18 Essential Tools: Best Apps for Freelancing
Searching for useful freelancing tools to boost your productivity and streamline work processes? Explore our list of the 18 best tools for freelancers in 2023.
Working as a freelancer can be a complicated and stressful career path. For instance, you must stay on top of handling finances, looking for and reaching out to new clients, maintaining effective communication, and understanding legal processes. Luckily there are many apps available that can assist you with these and much more. This article lists the top 18 best freelance tools to use in 2023 to help ensure you have all the tools you need to be a successful freelancer.
18 best apps for freelance work
1. Headway — for self-growth
As a freelancer, you are effectively running your own business, so it is important to sharpen existing skills and learn new ones to stand out against the competition. For all your self-development and personal growth needs, look no further than the Headway app.
The Headway app provides bite-sized learning, with 15-minute audio and book summaries, daily insights, challenges, visual explainers, and more to fit around any work schedule. We provide short summaries of key ideas from the world’s most popular nonfiction bestsellers so you can concisely learn essential knowledge that helps you grow. The app can effectively improve many skills, such as productivity, success, self-confidence, negotiation skills, and physical and mental health.
Our subscription-based app begins by customizing a growth plan based on your individual goals before providing you with critical, relevant knowledge to help you crush those goals and become a better version of yourself. You also earn achievements as you learn for added motivation and encouragement. So, if you are looking to beat the competition and refine your skills and abilities, download the Headway app and enjoy fun and easy learning.
Top tip: For recommendations on the best books for business owners to read and learn from, check out our blog article listing the top 10.
2. Apploye — for time-tracking and invoicing
To monitor time spent on specific tasks and create invoices for clients, Apploye is a fantastic tool. With this time-tracking app, you can:
clock in and clock out;
view daily, weekly, bi-weekly, and monthly timesheets;
add time manually when you forget to turn on the timer;
view reports on your logged work time;
track time across all platforms, including mobile, desktop, and web browsers;
monitor billable and non-billable time spent for invoicing.
Apploye can be used for free for ten days once you download the app, and it offers a ‘Solo’ pricing plan recommended for freelancers.
3. TeuxDeux — for organization
Being organized is essential for freelancers to run their businesses and manage their workload efficiently. TeuxDeux is a digital planner that can help you stay on top of your tasks. With this app, you can:
view a to-do style list of your day, so you know what tasks are lined up;
add a task with one tap, pull, or click;
easily adjust your lists using drag-and-drop;
set custom colors for an attractive design;
set recurring to-dos;
store plans and ideas for later using its ‘Someday’ lists;
avoid distraction with its simple and clean interface.
TeuxDeux is a must-have project management app for freelancers seeking to organize their working lives better.
4. Mint — for finances and budget management
Consider Mint if you are looking for an app to help handle your finances. It provides many useful features, including:
personalized insights into your finances;
spend and subscription tracking;
all your spending and finances in one place to get a better idea of your financial health, including expenses, account balances, credit score, and net worth;
a budget tracker;
a smart budget;
alerts when you are close to going over budget;
bill tracking and reminders;
filing and monitoring your taxes;
money management advice.
Mint is one of the best apps for freelancers looking to manage their money efficiently.
5. SaneBox — for email management
SaneBox is an email management app perfect for organizing your emails. It connects to any email service, including Yahoo, Office 365, Gmail, and iCloud. Using impressive artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities, SaneBox considers your email history to decide what matters most to you. The app boasts many impressive features, including:
sorting your ‘Inbox’;
removing distractions into the ‘SaneLater’ folder;
a ‘Do Not Disturb’ feature to stop new emails coming in;
snoozing unimportant emails;
checking your ‘SaneBox’ and ‘Inbox’ folders with email clients;
unsubscribing from unwanted emails with one click;
notifications when someone has not replied.
SaneBox offers a 14-day free trial once you sign up.
