11 must-have freelance writing tools to grow your business
Freelance writing isn’t a hobby, it’s a business. You must adopt a winning mindset, and the right freelance writing tools to succeed, thrive, and remain profitable.
No compilation list is ever complete. What one writer uses is not what another writer prefers or uses in their business. However, a few areas intersect when you are a freelancer, or otherwise in life and work. They include managing operations, marketing, communication, billing, etc.
Our list of top freelance writing tools provides the essential apps to keep your business organized, efficient and profitable. They can help quickly find leads, manage your website with ease and boost your freelance earnings.
Time is of the essence in your freelance career. Deadlines always loom. Plus, unlike in a typical 9 – 5 job where you have a ready schedule and benefit packages, you set your hours, manage your schedule and handle finances.
It’s a tricky balancing act especially if you’re not prepared.
The following freelance writing tools provide a user-friendly and intuitive way to help you manage your freelance business or side hustle. They should help you overcome the digital entrepreneur time trap that plagues freelancers by improving your workflow and boosting your productivity.
I’ve organized the tools into four categories:
- Freelancing writing tools to organize thoughts and produce content
- Communication and workload management tools
- Social media marketing and graphics tools
- Money management tools
Let’s dive right in!
Freelance writing tools to super-charge your business
Writing & organizing tools
Evernote is a note-taking app you can use to jot down ideas and flesh them out. You can attach images to provide vivid reminders of your thoughts. Lots of writers also use it to brainstorm and collaborate with clients and teammates. Your notes are backed up and synced to the cloud and your devices giving you an efficient way to retrieve them when needed.
Grammarly is an editing tool perfect for putting those final touches on a piece. While no editing tool is perfect, Grammarly is ideal for catching silly grammar, word choice, and sentence structure mistakes that can ruin your work. Just upload your article and go through a simple editing process complete with a score.
WordPress is a content management system used by bloggers and businesses to run their websites. While other platforms exist, WordPress has entrenched itself as a popular, robust, and easy to use platform for blogging and managing content. As a freelance writer, it’s the perfect platform to run your writer’s blog. Knowledge in WordPress is a bonus when working with other businesses online.
Google Drive lets you edit, share and manage documents in the cloud. You don’t have to worry about losing your work because Google Drive backs up your work in real time. If your computer crashes, you can still access your work intact on the cloud. It’s also neat when you want to collaborate with other people. Simply share your document with a few clicks giving either read or full edit access.
Workload management & communication tools
Gmail is one of the most popular email platforms used by freelancers and businesses alike. It’s free for the regular user. You can customize your mailbox using a custom domain name, e.g., your writer’s website domain name. Gmail excels at being simple to use, intuitive, and clutter-free. Its painless settings make it easy to customize your workflow and ease communication
Trello is ideal for managing projects and virtual team collaboration. It’s user-friendly and gives you a bird’s eye view of your business and operations. You can use it for content scheduling and team management, ensuring the team always knows about deadlines, progress etc.
Email gets exhausting fast. Sometimes a quick call clears hours of back and forth emailing. Skype is excellent for video and audio calls. It eliminates the need for endless email threads and provides that personal human touch.
Graphics & social media marketing tools
Canva lets you create beautiful shareable images. It’s perfect for social media graphics, blog cover images etc. With Canva you can quickly add style and elements to your graphics and customize your brand colours to go into every picture.
Check out this excellent tutorial on how to use Canva to create stunning graphics:
Social media is a great way to promote your freelance services and connect with clients or fellow freelancers. However, keeping up with social media is time-consuming. Buffer helps you schedule posts and updates in advance saving you time while helping you keep an active social media presence. You can schedule posts to go on
- LinkedIn, etc
Finance management tools
Freshbooks lets you invoice clients, organize invoices, manage billable hours and track your expenses all one intuitive platform. It’s a great freelance writing tool to keep things professional instead of using those annoying follow-up emails that ask, “Did you pay me yet?” With Freshbooks, you never lose track of who owes you money, and it’s handy when preparing your taxes.
It’s easy to lose track of your finances when managing a freelance business. Mint helps you keep tabs on your money. It’s a great tool to track your financial state, your income, spending and goals, freeing your mental bandwidth to work on your business. A solid financial grounding is essential to your success as a freelancer. In a career marked by boom and bust cycles, having a firm handle on your finances lets you survive and thrive as a digital entrepreneur.
A freelancer is a business manager who has to wear different hats. You must competently handle your marketing, operations, and accounting to thrive and succeed. And while you can delegate some functions by hiring a virtual assistant, you still need to manage your virtual team. These freelance writing tools reduce the hassle of managing your business helping save time and be more productive.
Are there any more tools or apps that you would like to recommend for freelancers? Please include them in the comments section below and join the conversation on our Facebook Page.