Based on the information you’ve provided, it looks like you’ve got two options when looking at pairing up designers with clients wanting design services through a lead matching app.
You mentioned that you’d like to sort the applicants by proximity to their designer so you may want to use a lead matching directory feature like what Brilliant Directory offers. This could be set up to be automated or set up to be verified by you on the way through.
If you’re looking for a more curated way of pairing providers with end-users, you could look to use a custom webform to collect details and then doa filtered search on your users to find the designers that best suit the client needs. As most of the design work is being provided remotely, you might find that this provides mroe value to potential clients and could lead to higher service charges on your platform. If you wanted to facilitate the process through a custom CRM or PM software system, you could increase the service charge and control more of the client experience. This would also enable you to manage SLAs and ensure the best service possible, especially in the early stages of your marketplace.
For many industries, having an email archiving solution is mandatory and it can be hard to find a solution that meets the specific archiving needs of the business. The main considerations when choosing an email backup or archive for your business is the secure of the storage, the process to store, the cost of the solution, the format for retrieval and the structure of the database.
If you’re looking for a CRM-based archive system, you could look to bundle together Help Scout for email and their auto-BCC feature, having the emails sent to either Highrise or to Podio. You could also look to bundle together Pipedrive and your email as a way to backup your email to your CRM.
For a more robust solution for backup, there are plenty of software systems that will archive your email database in Outlook but one of the best we found was GFI Archiver as it does allow for you to have a copy of your emails sent to their service for archiving. Setting this up involves using a journalling inbox and then sending a copy of these emails to GFI as well as to your email client. It’s a little more technical but beats most other solutions available.
Looking into sales dashboard software that can connect to various data sources. Some options include:
Comparing a wide range of sales dashboard options showed me that it’s hard to find a simple software program that isn’t enterprise in pricing or look, that has the basic features + a few extra bells & whistles. I was looking to create a custom dashboard using Podio or Airtable to track sales figures and staff performance but was hoping to find something that would make the job easier. Other alternatives in this space would be HR software like BambooHR that may have the features that you need to track monthly employee sales figures and provide manager overview.
You may also want to check out free BI, chart-building apps for your business, including Chartblocks, Cyfe and The Dash.
Doing some research on WordPress themes to show case YouTube videos. Need it to be fast-loading but not as busy in design as some newspaper/magazine-style WordPress themes. My picks in order are:
- Vlog – Video Blog / Magazine WordPress Theme
- VideoBox – VideoBox is the perfect solution for showing off video content, impressively. Highly customizable and with a wide support for popular video websites like YouTube, Vimeo and many others.
- Aware – Responsive WordPress Portfolio Theme
- Snaptube – Premium Video WordPress Theme
We have another look at some design proofing tools.
- Red Pen is interesting and works with image files to leave simple annotations. Only downside is the per-project payment method that might not suit some clients. Also managing a large amount of files can be confusing.
- PageProof has a nice design but is a little more complex to use as it incorporates workflows into the proofing process, These can be set up beforehand and use on future projects. Pageproof video tutorial found here. Gave it a try and it’s a little clunky doing edits and waiting for previews.
- Cage App looks fantastic and works well for larger lists of projects. Only downside was the guest sign-in experience which is too long and a little confusing.
- Mural for the sticky note design proofing people who came from sticking Post It Notes on pdf proofs.
- ProofMe is similar to GoVisually and works well across a large range of file formats that need quick proofing
- Looking for self-hosted design proofing software – see also Project Huddle for a once-off purchase for $80
- A little old school in the design but File Camp could be something for those seeking simplicity whilst proofing on a custom subdomain
- Looks interesting, File Stage seems to have everything but also has one of the highest price tags for a design proofing tool. One to check out if you have the budget.
- Notable is more geared towards website design proofing but could be adapted to suit.
- Prevue looks like a clean and simple tool for fast design proofing but the UI is a little confusing and there is too much clicking to get through the design proofing stages + no approval process included.
Want to take a deeper look into comparing design proofing tools? We’ve created a course on comparing design proofing tools here.