Blog General retail 10 best software solutions for small business management in 2024
05 June, 2024

10 best software solutions for small business management in 2024

The best software for small business management includes Cin7 for inventory management, Inventoro for sales forecasting, and Salesforce for managing client relationships. The best small business software not only helps you run your business efficiently but also frees up your day-to-day and eases the mental load that comes with being a small business owner. 

As a small business owner, you don’t have time to manually run every task — big or small — by yourself. It’s 2024, and business statistics show that it’s time to enlist technology for support.

In this guide, we’ve listed the best software solutions for small business management, like Cin7 as the best inventory management software and Rippling for human resource services — many of which integrate for a comprehensive experience. 

This guide unpacks each solution’s use cases, pricing, and key features. Read on to see the software you need for your small business. 

Methodology: To compile our list of the best software for small business management, we evaluated solutions across key areas critical to the success of small businesses. For our recommendations, we weighed factors such as pricing, ease of use, integrations, and customer reviews.

Table of contents:

  1. Cin7: Best for inventory management
  2. Salesforce: Best for managing clients
  3. Inventoro: Best for forecasting
  4. Rippling: Best for HR management
  5. Gusto: Best for payroll
  6. Spendesk: Best for budgeting 
  7. Trello: Best for project management 
  8. SYSPRO: Best for supply chain management
  9. EngageBay: Best free CRM
  10. Square POS: Best for point of sale (POS)

1. Cin7

The Cin7 homepage highlighting its connected inventory performance solutions.

Our pick for: Inventory management

Awarded best inventory management software by Forbes and U.S. News, Cin7 offers two solutions — Core and Omni — to support the needs of small to midsize businesses across industries and market shares. Cin7 allows business owners to manage sales across devices, track inventory levels, and communicate with customers.

With Cin7, business owners move away from manual spreadsheet tracking to connected inventory performance for a real-time look at inventory levels. With this insight at your fingertips, you can make quick, data-driven product decisions to strengthen your business’s efficiencies while saving you time and money.

Cin7 offers many features complementary to the other software solutions below and fosters connected integrations with third-party external tools.

Pros Cons
  • Automated workflows
  • Clear visibility into stock levels whenever you need it
  • Scalable to support small to midsize businesses
  • Connects with sales channels
  • Integrates with hundreds of applications
  • Not ideal for enterprise size businesses



  • Comprehensive inventory management
  • Streamlined procurement with purchase order software
  • Warehouse management
  • Accessible, real-time insights from 70+ custom reports
  • EDI and third-party logistics connections
  • Flexible configuration (Omni)
  • Multi-entity support to manage several brands and locations seamlessly (Omni)

2. Salesforce

The Salesforce homepage highlighting its Starter Suite program for sales and marketing.

Our pick for: Customer relationship management

Salesforce’s customer relationship management (CRM) software allows businesses to build, store, track, and manage customer details in one centralized location. It also offers marketing, sales, commerce, and service solutions to support growing businesses. Developed for service teams, Salesforce assists small to enterprise businesses across all industries, with no limits on location. 

As a bonus, Salesforce integrates with Cin7 to provide customers with real-time product information, stock levels, and purchase statuses. In addition, quotes generated within Salesforce transfer contact details to Cin7.

Pros Cons
  • Affordable starting monthly cost
  • Numerous products available to build a custom, comprehensive solution
  • Integrates with external tools
  • Requires multiple product licenses to build a comprehensive solution
  • Increased cost for each additional product


  • Starter Suite: $25/mo/user
  • Pro Suite: $100/mo/user
  • Additional custom pricing plans are available for add-on products


  • Service, sales, and commerce tools made for small businesses
  • Case management 
  • Custom email templates
  • Customizable dashboards
  • Task management


3. Inventoro

The Inventoro homepage highlighting its AI-driven sales forecasting.

Our pick for: Sales forecasting

Inventoro is an AI-based sales forecasting tool for small businesses wishing to reduce inventory levels, avoid stockouts, and flag deadstock early. Inventoro claims its solution helps users accurately maintain product availability, increase revenue, and decrease inventory while freeing up several hours a week.

Inventoro integrates with Cin7 for an integrated view of sales forecasting and detailed reports. Cin7’s solutions also offer valuable insights to support inventory forecasting, making it the preferred option for small businesses looking for an all-encompassing solution to inventory management.

