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8 best tools for solopreneurs and small businesses

READ TIME: 10 MINUTES

Hilary Yeganegi, July 14, 2022

So you’ve done it – you’re turning your million dollar idea into a business and diving into the world of entrepreneurship. Solopreneurs have tons of decisions to make once you decide to take the plunge. 

Your top priority?  You have to decide how to run every aspect of your business. From managing customers, marketing to new leads, managing money, and collecting feedback, you’ll need some tools to help you manage efficiently.

Whether you’re a budding entrepreneur, owner of a small business startup, life coach, freelancer, instructor, or tutor, we’ve rounded up our favorite no-code platforms to help you grow your business. Plus, we explain how Calendly can work with each platform to help streamline your meetings and scheduling automations.

Our favorite tools for solopreneurs and small businesses

1. Typeform

Typeform is one of the most popular tools for creating forms, surveys, and quizzes. Probably because they’re easy to build and customize, to show your brand at its best. For entrepreneurs and small businesses that are working to grow, learning from others is vital, and you can do it all with Typeform. Get feedback, do research, and generate leads with custom Typeform layouts, templates, and themes.

Typeform also enables conditional logic that lets you ask the right follow-up questions and skip the rest. Using a lead generation quiz to engage with potential customers and collect contact info? Make sure they’re only answering the relevant questions based on their previous responses. You can even route questions to schedule a demo directly within a Typeform.

Typeform pricing: free version available, paid from $29/month

With the Calendly + Typeform integration, you can easily embed Calendly as a question block directly in your typeform, and instantly collect information (company size, use case, etc.), qualify potential sales leads, and let your respondents book time with you. They’ll never have to leave the page to book a meeting, and in one seamless step, you’ll collect the information you need and secure appointments.

 

Related reading: Get actionable feedback from Calendly + Typeform integration

2. Kajabi

Kajabi is an all-in-one platform that makes it simple to create online businesses. Their mission is to empower knowledge entrepreneurs who are serious about achieving success online. With a variety of product features including website and page builders, email marketing software, and pipelines to automate campaigns and funnels, Kajabi’s platform helps users monetize their knowledge in the form of courses, coaching, podcasts, memberships, and more. 

You can even manage your business’ behind-the-scenes with Kajabi’s built-in CRM functionality to gain deeper insights on your customers. Plus, Kajabi offers additional business tools to invoice and collect payments, and view analytics to understand key data points, like subscription churn rate and areas for improvement.

Our favorite part? When integrated with Calendly, Kajabi provides everything you need to run your coaching business in one place. Display your Calendly booking screen directly on your Kajabi coaching page, offering seamless two-way communication between you and your clients.

Perfect for teachers, coaches, and instructors who want to worry less about software so they can focus on helping clients reach their goals, the Kajabi and Calendly integration makes it easy for your clients to schedule coaching and teaching sessions. Learn more about connecting Calendly to your Coaching Product on Kajabi for a more seamless scheduling experience. Note: A Calendly Professional plan or higher is required to connect with Kajabi.

Kajabi pricing: from $119/ month

3. ActiveCampaign

ActiveCampaign’s lean platform includes the email marketing, marketing automation, and CRM tools you need to create incredible customer experiences. The tool is great for small and growing businesses in the B2B, B2C and e-commerce across all industries, serving over 150,000 businesses around the globe.

The features available with ActiveCampaign help you manage all aspects of marketing and sales funnel:

  • Reach prospects with precise targeting and tailored messaging via landing pages, email marketing, subscription forms, and more.

  • Nurture and grow relationships with your audience using marketing automation, SMS tools, dynamic content, and event tracking.

  • Convert your audience as their confidence grows with well-timed CTAs via CRM and sales automations, lead scoring, and pipelines.

  • Grow and delight each customer with conversations and chat, loyalty, predictive content and more.

With so many marketing and CRM features in one, ActiveCampaign is a great multi-tool for entrepreneurs and small businesses. Keep all your leads and contacts in one place, and send them customized communications to continuously engage them.

ActiveCampaign pricing: from $9/month

Plus, with the Calendly + ActiveCampaign integration, all your contacts and leads who book meetings with you via Calendly are automatically added to your ActiveCampaign contacts, so you can add them to custom email lists and begin marketing to them immediately. Note: A Calendly Professional plan or higher is required to connect with ActiveCampaign.

 

4. Stripe

Stripe is a popular online payment processor that’s used by businesses of all sizes, and it’s the perfect tool for entrepreneurs and small businesses. Particularly ideal for those with online businesses, Stripe’s online payments tool allows you to collect payments and move money globally with a platform that is user-friendly for both you and your customers.

There are countless integrations available when you use Stripe, so you can undoubtedly connect Stripe to the other tools you use to run your business. And if you use Calendly to automate your business’ scheduling, we have an integration for that, too! Note: A Calendly Professional plan or higher is required to connect with Stripe.

 

By integrating Stripe with Calendly and requiring payment at booking, you can

  • Facilitate a paid coaching business

  • Get paid for your expertise

  • Make the “brain pickers” pay

  • And much more — your time is valuable!

