Small and mid-size businesses are constantly trying to keep up the pace in the rapidly transforming digital world. They are the first to test the newest lead generating tools or productivity hacks, but many of them neglect the vital part of any business – communication. According to stats, productivity improves by up to 25% in organizations with connected employees. In this article, we’ve selected some of the best communication tools designed with smaller companies in mind and helping you take your business to the next level.

Slack for Instant Communication

Slack is a handy software for clear and efficient communication inside your team. It helps to align sales, marketing, and other departments. It’s easy-to-use platform for instant chats, discussions and file sharing. As soon as you download Slack, you’ll need to create a team and invite your colleagues there. You can then create separate channels, public or private to discuss topics related to your project and share important announcements to the whole team. You are not limited to the number of channels and can easily integrate Slack with Gmail or Trello to receive notifications from these services right to your Slack account.

Price: free with basic features, extended features $6.67 per person monthly.

Google Hangouts for Productive Conference Calls

Google Hangouts is another free tool for scheduling audio and video calls for those companies, who have clients worldwide or have remote co-workers. If Google won’t kill the project in October, you can continue using this handy solution for effective cross-team communication and communication with clients.
Meet minimizes the hassle of joining video calls at the office. It works simply as that: you set up a meeting and share the link with its participants and they can join it without worrying about right accounts or plug-ins.

Price: free

Zoom for Webinars and Demos

Zoom is a necessary tool for every entrepreneur who wants to conduct live webinars, conference calls and trainings. Zoom is video communications company to help you organize demos for several people, share your knowledge and save these recordings. It can be easily integrated with apps your company already uses and give additional benefits to its participants. The participants don’t need a Zoom app to join the meeting: they can watch it from their phone, desktop, mobile or tablets.

Price: free basic plan for one-to-one meetings and group meetings for up to 100 participants. Unlimited plans start at $14.99 per month per host and come with admin tools, customization options, and additional integrations.

Skype for International Calls

Skype is a great tool for instant messaging, international calls, chats, and group calls between computers, tablets, mobile devices, the Xbox One console, and smartwatches. Even if your wifi is not working, the Skype calls are five times cheaper than international calls from your mobile operator. Skype has multiple features that could be of great value to entrepreneurs:

  • HD video calling: experience great quality of video calls and group meetings.
  • Live subtitles: allows reading the words that are spoken during the live audio or video call.
  • Screen sharing: allows you to share presentations, pics or files during a Skype call.
  • Skype call recording: helps you capture Skype calls or record important meeting with colleagues.

Price: Free for chats, see the rates for international calls.

Trello for planning and organizing teamwork

The entrepreneur can get the company’s daily and weekly tasks organized with Trello. The interface of the app is pretty intuitive: you can create tasks for each team, make centralized team updates and keep information transparent. Trello is a great tool to visualize your daily routine and control what’s being done every day to make you closer to your business goals.

Price: free with basic features, from $10 per person annually for extended functionality.

Jira for time tracking

When you’re a team of only three people, you know what everyone’s been doing. But as your company grows, it’s getting harder to control everyone’s workflow and measure performance of every employee. You can see how much time your team invests in different tasks and how much is left for the task to be completed. With the help of Jira, you can visualize the whole workflow and split massive tasks into smaller ones.

Price: at least 10 users, starting from $10 flat rate for 10 users.

NetHunt CRM for organizing your workflow

NetHunt has been operating as a Gmail-based CRM software designed for small and middle-sized businesses. It’s a productivity tool inside Google Apps that cover a full set of features to manage leads, nurture customer relations, monitor sales progress, and close deals right in the inbox.

As soon as the team starts using а powerful CRM, their performance skyrockets. According to Salesforce, CRM may increase the company’s sales by up to 29%

What are the major benefits of CRM for entrepreneurs?

  • Get their database of clients and leads organized;
  • More often and quickly turn leads into clients;
  • Synchronize Gmail activity with the sales processes;
  • Provide excellent customer experience;
  • Store and access every moment of customer interaction with the sales team;
  • Schedule follow-ups and bulk email campaigns and more.

Price: free for up to 2 users, from $24 per person monthly

Download a comprehensive guide on how to choose the right CRM for your business needs here: