Top 10 Google Chrome Plugins for Small Business
The Google Chrome Web Store has made it easy for anyone to stay organized, and the browser has gotten much faster, as we've noticed in the beta version of Chrome 17. But as the web gets bigger and stronger, so many apps and plugins are available that it's hard to know which is the best for you.
If you're running a business and don't want to be bogged down by multiple PC-installed applications, there are a couple of great go-to apps that you should become familiar with to help manage your day-to-day routine. Whether you need financial management or to check your email offline, here are some great options for small businesses using Google Chrome.
1. Gmail Offline
Gmail Offline beta is built to support offline access, so you can read, respond and archive without network access. After your first start-up, Gmail Offline will automatically synchronize messages and queued actions anytime Chrome is running and an Internet connection is available.
Evernote is a free, notepad-like service that enables you to save and organize anything you'd like to remember without leaving the website. You can also take quick notes, add tasks and tag everything within categories. Social media integration makes the service seamless, and there is also a mobile app that will bring all your notes to your Android and iOS phone or tablet.
For financial management, Mint.com is a great app that allows you to track, budget and manage your money all in one place. You can manage a bank, credit, loan or retirement account, and the service automatically categorizes all of your transactions, so you know when and where you're spending and saving.
PollDaddy is an easy way to create polls, surveys and quizzes. Reach out to potential customers, or figure out what works and what doesn't for current clients with a customer service survey.
TweetDeck makes it easier for publishers, marketers and power users to track the real-time conversations they care about. It brings more flexibility and insight to active social media users through a customizable layout that lets you keep up with the people and topics that matter most to you. And, you can join the conversation by tweeting, sharing photos and links to news stories, and more. It also lets you tweet from multiple accounts, which is great if you manage a brand's social media account and have your own, too.
When you need a very basic website, sometimes hiring someone is either unnecessary or out of the budget. Weebly is a free, user-friendly web builder that lets you create a simple (but still attractive) website, blog or online store. With features like integrated domain registration and cloud hosting, your new site will still maintain a professional feel.
When you want to capture your client's attention, a solid presentation is everything. Standard PowerPoint slideshows have become a thing of the past, so it's time to get dynamic. Prezi is web-based and allows you to add multimedia, providing you with a more engaging presentation. Rather than using slides, all of your thoughts and ideas are spread out on a blank canvas, and you control the direction of the slideshow.
8. Screen Capture
Grabbing a screenshot on PC can be tedious without the right tools. You have to print screen, copy and paste into a photo editor, and then crop and edit. Screen Capture not only lets you grab content from the web, but you can also edit your screenshot before saving the PNG image.
Cacoo is an online drawing tool that allows you to create diagrams such as site maps, wire frames, Unified Modeling Language and network charts. The free service provides real-time collaboration, so multiple edits can be made at the same time.
What's great about the file-sharing service Ge.tt is that it not only provides real-time sharing, but it also has statistics that tell you how many times the file has been downloaded. You can also send the shared files in an email directly from the website, without having to worry about the file being too large, and if you create an account, the recipient will have the option to reply directly to you.
Are you using the second-favorite browser and all the tools it has to offer? What plugins do you use to manage your business? Let us know in the comments.