Many professionals are making the transition from full-time employment to freelancing, for several reasons. The ability to set your own schedule, the absence of demanding bosses, and the overall boost in independence and freedom are all alluring prospects.
However, having your own business comes with its fair share of challenges too. It requires discipline, commitment, and resourcefulness, among other things.
As a freelancer, you don’t have the same level of security or financial backing as an in-house employee. Fortunately, there are plenty of free tools and services available.
Here are some of the best free Google Apps that are ideal for freelancers.
1. Google Calendar
Calendar is an often-underappreciated free app from Google. Scheduling and time management are vital elements of a successful freelancing strategy and Google Calendar has a lot to offer, even when compared to expensive organization apps.
It allows you to sync events and reminders across multiple devices, edit your schedule while on the move, and store all your scheduling data securely on the cloud. What’s more, Google’s AI automatically recognizes and imports events from your Gmail inbox into your calendar.
2. Google Docs
The ability to create and edit documents has become a necessity for all working professionals, including freelancers. Unfortunately, freelancers don’t get access to products like Microsoft Office through their employers, and licenses for these programs don’t come cheap.
Google Docs solves this issue by providing all the functionality of a paid office suite completely free of charge. It also makes remote collaboration easier by enabling you to share documents with colleagues and clients, who can then make edits that are viewable in real time.
AppSheet is a game-changer for freelance developers. Even if you have zero coding experience, AppSheet allows you to design and create unique mobile and web apps for several purposes. It integrates seamlessly with Google Drive, Office365, and Dropbox, as well as other cloud-based database and spreadsheet platforms.
AppSheet is completely free for organizations of less than ten people, making it the perfect option for solo entrepreneurs or freelancers that collaborate with small teams.
4. Google Drive
Google has almost five billion users worldwide. Whether it’s searching the internet, checking email, or using an app, this company is one of the most powerful businesses in the world. This is why it’s such a great idea to use Google Drive to store your documents. Most people know how to use it, so sharing information with customers directly is easy.
It’s a great organizational tool for client-facing projects and you can use the free version that offers 15GB of storage.
The Gmail app lets you check and sort emails, as well as send and receive them and create To-Do lists. The excellent security filter will help you keep your inbox from overflowing with spam messages and you can even unsend an email if you need to.
Gmail also allows you to create folders to sort emails and categorize them. You can also add labels that make tracking projects and client communications easier.
6. Google Meet
Zoom became hugely popular during the pandemic, and Google’s Meet app offers much the same service with no limits. This collaborative communication platform facilitates both text and video chat and allows you to share videos, your desktop, and presentations.
You can send invites to clients or collaborators and schedule meetings that are automatically added to your Google Calendar.
7. Google Assistant
Every boss needs an assistant, and if you’re your own boss, then this app is what you need. Google Assistant offers you an easy way to use your smartphone and apps hands-free. You can check your schedule using it, control Smart Home devices when you’re not there, set alarms and reminders, navigate when you’re on the road, and it can even offer translating services if you need them.
As a freelancer short on time and juggling multiple balls, this app is an excellent tool.
8. Google Docs Invoice Template
You’ve hit the ground running with your small business or freelancing career and can’t find the time for necessary, but tedious, tasks like invoicing? The Google Docs Invoice Template is the solution you’ve been looking for.
You’ll find numerous free invoice template Google Docs options, so there’s plenty to choose from. These templates are fully customizable so you can tweak your invoice to include your logo and company details, brand colors, and other relevant information.
Having a professional-looking invoice helps to ensure that you get paid properly for whatever products or services you provide. Additionally, this app is easy to use and cloud-based, making it accessible from anywhere.
9. Google Pay
Google Pay offers its users a quick, straightforward way to make online and in-store payments. You can integrate with the Google Pay API and receive payments from customers quickly and securely. Your customers can pay using a credit or debit card linked to their Google account or with cards saved to Google Pay, making transactions smooth and seamless.
Google Pay is rapidly growing in popularity on a global scale and offering clients this way to pay gives you a major advantage. The easier and safer you make payments, the more inclined customers are to pay you.
10. Google PhotoScan
Photoscan lets you make high-quality images of physical photos with your smartphone camera that are glare-free. You can then store these as digital files. It will direct you through the process of capturing multiple angles and then do the cropping and straightening for you. This is a great way to create images for your social media profiles or for use on your website or marketing material.
Making Google Work For You
As a result of its focus on freelancers, Google has all the tools needed for them to manage and run a small business. You can use these apps to add a professional touch to your business without having to spend a fortune on software.
Everything you need is available online and as it’s cloud-based, you can log in from anywhere. This makes it ideal for freelancers on the move, digital nomads, or entrepreneurs who aren't bound to an office.
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