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Apps for Tech Startups

Startup Apps are the secret sauce for your startups. There are many startup apps available, but choosing the right one can make a huge difference in your success. I work with startups to build their app ideas into MVPs, test them with real users. This guide is based on my experience helping hundreds of startups launch their products.

In this post, you will discover the best apps for tech startups to grow their businesses.

Asana (Free)

Jason Ballard, founder and CEO of sustainable home improvement retailer TreeHouse, finds that navigating between multiple work-related concerns can get confusing. “Rather than clogging my email inbox with messages about all the things I’m working on, we use Asana,”, he says. Asana is a project management tool. “It lets me manage my fundraising, store openings, hiring, my ‘product radar’, and all my other projects into easily-organized buckets.”

Available for iPad, iPhone, Android

Shoeboxed (Free)

One of the most important – and least discussed – aspects of small business ownership is paper management. Regardless of your business, chances are that you’re going to find yourself picking through piles of receipts and business cards, trying to remember the name of this supplier or figure out whether that meal was deductible. Shoeboxed makes it possible to digitize and store receipts and business cards in an easily searchable archive. As a bonus, the app also features a GPS-based mileage tracker, which can help simplify accounting and tax preparation.

Available for iPad, iPhone, Android

Tiny Scanner (Free)

Speaking of paper management, Tiny Scanner makes it possible for your phone to easily convert documents to PDFs. So, rather than trying to find places to file all the tax documents, supplier letters and other pieces of information that flow across your desk, you can automatically convert them to electronic documents and organize them on your computer.

Available for iPad, iPhone, Android

Slack (Free)

Getting employees on the same page can be extremely difficult, especially when team members are in different countries. Tictail’s Waldekranz gets around some of those difficulties with Slack, an app that offers chat rooms, private group spaces and direct messaging. Some refer to it as “Gchat on steroids”. All exchanges become searchable, which increases its business effectiveness. “I’m a big fan of Slack,” he says. “Wherever I am it feels like I’m close to the team.”

Available for iPad, iPhone, Android


For many small businesses, HR can be a mysterious thing. It’s complex, tricky to navigate, and often filled with paperwork. If you’re in a startup environment, it can be difficult to dedicate the headspace (and personnel) that are necessary to do a great job. The good news is that there are all-in-one platforms to help you meet your company’s needs. is a platform that moves human resources and benefits to the cloud, streamlining employee onboarding and offboarding, time-tracking, performance management, benefits administration, document management, and compliance. It also works with some of the payroll and management software and productivity apps – we’ll get into later in this article, giving you the HR capabilities you need without all the paperwork.


When it comes to growing your startup, one of the biggest pieces of advice you’ll get over and over again is to hire the right people. The problem is that there’s a lot that can go into that process: from reference and employment checks to pre-hire skill tests, there’s a lot that you probably want to know about someone before you decide to bring them onto your team. GoodHire helps you figure it all out with just a few clicks on your device, and gets everything back to you in less than 24 hours.


Formerly known as ZenPayroll, Gusto makes your small business’s tax, benefits, and payroll process easier than ever before. It helps take care of all of the onboarding paperwork and also handles all of the reporting you need to do when you make a new hire. It takes care of federal, state, and local tax filings; emails paystubs to your employees; and automatically makes deductions for benefits and workers’ comp.


And while we’re on the topic of payments, depending on your business model, there can be a lot of paperwork between when you get the job done and when you actually get paid for it. Managing and tracking invoices can be a tall order, but fortunately, Freshbooks is here to help. You can effortlessly create simple and professional invoices, set up recurring invoices for your clients, and accept credit cards on your mobile device with this productivity app. It also features expense-tracking, business report generation, and profit and loss statements to help you stay on top of everything you need to keep your business running smoothly.


The truth about customer service is that whenever and wherever your customers have a good experience, that experience becomes their new baseline expectation for how they’ll be treated elsewhere. Positive and surprisingly delightful communication with customers is increasingly becoming a differentiator for businesses.

Intercom uses a combination of education, live chat, and more to make it easier for your startup to engage and interact with your consumers. That way, you can focus on solving problems before they start and make sure that your business is converting customers into fans.


Sometimes when you’re running your small business you’ll come across a situation where you need a certain set of skills your team simply doesn’t possess. Since it’s a one-off project, you don’t necessarily want to hire someone full-time and deal with all of the paperwork (although we’ve looked at some tools and apps that can help).

