Small business software makes your company more productive and helps reduce costs. We review the 7 best pieces of software for small businesses in 2023.
Small businesses rely on good software to run every day. Small-business software enables you to schedule shifts and clock employees in and out. It also lets you communicate with your team throughout the day, run payroll, and so much more. Software is also critical in today’s business world to land and retain customers, stay on top of projects, and grow your company.
The trouble for many business owners is that there are so many small business software platforms available. That makes it very difficult to choose the right ones. In this guide, we’ll review the 7 best software for small businesses in 2023 to help you get the tools you need to run your business.
If you don’t have the time to read through our research, jump down to our quick comparison table.
Our Top Picks
Best all-in-one software for small business owners and managers
Good for invoicing and expense tracking
Good for landing new customers
What to Look For in a Software for Small Business
When choosing business software, it’s important to think about what your company needs and how software may be able to help. There are many different types of software tools available to small business owners. Here are a few common categories of business software.
- Shift scheduling. Shift scheduling software enables you to plan out work schedules and assign your employees to shifts.
- Time tracking. Time tracking software enables employees to clock in or out of work and accurately track their hours.
- Payroll. Payroll software can calculate gross wages for each employee for each pay period. It can also deduct any taxes and withholdings and transmit money to your employees’ accounts.
- Communication: Team communication software makes it easy for employees and managers to communicate throughout the day. These platforms may have one-on-one and group chat messaging tools, video conferencing, and more.
- Accounting: Double-entry accounting software enables you to accurately track income, expenses, and cash flow for your business.
- Task management. Task management software helps employees collaborate on projects and ensures no work is missed.
- Lead generation. Lead generation tools help your business land new customers.
- Document management. Document management software helps you securely store and organize all of your business’s critical files. That includes your employee handbook, employment contracts, payroll records, and more.
The 7 Best Software for Small Businesss of 2023
Connecteam is a do-it-all business software for small business owners and managers. Our platform includes everything you need to run your day-to-day operations and help your business grow.
Here are some of the outstanding features that Connecteam offers for small businesses.
To help your business hit the ground running, Connecteam offers a drag-and-drop shift scheduling tool. Managers have visibility into employees’ vacation days, availability, and certifications. So it’s easy to assign workers to shifts in seconds. Our platform also alerts managers if an employee is scheduled for overtime, helping your business save on labor costs.
Employees can view their work schedule on the go from the Connecteam app. They can even trade shifts among themselves to better match their work preferences.
GPS time clock
Connecteam also includes a mobile time clock app that employees can use to accurately track their work hours. If you have employees working in the field, you can set up geofences around your project sites. Employees receive a reminder to clock in when they enter the project site and a reminder to clock out when they leave.
Managers always know where their employees are thanks to GPS employee tracking through the Connecteam app. That’s a major advantage when work comes up at the last minute and you need to redeploy your team in real time. Managers can also receive alerts if an employee travels outside your business’s usual zone of work.
In addition, Connecteam offers one-on-one and team messaging features so employees and managers can keep in touch. Our platform also has a unique announcement feed. This feed makes it easy for business owners and managers to share updates with your entire team.
Another helpful tool Connecteam includes is task management software. Managers can set up custom digital forms and checklists. Employees can claim ownership over individual tasks for collaborative projects.
Connecteam automatically sends out reminders for tasks that are approaching deadlines. This ensures that no work is ever missed.
Connecteam also serves as a document management platform for your company’s HR team. HR managers can store employee files securely in the cloud and control who has access to them.
Connecteam’s document management system also makes it easy to see when certifications and tax forms expire. So, you can ensure your business is always in compliance.
Surveys and quizzes make it easy for HR to check in on your company culture and learn more about the employee experience your business offers. That in turn leads to higher morale and better employee retention. Surveys can be anonymous or programmed to display live results. Quizzes are completely customizable to match your business’s training needs.
Try Connecteam today
There’s so much more to explore in Connecteam. Our software is completely free for small businesses with 10 or fewer employees. It starts at just $29 per month for small businesses with up to 30 employees, then just $0.50 for each additional employee.
