10 Great Mobile Apps for Small Business Owners on a Budget

cheap apps small business

For small business owners looking for cheap apps to boost productivity, the digital marketplace offers a plethora of tools that are revolutionizing business operations.

These mobile technologies enable owners to organize, streamline, and automate various daily processes, significantly enhancing efficiency and reducing manual labor.

However, the vast array of available options can make finding the right tools a daunting task, especially for newcomers or those with limited resources. Identifying effective and budget-friendly applications is crucial in this tech-savvy era, where the right choice can transform the way small businesses operate.

Benefits of Using Mobile Apps for Small Business Management

Mobile apps offer a range of advantages for small business owners seeking to optimize their operations on a budget. Here are some key benefits of integrating these tools into your business strategy:

  • Enhanced Productivity: Streamline daily tasks and save time with efficient app functionalities.
  • Cost-Effective Solutions: Many apps offer free versions or low-cost plans suitable for budget-conscious businesses.
  • Remote Accessibility: Manage your business on the go with mobile-friendly apps.
  • Improved Collaboration: Facilitate teamwork and communication among employees, regardless of location.
  • Automated Processes: Automate routine tasks, from social media posting to expense tracking.
  • Data Security and Storage: Safely store and manage important business files and data.
  • Insightful Analytics: Gain valuable insights into business performance and customer behavior.
  • Customizable Options: Tailor the apps to meet your specific business needs and preferences.

cheap apps small business

Our Methodology: How We Chose the Best Cheap Apps Small Business

To guide small business owners in selecting affordable and effective apps for their operations, we use a specific set of criteria. These criteria are essential for identifying apps that offer the best combination of functionality, user-friendliness, and affordability. Each criterion is rated on a scale from 1 to 5, where 1 signifies the least importance and 5 the highest importance:

  1. Cost-Effectiveness
    • Importance: 5
    • The app should offer significant value at a low cost. We assess whether the features and benefits justify the price, with a focus on free or low-cost options that don’t compromise quality.
  2. Functionality and Features
    • Importance: 5
    • The app should provide essential functionalities that meet the specific needs of small businesses, such as invoicing, scheduling, customer relationship management, or task tracking.
  3. Ease of Use and User Interface
    • Importance: 4
    • The app should have an intuitive and user-friendly interface, making it easy for business owners and employees to adopt and use effectively without extensive training.
  4. Integration Capabilities
    • Importance: 4
    • The ability to integrate with other tools and software commonly used in small businesses is important for streamlining operations.
  5. Scalability
    • Importance: 3
    • The app should be scalable, supporting the business as it grows, with the ability to accommodate more users, more data, or more complex processes over time.
  6. Customer Support and Resources
    • Importance: 3
    • Good customer support, including helpful resources like tutorials and FAQs, is important, especially for businesses with limited IT expertise.
  7. Security and Data Protection
    • Importance: 5
    • The app must have robust security features and data protection measures to safeguard business and customer data.
  8. Positive Reviews and User Feedback
    • Importance: 4
    • We consider user reviews and feedback to gauge the app’s reliability and effectiveness in real-world small business environments.
  9. Regular Updates and Maintenance
    • Importance: 4
    • The app should be regularly updated to ensure compatibility, security, and ongoing improvement in features and performance.
  10. Customization Options
    • Importance: 3
    • The ability to customize the app to fit specific business needs or branding is an added advantage.

By applying these criteria, our aim is to identify affordable apps that are not only cost-effective but also robust in features, user-friendly, and scalable, meeting the diverse needs of small businesses.

cheap apps small business

Comparison of Cheap Apps for Small Business Owners

Explore these cost-effective mobile apps designed to enhance productivity and streamline operations for small business owners. This comparison table breaks down their core functionalities, pricing, and standout features, and will explore each one in detail below.

App NamePrimary FunctionPricingUnique Feature
SkypeCommunicationFreeFree Skype-to-Skype calls, video conferencing
Google DriveStorage & CollaborationFree to $9.99/month15GB free storage, real-time collaboration
FreshBooksExpense TrackingStarting at $15/monthInvoice and time tracking, workflow automation
HootsuiteSocial Media ManagementFree to premium tiersSchedule posts, performance reports
MailChimpEmail MarketingFree to $10/monthAutomation, large subscriber and email limits
ExpensifyExpense ReportingFree for end-users, $5/submitter/monthAutomatic receipt transcription and reimbursement
AsanaProject ManagementFree to $9.99/user/monthPrioritize tasks, set deadlines, team collaboration
WixWebsite BuildingFree to $4.50/monthDrag-and-drop functionality, mobile optimization
PreziPresentation Creation$5 to $15/monthInteractive, canvas-based presentations
DropboxFile Storage & SharingFree to $20/monthLarge storage space, easy file sharing

cheap apps small business

10 Cheap Apps for Small Business


Skype is a proven and reliable communication platform. And best of all, you can make Skype to Skype calls for free.

