As a small business owner, you have a lot of tasks ahead of you in the process of living your passion and growing your business to success.
However, if you're stopped cold in your journey by a task you're not equipped to do, it can quickly become very frustrating. Even small tasks can become needlessly difficult if you don't have the right tools, and it can be discouraging to need to spend your valuable time figuring out how to do something that your business needs. After all, time is money!
Our mission at 3dcart is to make it easy for you to build and grow your business through every stage, from creating an online store and onward. Here, we have a collection of free business tools to help you streamline your operations and increase your success at no charge. While many of these free business tools are developed by 3dcart, our collection also includes great tools and services from across the internet to help you meet all types of challenges. We hope you find them useful so you can return your focus to the road ahead!
Inventory management is extremely important, but it can be difficult or tedious to stay organized. If your business grows to sell a larger number of products, you can soon become overwhelmed as the workload piles up. Fortunately, the right tools can make inventory management a lot easier!
Likewise, product pricing is crucial for your business but can be hard to sort out. Rather than only affecting possible profits, your pricing influences everything about your business from marketing to number of sales to target audience. Because of this, it can be very difficult to arrive at the perfect price for any given product — but our free business tools are here to help you.
A UPC code is a unique product number assigned to a specific product, and the barcode is generated from the UPC. UPCs should not be confused with SKUs, as a SKU is a store-specific product identifier, while a UPC is a universal product number determined by an independent agency. Depending on what you sell, your products may already have UPC codes and barcodes, but in some cases (for example, if you make your own products for sale), your products may not have a UPC or barcode of their own.
Adding barcodes to your products can be very handy, as you'll be able to simply scan the product instead of typing in the code. Additionally, some online marketplaces require your products to have a barcode before you can sell on their platform, such as Amazon.
To use our barcode generator, first you must have your 12-digit UPC codes for each product. UPC designation is handled by GS1, a non-profit organization serving supply chains with the global standard for product number assignment. When you sign up, your business is assigned a numerical prefix which is used as a base for all the UPC codes you create.
When you're ready to generate a barcode, simply enter the 12-digit UPC into our PHP Barcode Generator. You can then print your barcode for use on your product.
Every business faces a challenge when it comes to product pricing, and it's more difficult for some businesses than for others — especially those that face heavier competition. The pricing of your products should depend on your business's cost to acquire that product, while still taking into account the additional expenses that can be imposed by your payment processor (and your shopping cart software, if you use a platform that charges transaction fees).
If you don't factor these in while choosing your product prices, you'll discover your business is less profitable than expected, which can hurt your rate of growth. On the other hand, if your prices are too high, you're likely to miss out on sales, especially if your products are available elsewhere for a lower price.
Product pricing needs to take all of the above into account so you can determine a great price for your products that earns sufficient income for your business. Our Product Pricing Calculator helps you quickly determine the ideal price to sell your products, factoring in cost, fees, and the markup you apply. You can use our calculator to learn the exact amount of profit your business will make per each sale of a specific product, and adjust your markup as needed.
Profit margin describes the amount by which your sales revenue exceeds your costs. It's an important measurement of your business's profitability and can help you determine which products are worth selling. For example, a product with a low profit margin may not earn your business enough profits to justify the cost of selling and shipping it individually, so you may choose to sell that specific product only in bulk. Or, a profit margin may be low enough that your business must exempt the product from promotional discounts to prevent selling at a loss. In contrast, your business has much less to lose by holding a discount event for a product with a high profit margin.
Since some products are slow to sell due to their pricing, you may want to lower the price to encourage more customers to buy. Profit margin also informs you as to whether your business can afford to lower the price on a certain product, and by how much. Overall, understanding your profit margin helps you grasp your ROI (Return on Investment) and will lead to your ability to make better business decisions.
Our Profit Margin Calculator makes it simple to determine selling prices for your products, to save money for your business and help you develop your strategy.
