works with any VoIP phone with cloud software
RingCentral is a VoIP platform that combines phone, video, and messaging services in an easy-to-use interface whether your employees are on a phone, tablet, laptop, or landline. Flexibility and collaboration are built into the cloud-based platform, and add-on features can be toggled on and off as needed.
Best Features: Access phone, video, and chat services with one click
Product management tools help you and your team ideate and develop products and then get feedback and analyze customer data, all in one place.
Amplitude is a product analytics software that helps you better understand your customers to increase engagement and conversions. The shared workspace lets your entire team understand your customer’s journey quickly to make the right decision efficiently and confidently.
Best Features: Decide what data is important and easily add context to data reports
Focus on your customers as you develop products with Productboard. Easily collaborate with colleagues to prioritize products for development, conduct research, and collect feedback from customers as products move through the development cycle.
Best Features: Integrates easily with Slack, Microsoft Teams, Zapier, and other tools
Easily create product roadmaps with ProductPlan. This software allows you to collaborate with colleagues to create timeline, list, or table layouts to help you prioritize your product development.
Best Features: Customize product roadmaps based on the audience to keep ideas secure
Help your teams stay organized with project management tools that make planning, tracking, and managing projects easy.
Asana’s free plan is one of the richest, with unlimited capabilities as long as you don’t have more than 15 people on your team. With a paid plan, you can access advanced customization functions that make it incredibly versatile.
Best Features: Integrates with many time-tracking tools at no cost using the free version
Basecamp is built for remote work, with built-in collaboration tools that allow it to replace other apps for chat and scheduling. Task-management features include to-do lists, communication tools, client access, integrated calendars, automatic check-ins, document sharing, and file storage.
Best Features: Pay a $50 flat fee rather than by the user to make scaling easy and inexpensive
Designed for software development companies, Shortcut has a user-friendly interface. It allows users to see daily, weekly, or quarterly tasks with the click of a button and is fully scalable and customizable.
Best Features: Integrates easily with Google Calendar, Slack, Zendesk, and other tools
As your business gains employees and customers, keeping everyone’s schedule organized can be a challenge. These scheduling tools make scheduling appointments and meetings easy.
Acuity Scheduling automates the scheduling process with an interface that is easy for your customers to navigate. The program sends branded and customized meeting confirmations and reminders via text and email to both you and your customer so missed appointments are a thing of the past.
Best Features: Allows online payments through Square, Stripe, and PayPal
Mixmax pairs with Google accounts to easily schedule appointments without all the emails. Once an appointment is scheduled, the Google Calendar invites, notifications, and reminders are automatically sent.
Best Features: Eliminate email back-and-forth by sending optional meeting times
ScheduleOnce integrates with your existing calendar provider to easily add booking pages directly to your website, so you won’t need to change your existing calendar apps. It also provides easy and secure video linking by syncing with most video conferencing software.
Best Features: Have the final say on meeting times with the “Booking with approval” feature
4.55 billion people are active on social media, and engaging with your followers is a great way to build your brand. Social media management takes time, but these social media management tools can help carry the load.
Hootsuite saves you time by scheduling posts for all your social media channels in one calendar view. Keep all your social media conversations in one thread so they are easy to track and engage with. Use data to determine the best type of content for your audience.
Best Features: Integrate with cloud-based services to easily access your brand content from anywhere
Smith.ai Live Chat has live agents available to answer your clients’ questions. Personalize your chat widget to fit your brand with no setup fees, and our agents can collect payments, make appointments, and answer questions 24/7.
Best Features: Close deals when live agents transfer qualified leads straight to sales
Sprout Social does more than schedule your social media posts and track follower engagement. Customer service representatives can also use it to deliver customer support quickly to impress followers reaching out for help and build lasting customer relationships.
Best Features: Stay on top of your brand’s social media presence with extensive reporting and analytics
The age of traditional punch time clocks is obsolete, replaced by powerful apps perfect for in-office or remote time tracking. For more information, check out our full list of time tracking apps.
Harvest tracks time and expenses in one place to keep projects on time and within budget. The program is easy to learn and works on all devices, yet still flexible enough that you can tailor it to your business needs.
Best Features: Integrates with Stripe to make sending invoices easy, even with multiple currencies
Hubstaff works with any device so your employees can track time wherever they are. Easily see time tracking reports and monitor productivity to make your workplace more efficient. You can also access payroll and invoice tools to handle workforce management tasks without a separate product.
Best Features: Offers a variety of tiers and pricing plans so you only pay for what you need
Toggl Track allows your employees to track time spent on specific tasks to see how their time breaks down each day. By studying their patterns, they’ll be able to identify areas that need to be more efficient and make the necessary changes.
Best Features: Eliminate extensive training with easy-to-use one-click timers
Running a business isn’t easy, but these to-do list tools help you organize cross tasks off your list so no task is forgotten.
Airtable keeps all your tasks in one place and offers customized views so your list works for you. Organize by priority or due date, or view tasks in the calendar.
Best Features: Use the saved views for visual reporting tools instead of spreadsheets
TickTick combines a to-do list with a built-in Pomodoro method focus tool and time tracking, note-taking, and collaboration abilities all in a convenient calendar view.
Best Features: Create automatic reminders based on location or date when creating new tasks
Todoist has hundreds of templates you can use to start your to-do list journey, or you can customize it to your organizational style. Connect Todoist to the tools you’re already using for maximum productivity.
Best Features: Learn productivity tips tailored to your personality and work style
At Smith.ai, increasing your business’s productivity is at the core of everything we do. Let our talented virtual receptionists answer the phone, conduct outreach campaigns, and respond to live chats. We offer various features that will help take your business to the next level.
Book a free consultation today to see how we can take outreach, appointment setting, client intake, and lead engagement off your to-do list so you can focus on your business.
Sources: Web Tribunal | Finances Online | Backlinko | HubSpot
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