We’ve been using Slack for the last 6-8 months. Before that, we used Google Chat, since we’re on Google email already. But Slack has been great because it allows us to have different channels set up for different conversations, depending on which product is being discussed. It’s very easy to keep all of our channels separate and organized. And it’s very easy to add files into what we’re talking about. We have a developer in Taiwan, some of our team is in New York and some are in California, so it’s really helpful to have Slack available on all of our phones and computers.
We use Stripe on our website and for in-app purchases, as well. We don’t have a ton of volume yet, but in terms of ease of use, the dashboard is great. You can see all of your transactions, give refunds, etc., all from the dashboard, and I’m able to manage it perfectly well. We do not need any sort of technical backup on it. In fact, we just added Apple Pay as a payment option for in-app purchases in a test of our new app, and Stripe has integrated Apple Pay, so there has been no extra work required. We were able to easily drop an Apple Pay button in there.
MailChimp has been great for a nontechnical founder like me. I can get everything done on my own, with no coding required.
We use Mandrill for transactional emails, and it’s been great. It’s connected to MailChimp, so I appreciate that I can do something in MailChimp and then easily export it to Mandrill. One downside is that the export doesn’t always work perfectly, and something you do in MailChimp might not translate over to Mandrill.
Honestly, we really only use Dropbox when a partner or other third party prefers to use Dropbox. Occasionally, our designer will use Dropbox, on top of Google Drive, when sending designs to our developer in Taiwan, but we really mainly use Google Drive.
Google Drive is where we do all of our file sharing.
QuickBooks Desktop is fine so far. It’s easy and straightforward. We use the desktop version because it’s easier for our accountants to use the desktop version when they want to do anything with taxes.
The reason we went with TriNet is because we went through the Entrepreneurs Roundtable Accelerator (ERA) program, and they had a relationship with TriNet. We were able to meet with a rep, and we were offered a discount for going with them. And, at the time we were setting up our healthcare benefits, almost everyone was on either equity or working as contractors, and everyone told us there was some sort of regulation that said we had to have two or more full-time, salaried employees to set up benefits. At that time, we only had one employee who met that criteria, and TriNet had more flexibility around that.
In our early days, we had some engagement with Pivotal Labs, the makers of Pivotal Tracker, and that’s what they used in-house. We all got very comfortable with it, and we hired a few engineers from Pivotal Labs, so it was the platform everyone was familiar with. Pivotal Tracker is good, and does everything we need it to do.
We’ve been a bit negligent with it recently, but we do use Hootsuite. I don’t know how it stacks up against others, but it’s the one we knew, and we appreciated being able to schedule our posts in advance.