Top Apps and Services for Entrepreneurs

Top Apps and Services for Entrepreneurs

Small Business Expert

Essential hints, tips & business advice for startups & entrepreneurs.

If you’re an entrepreneur, especially for a small, independent business, then you’re going to have to learn a few things. First, you need to learn how to thrive on peanut butter sandwiches (at least until you start seeing some financial success). Second, you need to know about the best apps and programs for helping an entrepreneur get his or her business off the ground. 

You need programs and/or apps for communication, organization, and managing your finances. Luckily, it’s all out there, and whenever it’s not free, at least it’s affordable. Here are the five best programs and applications for any entrepreneur who’s scrambling to find his or her footing in a frenzied time. 

EvernoteEvernote is a free-to-download program that lets you save ideas, pictures, and sounds. It’s available across multiple smartphones, tablets, and computers, including PC, Mac, iOS, Blackberry, Android, and Windows Phone. Evernote’s search function lets you find what you’re looking for without a hassle. Never forget a prospective client’s name ever again—unless you really want to, for whatever reason.   

FlightTrack ProAvailable for iOS or Android, FlightTrack Pro is a must-have application for anyone who spends a considerable amount of time in the air. With the touch of a few buttons, you can look up your detailed flight information, including possible delays and gate numbers. FlightTrack Pro even informs you of cancellations and suggests alternative flights. If your flying experience turns into a scheduling nightmare, you’re going to want FlightTrack Pro by your side. 

SkypeFree Skype-to-Skype phone calls with clients or other workers can save you a bundle in phone bills. More importantly, whenever you travel out of the country, Skype-to-Skype calls via smartphone apps will prevent you from having to give up your first born child in roaming fees.    

Dimewise – Dimewise helps you manage your budget as simply as possible. You can record and categorize your purchases, then take a look at your spending habits with the aid of a handy pie-chart. Dimewise is web-based, so you can access it anywhere you can find a browser. 

TrillianMany companies conduct a great deal of business via IM (instant messaging) chats. Problem is, everyone has their favorite, and they’re often not cross-compatible. Fear not. Trillian lets you log into several of your favorite chat clients at once, saving you the agony of having to juggle multiple programs. Trillian supports AIM, Windows Live Messenger, ICQ, IRC, Google Chat, Facebook Chat, and much more. It can be downloaded as a desktop program, or as an app for iOS, Android, or Blackberry. 

For more great suggestions on programs that every entrepreneur should have, visit: 

Top 25 Apps to Grow Your Business at AvivaDirectory

10 Best Digital Tools for Entrepreneurs at Forbes

10 Must-Have Business Apps for 2011 at Entrepreneur.com 

Best Personal Finance and Accounting Apps

Best Personal Finance and Accounting Apps

Small Business Expert

Essential hints, tips & business advice for startups & entrepreneurs.

Running a small business is a fulfilling experience, but it also provides enough expenses and small headaches to last you a lifetime. You have enough troubles to worry about and costs to fret over even without the stress of finding the financial software that’s right for you and your business. 

Luckily, the Internet is a portal to financial software options that are easy to use and inexpensive, making them ideal for small business owners that already have enough on their plate. Here are five of the best personal finance apps and accounting software programs that can help you manage your personal and business expenses.   

FreshBooksFreshBooks is a program that specializes in invoicing and billing, though it’s not well-suited to accounting tasks in general. Still, its interface is straightforward, it has international options, and a robust online community means that there’s lots of help on-hand if you should need it. You can try FreshBooks for free for 30 days. 

Mint – If you want to track your small business expenses as well as your personal expenses, Mint is a good solution, as it lets you pull all your financial accounts into one easy-to-access spot. You can keep track of your income, your expenses, and even budget for that dream vacation you so richly deserve. 

Money 4 – Money 4’s tagline is, “Your sweetest accounting app.” How can you possibly resist such a friendly invitation? In all seriousness, Jumsoft’s “Money” software series has long been a favorite of budget managers everywhere thanks to its ease of use and affordable price. With Money 4, you can plan budgets and loans, handle invoices, and keep an eye on stocks. It’s all yours for under $40 USD, which makes it a pretty sweet deal. (For Mac and iPad) 

XeroXero is an easy-to-use piece of accounting software that lets you track your bank transactions, your cash flow, and create invoices. You can also integrate your account with add-ons to expand its functionality. You can try out Xero for free to see if it gels with you. 

iBank 4 – iBank 4 lets you keep track of all your expenses in one place, track your investments, and sync your financial data with your iPhone or iPad. You can manage loans and debts, and the iBank’s customer service is attentive and always ready to help. (For Mac and iPhone/iPad) 

For more suggestions on financial/accounting software that’s ideal for small businesses, visit: 

Personal & Small Business Financial Software for My Mac at MarkParrot.com

The Best Personal Finance Software for Windows at About.com

7 Great Financial Apps at AppStorm.net

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5 Best Self-Publishing Services and Sites

5 Best Self-Publishing Services and Sites

Small Business Expert

Essential hints, tips & business advice for startups & entrepreneurs.

Want to make a little extra pocket change? The Internet can help—and no, making money over the ‘net doesn’t mean stuffing envelopes or selling diet pills. Instead, you can use online services to produce and distribute books, crafts, games, and other cool items made with your own hot little hands. Before you make plans on how to spend all that sweet money, though, you should make yourself aware of the best self-publishing sites and services. 

Most services specialize in one field, or a small handful. It’s important to find one that suits both your needs and your budget. Here are five suggestions for good self-publishing services and sites. 

Lulu – Lulu is one of the Internet’s most popular go-to sites for authors that would like to do things themselves. You retain all the rights to your work, which can then be sold through popular online outlets like Barnes and Noble and Amazon.com. Lulu also has a wide range of print options, including paperback, hardback, glossy, color, or black and white. 

Kickstarter – Kickstarter is fast becoming an extremely important site for individuals looking to fund niche projects via crowdsourcing. The person who is looking for funding pitches their project on the Kickstarter site in hopes of attracting enough donors. If the target amount is reached, the project is funded (the donors’ credit cards are not charged until the Kickstarter is successful), and donors are rewarded for their contributions. Kickstarter is used to fund all kinds of creative projects, including independent video games, books, albums, and documentaries. 

Smashwords – If you’re looking to self-publish a book, it’s not a bad idea to start off with an ebook. Ebooks are much cheaper than self-published hardcopies, which makes people far less reluctant to take a risk on them. Smashwords lets you publish your stories on-line and then distribute them at a price you set yourself. 

Etsy – Etsy is a crafting/supply site. It’s typically the go-to option for ladies and gentlemen who are looking to sell crafts, art, jewelry, and home-made toys online. For some artists, operating an Etsy store is a full-time job that brings in a steady income. 

App HubApp Hub is a website that offers free/affordable services to indie game developers that want to publish on the Xbox 360 and/or the Windows Phone. Developers who join will gain access to free tools, sample code, community support, and more. 

Need more tips on where to find great self-publishing resources? Visit: 

How to Self-Publish Anything at Mashable

Self-Publishing a Book: 25 Things You Need to Know at CNET

Music Self-Publishing at Squidoo