My Favorite Programs For My Business

If you run your own business, and you don't have assistants, you'll need to fill a lot of roles yourself. For most people this can be a big old pain in the butt, and for creative-types even more so. Do you enjoy bookkeeping? I don't. But I've found ways to manage and streamline tasks that take a lot of time so that I don't have to think about them as much. Note that I'm not receiving any payments or kickbacks from recommending any of these, I just like them and use them on a regular basis.  😀

First, I love GoDaddy Bookkeeping. This is the one program that I'd recommend to anyone who has to deal with income and expenses. You can add accounts to import, like your paypal, credit card, and business bank account, and it retrieves that information on a regular basis. All you have to do is go in and make sure that everything is in the right category a couple times a month, and your bookkeeping is done. Print out the report for a monthly summary at the end of each month, and you have your hard copy for your taxes. There are other programs like Quickbooks that you can also use, but I haven't used them. I'd recommend that you use SOMETHING that imports your information, regardless of what it is. Check them out to decide which one is right for you. You can take a tour of GoDaddy bookkeeping here: Take the tour

For my social media, I use Buffer to schedule posts. I chose Buffer over Hootsuite and some others because I just found it easier to navigate, and they offered a Pinterest scheduler. I use it to schedule Pinterest and Facebook ahead of time so that I don't have to think about it every day. They have options to connect your Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, Facebook and Linked In accounts, and they'll also send you Instagram reminders. If you're looking for a free service, try Hootsuite, or schedule directly from Facebook. You can link accounts to save time, too, but that's usually done in each individual platform's settings.

To send out my newsletter (you have a mailing list, right?) I use Mailchimp. It's free for their basic service up until a certain number of subscribers, so you can set up a list to try it out. I pay for the automated version so that I can send out my discount codes to people who sign up for my VIP Club automatically.

I also have Microsoft Office online through GoDaddy, which is where I have my website email address registered. It also gives me access to online MS Office programs if I need those.

The free calender in the Google apps is where I schedule my blog, youtube, and upcoming sales information. I open it up while I'm working to check things off the list.

Finally, I went ahead and bought a subscription to Carbonite file backup after admitting to myself that i'm not the best at remembering to back up my work. This does it for you as you work, so you don't have to think about it.

Those are the main sites that I use every week to deal with the running of my business. There are some other ones that are Etsy-specific, but they're not really relevant to cakes, so I'll leave those out of it. Total cost per month is $44 for the programs I've mentioned, which is pretty cheap considering how much I use them.

Kara Buntin owns A Cake To Remember LLC,  online cake supplies at and