In this list, my aim is to highlight some of the simple tools that almost anyone working from a computer can leverage to their advantage. Some of these may look familiar to most but even if you can leverage a single tool found in this list it could make a massive difference to your daily workflow.
Canva – It’s no secret that Canva is one of the most popular creative tools out there. From creating social media posts or banners, all the way up to creating thumbnails and even content to use in paid ads. Canva can do a lot and comes with the sizes for each application that you are building a creative for so you know that you’ve got the right size from the start. Another thing I really like about Canva is that it’s really user-friendly for people that aren’t super creative design-wise. I feel like even I can hack some cool design stuff together on Canva.
Grammarly – This tool is probably the most important on this list. Spelling mistakes are the worst, not only can they cause problems on your website, make your ads campaigns tank, or worse, even make you look like you have no idea what you’re talking about. I don’t think someone’s ability to spell has anything to do with anything since we’re typing on computers and have to autocorrect anyway, but having Grammarly installed as an extension will save you some embarrassment. I’d like to think this is my most used tool since I myself don’t spell very well and typically smash out keys on my keyboard without thinking twice. Do yourself a favor and get Grammarly before you make that epic mistake.
Lastpass – This is the ultimate security and productivity tool. If you’ve ever had an account get compromised you’ll appreciate a bunch of the safety features that Lastpass has baked in. The first major plus of Lastpass is that you’ve only got to remember a single login to access all of your accounts, including secured notes. The other awesome aspect of Lastpass is the ability for the platform to create strong passwords for you on the fly which saves you a ton of time and keeps things even more secure. Lastpass is great for working with teams as you can share access to certain accounts without ever revealing the login details. Access can also be removed very easily without compromising the account credentials so if you have to let someone go it’s a simple task to secure your accounts even though that person never really had access to the credentials, to begin with.
Loom – Loom is a video tool that allows you to create very quick screen share videos on the fly. These videos are then uploaded immediately to Loom’s site where you can simply share a link to get someone to watch. These are great for tutorials, answering quick questions, and showcasing a new feature or process to someone. Loom makes it even easier to work with teams and explain something much faster than if it were a written email.
Copyclip – This one is mac specific but almost any clipboard manager will do. If you work on a computer and don’t have a clipboard manager you are really missing out on some seriously easy productivity upgrades. Basically what this tool allows you to do is to keep a backlog of your copies (CTRL + C or Command + C) so you can get back to them later. This is especially useful if you frequently copy and paste things as you can now save time from having to recopy something that you would end up needing a few seconds later. Copyclip 1 > Copyclip 2.
Slack – I’m pretty sure most of the internet already knows about Slack, but how many actually know how to use Slack to its full potential? I like to use Slack as a mini virtual assistant because you can integrate your Google Calendar, Drive, Zoom, Trello, and so much more to have slack go to work for you! I frequently use my slack to keep track of meetings I need to be in by providing me a nice warning 2 minutes before the meeting starts and the links to join. I also use this to be notified when I’m waiting on assets from someone to show up as Slack will let me know that they have been added to a specific folder if I desire. This is just scratching the surface for Slack outside of its main communication purpose.
Google Drive – By far one of the best online storage systems around. Google Drive allows you to upload documents or files and access them anywhere from any device. I’ve used Google Drive to store important PDFs, Ebooks, Videos, Music, & anything else I can think of to keep my storage space clean. This works great too for storing Ebooks that you want to read from your phone or iPad later. Any Google docs that you store in drive also do not take up any space which makes them even better than Microsoft’s suite of tools in my opinion because you can seamlessly access and safely store these files from anywhere.
Trello – There are a lot of project management tools out there but nothing is quite as simple yet also powerful as Trello. The best thing about this tool is it can be as simple or complex as you’d like for it to be. I like to use it as a to-do list for personal and work-related tasks. I’ve seen complex Trello boards built out full-scale for large teams with a ton of automation involved as well so don’t let the simplistic side of things fool you. Unlike some of the other tools out there Trello lets you strip things down if that’s how you roll for a relatively simple experience.
Zapier – To be honest, I still have no idea how to say this tool’s name but I’ve been using it for years. One of the best-known tools or best-known secrets until you discover it. Zapier basically acts as a middleman between tools and allows you to create custom automation like sending emails, updating spreadsheets, or even sending text messages to yourself when something happens inside of another program. This tool is as powerful as you make it allows you to be insanely creative with your workflow. I myself have been able to do some pretty awesome things with this tool and even saved myself from having to hire someone to do something that I was simply able to automate.
Google Ads Match Type Tool by Digital Arts – This tool is a bit older but if you do a lot of Google Ads campaigns this tool can save you a ton of time. Basically, you can copy and paste large strings of keywords into this tool and convert their match types without having to work inside of Google Ads which saves a ton of time.
Hotjar – One of the easiest on-site tracking tools to use. Once installed on your site Hotjar will capture recordings and snapshots of users that visit your site. You can view trends, heatmaps, recordings, and get surveys back from users about their experience using your site. This tool is great for testing, learning, and drawing insights from your websites much beyond what you’d get from Google Analytics. You can sign up for this tool for free and capture a limited amount of traffic and events without having to pay. I normally set this up on anything we work on because of this.