As a business owner, you probably know that technology is important. But what kinds of software do you need to run your business?
Luckily the solid growth of software development services has made it possible for any business to quickly find the right software for their needs.
Here are the 11 most common types of software for businesses, including the value they deliver.
1. Project management software
Project management software is used by project managers and team members to organize, manage, and track projects. It usually includes features such as task management, budgeting, and collaboration tools.
Some of the most common applications include:
- Tracking tasks and deadlines
- Assigning and managing team members' roles and responsibilities
- Gathering feedback and monitoring progress
- Producing reports on project status
Examples of project management software: Asana, Trello, Basecamp, Microsoft Project, Jira.
Asana, for example, is a great option for large teams that need to be able to track tasks and deadlines simultaneously. Trello on other hand is ideal for smaller teams or for projects that have a lot of moving parts.
2. Customer relationship management software
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software helps businesses manage their customer relationships. It allows businesses to track customer data and interactions, including contact information, purchase histories, and support tickets. This information can then be used to improve customer service, marketing efforts, and product development.
CRM software is essential for any business that wants to build and maintain strong customer relationships. It provides a central location for all customer data, making it easy to track interactions and gather insights. CRM software also helps businesses to automate many tasks related to customer service, such as sending follow-up emails and tracking support tickets.
Examples of CRM software: Salesforce, Zoho, EngageBay, HubSpot, Dynamics, BIG Contacts.
3. Human resources (HR) software
Human Resource Software helps companies manage their employees. This can include tracking employee information, such as contact details and job history, as well as managing employee benefits and salaries. Human resources software can also help with performance management and compliance with government regulations. HR software plays a huge role in managing employee files, tracking employee roles and responsibilities, and more.
This software is invaluable for businesses that have a large number of employees, as it allows for streamlined communication and easier record-keeping. It can also help to identify potential HR issues before they become bigger problems.
Examples of Human Resource (HR) Software: Namely, Bamboo HR, Workday, SAP SuccessFactors, Gusto.
4. Accounting software
Accounting software is used by businesses to manage financial data. It allows businesses to track expenses, create invoices, and manage budget.
This type of software can be especially helpful for small businesses who may not have the staff or resources to handle their bookkeeping manually. By using Accounting software, you can automate many of the tasks associated with bookkeeping, such as tracking invoices and payments, income, budgeting goals, as well as creating financial reports, and reconciling bank statements. This can save time and money, freeing up business owners to focus on more important tasks.
Examples of accounting software: QuickBooks, NetSuite ERP, Freshbooks, A2X, Sage.
5. Inventory control software
Inventory control software is essential for businesses that need to keep track of what they have in stock and when it needs to be replaced. This software can help you to plan orders, track stock levels, and prevent stockouts. It can also help you to identify slow-moving items and make decisions about whether or not to discontinue them. This is essential for businesses that need to maintain a certain level of inventory at all times.
Inventory control software can also be used to manage product deliveries. This is important for businesses that receive regular shipments of inventory. By managing deliveries, businesses can ensure that they always have the products they need on hand when they need them.
Examples of inventory control software: Orderhive, Zoho Inventory, Megaventory, Upserve, inFlow
6. Sales and marketing software
As the name suggests, sales and marketing software is used to manage sales and marketing activities. This type of software can include a variety of different software applications, such as email marketing, and social media management.
Each type of sales and marketing software has its own set of features and functions that can be helpful for business owners. For example, email marketing software can help your business to create and send customized email campaigns to many customers at once. Sales software can generate sales conversion data.
Examples of sales and marketing software: Salesforce, MailChimp, Hootsuite, Semrush, MailerLite.
7. Communication software
Communication software is used for a variety of purposes in businesses. It can be used to chat with coworkers in real-time, make voice or video calls, share files and more. Communication software provides a number of benefits for businesses, large and small. Perhaps most importantly, it helps to streamline communication between employees, customers, and clients.
This software also helps to create a digital trail of interactions, which can be helpful for employee performance reviews and customer service inquiries. Additionally, many communication software platforms offer features such as video conferencing and screen sharing, which can be highly advantageous for businesses that need to collaborate with remote teams or clients.
