5 Online Tools to Streamline Your Small Business Operations

Small businesses operate in an increasingly competitive, fast paced world. 

In the United States alone, there are as many as 31.7 million small businesses. They account for 99% of all U.S firms and businesses

Small businesses are an important part of any country’s economy and play a major role in their local communities. As a small business owner, you know how important it is for everyone that your business thrives.


Succeeding in this landscape takes a combination of brains, guts and some highly effective technology. 

Without this combination, your small business may find itself struggling to survive.

Unfortunately, the internet is inundated with hundreds of tools, applications and pieces of software that claim to do amazing things for your business, but often fail to live up to that promise.

Since the right tools can make or break a business, it’s essential that you make the right choice when it comes to choosing the right software. No one wants to waste money so to help you figure out which online tools are best for your business, we’ve outlined some of the best options in every category your business may require.

Best tools to improve your business operations

Making sure that your business can perform at its best requires you to take advantage of any and every tool at your disposal.

  1. An email marketing tool

It may not seem like it at first, but email marketing offers some of the best ROIs of any marketing tool out there. 


That may sound surprising given the increasing prevalence of social media marketing and PPC advertising, but it becomes a lot more believable when you take into account the more than 4 billion email users globally. Just as encouraging is the fact that there are over 332 billion emails sent every day.

This enables you to reach and connect with your leads in a highly personalized and targeted way. A great email marketing strategy can bring an incredible amount of business your way at very little cost. Especially if you compress PDFs that were originally old-school manual pamphlets.

While there are a few quality online tools that can help your business, from our point of view, Constant Contact is your best bet.

Constant Contact is great for small businesses because of its flexibility when it comes to sending large numbers of emails since it charges for services based on the number of contacts. It also offers great integration and provides transparent reporting as well as a user-friendly email builder.

While other forms of marketing have their place, making use of email marketing can make or break a business.

  1. OKR software to measure and track progress

If you want to succeed as a small business, not only do you need brains, great products and productive employees, you also need a plan.

More than that you need a framework within which you can measure and track the goals and achievements of your plan.

That’s where OKR software comes in.

It allows leaders to provide a structure to set goals within and track their progress toward achieving them. It makes sure there are no loose ends, fosters a sense of transparency, and lets each team member clearly identify their progress as well as those of their colleagues. 

It also helps develop a sense of team communication which, as any business leader knows, is always a good thing.

  1. A customer support service

Customer service is extremely important when it comes to running a small business. It may seem like your products are all you need to succeed when you run a small business, but statistics disagree.

According to Salesforce, 89% of consumers are more likely to make another purchase after a positive customer service experience. Research from Hubspot showed a similar stat (93%). 

While this may conjure an image of hordes of workers sitting at a desk and dealing with complaints, thanks to today’s online tools, that’s no longer the case.


If your business can provide customers with an experience that delights them, you’re guaranteed to see them return. Using an online tool to fast-track issues and improve customer satisfaction, can go a long way.

Zendesk can help you achieve this excellent customer service. Between offering self-help portals to help customers find answers to their issues, a ticketing system to allow you to manage customer support requests, and more, Zendesk is a major asset.

World Class customer support that keeps the customer happy and satisfied is essential to creating customer loyalty. This in turn, ensures your customers are going to leave the interaction with a pleasant experience and have them coming back for more.

  1. Slack as a dedicated communication tool

Communication is key. That’s not just some catchy, self-help slogan, it’s a fact of life. Especially when it comes to running a small business. 

Humans are naturally communicative beings. In order to be at our best, we need to talk to one another. In fact, 86% of employees as well as executives say that the lack of effective collaboration and communication is one of the main causes of failure in the workplace.

Luckily, in an age of increasing digital connection, there are more tools than ever before to improve communication in your business. 


While email has been good enough for traditional, corporate communication and should still be an aspect of how you communicate, it’s not the be-all and end-all. 

Especially when it comes to internal communication.

When it comes to that, Slack is head and shoulders above the competition. Slack is capable of organizing various streams of conversion into easy-to-navigate and communicate channels. This makes it a highly convenient, modern option for your employees to share ideas, make decisions and move work forward.

Given that Slack also comes with the option of a mobile app, it’s the perfect communication solution for a modern, practical small business.

  1. Accounting tools

Most businesses have definitely moved on from stacks of red and black inked accounting ledgers. Still, that doesn’t mean every business has truly embraced modern accounting methods.


Accurate books are essential if you’re running a business. Especially, if it’s SaaS bookkeeping.

Great SaaS bookkeeping programs like QuickBooks Online (QBO) provide visibility into your profitability, generate financial reports, and can even provide you with metrics you can use to show potential investors. Additionally, it can assist you with expense management, subscription billing, sales tax filing, revenue tracking, and even cash flow management. 

Faster, more accurate, and more convenient, QuickBooks Online is an especially nifty way to streamline business accounting practices. 

  1. A tool for project management

Staying on top of your ongoing projects is massively important if you’re running a small business. 

Depending on the nature of your business, you may have multiple projects running at once or work with multiple teams, you’ll need something to keep track of it all. This will prevent you from wasting time trying to figure out what’s happening, where, and with whom.

It may not seem useful at first, but never forget the age-old adage; time is money

There are few well-known project management tools out there. From Basecamp to Trello to Asana and Monday.com, the world is increasingly inundated with multiple tools that all do pretty much the same thing. Organize your projects.

If we had to pick one our pick is Basecamp. 

Offering everything from milestone management, file sharing, messaging and a host of tools to encourage collaboration, Basecamp is a solid option for any small business looking to streamline their operation. Whether you’re running large projects with several team members or just one or two, Basecamp should definitely be something you’re considering.

The rundown

When it comes to keeping up with the competition, online tools are essential. 

Unfortunately, because you’re a small business, you probably can’t afford to try out every online tool on the market. No matter how useful they appear to be.

Convenient and cost-effective, online tools present various solutions your business may not even know it has. They often bring returns that far outway their costs. Most often they free your employees up to focus on tasks that are more important and overall allow your business to operate with better productivity.

As a small business, it can often feel intimidating trying out new software. There may at first be some initial friction, but given the size of rewards you stand to reap, trying any of the 7 online tools we’ve mentioned above.