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You are finally getting yourself out there in the business world and out of the blue, a potential client reaches out that they are interested in working with you… and all you can think is oh crap! Now what?
You scramble and start signing up for all the tools that you have heard others using in their business in all of the Facebook groups and courses you have bought. Click here to learn how to organize your client process in 3 easy steps.
I have seen this happen over and over and more often than not, you start with tools that are too expensive, or tools that aren’t the right fit for your business and then you are frustrated, overwhelmed and not building the correct foundation for your business to run smoothly.
Do you find yourself asking…
What do you actually need?
Where do you start and what are the right tools to help me manage my business?
And does it need to be expensive?
I feel like to answer this question, we first need to acknowledge that there are so many different ways you can choose and a lot of it depends on your business needs. This isn’t maybe what you want to hear but each business is different. You want to create the right foundations as early in the process as possible, so you aren’t having to go back and set up the right tools later and waste precious time (and money)!
If you are finding that you are overwhelmed, or that you don’t know where to start, you can always reach out and book a quick call with me to get started:
The biggest question you need to ask is what should you get set up sooner, than later? What are the pieces you need in order to work with your first client?
This list could be so much more detailed and this is really just skimming the surface, but the right tools can help you free up time, energy and save your sanity when trying to manage all of the pieces of your business.
Most importantly, help you to start taking the right step towards automating your business.
Here are my top 5 favourite tools to get you started:
1. Google Business Suite (now Google Workspace)
Google Workspace is the perfect place to start when it comes to setting up your business. You need to have a place where you can create documents, build simple forms to help your clients answer questions, have a place to create contracts and all of the other amazing resources that your clients need to help get the process started in your business.Google Workspace has amazing file storage options and beat all of the other iCloud storage options for the cost.One of my favourite things about Google Workspace is that it integrates with so many other programs. This is something you really need to watch out for. You could have the best program but if it doesn’t talk to other programs, it can really bog down your process.I love that you can also create your business emails here so that as you grow your business, you don’t have to worry about paying for more business email addresses!
2. Document Signing Software
Now that you have built your contract in Google Workspace, you need a software program that can help you get your contracts signed, easy peasy. There are a few really great programs out there to help you with this. You simply upload your document, add a few fields for your clients to sign, initial, date or whatever else you need them to complete and the process can be done in no time!This saves you the step of sending the contract by mail or email, having the client sign the paper and need to mail you back the copy.
3. Accounting Software
Accounting Software is something you need to set up early in your business so that you are able to track your finances in your business. Like many, I waited too long to do this in my business and it cost me a lot of time, frustration and money! Your accounting software will help you manage your incoming expenses, invoices for your clients, help you track your Profit and Loss and many other amazing things.
My Tool Suggestion: Quickbooks
4. Payment Processor
Once you have sent your client an invoice, how the heck do you get paid? The easiest answer, one of the payment processor options. A payment processor is where you direct your clients to go to actually transfer money for the services or product you sell. Nowadays, you have most likely used a payment processor at least once, especially if you have purchased anything online.The most common payment processor is PayPal. You put your credit card information in and or use your PayPal account which is connected to your credit card, and boom! You have paid someone online. I actually use 2 different payment processors to manage my business.
5. Online Scheduler
This is one that will save you so many headaches. Have you ever been trying to book dinner out with friends and you go back and forth for days trying to find a day and time that you are all available to meet for dinner? An online scheduler will help you do this so much easier with your clients.Basically, you set up the appointment types, create a master schedule with your availability, and then the client is able to book appointments based on your availability, time zone and more.The best part is that this program will also sync with your calendar so if you have an appointment already booked with say your doctor, then the online scheduler won’t allow your client to book in this spot. You can create reminders, forms and depending on the level of Online Scheduler you have, you can also set up payments saving you a tool!
My Tool Suggestion: Acuity
6. **Bonus** All in One Client Management Tool
If you are like me and you hate having to go into a bunch of different apps and tools to manage your clients/ business, consider replacing all of the tools above with an All in one Client management tool.The right tool will be able to help you create forms, templates, contracts, canned emails, allow your clients to sign contracts, build invoices, schedule client meetings and all of the pieces in-between.
My Tool Suggestion: Dubsado
Now that I have gone through my favourite tools, I’d love to hear back from you on what your favourite tool in this list is or maybe your favourite tool that’s not in this list. I am always looking for new great platforms to test out so that I am able to make the best recommendations for my clients.
If you are finding that this process is still really overwhelming, then let’s book a call so I can help you build the right foundations in your business.