Marketing can take many forms, especially when selling online. There are multiple channels available to you and each can be a valuable part of your strategy. Of course, you also need the means to measure the success of each marketing campaign, so you can better allocate your resources and continue to develop a rock-solid marketing strategy. These free business tools will help you reach customers and surpass your marketing goals.
QR codes are an exciting way to bring your online marketing efforts into the "real world." A QR code is a type of barcode that can be printed on physical items like business cards, stickers, packaging, or other materials. Each unique QR code is connected to a specific online URL so that when the customer scans the QR code with their smartphone, their mobile browser is immediately brought to the associated page.
You can use QR codes in your marketing to surprise and delight your customers, build interest in your business, offer unique promotions, and more. QR codes can lead to all types of links as well as map locations, PayPal payments, and other types of smartphone functions like email, texting, and even calls. For example, customers can scan a QR code to immediately purchase an item via PayPal, receive an instant text or email from your business (perhaps with a promotional code), and more. The versatility of QR codes allows you to be quite creative with your marketing!
Our QR Code Generator makes it easy to create your QR code in a few clicks. You can even change the colors to match your brand without affecting the functionality of the QR code, as long as the colors you choose maintain a high enough contrast. QR Codes Easy
If you're looking for a convenient way to send marketing emails for free, MailChimp could be your new favorite tool. With a free MailChimp account, you can send up to 12,000 emails to up to 2,000 subscribers, with the ability to upgrade your account as your business's marketing needs grow.
MailChimp includes an easy-to-use email customization interface that allows you to create attractive email content complete with images and a Call to Action back to your website. To help you get started with creating your emails, MailChimp also comes with several appealing templates that will have you designing the perfect marketing emails in no time. Personalize your emails with a single click!
You'll also find mailing list management easy — and if you're using 3dcart for your online store, our MailChimp integration ensures you'll be able to import your opted-in customers into your MailChimp lists complete with Customer Group information, perfect for segmenting your marketing newsletters. MailChimp has tons more features, including excellent analytics tools that will help you understand your open rate, click-through rate, and overall success of your marketing emails so you can adjust your strategy and make improvements as needed. Overall, MailChimp's free plan is an excellent solution for many small businesses.
HubSpot is a well-respected internet marketing company that provides tons of resources to help eCommerce businesses improve every aspect of their marketing strategies. One of their best resources is their Website Grader, which helps analyze and rate all aspects of your website — all of which are important to your marketing. Your grade is based on five factors chosen for their overall impact on your marketing: blogging, social media, SEO, lead generation, and mobile compatibility.
HubSpot Website Grader checks to see if your website includes the most important marketing features and social media connections, including a blog, social sharing buttons, Facebook Business Page, Twitter account, various SEO features, and much more. Many of these features are easy to overlook, and you can just as easily underestimate their importance unless you have the insights from a tool like HubSpot Website Grader. It's perfect for unearthing details you may have neglected without even knowing it.
While HubSpot does have a wide range of paid services, Website Grader is free to use and requires only your email address and the URL you want tested. Your results will help strengthen your inbound marketing by identifying areas for improvement and additional tools you could benefit from.
Google My Business is a specialized tool that allows businesses to create Google profiles containing important information that will show up in a Google search. This is extremely helpful for businesses that have a brick-and-mortar location, but it works well for pure eCommerce businesses too. All businesses can benefit from having an official profile on the world's biggest search engine!
By creating a listing on Google My Business, you can add your business's location, hours of operation, phone number, photos, and more. You can even create a virtual tour of your business to help further humanize your brand and let customers feel as if they can get to know you. This is a great first step for building a positive reputation and creating long-term customer relationships built on trust.
All the information you include in your Google My Business profile will appear in search results to help enhance your business's appearance on Google SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages). This is much more eye-catching than the typical search result and can help portray your brand as a leader — and as a bonus, improves your SEO. Your Google Customer Reviews will also be connected to your listing (you can add Google Customer Reviews to your website by using an integrated eCommerce platform such as 3dcart).