Pros Cons
  • Accurate sales forecasting
  • Groups SKUs into categories: winners, chasers, and losers
  • Daily updates for stock replenishing
  • May be intimidating for new small businesses
  • Takes time for the tool to learn sales patterns


Inventoro’s pricing model directly relates to your business’s annual turnover. Monthly rates start at $49, increase to $149 for accounts with a $500,000 annual turnover, and reach $699 for those exceeding $10 million. The rate continues to climb the higher your turnover rate.


  • Sales forecasting and automations
  • Smart replenishing
  • Product segmentation

4. Rippling

The Rippling homepage highlighting its services for managing payroll, HR, IT, and invoicing.

Our pick for: Human resources management

Rippling’s Unity platform is an all-in-one human resources (HR) and workplace system that offers basic and advanced features, like bill pay and recruiting assistance, in addition to the typical day-to-day tasks of a business. It can support small businesses with a handful of employees as well as those with up to 2,000 members. 

Anything you can think of related to human resources, Rippling can help — and U.S. News agrees by ranking Rippling the best HR software.

Pros Cons
  • Unique features to manage remote teams
  • Easy to use
  • Customizable platform
  • Allows global payments in local currency
  • Integrates with external tools
  • No free trial
  • Not ideal for very small businesses in need of singular features (i.e., payroll)
  • Increased cost for additional features after payroll 
  • No free phone support


  • Rippling Unity: $35+/mo with the following plans 
    • Core
    • Pro
    • Unlimited
    • Enterprise
  • Rippling Payroll: $8/mo/employee
  • Advanced plans come with a higher price tag but more features


  • Workflow and employee lifecycle automation
  • Compensation bands and time off management
  • Org charts and workforce analytics
  • Employee document management
  • Automated compliance management
  • Role-based permissions and access to features

5. Gusto

The Gusto homepage highlighting its services for hiring, paying, and managing employees.

Our pick for: Payroll services

Gusto is also a highly rated human resources platform with numerous offerings, but we like it best as a payroll servicer for small businesses, and so does U.S. News. It’s ranked as the best payroll software and best HR software for SMBs. 

Gusto’s scalable payroll solution provides multiple options for direct deposit, automated tax filing and forms, brokered health insurance administration, and more. It appears to cost more than Rippling upfront; however, many features for which Rippling charges additional fees are already included in Gusto’s specified monthly rate.

Pros Cons
  • Unlimited payroll runs
  • Integrates with accounting, time tracking, and expense management
  • Customer support with HR experts (Premium plan)
  • Intuitive to set up and use
  • Increased cost per user for each add-on benefit (though Plus and Premium plans include many features) 
  • Gets costly with per-user pricing + monthly fee
  • Limited external integrations


  • Simple: $40/mo + $6/person
  • Plus: $80/mo + $12/person
  • Premium: Exclusive pricing 
  • Contractor Only: $35/mo + $6/ contractor


  • Full-service payroll, including W-2s and 1099s 
  • Time off management
  • Health insurance administration
  • Payroll and time off reporting
  • Hiring and onboarding support
  • Performance reviews (not included in Simple plan)

6. Spendesk

The Spendesk homepage highlighting its services for company cards and spend management.

Our pick for: Budgeting and spend management

Spendesk is a seven-in-one spending solution striving to build confidence in budgeting and spending for business owners. Spendesk partners with business owners to create healthy workplace cultures around spending, fostering trust and autonomy among team members. 

Spendesk offers a larger enterprise system, but its free Collaborative Budgets tool is best for small businesses. Business owners and managers control spending by setting budgets and allowing employees to submit simple purchase orders. The centralized aspect allows for real-time visibility and budget reporting.

Pros Cons
  • Budgeting without spreadsheets
  • One tool to manage spending and reconciliation 
  • Scalable to evolve with growing businesses
  • Visibility into in-action spending
  • Enforces multiple security measures, like fraud detection and encrypted databases
  • Debit Mastercards are not accepted everywhere
  • Lack of currency variety


Spendesk offers flexible, custom pricing based on company needs. Inquiring customers must contact the Spendesk team to receive a quote. You can also try Spendesk for free with a demo or trial to test the tool before you commit.


  • Access to physical and virtual cards and supplier invoices
  • Receipt collection and payment reimbursements
  • Real-time spend monitoring
  • Spending rules
  • Bookkeeping

7. Trello

The Trello homepage highlighting its services for employee project management

Our pick for: Project management

Trello is a project management tool designed to keep projects progressing and micro-tasks organized. Managers can easily keep track of their team’s workload, identify roadblocks, customize notifications, and collaborate with team members at ground level.