With Skype video conferencing, you can bring up to 25 colleagues and team members together and still not pay a dime. It’s functional, easy to use, and can even scale with your business thanks to numerous integrations and features.

Google Drive

Google Drive has a suite of business applications, communication and storage solutions in one platform. And just like Skype, these features are free.

The Google cloud platform allows you to collaborate with your team no matter where they are. You can sync across emails, edit documents in real-time, and use the 15GB of free storage to archive the work.

If you need more storage, you can get 100GB for only $1.99 per month or $9.99 for a terabyte. This makes it an incredibly affordable yet functional option that can scale with your business.


Tracking your expenses is part of running a small business. With FreshBooks, you can track all your invoices, expenses, projects, and even your time.

The app also lets you automate your workflow so you can save time by eliminating manual processes. The company has 70 new app integrations to make FreshBooks work seamlessly with many popular apps.

The price depends on the number of clients you have. And it starts at $15 per month for 5 billable clients.


Social media is a must for many small businesses. Hootsuite is a social media managing platform which brings your channels together under one roof.

The app lets you schedule your posts, report on your online presence, gather content and measure performance.

Hootsuite has a free version, but the premium tiers have additional tools for managing and monitoring your social media efforts, making it a scalable option for many businesses.


Email is still one of the best communications tools for business. MailChimp has automation features designed to simplify the process of sending emails.

Whether you are launching a limited or large marketing campaign, MailChimp has the functional tools for creating, managing, and tracking the performance of each email.

Even the free version gives you 2,000 subscribers and 12,000 emails per month. The $10 Grow plan ups those options to unlimited subscribers and emails.

cheap apps small business


Some businesses require regular reporting when it comes to expenses. Expensify is designed to specifically address these businesses by simplifying this tedious process.

The app scans your receipt, automatically transcribes the details, applies for reimbursement, and creates a report outside of the office.

The cost is free to the end user, but the person approving the reimbursement will pay $5 per submitter/ month.


Managing teams has become much easier thanks to digital technology. Asana is a work management platform which brings everyone together.

Team leaders can manage, plan and structure projects by setting priorities and deadlines and sharing details in one place thanks to the tool’s customizable features.

A free version can bring up to 15 team members together. And the premium tiers have more features, including more team members starting at $9.99 per user/month.


A website is the digital storefront of a business. Wix is a DIY website builder with drag and drop functionality for quickly and easily creating a fully functional website.

The features on Wix allow you to create a website with its Artificial Design Intelligence or the Wix Editor. This includes the ability to add advanced functionality such as mobile optimization, SEO, eCommerce, and more. So it’s not only completely customizable, but it’s also easy to use.

You can create a free Wix website, but the paid packages, which start at $4.50 per month are well worth the price.


If you are still using PowerPoint, Prezi has an innovative platform for creating engaging and interactive presentations.

The canvas-based tool uses a drag and drop interface to create timelines, historical references, and chronological data easily. At the same time, Prezi is able to track how users are viewing and where they are engaging most.

The personal Standard tier starts at $5 per month, with the Plus going for $15 per month. So it’s a cost effective tool with positive reviews and tons of powerful functions.


Although it is last on the list, Dropbox is an extremely powerful and customizabl tool for today’s businesses.

It lets you store and organize all your files for easy access. And you can share the files with your clients and interact with your team from virtually anywhere.

Dropbox is also a great tool for storing your important information.

The free version gives you 2GB of space and for $20 per month, you can get as much space as your team needs.

cheap apps small business

Top 10 Apps for Business Owners on a Budget: Infographic

A new infographic from Smarter Business has compiled a valuable resource for those on a tight budget. Titled, “Top 10 Apps For Business Owners On A Budget,” the infographic is a curated list of affordable applications which work together to enhance productivity and efficiency.

These apps, which range from financial management to customer relationship tools, have been selected for their ability to deliver high-quality functionality at a minimal cost.

This is particularly useful for small business owners who need to maximize every dollar while still leveraging technology to grow their business.

The infographic simplifies the decision-making process by presenting a concise overview of tools that are both economical and effective, enabling business owners to make informed choices about the apps they integrate into their daily operations.

10 Great Cheap Apps for Small Business Owners on a Budget

Image: Smarter Business

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Michael Guta Michael Guta is the Assistant Editor at Small Business Trends and has been with the team for 9 years. He currently manages its East African editorial team. Michael brings with him many years of content experience in the digital ecosystem covering a wide range of industries. He holds a B.S. in Information Communication Technology, with an emphasis in Technology Management.