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10 Tools to increase your productivity

Author: Carl Heaton
He is our senior instructor and originally from Manchester UK. Carl teaches our Web Design and Online Marketing Courses.
Notion, Toggl, and Canva on 3 screens
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We usually get caught up in often insignificant and minor tasks, recurrently let procrastination take over, or underestimate the time it will take us to get a certain task done. And often these things become a hindrance to our productivity. But there are more things that slow our productivity pace. One of the things slowing you down is called an organizational drag. Mankins and Garton describe organizational drag as a “collection of institutional factors that interfere with productivity yet somehow go unaddressed.”

To get you over that, we have made this list of ten tools that will not only help you get over organizational drag but also boost your productivity on a more personal level.

1- Calendly

a screenshot of calendly website

In today’s day and age, everything is happening online. It takes a good amount of back and forth emails and a good chunk of your precious time to schedule one meeting. Calendly saves you from that hassle. Connect your calendars to Calendly, add your availability hours and Calendly will save you from those back and forth availability checking conversations. It also offers personalized reminders for appointments so that you don’t forget any. I’ve been using Calendly to schedule all of the online meetings with my team and honestly, I feel that it kind of works like a personal assistant if you use it properly, which is why we love it so much.

Pricing –

  1. Basic – Free
  2. Essentials – $8.00 per person/month
  3. Professional – $12.00 per person//month
  4. Teams – $16.00 per person/month
  5. Enterprise – Contact Sales

2- Notion

a screenshot of Notion website

When it comes to project management, creating to-do lists and databases, a multitude of apps claim to be an all-in-one apps, but only a handful live up to the expectations. Notion is one of those apps that deliver more beyond our expectations. From taking notes to linking documents to creating checklists, calendars, to-do lists, to task and project management to creating databases, Notion really allows you to deal with and manage a lot of things from one place. It also allows you to integrate a variety of external apps and links. In my opinion, if you use the app correctly and to its potential, you can avoid a big chunk of organizational drag using Notion, because everything that you need for your company or organization, you can connect and store in one place.

Pricing –

  1. Personal – Free
  2. Personal Pro – $5/month
  3. Team – $10/month
  4. Enterprise – Contact sales

3- Toggl Track

a screenshot of Toggl website

Toggl is a powerful time tracking tool that can help you better manage your time and keep a track of the tasks you’re doing. You can start the timer when you start a task and stop the timer when you’re finished with the task. You can view your hourly, daily, weekly, monthly or even yearly reports. Toggl also allows you to generate and import performance reports in multiple file formats, from PDF to CSV. It also allows you to see what your team is spending their time on. I’ve been using Toggle Track for almost 3 years now and I don’t even want to think about replacing it with another similar software because its just that good and ticks all of the boxes for me and my team.

Pricing –

  1. Free
  2. Starter – $9 per user/month
  3. Premium – $18 per user/month
  4. Enterprise – custom pricing (unlimited users)

4- CoScedule

a screenshot of CoSchedule website

If you have multiple social media channels, keeping them all running altogether can take a lot of time and effort. Posting and updating the content one by one on each individual medium is a lot of work and can create a huge amount of organizational drag which will slow down your overall productiveness. This is where CoSchedule comes in. It is an all-in-one platform for planning, organizing, and executing all things related to content marketing. I think that its easy-to-use drag and drop calendar interface makes it the perfect medium to collaborate and schedule all your projects in one place. You have to schedule a post one time, choose all of the social media channels you want to share it to and CoSchedule will post it on the date, time and channel. This saves you the hassle of going on each media channel and uploading content one by one. I have been using it for about a year now, and it has saved me a great deal of time.

Pricing –

  1. Free
  2. Pro – $29.00/month
  3. Business – Contact Sales

5- Evernote

a screenshot of Evernote website

Now we all know how important it is to write notes so we can remember our brilliant ideas. There are multiple apps that claim to be as good at that but Evernote is simply fantastic at what it does. It is a powerful app that can decrease the organizational drag exponentially. From taking notes to adding screenshots, pictures, audio and video recordings, to saving links, articles and documents, to making to-do lists. You can also set reminders through the app and it can send you email alerts as well, which I feel makes Evernote very unique and place it above any other note-taking, organizing, task management, and archiving app.