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a vital part of any eCommerce website's marketing strategy, but it can be difficult to know you're doing it right. All SEO must start with a basis of research and understanding of the process and how to apply it to your own website and products. This learning experience never ends, as good SEO requires constant updates and adaptations to stay current with search engines' evolving standards. You also need to monitor your own progress so you can improve your SEO efforts and capitalize on what's already working for you.
No list of free SEO tools would be complete without Google Keyword Planner. It's a fast, informative way to search for keywords relating to your products or services, see them ranked for popularity, discover new keywords, and more. One of the main purposes of Google Keyword Planner is to help you set up Google Ads (and each keyword will have a bid price associated with it) but you can get plenty of usage out of it for research purposes.
Google Keyword Planner provides a lengthy list of keywords associated with your chosen term, including related keywords you may not have been aware of. By including more of the related keywords in your page content, you'll be able to improve your SEO and achieve better results than before. You can also see how often different keywords are used in searches, which is another valuable data point to help you with your targeting.
Google Keyword Planner is a great starting point for any business that wants to better understand how their own products relate to the searches people perform not just on Google, but on every search engine. If you decide to branch into paid advertising via Google Ads, you'll be able to use all your experience with Google Keyword Planner to make the best choices for your marketing. Plan Keywords Now
Long-tail keywords are keywords that include several words rather than a single, simple search term. They're often used by search engine users who are seeking to address a particular problem — possibly a problem that your products could solve for them. Online shoppers looking for answers tend to search with longer keywords rather than by typing in a single word, simply because a short keyword isn't specific enough. Common examples include full sentences starting with "how to…" or "why…" or "best solution for…" or, more simply, "cheapest (product) near me."
SeedKeywords is a great tool for crowdsourcing long-tail keywords from your friends, colleagues, and other contacts. It allows you to create a scenario and ask your contacts how they would search in that particular situation. Your contacts can respond with the various search terms they'd try while hunting for answers based on the scenario you gave them. This can give you powerful insight into the ways "real people" use search engines and give you fantastic ideas of long-tail keywords you can target.
The only caveat with SeedKeywords is that you must send the created scenarios to your own contact list, and the more people willing to help you, the better the results you can get. If you have a large group of colleagues happy to answer a simple question, though, it's one of the best tools available.
Content marketing is one of the most powerful SEO techniques you can put into place on your website, and consists of writing valuable, keyword-rich blogs and page copy that target a specific topic relating to your business. But keywords are one thing, and full articles are another. If you're going to write an article based on a keyword, you still need a topic — and the more specific the topic, the better.
Answer the Public is a search data aggregator that will show you the most common search terms used by people searching based on the keyword you provide. Results are organized based on type (for example, you may get a whole section based on searches starting with "why" and containing numerous "why" questions on the subject of your keyword). Many of your results could work perfectly as blog titles, right out of the box.
The purpose of content marketing is to answer questions for your readers, and Answer the Public lets you discover the questions your potential readers are asking, so you can write copy that answers those questions directly. Depending on the keyword, your results might vary, but in most cases it could be one of the most powerful tools in your SEO arsenal.
Alexa.com is a website providing numeric data on website traffic and detailed analytics of said traffic. Alexa can tell you how popular your website is in relation to your competitors, where your traffic is coming from (i.e. referral sources), and other traffic statistics.
Alexa also offers competitive benchmarking, which compares your website's traffic from various sources with the same statistics from your competitors. This is valuable data that can help you figure out exactly where you stand. Audience insights are also featured, and include information on the users of your website like the topics they're interested in and the keywords they search for. You can also discover websites that share an audience with yours — whether they're your direct competitors or not.
Alexa also offers suggestions as to how you can improve your website so as to better compete in your industry. You can analyze industry-leading websites to discover more about their own strategies, so you can work similar tactics into your own marketing efforts. The Alexa Rank is a simpler tool that uses Alexa.com's metrics to determine your website's rank based on global traffic. If you need a quick indicator of how much traffic you're getting at any given time, the Alexa Rank is perfect for that. Our free Alexa Rank Checker will instantly return the numerical Alexa Rank of any given website.
