I recently had to get a new smartphone. That’s always a good time to assess what apps I’ve downloaded and which ones are actually being used and which ones are just taking up valuable space and memory. I was able to dump quite a few, but there were even more that I use almost daily.
I thought I would take a little time to give you a peek into my smartphone. Here are 15 of my favorite apps for bloggers, home business owners, and busy work-at-homers.
Top Productivity & Business Apps
This is perhaps the most used app on my phone. I get a ton of emails each day and they arrive through six or seven email addresses – both personal and professional. I like to stay on top of it, even when I’m away from my desk. The Gmail app allows me to have all of those email addresses open at once so I can easily move among them without having to log in and out each time.
And even if you aren’t using a gmail.com email address, don’t forget you can easily route other email addresses through Gmail or G Suite. Streamlining your online life is a game changer!
There will come a time when you need to access an account – one without an app – from your phone. You can Google the URL, but what about your username and password?
LastPass is a must-have service that safeguards all your login information for every site and stores it for easy access. The app can even autofill that information on the site or app that you are needing to access.
I have used this service for years. It also allows you to share passwords with a family member or contractor without having to reveal the actual password.
How many times per day do little tasks that you need to do come to mind? Are you writing them down on a piece of paper that you inevitably lose? Do you think you’ll remember them later only you don’t?
I use Todoist for jotting down these thoughts. It’s a super simple app without a lot of frills, but it’s also a browser extension. Anything I jot down on my phone will show up on my browser tab next time I’m on my computer, and vice versa.
I like Keep for my lists; grocery lists, movies I want to see, restaurants I want to eat at, places I want to visit, etc. These are usually non-essential lists, but they are thoughts I want to save nonetheless.
5. Screen Time
Screen Time was designed with parents in mind, but it’s also pretty useful if you can’t figure out where the time is going. See which apps are sucking your time. Set up distraction-free time blocks. Limit your own time on social media and more.
If you have been hanging around here long, you probably know I’m not the best at proofreading my own work. Let me assure you, it’s even worse when I’m not using Grammarly. And it can get even worse than that on my phone!
With the Premium Grammarly plan, you have access to the app. This can help with those spelling and grammar errors when sending emails, posting on social media and more. A must if you are responding to interview requests!
Top Health-Related Apps
Health is a big concern of many of those working from home. If it’s not now, it might be soon.
We all know how dangerous a sedentary life can be. When you are working from home, you often have less accountability to get in those steps or make those healthier food choices.
The following apps help me stay on track.
Today’s Fitbit holds so much more information than just how many steps you took today. It can tell you how much – and how well – you have slept, how much water you are drinking, how much you weigh and your body fat percentage (Aria), how active you are each week and more.
In combination with my Fitbit, I’ve also been using HealthyWage a lot over the past few months. HealthyWage offers not only weight loss challenges (find out how much you could win here), but also step challenges.
HealthyWage’s step challenges typically last 60 days. At the end of 60 days, if you have met your step goal, you will win back your bet plus split the pot with the rest of the winners. Cash is a nice little motivator to stick to your goal.
Meal planning helps me stay away from the drive-thru or pizza delivery. Every Wednesday, eMeals sends me a week’s worth of meals and the groceries needed to make those meals. The app can even send your shopping list to participating stores.
I like eMeals because they offer a large number of plans for different dietary restrictions (Paleo, low cal, low carb, budget-friendly, kid-friendly, etc.). I can also switch between plans as many times as I like each week without having to pay for another plan. I really appreciate that.
Top Finance Apps
We’re all about the money around here. Right? I have some great apps on my phone for that too.
I like my cash back. Heck. I like getting paid to shop. Ibotta offers rebates on grocery items. It’s super simple to use. With some stores, you will need to scan the receipt and scan the grocery item. At others, you may only need to scan the receipt or the barcode on the receipt.
Rebates are available in your account within a few hours, in most cases. Once you hit $20, you can request a payout but PayPal or gift card.
When it comes to getting cash back on online shopping, Ebates is my app of choice. I have been using this service for years and have earned thousands of dollars in cash back.
Just click through the Ebates link before shopping at a participating store. Checks or PayPal payments are sent quarterly with a $5 minimum.
Swagbucks is a legitimate app that will pay you to answer surveys, watch videos, play games, search the web and more. It’s a good time-waster when you are sitting in a waiting room, during commercial breaks, sitting in the carpool line.
There are so many ways you can receive your earned Swagbucks. Redeem them for Amazon gift cards, PayPal cash, Target or Walmart gift cards and more. Some gift cards start at just $1.
I’m like a squirrel when it comes to saving money. I have little stashes all over the place. Acorns is a fitting app for people like me.
Acorns will round up your purchase and invest that change. Hopefully, that money will grow into a fruitful tree I can enjoy in retirement or help pay for a large purchase later down the road.
Acorns allows you to invest in small amounts. Even $5 a week can add up to $260 in a year. And Acorns picks the stocks for you based on your goals. You don’t need to worry about choosing individual stocks yourself like you do with apps like Stockpile.
We rely more and more on PayPal today. With the app, you can send and receive payments on the go. With a Business account, you can send invoices, issue refunds and more.
15. Quickbooks Self-Employed
Perhaps, you need something more robust than PayPal alone. QuickBooks has long been my accounting software of choice. I’ve been using it to manage my work-at-home income since day one.
QuickBooks has evolved a lot over the past 11 years. They recently introduced a slimmed down Self-Employed edition that can help you stay on top of invoices, money received and spent, track your mileage, estimate your quarterly tax payments and beyond.
These are just a few of my favorite apps. I hope you found a few new gems to add to your phone.