Pricing –

  1. Basic – Free
  2. Premium – $7.99/month

6- Pocket

a screenshot of Pocket website

Every now and then we come across blogs and articles, podcasts, videos, or memes, but we don’t have time right at that moment to go through them, so we just want to save them in our pocket (pun intended) for later when we can sit down and go through it. With Pocket, you can save those links to articles, blogs, videos, pictures and much more so you can easily access them later. Pocket not only works with your browser but also with other resources and apps including Twitter. It automatically syncs with your multiple devices too. The best part is that you can save a backup of articles and web pages and have offline access to them, which in my opinion make this an incredible tool for saving resources for when you don’t have access to the internet.

Pricing –

  1. Free account
  2. Membership – $4.99/month or $44.99/year

7- Dashlane

a screenshot of Dashlane website

How much time do you spend remembering passwords or going through your notes to find those passwords when going to less frequently used apps and websites? It’s a hassle when you have multiple accounts and a multitude of apps and passwords to remember. Although the total time spent on these activities may seem insignificant, it will definitely disrupt your concentration and negatively affect your productivity. So this is where Dashlane comes into play. It lets you store up to 50 passwords for free, analyzes your password for security and tells you if the password is weak, compromised, or used multiple times. It will also notify you if any of your passwords becomes the victim of any data breach event. If you ask me, Dashlane’s ability to synchronize passwords across multiple devices is pretty fantastic and one of the reason’s I love it.

Pricing –

  1. Free account
  2. Premium – $3.99/month or $39.99/year
  3. Family – $5.99/month or $59.99/year

8- Canva

a screenshot of Canva website

Design is an important part of digital marketing and visual communications. Often it takes multiple apps to make one perfect design. But not with Canva. Canva is an easy-to-use and simple design platform that has lots of potentials. It comes with plenty of templates, if you don’t want to start your design from scratch or if you want to develop something in a really short amount of time. It is mostly geared toward people who want to create great designs quickly, but advanced designers also recommend it because of its easy to learn functionality and great outcomes. It now allows you to schedule posts in advance for your social media channels too. I’ve been using Canva for not only my work-related post design but also for my personal social media posts. I feel like it is one of the best free apps that you can use to create visual designs, that can give most of the premium softwares a run for their money.

Pricing –

  1. Free
  2. Pro – $12.99/month
  3. Enterprise – 30.00/month

9- Grammarly

a screenshot of Grammarly website

Whether you’re a native English speaker or not, you cannot deny the fact that you have misspelt words and used incorrect grammar for professional work. If you’re prone to making those silly mistakes or if English is a new language to you, Grammarly can help you immensely. You no longer have to re-read your emails or whatever you’re writing ten times after you’ve finished it because Grammarly helps you correct the mistakes on the go. It is highly accurate, offers explanations so you can learn as well as fix your errors, and you can add new words to the dictionary. It is loved by many for a reason. I use Grammarly with pretty much everything that I can and it has saved me a whole lot of time that i can now spend on other things and be more productive. In my honest opinion, it is one of the best free apps/software of all time.

Pricing –

  1. Free
  2. Premium – $30.00/month or $144.00/year

10- Freedom

a screenshot of Freedom website

Often we come across websites and apps so addicting that they take over our work time. I sometimes get so caught up doing unnecessary things on the internet just because I have access to that. If you’re like me and are stuck in that never-ending cycle of infinite scrolling, Freedom can help you. It is a productivity app that lets you block distracting websites and apps so you can focus on what’s most important. It can even block the internet if that’s a distraction to you. You can sync your blocks across devices too. Freedom also allows you to schedule blocks in advance and also has a locked mode that prevents you from ending a block session ahead of schedule. As I see it, Freedom is one of the best apps that can help you become more focused and extra productive.

Pricing –

  1. Free (Trial)
  2. Monthly – $8.99/month
  3. Yearly – $39.99/year ($3.33/month)
  4. Forever (one-time-payment) – $159.99
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