Stripe pricing: from 2.9% + 30¢ per charge

Related reading: Collect payments at booking with Calendly’s Stripe integration

5. Mailchimp

Mailchimp is one of the original all-in-one marketing automation platforms for small businesses. It was designed as an alternative to more expensive and complicated email marketing platforms designed for large companies. Mailchimp’s intuitive platform is an amazing tool for entrepreneurs and startups with fewer resources who need a turnkey email marketing tool.

Today, Mailchimp is much more than email marketing. In addition to engaging your audience and subscribers with custom, branded email campaigns, Mailchimp users can easily:

  • Create free websites and online shops with custom domains

  • Design landing pages to grow dedicated audiences

  • Build followings and target ideal customers with social media management and digital ad features, and more!

Mailchimp pricing: free tools available, paid from $11/month

If you’re using Mailchimp to market your business and communicate with customers, you can easily connect the Calendly + Mailchimp integration. Once connected, the integration automatically creates and tags contacts within a Mailchimp audience for any new people who schedule a meeting with you via Calendly.

Within Mailchimp, you can create unique audiences and tagging rules based on different Calendly meetings, and begin including these contacts in various email and other marketing campaigns. You can also easily embed your Calendly booking calendar on your website’s landing page. Note: A Calendly Professional plan or higher is required to connect with Mailchimp.

Related reading: The Happiness Planner: How this planner app creates more content with Calendly + Mailchimp integration

6. Zapier

Zapier is a popular connector tool that enables users to automate workflows and tasks. With over 4,000 apps in their library, Zapier lets you connect the apps you use to each other without using code. You can also set up triggers to automate processes and actions between them.

Set up a trigger in one app, then set up the action, or what you want to happen, in the other to make a Zap. Once configured, Zaps run continuously in the background, replacing previously repetitive and mundane work and running automations in real-time.

For example, you can create a Zap that watches Facebook for incoming leads, then sends your team an email or Slack update each time a lead is captured. Add up to 100 actions in the background while you work on more important tasks, with no code involved. Using Zapier can save you and your team countless hours, which is especially helpful for business owners and small teams.

Zapier pricing: free plan available, paid from $19.99/month

 

Zapier is a great tool to build enhanced and custom Calendly integrations to handle administrative work, reminders and automations. Available with a Calendly Professional plan or higher, the Calendly + Zapier integration allows you to build Calendly automations with thousands of popular apps and tools you may use as an entrepreneur or small business owner. Note: A Calendly Professional plan or higher is required to connect with Zapier.

Related reading: 6 Calendly and Zapier automations that we love

7. Unbounce

Unbounce is one of the original landing page builders and it helps convert more of your visitors into leads, sales, and customers. The Unbounce platform includes a variety of features that are ideal for entrepreneurs and small businesses, including pre-optimized landing pages and a tool called Smart Copy that can write text for you. Unbounce also includes necessary marketing tools like pay-per-click and social ads, email marketing, and lead generation.

Unbounce’s Conversion Intelligence Platform is powered by AI, and includes the Smart Builder which helps you create your best-performing landing pages in a few simple steps. With just a little information about your desired campaign, Smart Builder will suggest your ideal page layout and on-brand copy that will help convert more customers, faster. It can’t get much easier than that! 

Unbounce landing page pricing: from $81/ month

For Calendly users, Unbounce recently released a Calendly app within the Smart Builder. With this Calendly + Unbounce app, you can easily create better converting landing pages by embedding your Calendly booking page directly onto the page. Using the no-code app, you can customize the appearance of your booking flow, and capture leads with instant appointment booking (and they never have to leave your page).

8. Podium

Podium is a communications and marketing solution that’s focused on providing local businesses with everything they need to succeed. From review management  to business texting and payments, Podium’s all-in-one platform offers a variety of easy-to-use tools:

  • Grow your local business with review tools that make it easy to request reviews for your most loyal patrons and manage your reputation across multiple review sites from a single dashboard. Capture leads with website chat features, and engage with your audience via text message campaigns

  • Communicate with your customers through a variety of channels via Podium’s Inbox – which brings every conversation into one, centralized location – manage contacts with a built-in CRM especially for local businesses, and even capture missed calls and prompt-to-text  to respond to customers as quickly and conveniently as possible.. 

  • Collect payments both digitally and in-person with invoices you can send via text, or with Podium’s mobile card readers.

Podium pricing: from $249/month

Over 100,000 businesses are using Podium to grow, and with so many tools in one, it’s easy to see how solopreneurs and small businesses can benefit their platform. 

With Podium’s Calendly integration, it’s even easier to schedule time, appointments, and meetings with your customers. Once Calendly is connected, you can easily share your Calendly booking link and reminders with customers via Podium texting tools to discuss projects and opportunities, or follow-up on work. Your appointment rates will never be better!

Choosing the right tools to jumpstart your business

Any of these tools may be a great fit for you and your business.

While you continue to grow, be mindful: choose tools that not only make life easier for you, but also tools that can work together seamlessly. When your platforms can integrate with each other and share information (as Calendly can with these tools), it will save you time and eliminate the need for manual, duplicative work so that you can accomplish more.

Ready to grow with Calendly? Sign up for free today.

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Related reading: 6 ways early-stage entrepreneurs can leverage scheduling automation to grow their business

Hilary Yeganegi biography
Hilary Yeganegi

Hilary is a Partner Marketing Manager with Calendly. She's based in Atlanta, Georgia.

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