Business Tasks Made Simple With Tech

You don’t need to be an early adopter, living on the bleeding edge to increase your business through tech tools. No matter your skill level, here are five that will help you.

Back up your text messages. Emails are easy to add to a transaction record, but including relevant text-message conversations in that archive—in an accessible format—isn’t so simple. If you have an iPhone and use the Messages app on a Mac with the same account as on the iPhone, you can view a conversation in the desktop Messages app and copy and paste it to a text document. Otherwise, try iExplorer ($39) for Windows and Mac, CopyTrans ($29) for Windows, or PhoneView ($30) for Mac. Android users can create backups of conversations in their Gmail accounts using the free SMS Backup+ app.

Manage social media. Buffer and Hootsuite consolidate your social media accounts so you can schedule, monitor, and analyze your activity in one place. They have Android and iOS apps and excel at broadcasting content to your connections. Their free plans let you connect three accounts and schedule up to 10 posts per account. Paid monthly plans, starting at $15 for Buffer and $29 for Hootsuite, add analytics, advanced scheduling options, and content assistance.

Choose the right name. You want a consistent online presence for your business. Make sure you can claim the same name for all your social media accounts and website URL with NameChk. It’s a free service that checks the availability of usernames across the internet.

Create engaging marketing. Canva enables you to create engaging visual content—social media graphics, fliers, brochures, postcards—with a simple drag-and-drop editor. The free plan requires you to provide or purchase images, while the $12.95 monthly plan opens up the photo and illustration library.

Send smarter emails. With email marketing services, you can send professional-looking, mobile-responsive messages to segments of your list—by location, whether they’re buying or selling, etc.—that will improve your messages’ effectiveness. You can also set up automated campaigns that not only send on a schedule but can also trigger additional messages based on recipients’ actions, such as opening or clicking on a link in the message. Popular email services MailChimp and Campaigner offer these and other features starting at $10 and $20 per month, respectively.