So, you know which keywords you're targeting — or at least, you have a pretty good idea. You've done your research, written your content, and now you just want to know how well your website ranks for a certain keyword. Or, in a different scenario, you've only just started on your SEO and you want to see how you're already ranking before you tackle it. In either case, our free eCommerce Site Audit can tell you what you want to know.
Our eCommerce Site Auditing Tool can tell you how your website ranks for any keyword you choose. It's a great, fast indicator to find out how well your SEO strategy is working at any given time. You can use this tool to help plan improvements to your SEO as well as to identify what's already working. It can even help you save money on Google Ads by informing you of possible keywords you already rank well enough for that budgeting for PPC (Pay Per Click) may not be crucial.
You can also use our Site Audit to compare your website's keyword score with that of one of your competitors. If a competitor outranks you, you may want to investigate their strategy to see if they're using any tactics your business might be able to adopt.
Building a website is much easier than it used to be, but it still presents quite a few challenges, especially when you're building an online store. Sure, you don't have to write code and develop your website from scratch, but you still need to make design decisions and add important content like your store policies. Plus, once your online store is live, you need a way to find out your conversion rate to identify ways to improve.
We've collected several of our favorite free business tools to help you with these tasks, including everything from stock images to favicons to conversion rate calculations — along with the easiest ways to generate your store policies.
A picture is worth a thousand words, and every website needs images to increase its appeal. Bloggers love to use stock photos to make their posts more interesting and to help illustrate important concepts. If you own an online store, you're probably already taking great product photos, but you can't necessarily use them for everything!
Pixabay is a fantastic resource for original stock photography, available for free with no copyright restrictions. You can find stunning photos and other graphics covering a wide variety of topics, without any membership fee. Some photographers on Pixabay do request that you credit them and/or add a link back to their listing, but this is a small price to pay considering the huge variety of images you can immediately access at no cost.
Regardless of whether you need images for a blog post, a landing page, an advertisement, or other graphic elements on your website, Pixabay is a great source. The website is easy to navigate and holds an ever-growing library of thousands of images ready to meet your needs. Just make sure to check the requirements of an image you love before you decide to use it, so you can ensure proper credit is applied — some photographers will return the favor and give your site some free publicity.
What better way to start building an online store than to jump right in? But maybe you're not a web developer or designer, or maybe you just hate installing and updating eCommerce plugins on popular website builders that aren't made for online stores. Maybe you're looking for a way to get more eCommerce tools built into and connected to your website. After all, with better tools at your fingertips, the more efficient your business can become, and the more profits you can make.
That's why it's a smart decision to use a dedicated eCommerce platform for your online store. Of course, picking the right software can always be a hassle, with a lot of second-guessing as you try to determine which platform is best for you. That's why we offer a 15-day free trial of 3dcart with no credit card required. You can use this time to create your website with our easy-to-use, customizable online store builder, get a taste of our inventory management features, decide which plan your business needs, and more.
With a risk-free trial, you can get hands-on experience with the most feature-rich eCommerce website builder, and find out how easy it is to start creating the perfect online store for your business.
A core part of eCommerce is the ability to accept multiple types of payments, including all major credit cards. Most customers are used to being able to pay online with their favorite card, but with more alternate payment methods emerging, some online stores do things differently. Today, customers who want to pay by credit card often find themselves wondering if an online store does in fact accept credit cards, or if an alternate method is required.
By displaying credit card logos on your website, you're quickly informing visitors that you accept them as a payment method. This cuts down on uncertainty for your customers (which is always a good thing) and encourages them to shop. You can display a logo for each credit card you accept, so customers will understand all their options right away. Credit card logos also bring a sense of trust to your website by associating your brand with the credit card provider, even though you're not claiming any type of endorsement — only stating that you accept the card.