- Drag-and-drop shift scheduling
- GPS-enabled time clock
- One-to-one and team messaging
- Task management tools
- HR document management system
- Employee surveys and quizzes
- All-in-one app for operations, communications, and HR
- Customizable permissions for managers and HR employees
- Customizable automated workflows
- Free for businesses with 10 or fewer employees
- Does not include accounting software
Starts at just $29/month for the first 30 users
Free 14-day trial
Free plan available
Freshbooks is a modern accounting software for small businesses. It includes a wide range of tools that can help your business invoice clients, track expenses, run financial reports, and much more. You can even accept payments from clients directly through Freshbooks. So, this software makes it easier to get paid and simplifies the accounting process.
This small business accounting software is easy to use and offers a mobile app so that business owners can view their balance sheets on the go. It also integrates with a wide variety of other business platforms. That’s a big plus if your business also uses fleet tracking software or customer management software.
There are other accounting solutions like Zoho Books and Quickbooks Online. However, we think Freshbooks offers a wider range of tools at a lower price. Freshbooks starts at $15 per month.
- Invoice clients and send estimates
- Accept payments online
- Double-entry accounting for expenses
- Mileage tracking for business vehicles
- Wide range of business software integrations
- Highly customizable expense reporting
- Cannot run payroll
- Limited collaboration features for accounting teams
Starts at $15/month + $10/user/month
Free Trial: Yes
Free Plan: No
Salesforce Sales Cloud is a comprehensive customer relationship management (CRM) software. It’s designed specifically for businesses that want to grow fast. This platform is designed to help you find new business leads and turn them into customers.
With this platform, your sales team can easily reach out to potential or existing customers and drum up new business. Sales employees can see all of the interactions your company has had with a potential customer in the past. They can then set up potential deals and track them through to closing.
Salesforce Sales Cloud is also useful for forecasting your business’s future work. The software can estimate the likelihood that a deal will close. This enables you to see how much revenue your company will generate in the months ahead.
- View all past interactions with a customer
- Deal pipeline shows the status of all contracts in progress
- Generate leads with online advertising
- Document management system for collaboration
- Highly customizable workflows
- Tons of reporting options
- Expensive for many small businesses
- Steep learning curve
Starts at $25/user/month
Free Trial: Yes
Free Plan: No
Asana is a project management software designed to facilitate collaboration. Everyone on your team can view the tasks necessary to bring a project to completion. Each task can be assigned to an employee. Employees and managers can leave comments on tasks, link to resources, and more.
Asana offers multiple ways to view work, including lists, kanban boards, Gantt charts, and calendars. The visualizations are a major benefit for managers who are overseeing multiple projects. Managers can use Asana to see how much work is assigned to each employee and balance workloads across a team.
This small business software also offers automated workflows and task reminders. It also includes integrations with popular business communication apps.
- Multiple task views including Gantt charts and kanban boards
- Custom workflow automations
- Reporting to help managers balance tasks across employees
- Integrated file storage
- Free for teams of up to 15 people
- Integrates with popular business communication apps
- Automation tools are expensive to unlock
- Limited user permissions management
Starts at $10.99/user/month
Free Trial: Yes
Free Plan: Yes
Google Workspace is a productivity suite that offers an essential set of software tools for small businesses. The platform includes email, a calendar app, cloud storage, and video conferencing. It also offers a word processor, spreadsheet software, and presentation software.
Google Workspace facilitates smooth collaboration among your team members. Employees can quickly share calendar invites or access shared files in the cloud. Google Workspace’s word processor enables multiple people to edit a document simultaneously. You’re also able to leave comments for one another while doing so.
Not all of the tools in Google Workspace are best-in-class. For example, the chat feature could offer far more ways to organize and search messages. However, as an overall business software suite, there’s a lot to like about Google Workspace.
- Word processor and spreadsheet software
- Customizable email accounts at your domain
- Shared calendars
- Voice and video conferencing
- Plenty of cloud storage for most businesses
- Supports simultaneous editing tools on documents
- Difficult to organize chat messages
- Limited customer support
Starts at $6/user/month
Free Trial: Yes
Free Plan: No
Pipedrive is a CRM platform built to help small businesses grow their sales. With this platform, you can build a custom sales pipeline and then start funneling potential customers through it. Pipedrive makes it easy to keep track of where each lead is in the sales process and what the next steps are to keep your deals moving forward.
Pipedrive offers a range of tools for shepherding deals. These include automated emails and custom workflows. Sales team members can also collaborate by assigning each other tasks and handing off leads as they move through your sales pipeline. You can also create and e-sign documents right in Pipedrive.
