woman on phone and laptop working from home
From collaboration tools to payroll and benefits platforms, there are several services available for free now to businesses amid the COVID-19 pandemic. — Getty Images/Ridofranz

COVID-19 has thrown lots of business owners into crisis mode as storefronts close and sales nosedive. Fortunately, there are tons of big enterprises offering help to smaller merchants and entrepreneurs by discounting or offering their tools for free. Here are some free tools you can access now to make running your business on a budget a little easier.

[Read more: Must-Have Tech Tools If Your Team Is Working Remotely]


New customers who sign up for DocuSign’s e-signature Business Pro product will receive three months free. This offer includes up to 100 “envelope sends” meaning you can have multiple documents for signature sent out in the same envelope. This is a great option for merchants trying to get legal signatures while working remotely.


Microsoft is offering six months of Microsoft Teams, its communication and team collaboration platform, with Microsoft 365 Business Basic. At this time, you can also get Microsoft 365 Business Basic for six months free with an annual commitment. The license costs $5.00 user/month after the first six months and includes web versions of Office apps, such as Word, PowerPoint and Excel.

[Read more: Zoom Video Conferencing Alternatives]


GoDaddy is offering a number of free tools to support small businesses’ online marketing efforts. Get a free website as well as free access to GoDaddy’s marketing tools for email marketing, Google Business and Facebook. If you already have a site, check out GoDaddy’s social media design tools with a free three-month Over subscription, including access to the design content library.


Mailchimp is also offering a free, custom website domain for up to five years. In addition, the popular email marketing platform is making its website builder platform free until May 31, 2020. This is a great way to set up an e-commerce store or landing page quickly to promote your business.


This payroll and benefits platform is offering three months free for payroll and State Unemployment Insurance services, as well as two months of free HR support. Paychex is also advertising support and resources to help small businesses come up with a strategy to keep employees on and continue to pay as many people as they can while the economy recovers.

Cisco is offering a free license of their Duo Security two-factor authentication tool for new customers.

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Freshworks is another HR software company that is offering its customer engagement tools for free for businesses with less than 50 employees. Freshchat is a chat and messaging platform that you can use to stay in touch with customers through digital channels like Facebook Messenger and live chat. Freshcaller moves your call center to the cloud, allowing you to still offer a hotline that can be answered by remote-working members of your team.


Hootsuite is a social media management platform that allows your team to manage and coordinate posting to Instagram, Facebook and Twitter in one easy dashboard. Small businesses and nonprofits can access Hootsuite Professional for free until July 1, 2020.


Small businesses are common targets for hackers online, and, unfortunately, a crisis doesn’t change that. Cisco is offering a free license of their Duo Security two-factor authentication tool for new customers. Existing customers are allowed to go above their user limit during the pandemic. In addition, Cisco is offering its web security tool Umbrella, VPN product AnyConnect and conferencing tool Cisco Webex for free until July 1, 2020.


1Password is a password management tool that generates complex passwords to help keep your information safe. 1Password for Business is free for your first six months. This tool will make it easier to share secure logins and other resources with your team as you work remotely.


Workable is helping companies that are able to hire during this time by making its video interviewing software free for all customers. Conduct job interviews virtually on this user-friendly platform. HR professionals and business owners can also access Workable’s library of COVID-19 response content to help manage personnel during this time.

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