The life of a digital nomad – someone who is location independent – is never dull. There’s a liberating sense of freedom to be able to go anywhere you like, whenever you like, and still earn money. For people who are itching to see the world, a nomadic lifestyle combined with an online career, is the perfect match.
Yet there are some drawbacks. Traveling can lead to lost or damaged digital equipment. Moving from place to place can be distracting. Without proper organization, you can soon find your work-life balance disjointed and your all data in a chaotic mess. A nomadic life needs order even if its essence is one of spontaneity.
Whether you’re frequently traveling from one country to the next, or simply taking your work with you between coffee shops and co-working spaces, there are certain essential online tools you’ll need to keep your business running smoothly.
Here are 8 types of essential tools we know the digital nomad needs:
- Invoicing software
Invoicing is an essential component of running a business. When you’re potentially sending out multiple invoices every week, from a variety of different locations, then you need invoicing software that can handle your lifestyle.
Invoice Ninja, for example, is a cloud-based invoicing platform which allows you to send professionally designed invoices from your laptop or Android device. All your data is stored in the Cloud which allows you to securely access your data from anywhere in the world.
Gone are the days when you needed to manually update excel spreadsheets on your laptop. Now you can quickly create and send invoices, and get paid, all while on the go.
- Cloud storage tools
Speaking of the Cloud, it’s imperative as a location independent digital nomad to store as much data outside your laptop as possible. You never know when the worst can happen while traveling, like your computer being stolen, mislaid, or damaged by some inconsiderate fellow traveler. You’ve suddenly just lost a week or a month of client work, or worse.
There are a number of Cloud storage tools you can use to keep all your work safe and accessible from anywhere and any device. Some of the most popular include Google Drive, Dropbox, OneDrive, and iCloud. There are various different price plans which are relatively inexpensive compared to the peace of mind and functionality they provide.
- Data integration and syncing tools
Life as a digital nomad can be hectic. You’re not only running a business but you’re also busy enjoying the sights, sounds, and adventures in the places you visit. There’s accommodation to find, tickets to book, and fun to be had after a hard day of working. This means the last thing you want to be doing is manually updating multiple different apps every time you receive payment or gain a new client.
This is where a data syncing tool comes into its own. You’ll wonder how you managed without it. At Invoice Ninja we’ve partnered with a number integration partners including Zapier, PieSync, and Integromat. Your data is automatically synced between multiple apps when an update is made in just one. This boosts productivity no end and ensures every facet of your business is bang up-to-date.
- Project management tools
Working in different locations can be challenging. One day you’re working from a hotel, Airbnb rental, or friend’s place, and then suddenly you’re upping sticks to a city in another country for a few weeks. And the cycle continues. Maintaining a productive work schedule and remembering the myriad of tasks you need to complete becomes even more difficult.
That’s why, as a digital nomad, you need a good project management tool. Wherever you go, you can check what needs to be done and when, together with various deadlines and ever-changing scheduling. There are various apps you can use including Trello and MeisterTask.
However, with an Invoice Ninja account, you can connect with our very own Kanban board app. This allows you to keep track of all the tasks you need to complete with a clear visual overview of your workflow.
- Time tracking tools
A big factor in successful project management and productivity is accurate time tracking. When you know how long a task or project will likely take, based on past experience, then it’s easier to better manage your work time. The same also applies to your leisure and travel activities.
At Invoice Ninja we have our very own time tracker which integrates seamlessly with our invoicing and project management tools. You simply press a button or two and your time is recorded. This data can then be automatically added to invoices and other applications you integrate and sync.
All this time data can be very handy when trying to decipher whether to stay put and work or down tools and enjoy the local markets, museums, or nightlife.
- Collaboration tools
Collaboration is essential for most freelancers and solopreneurs. You might be working alone for most of the week but there are times when you need to collaborate with colleagues, delegation partners, and clients. When you’re on the go and moving between different locations, it can be challenging to stay connected with the latest updates and communications.
Thankfully there are a number of great collaboration apps available these days. Most of which are highly suitable for the on the go laptop business owner. Popular collaboration and communication apps include Slack, HipChat, Google Drive, and Yammer.
- Social media scheduling tools
Social media is usually part of an ongoing successful marketing campaign. Whether you’re a freelancer, solopreneur, or part of a bigger team, you’ll likely need to be publishing frequent social media updates every week. This can be tricky when you’re working hard and often traveling.
Social media tools can make your life a whole lot easier. They allow you to automate and schedule many of your updates ahead of time. Your followers will see you publish on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Pinterest, even while you’re in the air jetting off to some far flung location. Popular social media apps include Hootsuite and Buffer.
- Locational information tools
As an adventurous digital nomad, with the world at your feet and a laptop to earn money with, there are a million and more places to go. Yet there’s still the tricky part of arranging accommodation, finding places to work remotely, buying tickets, meeting people, and generally getting the best out of the locations you visit.
There are apps for all of these challenges! The traveling freelancer and solopreneur can arrange nearly everything even before they arrive at their destination. For example, NomadList gives you a ton of crowdsourced data detailing costs, internet speeds, safety, fun, walkability, nightlife and numerous other graded attributes of pretty much every big city in the world.
There are also apps for finding great places to work. Compass helps you find the nearest co-working spaces while Workfrom helps you find the nearest work friendly cafes.
Take Invoice Ninja with you wherever you go
You can integrate many of the above apps and tools with your Invoice Ninja invoicing account. Our platform allows you to track every second of your work day and automatically transfer the data to relevant client projects and individual tasks. Our Kanban Boards help you to organize your work hours and plan tasks ahead of time.
What’s more, you can automate many invoicing processes, such as recurring billing and late payment reminders, thereby boosting your productivity. The life of a digital nomad has never been easier. Invoice Ninja – via desktop or Android device – has been designed to make your modern online location-independent lifestyle, even more simple.