This CRM is much easier to get started with than comparable platforms. It’s also significantly more affordable than many competing sales software packages.
- Create custom sales pipelines
- Automated marketing emails
- Supports chatbots and web forms
- Assign tasks to employees
- 300+ business software integrations
- 24/7 customer service
- Doesn’t separate new leads and contacts
- No project management tools
Starts at $14.90/user/month
Free Trial: Yes
Free Plan: No
Forecast is a unique operations management platform. It can help your business be more productive and keep your customers satisfied. It handles task management, employee scheduling, and resource optimization. Forecast even includes inventory management and financial reporting tools.
Forecast enables you to break a project down into milestones, tasks, and goals. This makes it easier to keep track of progress. It also offers AI-powered demand-forecasting tools that help you balance work across your employees. It also enables you to hire more workers before your business is overwhelmed.
This software is pricey and has a steep learning curve. It’s best for small business owners that are taking on bigger projects and need ways to stay organized as their business grows.
- Forecast demand and balance loads across teams
- Project-accounting tools
- Customer-satisfaction surveys
- Custom analytics dashboards
- Integrates with project management and communications software
- Highly customizable reports
- Very expensive
- No free trial available
Starts at $29/user/month, minimum 10 users
Free Trial: No
Free Plan: No
Compare the Best Software for Small Businesss
What is Business Software for Small Business?
Small business software is a catch-all term. It includes any software platforms or apps designed to meet the needs of small businesses. Small business software encompasses everything from highly specific tools to broad productivity suites that include dozens of different apps.
The overall purpose of small business software is to make your company more productive, cut costs, and enable growth.
How Does Software for Small Businesses Work?
There are many different types of software platforms for small businesses. Some platforms are all-in-one packages that offer many of the tools that small businesses need to function. For example, all-in-one small business suites may include email, team chat, document management, task management, and HR features.
Other business software is more niche and focuses on specific demands that come with running a business. For example, there is business software that focuses entirely on accounting and expense management. There are also software packages built around tracking employees’ hours and creating timesheets for payroll.
The Benefits of Software for Small Business
Small business software is essential for most modern businesses. You need software for everything from sending emails to customers to paying your employees. Without high-quality software tools, most successful businesses would grind to a halt.
Adding new software tools to your business can help you be more productive. For example, team messaging tools make it easier for employees to collaborate on projects. Task and project management platforms ensure that employees aren’t duplicating work. They also help managers delegate effectively and ensure no work is ever missed.
In addition, software can help your business reduce costs. Time tracking tools, for example, can reduce time theft and ensure that employees are being paid only for the hours they actually work. Accurate accounting tools help your business count every expense. That way, you don’t overpay when tax season rolls around.
Small business software can also enable your business to grow. CRM software helps you drum up new business and close deals. Demand forecasting tools allow you to take on more work with the employees and resources your business already has.
How Much Does Small Business Software Cost?
The cost of small business software can vary widely depending on what your business needs. Many all-in-one platforms that facilitate general business operations are surprisingly affordable. For example, Google Workspace starts at just $6 per user per month.
On the other hand, software that’s designed to directly generate revenue or that will only be used by a handful of employees can be quite expensive. Salesforce Sales Cloud, which is built to help small businesses land new deals, starts at $25 per user per month.
We think Connecteam provides excellent value for businesses that need an all-in-one solution for operations, communications, and HR. Our platform is completely free for businesses with up to 10 users and starts at $29 per month for businesses with up to 30 users.
What software platforms do businesses need?
Small businesses need a variety of different software solutions. Most businesses have a productivity suite, accounting software, shift scheduling software, payroll software, communication software, and project management software.
Can I use Excel as accounting software?
You can use Excel as your small business’s accounting software, but there’s a significant chance you’ll miss an expense or make an error. Most small business owners would be better served with dedicated accounting software.
What is the best bookkeeping software for small businesses?
Freshbooks is the best bookkeeping and accounting software for small businesses in 2023. It’s easy to use, affordable, and offers a wide range of integrations.
The Bottom Line On Software for Small Business
Small business software is essential to making your business as productive as it can be. With the right software, you can get more out of your employees and resources, reduce costs, and set yourself up for growth.
Connecteam is a great choice for small businesses across a wide range of industries. Our all-in-one platform includes features to schedule your employees, track hours worked, manage projects, communicate throughout the day, and streamline HR.