Instead, consider turning to Upwork to find an independent contractor who can help you get your project done without all of the messiness. Whether it’s graphic design, web development, or copywriting, you can find someone who will jump in and handle whatever project you throw their way with aplomb. The review, bidding, and reference system help you make sure that you’re working with quality people, whatever the project may be.


At the end of the day, your business depends on your ability to find and win more customers. SalesLoft can help, with software designed to increase the effectiveness and efficiency of your sales reps. It features email built for sales from the ground up, integrations with tools that you’re probably already using like Salesforce, and a sales dialer to keep the phones the ringing.


If you need more than one device to run your business, Pushover is a gamechanger for keeping all your moving pieces connected and coordinated. It consolidates all of your push messages for all of your devices into one common space, letting you get a handle on everything that’s happening with your business at once.


Have you ever had a day that just got away from you? You keep on meaning to get to an important task, but first, you need to deal with all of this morning’s email, then with edits to a project you delivered yesterday, and before you know it, it’s time for lunch.

RescueTime can help you get a handle on where all your time is going by tracking where you spend it, sending you detailed reports and data to give you a full picture of how you spent your day. You can’t make progress on something until you start measuring it, so give it a try.

Squarespace (Free)

Sarah Kim, founder and editor of By Way of Brooklyn, a magazine that highlights female entrepreneurs, says that website building platform Squarespace has had a huge impact on her business. In addition to helping her develop an online presence, the Squarespace app, released as part of the company’s 2014 redesign, enables Kim to easily upload up-to-the-minute content. “We’re always on the move, and when we can’t get back to a computer to update our site, we use the Squarespace app – we can blog and post on the spot,” she says.

Available for iPad, iPhone and Android

Product Hunt (Free)

With the ever expanding array of startups, apps and other tech tools available to businesses, it was only a matter of time before someone came up with a way to organize it all. Product Hunt, a Reddit-style website where users can submit and vote on the latest technology, fills the bill. A must-use resource for anyone looking to stay ahead of the tech game.

Available for iPad, iPhone, Android

VSCO Cam (Free)

When it comes to creating a professional public image, Kim recommends VSCO Cam, a photo-filtering app that works across multiple platforms. Many of her magazine’s photographers use it for filtering the photos that appear in the magazine, and the app enables her staff to quickly create Instagram and Twitter photos that match the look and design of the magazine.

Available for iPad, iPhone and Android

Periscope (Free)

Some of the most useful business apps were originally intended for other purposes. Periscope, for example, offers users the option to “explore the world through someone else’s eyes”. For business users, that world can include meetings being held halfway across the world. And, with the ability to transform a smartphone into a body cam, it’s easy to take part in an important conference, even when you’re in a different time zone.

Available for iPad, iPhone and Android

Sunrise Calendar (Free)

For scheduling, Carl Waldekranz, cofounder and CEO of Sweden-based online retail platform Tictail, uses Sunrise Calendar to keep his schedule straight. “I am able to look at my entire day in a super concise and organized way,” he says. “Not to mention the push notification alerts I receive to remind me when an appointment is close.” Its newly released keyboard feature allows users to quickly view their calendar to schedule appointments.

Available for iPad, iPhone and Android

Mint, Zoho (Free)

It goes without saying that tracking finances is vital for startups, particularly for owners who are funding their companies out of pocket. One of most popular is Mint, a free app that made its name with a personal finance platform that seamlessly integrates multiple accounts. For those willing to pay for something more explicitly business-oriented, Zoho offers time-tracking, invoicing and expense management options, all with an easy-to-use interface designed for ordinary (read: non-accounting professional) business owners.

Both Mint and Zoho are available for iPhone, iPad and Android.

Square Register (Free, $10 for the hardware)

An older app that’s come of age, the Square Register app makes iPad-processed credit card purchases almost seamless. Dennis Lee, cofounder of New York-based Astoria Coffee, relies on it to process transactions, but has also found that it gives him insight into his business. “It has a really useful backend feature that allows us to track sales and organize data,” he says.

Square also provides a suite of other business apps, from payment and payroll processing to, most recently, an appointment manager.

Available for iPad, iPhone, Android


Having the right app can be essential for your startup’s success. There are thousands of tech startups out there competing to get noticed by consumers, investors and business partners like you. This can make it hard for tech startups to get ahead.

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