Selecting the best business management tools for your small business becomes super-complex when you add in one factor: integration. You see, management tools are supposed to automate tasks and save you time however, making your mix of solutions work together can suck that time right back up and turn all your effort into a wash.
Fortunately, there’s an answer to this problem: all-in-one business management tools. These solutions come loaded with everything you need in one neat package, removing integration worries from the equation entirely.
Even better, these tools live online so you can use them from anywhere and never need to worry about upgrades, hardware or backups because the vendor manages all that.
If you’re looking for a solution that’ll help you manage your back office, and often your front as well, then here are our picks of the best business management tools for small business.
Benefits of Using Business Management Tools
Business management software offers a comprehensive solution for streamlining various aspects of a company’s operations. This type of software integrates multiple functions into a single platform, enhancing efficiency and productivity. It allows for better data management and analysis, leading to more informed decision-making. Moreover, business management software improves communication and coordination within the organization, ensuring that all departments are aligned with the company’s goals. By automating routine tasks, it reduces the likelihood of human error and frees up time for employees to focus on more strategic activities. This integration of functionalities leads to cost savings and contributes to the overall growth of the business.
Benefits of Business Management Software:
- Enhanced Efficiency: Centralizes various business processes, leading to streamlined operations.
- Improved Decision Making: Offers robust data analysis tools for informed decision-making.
- Effective Communication: Facilitates better internal communication and coordination.
- Automation of Routine Tasks: Reduces human errors and saves time.
- Cost Savings: Consolidates multiple tools into one, reducing overall operational costs.
- Scalability: Easily adapts to the growing needs of the business.
- Customer Relationship Management: Helps in managing customer interactions and improving customer satisfaction.
- Real-time Access to Information: Provides instant access to crucial business data and metrics.
- Regulatory Compliance: Assists in staying compliant with industry regulations and standards.
- Enhanced Security: Offers robust security features to protect sensitive business data.
Small Business Deals
Choosing the Best Business Management Tools: Our Thought Process
When it comes to selecting business management tools for small businesses, it’s crucial to choose software that enhances operational efficiency and supports various aspects of business management. When crafting our list, we used an objective methodology, taking the following factors into account. Each one is listed below and rated on a scale of one to ten in terms of importance. Those that we consider absolutely essential are given a rating of 10/10. Here’s our methodology for evaluating the best business management tools:
- Range of Features (Scale: 10/10)
- Comprehensive set of features covering various business needs (project management, CRM, finance, etc.).
- Suitability for different business functions.
- User-Friendliness (Scale: 9/10)
- Intuitive interface and ease of navigation.
- Minimal learning curve for new users.
- Integration with Other Tools (Scale: 8/10)
- Ability to seamlessly integrate with existing software (accounting tools, email platforms, etc.).
- Support for data synchronization across different platforms.
- Customization and Scalability (Scale: 7/10)
- Flexibility to customize features according to business needs.
- Scalability to accommodate business growth and changes.
- Cost-Effectiveness (Scale: 9/10)
- Reasonable pricing for the features offered.
- Availability of different pricing plans suitable for various business sizes.
- Data Security and Privacy (Scale: 10/10)
- Strong security measures to protect business data.
- Compliance with relevant data protection regulations.
- Mobile Accessibility (Scale: 8/10)
- Availability and efficiency of mobile applications.
- Access to key functionalities on the go.
- Customer Support and Training Resources (Scale: 6/10)
- Quality of customer support services.
- Availability of training resources and documentation.
- Reporting and Analytics (Scale: 7/10)
- Robust reporting tools for insightful business analytics.
- Customizable reporting options to suit specific needs.
- Collaboration and Communication Features (Scale: 8/10)
- Tools that facilitate team collaboration and communication.
- Features like shared calendars, task assignments, and communication channels.
By thoroughly assessing these criteria, small business owners can find business management tools that not only streamline their operations but also contribute to strategic decision-making and long-term growth.
These solutions cover everything from customer relationship management (CRM) to invoicing, collaboration and support. If you’re looking for a solid solution that you can customize, this is the list for you.
That said, before you dive in, check the third section because that one deals with specific types of businesses and those solutions might suite your needs better.
Founded in 2009, WORKetc was one of the pioneers in the all-in-one business management tools. Over the years, this solution has grown and matured until it can handle your back office, and even some customer-facing activities such as a help desk, with ease.
Zoho‘s lineage is even older than that of WORKetc’s. Originally built as stand-alone online solutions, today Zoho’s suite of apps are tightly integrated into a system that can help you, “boost sales, step up productivity and manage all day-to-day activities.”
The fully featured Blue Camroo is chock full of all the functionality your small business will need. One outstanding feature is its ability to integrate social media both for tracking as well as for your help desk.
As you might expect from the name, Sellsy focuses on sales, but that’s not all it does. Unlike many of the other solutions in this list, you can use Sellsy to build and manage a website that’s fully integrated with your back end. They even have a “Rental” management feature that enables you to track availability and returns of rented items.
