As a freelancer, you know that when you start a job you need to have all of the appropriate tools right at your fingertips. Having to search for things will not only kill your productivity but ultimately your bottom line. Here is a list of 48 resources that I absolutely cannot live without. The best part is? A lot of these – are FREE.
Before I begin, for the love of all things that are good, get the Chrome Browser. It is absolutely necessary. And a GMAIL account. And a Google calendar. I don’t know how people exist without them.
Click on the photo to pin it!
- The Great Suspender – This is for those of you (like me) who have a million tabs open at once and your laptop fan is going full speed trying to keep your computer from exploding.
- Facebook Pixel Helper – Do you run Facebook ads? Then the Facebook Pixel Helper extension makes sure you have your pixels set up correctly.
- Awesome screenshot – Great for any freelancer who takes screenshots when writing tutorials. It’ll capture the entire web page.
- Eye dropper – I use this all.the.time. Get the six digit color code of any color on a website with this extension.
- Feedly – Whenever I’m on a site I love, one click on my Feedly extension and it’s in my reader. If you haven’t discovered the beauty of Feedly, you’re missing out!
- Pocket – This is a great way to bookmark your favorite site articles (especially if you don’t want to subscribe via Feedly). When you have the extension on, it’ll pocket links when you’re browsing on Twitter too.
- Hootsuite – One-click scheduling of any article you read that you want to share across social media.
- Pinterest – One click pinning of any image I see that I want to share.
- Search and Replace– This is great when I’m looking to update text, replace links, or when messing with code. It’s an extension like the “FIND” tool in Word.
- Last Pass – If you’ve ever worked with other peoples’ passwords, you know how maddening password management is. Last Pass eliminates that.
- Toggl Bookmark – Helps track time for tasks when you’re working hourly (17hats has a timer too, but it’s not an extension)
- Zapier – This is like having an admin assistant in your back pocket. It’s a tool that makes all your various accounts talk to each other so you don’t have to. When someone signs up for one thing, it automatically drops the email into all my various accounts so everything is synced up.
- Feedly – My favorite RSS reader!
- Hootsuite – My favorite social scheduling platform.
- 17Hats – So many reasons this NEEDS to be on your top priority list – proposals, contracts,
- ConvertKit – My email service provider. I recently moved from Mailchimp and am loving it!
- DPD Cart – Makes selling PDF’s, worksheets, e-books, and other digital goods a breeze! You only need this if you’re selling digital products yourself, otherwise – it’s something good to know for clients!
- Typeform – The most beautiful and responsive survey/quiz tool out there. There is a free and paid version.
- Amazon S3 Storage – If you are on a shared hosting plan and typically offer a lot of PDF freebies, get an amazon S3 account to store those documents…and also for backups of your site!
- Basecamp – My project management software. You can use it for free with one project. We recommend you use it to manage your projects and client to-do lists.
- Acuity – A scheduling app for all my calls. Again, necessary for freelancers who are networking with affiliates, companies, and sponsors.
- LeadPages – Sales and landing page software that I use to integrate with my WordPress site to create gorgeous and high converting email capture pages.**
- Zoom – If you use this for two people, it’s free. Otherwise, for groups of three or more, you’re limited to 40 minutes on the free plan, but it’s still more reliable than Skype and has recording capabilities.
** I now use Clickfunnels instead. I don’t recommend beginning freelancers use this UNLESS they plan to build sales funnels for others. Then..it’s a MUST HAVE.
Websites I visit constantly
- Pixabay – FREE images 🙂
- Stocksnap – more FREE images 🙂
- Creative Market – This place is dangerous. Proceed with caution – fonts, images, elements, and more
- Facebook Debugger – When Facebook won’t pull my featured image
- Facebook Grid Tool – To test my ads to make sure they don’t have too much text
- PicMonkey – For easy image creation
- Canva – To create ads, graphics, PDF’s, and more
- Font Squirrel – Free to use fonts
- 22 Rules of Storytelling – A good reminder for writing!
- Subtle Patterns – Backgrounds and patterns for websites and graphics
- Alltop – A place to find curated content to share on social media
- Google Webmaster Tools – To check on 404 errors, site health, and to submit sitemaps
- Alexa – Page rank checking tool
- Neil Patel – The top content marketing/SEO guy out there
- VideoFruit – Want to grow your business? This site is a necessary one!
- Genesis – I use their themes and am constantly looking at their tutorials
- Coolors – A Color scheme generator. Combine this with design-seeds.com and you might just fall down a rabbit hole.
- Share Link Generator – Create easy links to share on social platforms
- GT Metrix – Helps you test how fast a site is loading. Great for techies who are doing WordPress work
Additional Apps & Tools
- Skitch – This little app (by Evernote) makes taking screenshots and adding arrows and notations a breeze!
- Alfred – Oh Alfred, how I love thee. For Mac users, this app allows me to save endless clipboards of the same type of text I write over and over so I can paste it in easily. It also does a ton of other things I haven’t even used yet.
- Screenflow – If you’re a freelancer who does online tutorials, this is a must. It’s $99 and for the Mac, but it’s powerful recording software of your screen. I use it every day.
- Google Docs – Perfect for collaborating, completely syncs up on every device, and the best part? When I’m making links, it finds the link for me with Google’s search algorithm.
- RecordIt – Want to make a quick little gif of you doing something? The RecordIt will do just that, and turn it into an animated gif instantly.
- Photoshop – I don’t know how people live without it. You can get a subscription for $20 a month if you feel like Canva and PicMonkey aren’t doing it for you.
I’ve probably forgotten a few, so check back once in a while to see if I’ve added things!