Examples of communication software: Slack, Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Webex.
8. Asset management software
As your business grows, you accumulate more and more physical assets. From office furniture to company cars and computing devices, these assets must be properly managed in order to maintain efficient business operations. Asset management software provides you with a central repository for tracking and managing all these assets. This can include everything from purchase dates and prices to maintenance records and depreciation schedules.
Having this information readily available helps your business to make better decisions about when to replace or repair assets. In addition, asset management software can also help your business to track the location of assets and ensure that they are always safe.
Examples of asset management software: xAssets, Nifty, InvGate Assets, Asset Panda, AssetExplorer
9. Website building software
There are all sorts of Website Building Software programs on the market, but they all have one common goal: to make it easy for you to create a website. These programs come in all shapes and sizes, but most of them offer a drag-and-drop interface that makes it easy to add text, images, and other elements to your website.
Some Website Building Software programs are geared towards small businesses who want to create a basic website, while others are more advanced and can be used to create complex websites with custom designs and features. If you're not sure which program is right for you, it's best to consult with a web developer or designer who can help you choose the right program and get started.
Examples of website building software: Wix, WordPress.com, Squarespace, Weebly, GoDaddy, Jimdo, Zyro, Duda
10. Time tracking software
Time tracking software is critical for businesses that want to keep track of how much time they spend on various tasks. For small businesses, time tracking software can help to improve efficiency and productivity by providing visibility into how employees are spending their time. For larger businesses, time tracking software can be used to generate reports and analytics that can help to optimize operations. In addition, time tracking software can also be used to track billable hours. This is particularly critical for businesses that outsource projects and pay by the hour.
There are a few essential features that any good time tracking software should have. First, it should be easy to use and understand. Time tracking can be complicated, and the software should make it as simple as possible. Second, it should be accurate. The software should be able to track time down to the minute, so that you can bill your clients correctly. Third, it should have robust reporting features. The software should be able to generate detailed reports that show how you and your team are using your time. Finally, it should integrate with other tools that you use. The software should play nicely with your email, calendar, and task management software.
Examples of time tracking software: Hubstaff, RescueTime, Timely, Toggl.
11. Payment transaction software
Payment transaction software helps businesses to process and manage payments. This software is essential for businesses of all sizes. It helps businesses speed up the payment processing functions, track payments, and manage invoices. In addition, payment transaction software can help businesses reduce the risk of fraud and identify potential problems with payments.
Another key value that this software delivers is the process of taking payments from your customers, whether it's through their credit or debit card, or by e-check. The software allows you to keep track of all your transactions in one place, so you always know how much money you've taken in and where it's all gone.
Most importantly, payment transaction software keeps your business safe. It encrypts all of your customer's information, so you never have to worry about their data being compromised.
Examples of payment transaction software: Stripe, Google Pay, PayPal, Amazon Pay, Braintree, Dwolla, Authorize.net.
Business software is inevitable- there’s just no way to compete with the speed, accuracy, and efficiency that software provides. You may be hesitant to make the switch because of the cost or the time it will take to learn a new system, but those concerns are manageable. Software will ultimately save you time and money, and luckily there are enough options that cut across custom software and off-the shelf software. So take action now, identify which software is essential for your business and implement it the right way.
Business Software FAQ
Does a small business need software?
Yes. Any business that wants to remain competitive must use some essential software depending on their industry. Software will automate and keep track of the important tasks of your business such as finances, inventory, and customer relations. This leaves you more time to work on other aspects of your business. Additionally, many software programs offer valuable insights that can help you run your business more effectively. Of course, not all businesses will need the same type or amount of business software. The key is to assess your specific needs and find a software that fits those needs well.
What type of software is essential for small businesses?
Some of the most essential and basic software that any small business should use include: marketing, accounting, communication, and contact management. These are the fundamental items of business management that make or break a business especially in the early days when you are trying to assemble the building blocks of a successful business. You don’t need to be limited by in-house talent, as you can now easily outsource software development and have your needs met.