Trello is a great pick for small businesses because it’s a straightforward platform stocked with an endless supply of ready-to-use templates, so users can hit the ground running. Plus, businesses with fewer than 10 users can access Trello for free.

Pros Cons
  • Intuitive and easy to use
  • Integrates with 200+ external tools
  • Endless templates available and ready to use
  • Built-in automation to move tasks along
  • Free premium trial
  • Customer support is not standard; higher-level accounts receive greater customer support
  • Some features (dashboard + calendar) only available with higher-level plans 
  • ​​Reporting and privacy control limitations


  • Free (for up to 10 users)
  • Standard: $6/mo/user
  • Premium: $12.50/mo/user
  • Enterprise: $17.50/mo/user for accounts with 50 users or less; price decreases with more users

There are also cost savings for plans billed annually.


  • Task assignments and due dates
  • Boards, workspace, cards
  • Checklists
  • Custom workflow structuring
  • Multiple view options like dashboard, timeline, calendar, table, and more (not included with free or standard subscriptions)


The SYSPRO homepage highlighting its Enterprise Resource Planning services.

Our pick for: Supply chain management

As an enterprise resource planning (ERP) software system, SYSPRO helps businesses streamline and automate their business processes. Its modular framework allows businesses to build the tool they need in the moment and add to it as they grow, making it an ideal ERP solution for smaller businesses.

SYSPRO offers a wide array of solutions but its supply chain management feature enables businesses to build and manage an efficient supply chain through real-time data for improved visibility and automations. Small business owners can use these insights to better evaluate supplier performance, optimize sourcing strategies, manage risks, and more.

Pros Cons
  • Custom, individualized solutions to support small to enterprise businesses
  • ERP solutions for specific industries
  • Integrates with external tools and systems
  • On-site or cloud-based 
  • No free trial
  • May not connect well between departments
  • Learning curve may overwhelm new users
  • May be pricey for small businesses on tight budgets


SYSPRO fully customizes pricing for each customer based on needs. The base price is determined by the licensing model a customer selects.

  • Perpetual license: $3,500/user
  • Subscription license: $199/mo/user

Add-on modules start at $5,000. Implementation services, extra consulting and training, and upgrades are available for an additional cost.


  • Supply chain and production management
  • Manufacturing operations
  • Inventory optimization
  • Accounting
  • Robust reporting capabilities

9. EngageBay

The EngageBay homepage highlighting its free CRM services for small businesses.

Our pick for: Free customer relationship management

While Salesforce is our preferred customer relationship management system, EngageBay is an excellent runner-up and may be more appealing to small business owners who may not be ready for such a grandiose CRM. 

This free CRM software offers comprehensive solutions for items like automation, contact management, email templates, segmentation, site and SMS messaging, and much more. EngageBay even starts out free for companies with fewer than 15 users.

Pros Cons
  • Wide range of features available with the free plan
  • Integrates with hundreds of external tools
  • Alternative to HubSpot at a lower price point
  • Easy to use
  • Limitations on some features
  • Mixed reviews on customer support, reporting, and software issues
  • Not as customizable as other options


  • Free (for up to 15 users)
  • Basic: $14.99/mo/user 
  • Growth: $64.99/mo/user
  • Pro: $119.99/mo/user


  • Marketing automations 
  • Sales workflows
  • Tag management
  • Email integrations
  • Reporting dashboards
  • Readily available insights on contacts and companies
  • Appointment scheduling

10. Square POS

The Square homepage highlighting its point-of-sale solutions.

Our pick for: Point-of-sale software

Square is an all-in-one payment platform that accepts payments in-store, online, manually, or via invoice with 15+ additional features and tools. Square offers the most accessible options when it comes to point-of-sale (POS) systems, making it an ideal POS software option for small businesses. Plus, there’s no need to worry about security thanks to the system’s end-to-end encrypted payments and fraud protection.

Square offers over 300 integrations within its system and easily integrates with external tools, including all of Cin7’s solutions. Square and Cin7 work together to efficiently manage stock and quickly fulfill online orders for small retailers.

Pros Cons
  • Fast and easy sign-up and setup
  • Accepts multiple payment methods
  • Tipping screen
  • Quick transfers
  • Live phone support
  • Square hardware not required
  • Monthly pricing correlates with transactions and can fluctuate significantly
  • Processing fees vary based on checkout method and amount
  • Some additional features and tools cost extra
  • Hardware sold separately 


  • Free: Processing fees only
  • Plus: $29+/mo + processing fees
  • Premium: Custom rates

Although the basic plan has no setup or monthly fees, all plans are subject to additional processing fees per transaction. Processing fees vary by checkout experience, as detailed below.

