4 Eclectic Web Tools for Small Business

By Andrew Lock | Posted November 01, 2011

This week we've got another grab bag selection of handy, free or low-cost Web tools and resources to help small businesses get their work done without breaking the budget. These small business Web tools include a site to help you handle legal documents, a site where you can buy or sell Web ads, a resource for coupon codes, and software to create a dazzling array of visuals. Dig in, improve your productivity and save some money.

LegalZoom

It’s unfortunate that we need to have lawyers, but every business needs legal advice at some point. LegalZoom.com is one of the best resources I’ve discovered to make the process of creating legal documents less painful. It’s fast, and you’ll save a lot of money.

For example, a typical trademark application would cost around $1,400 if you used a lawyer. Handling the task online with LegalZoom will cost you around $525 including all government fees.

What kind of services are on offer? You can create a business entity, form a will or a trust, handle trademarks, patents and copyrights, file for bankruptcy, and process a small claim. I’m very impressed with this service -- it fills a real need in the marketplace.

Buy Sell Ads

I’m a big fan of having systems in my business, which is one of the reasons I love BuySellAds.com. As the name suggests, the site allows you to both buy and sell graphical ads. You can sell ads on your website, or buy them on any site that’s listed in the directory. It’s optimized for use with Wordpress.

The BuySellAds system is very well designed, and it's easy to navigate and use. If you want to sell ads, you simply enter your website URL along with a couple of other requested details. As long as your site gets some traffic and doesn’t sell or do anything illegal, it should be approved.

If you want to buy ads on other people’s websites, you can browse by category, price or stats, such as the Alexa ranking, to find a site that’s the right fit for your product, as well as the right budget. Expect to pay anywhere from $25 to $500 per month, depending on the popularity of the site.

BuySellAds.com is a super easy way to buy and sell ads online.

RetailMeNot

Dedicated to the frugal shopper, RetailMeNot.com is a must-bookmark site offering online coupon codes, printable coupons and tips for saving money when shopping online or offline, all year round.

SmartDraw

SmartDraw is the only software that allows you to create every kind of visual -- more than 70 different types -- including flowcharts, timelines, org charts, mind maps, floor plans, marketing charts and more.

SmartDraw's website serves as a valuable resource to professionals in every industry with in-depth information on how to create and use every type of visual, as well as insightful articles on how to use visual communication to boost profits and increase productivity company-wide.


You'll find lots more small business marketing tips and resources from Andrew Lock in our Small Business In-Depth series, Lock in Your Marketing Resources.

Andrew Lock is a self-described maverick marketer and the creator and host of Help! My Business Sucks, a free, weekly Web TV show full of practical small business marketing tips, advice and resources to help small businesses "get more done and have more fun."

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