Here, we have a library of credit card logos and icons that you can freely add to your website. Suitable locations include the global footer, checkout page, store policy page, or FAQ if your website has one.
Conversion rate refers to how many visitors to a website actually follow through with the intended action — which, when you're running an eCommerce store, means how many of your visitors make a purchase. It's crucial to understand your conversion rate so you can judge the effectiveness of your website, including landing pages, product pages, and more. Conversion rate also provides insight into the quality of your marketing and how well it represents your products, since if you're pulling in a lot of traffic but making few sales, it's a sign that your website isn't what your visitors expected.
You should calculate your conversion rate often, especially after making changes to your website or marketing. Changes in your conversion rate are the main indication as to whether your recent changes to your website are beneficial and whether they should be retained or reverted. It's also helpful to calculate your conversion rate at various times even if no changes have been made, as this can help you identify patterns among your website visitors. You can then use these patterns to your advantage, such as by learning the most profitable time to hold a sale.
Here, you can gain insight by calculating your website's conversion rate, as well as current total sales and sales per visitor.
The favicon is a small, yet often underestimated part of any website's branding. Favicon is short for "favorites icon," and is the tiny icon or image associated with your website that appears in select places in a browser. The favicon is visible in browser tabs, the Favorites or Bookmarks menu (including the menu bar), and is used as the icon for mobile device shortcuts and more. Generally, when a browser, operating system, or other platform needs a small graphical representation of your website, it will use the favicon.
Leaving your website without a custom favicon is a mistake. Having a favicon makes your website look more professional and "complete," and provides another branding opportunity. In addition, a favicon improves the usability of your website by making it easier to recognize in a user's bookmarks. This makes you more likely to get repeat visitors. Some hosting companies will automatically apply their own favicon to your website, but you should always add a custom one to make your brand stand out. Since favicons require a specific file format to work (.ico), it can be difficult to create them without specific tools. Our Favicon Maker can quickly generate favicons in multiple sizes for use with multiple platforms.
Google Analytics is an essential tool for understanding your website's audience so you can better optimize your website and marketing strategy alike. With Google Analytics, you can gain valuable insights such as where your website visitors are coming from, how they got to your website (e.g. through a specific advertisement, social media post, or other source), and how many of them are converting.
One of the biggest benefits of Google Analytics is that it has access to the huge amount of data Google collects, as well as its machine learning capabilities, and puts those advantages directly to work for your website. This means you can get insights from Google Analytics you can't get anywhere else. You can generate reports as needed and also connect Google Analytics to your other Google services to help improve your performance across the board. Data from Google Analytics can be used to identify both successful and failing marketing efforts, new (and sometimes unexpected) demographics you should consider targeting, patterns relating to high-performing campaigns, and much more.
It's easy to start using Google Analytics, although if you're running an online store, you'll get the best results if your eCommerce platform includes Google Analytics integration, like 3dcart.
Every website needs to clearly state its policies and make it easy for customers to find and read them. By defining your policies, customers will know how your business uses their personal information (such as email and shipping address), and what they can expect when doing business with you. Policies also protect your business by clarifying certain things ahead of time, like how your store handles returns.
Writing policies can be difficult, so we're including complete policy generators in our collection of free business tools. These policy generators will allow you to quickly create complete policies for your eCommerce business, which you can then edit as you see fit.
By having a Return Policy in place, you can inform your customers ahead of time as to what they can expect if they choose to initiate a return. Your Return Policy lays out the details of your online store's return process, including time limits for returns, what types of products can be returned and under what conditions, how and when refunds are processed, who pays for return shipping, and more. Customers will often check a store's Return Policy before they choose to make a purchase. If they can't find a Return Policy on your website, they may decide against doing business with you.
