Productivity tools are essential in today’s digital world. There are 1000s of tools available for a companies sales stack, each bringing a different value proposition, each providing a measurable ROI. However, most of these tools are a significant investment and are purchased at the enterprise level, taking the control out of the hands of the sales rep. In addition, many sales professionals are independent consultants, entrepreneurs, and coaches and don’t have the big budget largest companies set aside for sales tools.

So, I made a list of free or almost free ($25 or less a month) tools that will increase productivity and add significant value to the modern seller. These are listed in no particular order.

  • Social Media Management Tool – Whether it’s to amplify original content from you or your company. listen to what your industry, clients, and competitors are saying, curating and scheduling relevant content, or finding the best way to engage with your network having the right social media management tools is foundational to your success. There are some powerful tools to help you manage your social media, and if you have a team, consider a complete guided social selling tool like Staccato Social or stand-alone employee advocacy tools like GaggleAmpEveryone Social but for our Free(ish) list, there are 3 social sharing tools that you can check out:
  1. Heroic Social – This tool has an incredible freemium model. The features that you get for free are above in beyond what you might typically pay a significant monthly fee. Heroic social schedules, auto-post from RSS feeds, will schedule and share a reoccurring post as well as has some powerful twitter features like follow back, tracking unfollowers, copy other people’s followers and the list goes on.
  2. Hootlet – A free Chrome plug-in for HootSuite is an easy to use tool that helps you schedule curated content on the go. Find content, click the owl, add your 2 cents, choose your social channel from the drop-down schedule from the calendar and quickly share content to your social networks from anywhere on the web.
  3. Buffer for Chrome- Similar to Hootlet will publish your updates on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ and more. It also tracks results and analyzes everything you share for you.
  • Content Curation Tools – Finding the right content to share on a consistent basis can be a challenge. By leveraging a content creation tool, you can have one hub to visit when it is time to share.
  1. Feedly.com – The most simple way to get the newest content fed in from your chosen sources. Save all the RSS feeds from your favorite industry resources and have the most recent stories at your finger tips, in real-time, all the time.
  2. Pocket – When you find an article, blog post, infographic, video, or pretty much anything on the web and you want to save it for later, a click on the pocket icon will help you curate all the great content that your audience will care about.
  3. Scoop.it – Use Scoop.it’s active community and the tool’s search engine to discover the web’s best content, then “scoop it” into your custom topics, which display as elegant, magazine-style layouts. Scoop.it is popular in the digital marketing community, so you can achieve good social reach and traffic from your topics.
  • Calendar Sync – Offering your buyers a link to schedule a time to talk is one of the easiest ways to secure an appointment. No more back and forth emails trying to coordinate a call, with a calendar syncing tool, you will schedule more calls, consistently. These tools are not free, but will run you about $10 a month – so it’s pretty darn close to free. Here are 3 Calendar tools that you might consider:
  1. Calendly.com – With this incredibly easy tool to set up, customize and manage, scheduling calls with buyers and stakeholders has never been easier. This tool works best with Gmail and Office365 users.
  2. TimeTrade – Is similar to Calendly but is much better for desktop Outlook users.
  3. ScheudleOnce – Similar to the other tow, ScheduleOnce’s big differentiator here is that it integrates into CRM like InfusionSoft and Salesforce.com
  • CRM – Customer Relationship Tools are Ideal for keeping up with your prospects, tracking your sales and source of business, curating all the client information and so much more. Most larger companies have a salesforce.com or Microsoft Dynamics that are powerful, and expensive.For smaller companies, however, there are a few CRM tools that are quite affordable for anyone:
  1. Nimble – This CRM automatically updates itself with relevant prospect and customer information from dozens of data sources. You can see details about where your buyers work, where they went to school, where they’re from and how you’re connected. You even have access to all their last social shares right in your email, making it super simple to engage. And the best part, you don’t have to add data (outside of your notes) ever again. Nimble adds contacts with a click of a button. And although this tool isn’t free – at only $25 per month… it is free-ish in my book. (Nimble does offer a 14-day trial, go ahead, try this one – its a game changer!)
  2. Zoho – If you are looking for more of a collaborative CRM, Zoho, allows up to 10 users for free. And for only $30 per user per month, it has a traditional data management CRM and integrations dozens of other systems like accounting, payroll and beyond.
  3. Hubspot CRM – is 100% Free to everyone all the time, and it’s pretty good. Hubspot will manage your pipeline, log sales activity, and record all your email interactions in one place. So why is it free? This great system is a lead generation tool for Hubspot – so expect that you will be contacted in perpetuity to upgrade, but for the price of $0 a month, it just might be worth it.
  • Grammarly – This tool makes sure your messages, documents, and social media posts are clear, mistake-free, and impactful. Adding Grammarly to Chrome means that your spelling and grammar will be vetted on Gmail, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Tumblr, and nearly everywhere else you write on the web.
  • Auto-Text Expander – This free (and ad-free) saves time, typos, and the satisfaction of being extra lazy! Save text, paragraphs, message templates, search strings, content links and beyond and insert them anywhere in Chrome with just a few keystrokes (short-codes).
  • Doodle – This fast and free tool allows you to choose dates, share a link with multiple people and have them choose what times best meet their schedule. You can easily schedule group calls on the calendar while taking everyone’s availability into consideration.
  • Canva – THis free graphic-design tool website, offers an easy to use drag-and-drop interface and provides access to over a million photographs, graphics, and fonts. It is used by non-designers as well as professionals.
  • FindThatEmail – Findthat.email’s Chrome Extension enables its users to find prospects instantly right from your browser on social platforms or company’s website.
  • CharlieApp – Charlie combs through 100s of sources and automatically sends you a one‐pager on everyone you’re going to meet with, based on who is on your calendar.