Every day, we use dozens of tools to communicate, run our web agency, and in working with clients.
3 important criteria driving our choice of web-based tools:
- Easy-to-use for our clients and our team
- Be reasonably priced with good vendor support
- Works across Apple and Windows operating systems
#1 – Dropbox
Couldn’t live without this product and it is incredibly affordable at about $120/year. It functions as our computer back-up and it allows us to easily share large files with clients. Plus, we can access any file from any device as long as we are connected to the internet.
#2 – Google Drive
We use Google Sheets and Google Docs to track client work such as agenda’s, work product, my contractor’s timesheets, etc.
We set up timesheets in Google Drive that allows our contractors to keep track of their work hours and allows us to monitor that spend.
It’s free and all that you need is a Google Account to access!
#3 – Zoom Conferencing
For about $180/year, we can share desktops with clients and staff during weekly meetings. We combine this service with Google Docs for the Agenda and in real-time we are working with our clients remotely as easily as if we were in the same room.
Zoom also provides a reliable conference call telephone number that you can use even if you aren’t screen sharing.
#4 – QuickBooks Online
Super easy to use and affordable at about $125/year. And our accountants love this because they can access our financial files as needed.
At year-end, it makes producing and submitting contractor 1099s a breeze.
#5 – LastPass
We have hundreds of passwords for our business and our client accounts. We started with Excel but eventually upgraded to LastPass Premium to sync all our passwords across all devices.
LastPass has a cool feature that makes it super-easy to share passwords with team members.
#6 – Google Analytics
Like every other site, we need to know where our best source of leads are coming from and the content they consume. Google’s free analytics software makes that possible and provides insights that help us improve our website.
# 7 – EnvatoMarket
We regularly go to EnvatoMarket for email template and PowerPoint designs. We have also sourced tools for our website from CodeCanyon (part of Themeforest).
Our Favorite Templates
(because they are hard to find)
- Mercurio Template $20
- Motagua Template $15
- Business Email Template – $23
#8 – WordPress
A super-easy platform for managing our website.
We combine the content management system from WordPress and a great programmer to do the touch stuff and we end up with a great website that is easily managed.
#9 – Boomerang Gmail Plugin
Our paid Gmail account has been a disappointment because Google hasn’t improved the interface with features that are useful to us. But for about $150/year, Boomerang allows us to schedule my emails, it returns an email if no one responds by a certain date/time, and other helpful features.
#10 – Slack for Instant Messaging
Slack is always running on our desktops and mobile devices and it’s the most useful and efficient way for our staff and clients to quickly communicate with short requests and updates.
It significantly reduces email inbox overload.
We use the free service and it works great for our staff and clients.
Top 10 Must-Have Online Tools to Efficiently Run your Agency for less than $1,000/year. @totheweb Click To Tweet
For roughly $1,000/Year
That’s a quick wrap-up of our ‘could not-live-without‘ business tools. For less than $2K/year we can have an awesome suite of business tools.
→ There’s a completely different list of tools we use to search optimize client web properties.