Your Return Policy serves to create boundaries and guidelines for customers seeking to make a return. This makes things easier for the customer by helping them know what to expect, and also helps protect your business by clarifying your return requirements and process at the outset. By posting a visible Return Policy on your website, you give your business an advantage in customer disputes by implying that the customer was informed about the Return Policy before making their purchase.
Our free Return Policy Generator will help you easily create your online store's Return Policy, which you can then edit
Terms and Conditions represent the terms a customer must agree to abide by while doing business with you. This is similar to a contract, in the sense that it outlines the extent of your services, limitations, and the nature of your relationship with a customer. Generally, by continuing to shop from your store, the customer is stating that they agree to the Terms and Conditions, and consent is usually withdrawn simply by ceasing to buy your products or services.
Terms and Conditions are also similar to your other store policies in the sense that they explain to the customer what they can expect from your company. In some cases, Terms and Conditions can also outline acceptable usage of your products; for example, if you sell digital downloads, your Terms and Conditions can include the limitations placed on your customers relating to sharing of your content. A store selling ebooks may forbid customers from copying or redistributing their contents, while a store selling digital artwork may allow its usage on websites as long as it's non-commercial use.
Terms and Conditions are an important part of your store policies and can help round them out by including information that doesn't apply to either privacy or returns. Our Terms and Conditions Generator is an easy way to get started.
Cookies are small files saved onto your computer by your browser when you visit certain websites. In a general sense, cookies are used to exchange information between a web server and a user's computer and vice versa. Many common internet activities rely on cookies to work properly, such as logging into a website and placing items into an HTML-based shopping cart.
Many people misunderstand cookies because they're more aware of them as relating to advertising and tracking of browser activity. However, since cookies are needed for your online store to work, visitors must accept them. Increasing privacy laws, and customer concerns about how your website affects their computer or accesses their personal data, mean your business is now legally obligated to place a cookie notice on your website. Both US and EU law state that website owners must obtain informed consent from users before saving cookies to their computers.
No business can survive long without accounting, as it's crucial for you to understand exactly where your business's money is going and how much revenue you can expect to bring in. Naturally, there are also lots of intricacies when it comes to accepting payments online, often depending on your payment methods and processors. You may need to calculate fees, print invoices, or perform other tasks, and having the right tools will always make a difference.
Invoicing is essential for some businesses, but it can be a huge pain to create an invoice in a word processor, even if you're working from a template. Formatting can be an issue, as well as the need to ensure that all the pertinent information is included — and both are crucial, as a poorly-formatted or incomplete invoice can cause problems later, potentially cost you the customer, and hurt your business's reputation. However, a well-formatted invoice that contains all the needed information in a clear, easy-to-understand manner can enhance your business's standing among your customer base.
The appearance of your invoice also matters, as there must be no doubt in the customer's mind that the invoice is legitimate and truly comes from your company. By adding your logo and other important information, you're making your invoice easier to identify as genuine, and of course it also makes you look more professional. Our free Invoice Generator makes invoice creation simple; all you need to do is add your information and image, save it to PDF format, and print or email it as needed. You can use our free Invoice Generator at any time to generate invoices, quotes, and bills quickly and easily.
PayPal is extremely popular as a payment processor, and many customers prefer to use it whenever possible. It can be beneficial to you as an online store owner to accept PayPal on your website, but you should also be aware of the fees involved in every PayPal transaction. These fees apply whether you're selling an item through an online store or through any other method, so you should understand them whether or not you're a business owner.
PayPal fees can add up over time, and can be startling if you're not used to them. Some online merchants who accept PayPal choose to offset this fee by slightly raising their prices to cover the extra amount that would normally be lost to the fee. This is especially important if you need to earn a specific amount from a PayPal transaction (for example, a full $100 rather than the $96.80 you'd get after fees).
Whether you choose to alter your pricing or not, you still need to understand PayPal fees and how they can impact your bottom line. Since PayPal fees are a percentage, it can be difficult to calculate them on the fly, but our easy-to-use PayPal Fee Calculator will instantly provide complete fee information on transactions of any amount.