Image by Anosmia via Flickr
Want free tools for your business? These 28 handy helpers save you time, improve your marketing, and make life less stressful.
Five free tools to help you get more traffic, check your rankings in Alexa and Technorati (sites that track blog popularity), and learn more about the people who visit your site.
Web Site Grader reviews your site, checks your keywords, and tells you how effective they are. It will also give you your ranking in Alexa and Technorati.
2. We We Calculator
A computerized version of my One Minute Marketing Test. Paste in some text from a sales page or your front page. Find out whether you’re talking mostly about yourself (or about your prospects).
A tool that estimates the traffic and the demographics of visitors to your site (male/female, education level, age, etc). You can use it for other sites too.
Type in some text and find out how many people (approximately) are looking for those search terms each month. Useful for writing posts and doing some research before you start a site or invest in AdWords.
Use the wonder wheel to find related search terms. It gives you a visual representation of search terms, related terms, and how they connect to each other. You’ll find it under the “more options” button.
Free mind-mapping software. If you’re visually oriented (like I am) this is a great way to organize information and ideas. It’s like a flow chart for creative types.
If you want to send (or post) a long, messy URL, try using this shortener instead. It’s a lot less cumbersome, and you can even customize it.
See something you want to quote on your blog? Or get a quick idea while you’re browsing. Use ScribeFire to drag and drop text into a post (without opening your blogging software). Or, save it for later use.
Stuck for a name for a new service or business? Plug in some words and wordoid will come up with suggestions for you.
If you’ve ever wanted to “undo” an email you should not have sent, this tool is for you. Google Goggles makes you answer a math question (eeek) before you send an email. Set it for late night (or all the time).
Got a mystery font? This site can help you identify it. Answer a few questions and the computer will find your font.
This free tool takes a quick screen capture video – five minutes or less. If you need something longer, you can get Camtasia (not free, but not expensive).
Turns voice messages into emails. If you leave yourself a message, or someone leaves you one, it automatically appears in your email box (no typing).
Great for collaborating with people who are spread out in different cities. Keeps your notes, edits, and project management tools are in one place.
Woot for Macs. One great deal each day.
Make your own call to action buttons in photoshop. Plus, another one especially for buy now buttons.
Make your own ebook covers for free. Takes a bit of practice, but it works.
If you want more ebook options, try BoxShot 3D software. It’s not free (and Mac only), but it will save you a lot of time.
Once you finish that ebook, you’ll want to know if anyone is clicking the links back to your site. Great when you want to spread a free book or article.
Find images for your blog posts without leaving WordPress. Zemanta “reads” your post and tries to find images that match. Or, you can type in the words you think are relevant, and have it search for you.
It’s not just for Mr. Peabody anymore. Get your own time machine – and go back and find old versions of your site (or someone else’s) on the Web. It also has photos, old movies, and public domain books.
Sample book chapters, free (and paid) ebooks, forms and templates – many at no charge. Upload a free ebook of your own and use their traffic to spread it.
Free icons in lots of different styles, from glossy to rather scruffy. It’s got blog icons, e-commerce icons, and holidays too.
An improved Flickr search tool. It shows a full page of photos, plus their sizes (so you can find one that fits your needs without more clicking). You can choose by license too.
A stock image site, but one with photos that are more quirky and interesting than usual. Prices start at $1.
Out of ideas? Type a word into the inspiration generator and get photos, quotes, videos, bookmarks, songs, and tweets that match the word.
A step-by-step guide for publishing a web site. It’s got a list of everything you need to remember (so you don’t have to remember it). It’s also easy to pass along to someone else.
An online shopping cart. E-junkie processes the orders, takes the credit card (or paypal information) and notifies you when you’ve made a sale. Use their affiliate program to help other people sell your books too.