  • In-person: 2.6% + 10¢/transaction
  • Online: 2.9% + 30¢/transaction
  • Manually entered: 3.5% + 15¢/transaction
  • Invoices: 3.3% + 30¢/transaction


The following features come standard with all plans:

  • Online store for selling and booking
  • Invoicing
  • Business debit cards and savings accounts
  • Customer directory 
  • Dispute management

Six considerations for choosing a small business management software.

How to choose small business management software solutions

Business management software covers a vast array of technology solutions, each serving a unique purpose. As a small business owner, you may feel overwhelmed not knowing where to start when choosing a software solution. That said, here are the main aspects to consider when comparing small business management software.

  • Core features: Not all software solutions of the same type will provide the same core features. You’ll need to determine the key functions that would benefit your business and search for a software solution with those features.
  • Advanced features: If a feature isn’t included within the core offerings, it may be available as an add-on, upgraded plan, or within an additional product from the software provider. Carefully review the company’s website to understand all it offers and the fees associated with advanced services.
  • Integrations: Most business management software solutions work with other types of systems to allow a seamless, efficient experience. Look for programs that maintain a free flow of information and centralize tasks across departments. This is especially important if your business already has other preferred software solutions in use.
  • Ease of use: User experience plays a vital role in how satisfied you’ll be with a software product. Look for a solution that’s intuitive and flexible to ensure a smooth integration experience.
  • Customer support: Some software companies are known for their customer support, while others may offer different degrees of support based on subscription levels. You may want a higher level of support if the software’s functionality is brand new to you and your team. When reading reviews, pay close attention to what others say about their experiences with customer support. 
  • Reviews: Read reviews on third-party technology and business sources, not just the software company’s website. Poll others in your industry for recommendations and reviews to get an accurate idea of how a given tool can impact your business.
  • Pricing: The cost of small business management software varies by type, so reflect on how much you can set aside from your monthly budget for technology. Remember to consider how many people will need access to the tool and keep in mind that upfront costs should save you in the long run.

Besides the key aspects of business management software solutions, it’s important to take your business’s needs into account. Your business model influences which software solutions will be most valuable. For example, a retail business using a POS system doesn’t have the same technology needs as a service provider using field service management software. 

As a small organization, you may find that you do not immediately need each type of software mentioned. Small businesses with a handful of employees also may not need as elaborate software solutions as those with 50 team members. Some micro businesses may also find that their needs are fully supported by free versions of these tools, whereas the dynamic needs of larger small businesses may require the additional features within paid plans.

In addition, two unique aspects of your business will influence your choice of business management software:

  • Your business’s existing challenges
  • Your team’s strengths and weaknesses

How Cin7 supports small businesses

The options for software for small business management are endless, but Cin7 has your back to help you determine the best solution for your company. 

Whether you’re looking for an alternative to NetSuite that targets small businesses to automate operations or a powerful inventory management system, let us show you our next-level organization, tracking, forecasting, and more to support your small business’s growth. Request a demo to learn more about Cin7’s inventory management solutions.


What is small business management software?

Small business management software encompasses any type of computerized tool that’s meant to support business operations. Its purpose is to streamline, automate, and support the day-to-day operations within an organization. This software provides services like inventory management, budgeting, marketing, and more.

How much does software for small business management cost?

The cost of software for small business management varies significantly depending on what type of system you’re looking for. Some software solutions charge flat monthly rates based on the number of features within a plan, while others charge by user or charge extra for additional services. Costs can range from free to a few dollars per user per month to several hundreds or thousands of dollars total.

What software do small businesses use the most?

Accounting software is the one software type all businesses must use. Regardless of business model, offerings, and size, all businesses need a solution to manage their daily financial operations like payroll, invoicing, and bookkeeping.

However, this doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the most used on a daily basis. The business management software used most by small businesses varies by type of business and services. Some small business teams may live in project management software all day, whereas another team may never close out of their CRM or inventory management tool.

What are the three main types of software?

Three of the main categories of business management software include:

  • Team management, which covers areas like human resources and task management
  • Client management, which covers areas like relationship management, lead generation, and invoicing
  • Product management, which covers areas like product development, inventory management, and supply chain management


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