As a solopreneur, you’ve likely encountered an overwhelming number of tools and services that others insist you “need” to have in order to succeed. Each week, it can feel as though there is a new “must-have” app, subscription, or program for your business. Despite the efforts of others to sincerely make quality recommendations, the endless barrage of new tech offerings can feel next to impossible to keep up with.
When trying to run your business on a budget, it is crucial for you to carefully screen every suggestion that you receive. In the process, you may have overlooked some objectively helpful ways to grow your business (and make your life a lot easier). To sort through it all, Solopreneur Grind reveals some of the best freelance and tech-based solutions that are beneficial for nearly every solopreneur.
Enlist the help of a virtual assistant
When starting a business, you won’t always be able to do it all. Although it is financially advantageous to do as much as you can on your own, you will quickly burn out.
With that in mind, virtual assistant services are an affordable option for small business owners. Instead of hiring a full virtual team (which is completely unrealistic for most solopreneurs), having a virtual assistant is the best investment for your money. By removing smaller, time-consuming tasks from your plate — including data entry, answering phone calls, and scheduling meetings — you’ll free up hours of extra time. This will allow you to put more time into acquiring new clients and growing your business.
Save on essential hardware
Having good working equipment is crucial to running a business. A high-quality laptop, printer, and external hard drive will help you streamline management tasks and keep all your files safe and organized. You can find all the hardware your business needs an electronics store or by shopping online.
Use project management software
If you are finding it increasingly challenging to keep track of client projects, account logins, and other important info on a simple spreadsheet, it might be time to upgrade to project management software. While each brand offers unique features and functions, platforms such as Trello, Asana, and Basecamp make it easier to organize everything related to your business.
A subscription fee is required to use each of these options. Therefore, it is wise to sign up for free trials to evaluate which one works best for you.
Find + use just one invoicing system
If you are invoicing some clients on PayPal, others on Venmo, and a select few through another platform, it is time to stop and evaluate your current methods. Invoicing and accepting payments on multiple platforms can get messy — especially come tax time. While it is great to offer your clients multiple ways to pay, it should not come at the expense of your well-being.
Instead, find and use a single invoicing system. Your clients likely won’t care about this change, and will be happy to pay you in the manner that fits your needs. You’ll save yourself tons of time and frustration by doing this.
Subscribe to a simple graphic design platform
Although you may have the budget to hire a graphic designer for select projects, it is extremely expensive to do so for every design need that arises. This includes creating eye-catching posts for both Instagram and Facebook — which are often needed daily.
For the price of a few lattes per month, you can have access to some of the most user-friendly templates and features that allow you to be your own designer. Currently, the most popular of these platforms is Canva. With no experience, you can create gorgeous posters, social media graphics, online ads, and more.
When selecting and implementing freelance and tech-based solutions, always make sure that they meet the actual needs of your business. You could literally have an app for every function of your business. But sometimes, the use of an app or platform can actually add more stress to your day. Adopt the mentality that less truly is more when finding systems as a solopreneur.
Chelsea Lamb has spent the last eight years honing her tech skills and is the resident tech specialist at Business Pop. Her goal is to demystify some of the technical aspects of business ownership.