6. LastPass — for password management
LastPass is an app for securing passwords and personal information. We all know the frustration of getting locked out of online accounts or having to reset passwords constantly because there are simply too many to remember. With LastPass, this is now a problem of the past. The app is encrypted, ensuring total security, and all you need to remember is your LastPass master password to enjoy its many benefits. Key features of this app include:
storing and auto-filling of usernames and passwords for every online account;
storing important information such as health insurance cards, credit card numbers, and notes;
automatic device syncing;
secure password creation in a single click using the password generator;
password sharing with others;
multi-factor authentication (MFA) for added protection.
7. Figma and FigJam — for designers
If you are a freelance designer, add Figma and FigJam to your list of must-have apps. It is a great way to browse, view, and share your designs easily. The mobile app allows interaction with and viewing of prototypes on both mobile phones and tablets. On the Figma and FigJam app, you can manage task and team folders and share your work with clients. You can also mirror frames from desktops onto mobiles. If you use the app on a tablet, you can also:
annotate designs to share your thoughts;
note down ideas.
For bringing your design work to life, whether at home or on the go and sharing your creations with clients, consider Figma and FigJam.
8. Grammarly — for proofreading
Grammarly is a great app for freelance writers or anyone looking to check and improve the quality of their written work. Grammarly provides real-time, detailed writing feedback on your work so you can improve it before sending it off to clients. This app includes many features, including:
suggestions for shortening sentences and enhancing clarity;
a spelling and grammar checker;
personal writing statistics;
intelligent autocorrect tool;
use across all devices;
cloud-based document management.
Grammarly is one of the best and most popular apps for freelance writers. While free, it also has a Premium plan that offers more writing suggestions.
9. Doodle — for scheduling
Doodle is an especially useful app for freelancers working as virtual assistants, as it allows you to manage all your scheduling needs in one place. The Doodle app lets you:
share appointment and meeting times;
share rolling availability;
automatically send details of an event after a confirmed booking;
conduct group polls to determine the best time for an event;
automatically add video conferencing to scheduled remote appointments;
undertake scheduling without the hassle of adverts;
add custom branding to every booking page or invite;
time-limit your invites;
automatically sync with calendars, including Google and Outlook.
10. Photoleap — for photo editing
If you are a freelance photographer or have to take your own photos for work, Photoleap is a powerful choice for enhancing images. This impressive app lets you adjust and improve photos to take your images to the next level. Photoleap lets you:
use its AI image generator to create an image based on a written idea;
add motion to your images with 3D effects;
mix and blend photos;
easily change the background of images;
make a collage of photos;
include text and doodles to your image to share your thoughts;
create professional business posters and social media posts;
adjust tone color, fade, intensity, and more;
remove objects and blemishes;
Photoleap also offers RAW and 16-bit image depth support.
11. Upwork — for job sourcing
Upwork is an app specifically designed for freelancers seeking out work. It goes without saying that a steady stream of work from clients is the key to a successful freelancing career. Upwork connects freelancers with businesses to help them start, run, and grow their freelancing careers. Notable features of the Upwork app include:
millions of jobs posted each year covering more than 70 work categories, including programming, writing, accounting, and marketing;
searching, saving, and applying for a job;
help to find quality jobs according to the information you include on your profile;
submitting a winning bid and agreeing on a price;
the ability to chat, collaborate, and share files;
‘Upwork Payment Protection’ ensures you get paid on time.
12. MyFitnessPal — for physical health
Freelancing often means remote working, and this can make it hard to stay on top of fitness and physical health. MyFitnessPal is a health app perfect for combating this, helping you monitor and manage your physical health. Included on the MyFitnessPal app are the following:
food tracking tools;
personalized goals for nutrition, fitness, weight gain, weight loss, and weight maintenance;
tailored ‘Meal Plans’ according to your target calories;
fitness tracker where you can include workouts;
analysis of your calories and nutrition;
hundreds of healthy recipes and dozens of workouts;
active forums so you can connect with others;
water intake monitoring;
barcode scanner for store-bought foods.
13. Slack — for communication
A professional freelancer must be able to effectively and regularly communicate with clients. With Slack, you can handle all your client interactions with ease. The app provides a space for collaboration and allows you to:
access your work and clients at home or on the go;
communicate with your clients and sort conversations according to projects or topics;
customize notifications to ensure you are focusing on important matters;
share and edit documents for collaboration with clients;
set status to share current availability;
message or phone clients;
integrate with work tools, including Google Drive, Asana, Twitter, and Dropbox.