At first glance, Bitrix may seem to be a simple CRM, but they’ve included a lot of business management features such as invoicing, human resources, sales and even online meetings. The best part? Their basic level of service is free!
1CRM is another online business management tool that calls itself a CRM but offers so much more. They offer marketing automation, a feature that’s not present in most all-in-one solutions.
ExxpertApps shows its European roots in its ability to handle multi everything (country, language, time zone and currency). If you have an international customer base, you should take a look at their solution.
Last but not least, kpi.com is a full-featured online business management solution that offers tons of functionality to the small and medium sized business.
|All-in-one Business Management
|Integrated Business Solutions
|Fully Featured Business Management
|Sales and Website Management
|CRM with Business Management Features
|CRM with Extended Features
|International Business Management
|Comprehensive Business Management
|Unique Selling Points
|Handles back office and customer-facing activities, Help Desk
|Suite of apps for sales, productivity, and day-to-day activities
|Social media integration, Help Desk
|Sales focus, Website and Rental Management
|Invoicing, HR, sales, online meetings, Free basic service
|Marketing automation, Beyond standard CRM functionalities
|Multi-country, language, timezone, and currency support
|Full-featured solution for small and medium businesses
|Businesses needing comprehensive back office and customer service solutions
|Businesses seeking to boost sales and productivity with an integrated system
|Small businesses needing social media integration and help desk features
|Businesses focusing on sales and needing website integration and rental management
|Businesses looking for a free CRM with additional business management features
|Businesses needing CRM with advanced marketing automation
|International businesses needing support for multi-regional operations
|Small and medium businesses seeking a comprehensive management solution
General Service or Trade Business Solutions
If you run a service or trade business, then the solutions in this section were created to make your life easier. There are a lot of top-tier tools in this selection so take your time to find the one that fits your business best.
Before you dive in however, check the next section because that one deals with specific types of businesses and those solutions might suite your needs better.
Don’t let the name fool you because mHelpDesk offers much more then help desk functionality to service businesses. This is a robust and highly-rated tool so take some time to check it out.
Jobber is perfect for service businesses. One standout feature is GPS tracking which enables you to keep an eye on your staff in the field.
Booker helps your service business manage the end-to-end relationship with your customers. They do this by focusing on, and offering functionality to manage, each part of your customer lifecycle.
|Unique Selling Points
|Robust and easy-to-use solution for various trades
|More than help desk functionality, highly-rated
|GPS tracking for staff in the field
|Manages end-to-end customer relationship
|Various types of trade businesses seeking a comprehensive tool
|Service businesses looking for a robust management tool
|Service businesses needing GPS tracking and field management
|Service businesses focusing on comprehensive customer lifecycle management
Specific Business Type Solutions
While all the tools on this list enable you to manage your small business, this section lists solutions that are already tailored to specific types of businesses.
If your business matches one of the types listed below, then you can use one of these tools to hit the ground running.
Manage your salon like a pro with Phorest, a solution built for salon owners. Aside from point-of-sale processing and stock management, this solution offers a number of features you can use to market your salon while building, and retaining, your clientele.
Residential Builder and Remodeler: Co-construct
Managing all the details from before a building project begins to after it’s done is hard. Co-construct simplifies the process by tracking all the details from beginning to end. Here’s a sample of what you’ll find inside:
Technology Service: ConnectWise
If you run an IT consulting firm, then you’re going to want to check out ConnectWise. This solution has everything you need to stay on top of your client’s needs while running your back-office successfully.
Technology Company: CloudBlue PSA
If your business develops, sells and maintains hardware and software, then you need to take a look at CloudBlue PSA (formerly HarmonyPSA). Designed from the top down for companies that deal in technology products and services, their robust offering has everything you might need.
Law Firm: CosmoLex
If you want an all-in-one solution for managing your law firm, then CosmoLex might fit the bill. Here’s a peek at what they offer:
Distributors and Manufacturers: OfficeBooks
OfficeBooks is the tool you need when you’re managing the many parts of distribution and manufacturing. From inventory control to sales/quotes, purchase orders, contact management and reports, you’ll find a lot to like in this solution.
|Point-of-sale processing, stock management, marketing features
|Salon owners seeking comprehensive management and marketing tools
|Residential Builder and Remodeler
|Project tracking from start to finish
|Residential builders and remodelers needing detailed project management
|Client management for IT consulting
|IT consulting firms requiring client and back-office management
|Designed for hardware/software companies
|Technology companies involved in hardware and software
|All-in-one law firm management
|Law firms looking for an integrated management solution
|Distributors and Manufacturers
|Inventory control, sales/quotes, purchase orders, contact management
|Distributors and manufacturers in need of extensive inventory and sales management
In the end, an all-in-one business management tool will help you spend more time working in your business rather than working on your business and that’s a good thing.