Everyone has a different path to walk when opening their interior design business and beginning the journey of entrepreneurship. We all have particular strengths and weaknesses. I had a particular strength in website knowledge, because I generally understood how to use WordPress from a past job and I had a growing portfolio of work I wanted to get online. Now, let me be clear. Starting a website and starting a business are NOT THE SAME THING. I’ve learned a thing or two along the way and I want to share my 10 best apps for your interior design business to get you off on the right track. Whether you are starting out or a pro looking for some new technology, all of these tech-based services have helped me streamline my business and function at new levels of productivity.
If you are looking for more information on starting your interior design business I recommend this post on Start Up Costs for Your Interior Design Business.
If you are looking for more information on Branding Your Business here is an older post about Creating My Logo.
G SUITE – Completely worth the $5/month per person to have this for your team. More intuitive then outlook, cloud storage, and better reliability than any other web/email hosting service. Your business name is necessary in your email address to look professional and g-suite allows @centeredbydesign.com vs. XXX@gmail.com.
Boomerang for Gmail – A free plug-in that lets you write emails and schedule when you’d like to send them. Great for late night emails, and having them automatically send at 9am – making you look like you are at the office early!
IVY – With the slogan “make time for design” IVY is a project management and invoice and billing lifesaver specifically for interior designers. This woman-owned business is making waves in the design technology space. I truly could not run my business without this software.
QuickBooks Online – QBO integrates with IVY on the backend, and I let my bookkeeper handle QuickBooks while I manage IVY. You can link your Chart of Accounts to have everything flow seamlessly back and forth. QB is the most universally understood accounting software by accountants and bookkeepers, which makes it easier for you to hire someone.
ThemeForest – I purchased this web site as a template off of Themeforest and then hosted my site on WordPress. If you spend the time to search for a purchase a great theme, so much of the work of developing a web site is done for you. You only pay for the theme once, versus paying every month for a service like Square Space.
WordPress – I use WordPress as my website and blog platform and find it easy to use with a little bit of help from a developer who initially set-up my theme, and can make customizations for me when necessary. I’m not an expert on SEO but I’ve heard being on WordPress is better for blogging. Here is an article comparing the Pros and Cons of these two platforms.
Google Analytics – Great plug-in for your blog to see where your traffic is coming from and what your most read posts and pages are. Essential tool if you want to work with brands who want to know what your blog and web site stats are. Very powerful and can do a lot more I’m sure – I have a lot to learn on this one!
Trello – It’s sort of like Pinterest meets Basecamp. It’s a free tool for collaborating on projects and can be fun especially for inter-office projects, such as initial inspiration phases on client projects. It’s a good place to gather information, files, imagery and messages, without the hassle of lots of back and forth emails.
TurboScan – Best scanning application for easy and very good quality scans from your phone. I use it very frequently to scan and save paper business receipts.
MileIQ – If you’re not already tracking your milage you are losing out on money per mile! This is a great application where you can download monthly reports and easily differentiate between business and personal drives.
I also can’t live without these four technologies – AutoCAD, Photoshop, PowerPoint and Pinterest.
I hope this article was helpful! These are truly my 10 best apps for your interior design business. Please comment below if you have additional questions, I’m more than happy to help if I can!
XO – CLAIRE
Claire’s creative energy comes from her unique perspective on the world as both a trained interior designer and a passionate yoga teacher. Her affinity for kitchen design, timeless style and eclectic decorating are shared here, along with lots of interior design education and tips. Thanks for being here, please enjoy!