14. Google Drive — for storage
Google Drive is a cloud storage app perfect for freelancers to back up and access files across all devices. With this app, you can:
store all files safely;
invite clients to view, edit, and leave comments;
receive notifications about file activity;
find files by searching by content or name;
set permissions for files, such as ‘Restricted’ or ‘Anyone with the link’;
view content offline and when you are on the go.
With the Google Drive app, you can ensure that all your freelancing work is secure, safe, and easily shareable with clients.
15. Calm — for mental health
Looking after our mental wellbeing is important, and the stress that accompanies running your own business can often harm your mental wellness. The Calm app helps to improve your happiness and mental health with its sleep and meditation services. This app offers:
guided meditations (where you set the length of the session) to fit into your work schedule;
‘Sleep Stories’ narrated by famous voices, including Idris Elba and Kate Winslet;
tutorials with gentle stretching for any body type;
‘Masterclasses’ in mindfulness;
nature sounds and soundscapes for meditation or sleeping;
breathing exercises for relaxation and calm.
The Calm app offers a seven-day free trial.
16. Udemy — for online courses
To expand your business as a freelancer, attending online courses to learn more and become more valuable to potential clients is a great idea. Udemy is an app that offers video courses in categories such as ‘Business,’ ‘SEO,’ ‘Drawing,’ ‘Music,’ ‘Coding,’ and ‘Python.’ With insights from real-world experts and courses available in over 70 languages, there is a course on Udemy for you. Plus, on the Udemy app, you can:
download courses and learn offline;
set learning reminders;
take course quizzes to test your learning;
make notes and add bookmarks;
ask instructors questions for extra support.
Udemy is a fantastic app for learning professional skills and earning certificates of completion, helping to make your resume sparkle.
17. Bear — for note-taking
The Bear app is a note tool that helps you write, organize, and share notes. It has many features that are great for freelancers, including:
sketching and drawing support;
writing in portable Markdown;
note encryption and syncing;
adding sketches to notes;
adding tasks to notes to keep you on course;
note archiving to remove distractions;
many export options, including PDF, HTML, DOCX, and JPG;
sharing notes on any third-party app, such as Sparkle and WordPress;
using keyword highlights to find what you need.
18. LegalZoom — legal help
LegalZoom is an excellent app for managing the legalities of your business and currently caters to Limited Liability Company (LLC) and corporation customers. With the LegalZoom app, you can:
monitor your LLC or corporation filing status once sent to the state;
access official documents anytime and anywhere;
view, save, and share documents securely with LegalZoom’s unlimited cloud storage.
If you opt for the subscription version, you can access additional features, including attorney consultations for legal agreements, contracts, lawsuits, and more. You can also schedule tax consultations with a tax professional.
Sharpen your skills with the Headway app
You can enjoy an easier, more productive, and less stressful working life by using the apps listed in this article for your freelancing endeavors. The Headway app should be at the top of your download list as it helps you refine your skills and stand out from the competition.
By following a customized growth plan, gaining daily insights, and viewing 15-minute book summaries, you can sharpen your abilities on the go, no matter how busy your schedule is. Download the Headway app today to become the best version of yourself and clinch the high-quality clients you deserve as a professional freelancer.
What is the best app for freelance work?
There is no singular best app for freelancing, as different apps cater to different freelancing needs. For instance, Apploye is excellent for time-tracking and invoicing, SaneBox for email management, Doodle for scheduling, and LegalZoom for legal help.
How do freelancers get noticed?
To get noticed, freelancers can take numerous approaches, such as attending networking events and sharpening their skills to become more attractive to prospective clients. The Headway app focuses on self-growth and personal development and helps you refine key skills. Check out our blog article on the top 10 networking books to learn more about networking.
Is it hard to get clients as a freelancer?
Finding clients can be challenging as you often need to build a strong portfolio to work with bigger clients. However, by using the apps in this article, you can better organize, run, and manage your freelance business. To gain insights into the best books about networking and creating and fostering strong, long-lasting connections with clients, check out our list of the best networking books.