Free software for startups in 2023

The best free software for Startups and Entrepreneurs in 2023

The journey of an early-stage startup, MSME or SME can be very difficult and requires doggedness to manage the adventure. It takes a combination of dedication, hard work, and free software for startups to turn an early-stage startup into a thriving enterprise.

One key to success is effective management, which is where the right tools and software can make all the difference. In this article, we will highlight four areas where the right software can help small business owners streamline operations, increase efficiency, and free up time and energy to focus on other key areas of the business. Whether you are just starting out or looking to take your company to the next level, here are some of the best free software for startups in 2023.


Customer Relationship Management(CRM) Software

Customer relationship management (CRM) tools help businesses and startups retain customers, which is a key factor in determining and defining growth (what’s a startup with no customer?). It is one of the most relevant tools to a business’s growth because it helps to accomplish much with customers and clients while managing their relationships. 

Every startup needs a CRM to provide that required seamless customer experience. Without a CRM software you are losing 85% of converting customers into long-term customers. 

What features should you look out for in a CRM software

  • Dashboard and report 
  • Marketing automation 
  • Email integration 
  • Sales pipeline management 
  • Lead management

Here are some of the free CRM software for startups;

  • Zoho is a good choice for CRM software as it allows for seamless integration with other applications. It has a fully customizable user interface based on preferences; you can add features such as reporting tools, emails, etc. The software offers a startup-friendly free plan which supports up to three users. Zoho is a budget-friendly, and among the best free tools for startups online
  • Hubspot comes with a free forever plan and tiered pricing plans which are highly scalable. It has flexible pricing plans that allow you to purchase these tools individually or stack them together for an all-in-one CRM solution. Hubspot has many helpful tools for startup teams and it is the overall best option.


Project Management Software

As a startup in its early stage, you might have multiple projects to handle with small manpower to oversee the project. online project management tools allow you to stay in charge, collaborate with the team, assign a task, and manage project timelines.

The tool to choose will depend on the needs of the team and how easily it can be customized. Here are some of the free software for startups;

  • Trello is an online project management tool that gives a visualization of projects being managed. It doesn’t offer much flexibility in assigning tasks. It has a free plan and the paid plan starts from $5 which is cost-effective for startups.
  • ClickUp is another good software that allows you to manage teams and tasks, set priorities, and communicate all in one space.
  • Asana is a good online project tool with more customization features. It is suitable for small teams and has a feature that permits subtasks to individuals, and tracking of the task. Asana offers a free plan and its paid plan starts from $10/month. 


Finance Management Software

You might wonder if using financial software has any benefit. But if you plan to scale or move to the growth stage your accounting has got to be straight. It’s important to digitize your accounting processes as it helps effectively manage accounting records, reduce errors, 

Financial management software gives startup owners and managers faster access to better insights about payables, receivables, fixed assets, and other key financial data points. Some finance management tools to try; 

  • QuickBooks is a comprehensive financial management tool with powerful features tailored toward small and medium businesses and startups. It helps you with bank reconciliation, invoices, tracking expenses, payroll, and advanced reporting. They offer both cloud and on-premise solutions, and it has a flexible payment plan starting from $10/month.
  • Xero and Zoho Finance is a professional finance tool that lets businesses manage invoices, track expenses, and report. They also have user-friendly dashboards which don’t have much accounting expertise.


Cybersecurity Software.

Cybersecurity is critical for business, with the increase in online theft, pushing, and hacking employers will want to take security measures that protect employees who use email, your business’s applications, websites, or endpoints. There are various types of cybersecurity solutions for SMBs and startups. Using the right security hardware or software will empower your business to maximize its potential without sacrificing safety.

  • Antivirus software for ransomware attacks
  • Endpoint Protection protection of hardware connected to the network 
  • Web Application Firewalls (WAFs) keep your web-based applications protected from hackers that want to steal your information 
  • Cloud-based security 

The two most important factors for entrepreneurs and early-stage startups that are cash-strapped are affordability and scalability when it comes to using free software for startups. It’s also okay to migrate from one software to another when the time to scale comes but ensure you choose a software that meets your present needs and aligns with your future business goals so that transitioning is seamless.







Startup founder - cfagbata

Startup Founder? Ask these Questions Before Seeking for Funding

All appears to be set, for your startup, except for that, seemingly, important part, which is your source of fund.

Looking to raise millions, in seed funding, an average start-up founder would look no further, than the direction of an angel investor, or, a venture capitalist.

Before moving ahead on such, however, take a pause and demand from yourself, “do I need to obtain this funding?”

Have you thought of not being ready, to use funds that you are not, mentally, prepared for?

An unnecessary pressure can be on you, when the fund is secured, at the wrong time.

On the other hand, if you made a choice, to go for it, remember that, you might be “forced”, to give up a part of your start-up.

I have come up, with some questions, worth asking by a startup founder, before making that decision to go for your startup funding:

Is External Funding Really Required?

As much as a startup founder seek funding for their venture, they should realise that it is not free.

In considering external funding, founders, or, entrepreneurs, ought to weigh their options.

You may have to give up a large chunk, of your profit and unwanted pressure, from your investor, to deliver results.

This pressure may force you to take on certain obligations, for your investors that you are not prepared for.

Also read, Is VC Funding the best for your startup

How Much Am I Willing To Give Up?

Accepting external funding means that, you are giving up, part of your organisation, out for money.

Have you considered, what you will give up, in terms of control?

Remember that, when you get funded, investors come on board and they will, definitely, have inputs, as to how operations are executed, in your organisation.

Also, think of what the actual value will be, of the returns, for any fund raised.

For instance, if you give up 30% of your company, would the return on it, be worth, over what 30% profit would have returned?

Who Is My Ideal Investor?

Beyond raising funds for your start-up, investors can offer you, more than that money that you seek.

At different rounds of fund-raising, you have to define the type of investor you require.

What do you need from them? A Silicon Valley-based investor, might not be the right person for you, considering the market you want to break into.

Ensure that, your vision, mission and core values, are aligned, to what your ideal investor might turn out to be.
Is My Business Worth The Investment?

Put yourself, in the shoes of an investor and see, if you will, actually, commit a huge amount of fund into your start-up.

If your answer is no, then, think of what you can do, to make it worth investing in.

What would attract an investor, to throw in his hard-earned money, without thinking twice?

Consider certain things that you may have to change. Check out some parts, of your services that need improvement.

How Prepared Am I To Answer Questions?

Are you ready to be under the fire, when you stand before investors?

You can deliver a great pitch presentation, but it is another ball game to, accurately, answer questions thrown at you.

Beyond your pitch deck displayed on a PowerPoint presentation, you should have facts, figures and trends, on your industry, right there in your memory.

What Do Investors Expect At The Fund-raising Stage?

For every round of seed funding, the expectations of investors, are quite different.

At the round of pre-seed funding, you might be able to play the emotional card, with your passionate sales presentation.

But moving beyond that stage, if you cannot demonstrate metrics, like revenue, customer acquisition and retention, then, you are not, up to the task.

Ultimately there are lots of questions a startup founder can ask but the ones discussed here are very essential for their funding journey.

Also, read, Why Focus On Raising Startup Funds, When You Can Do This

Featured Image: the1thing