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These 10 Chrome Extensions Will Brighten Up Your Day Every Time You Open A “New Tab” Page

These 10 Chrome Extensions Will Brighten Up Your Day Every Time You Open A “New Tab” Page

Check out these Google Chrome extensions to motivate, inspire, and create functional and stunning visual homepages, each time you open a new tab.

1. MOMENTUM

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    Momentum greets you like artificial intelligence straight out of the movie “Her.” It is personalized to your time zone, local weather and name, and lets you set a focus for the day. When you start your day and start up Chrome, you are greeted with this as your first screen, giving you a moment to reflect before you dive into your workday. Beautiful images, flat design, and a motivational quote to get you moving. It also has a search feature so you can browse right from there. A breath of fresh air!

    2. CURRENTLY 

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      With a flat design you can customize to your liking with background and font color, this gives you a window on the weather where you are, the date, and a countdown clock. Keep it simple and minimal.

      3. DAYBOARD

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        Start your day off with a productive bang. Create a to-do-list of five items when you open Chrome. Every time you open a new tab, it reminds you to complete your daily tasks. The next day, it will carry over yesterday’s tasks in case you did not complete them all. It’s like a gentle reminder, keeping you on task when you get lost in browsing the internet aimlessly. It saves a list of your completed tasks, so you can remember when you completed something. Pure genius.

        4. DREAM AFAR

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          Take a vacation to an exotic destination from the comfort of your laptop. This extension shows a new destination daily, and is perfect for the armchair traveler, carried away by an image. Like Momentum, it adds in weather and time for your location, and a list of your top sites. Makes you want to keep opening tabs to travel around the world!

          5. GOOGLE MAPS EARTH VIEW 

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            To get some true perspective on how small your problems really are each time you open up a new tab, add the Google Earth View extension to get a view from atop a Satellite. It randomly opens a new image with each tab, and lets you see the Earth like no travel excursion ever will. A floating sidebar lets you share the image to social media, and it tells you where you in the world you are, to the bottom right. The image above is from Khour va Biabanak County, Iran(Google). 

            6. PINTEREST TAB

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              This one let’s you pick a category to get inspired by each day. When you select one topic, and then hit “start my day,” It picks an image from that category that you are interested in. What a fun way to let Pinterest spark your interest and to show you things you may not search for on your own. It also links to your calendar, so you can double check what your day has in store for you without leaving the page.

              7. IOS 7 NEW TAB

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                If you are an Apple iOS 7 user (and lover), why not have your browser show up in the same style? With flat design, icons, and backgrounds, have your big screen look like your small iPhone screen. You can edit from a group of backgrounds, and add the apps that you want to view. It automatically brings up popular apps, which you may or may not already use. It even gives you the option to upload your icons and customize the look even further. Keep your platforms looking and feeling the same universally.

                8. CARD BOARD

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                  Card Board is a Google specific new tab page that you get to customize. You can see your recent downloads, all your apps, or do a Google search straight from the page. It does not allow you to customize the colors or theme, and from a design perspective, is a bit lacking, but it’s still in the beta phase. Be one of the first to check it out.

                  9. AWESOME

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                    Awesome lets you customize widgets, much like the Apple iOS dashboard on your laptop does. You can add popular site widgets, and search right from the tab page. The ability to upload your own image, or choose from any background color let you make it feel like home. Get everything you need all in one place. How … awesome!

                    10. HOME

                    HOME

                      Get everything in one place with Home. You can create notes, get e-mail and feed reader notifications, and see all your favorite sites like app badges in one place. You can select your own background, yet the default wood panel background feels cozy and inviting. Tailor it to your e-mail account to get your e-mail notifications. No need to switch back and forth between tabs when you can get it all here at HOME.

                      Featured photo credit: multitasking man using tablet, laptop and cellphone connecting wifi via shutterstock.com

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                      Last Updated on October 16, 2019

                      11 Meeting Scheduler Apps to Boost Your Productivity

                      11 Meeting Scheduler Apps to Boost Your Productivity

                      Automations are key to improving efficiency. Set the system up right from the beginning and you’ll reduce the amount of no-shows and cancellations.

                      Whatever your business is, with automations, meeting scheduler apps do more than just streamline appointment setting. They prime your workflow for maximum results.

                      Meeting scheduler apps are awesome if you use them right. Use them wrong and you can look like an arrogant elitist.

                      In this article, I will share with you 11 great meeting scheduler apps you can start using today to boost your productivity.

                      1. ScheduleOnce

                        ScheduleOnce is an industry leader and robust solution. Whether you work alone or have a large team, ScheduleOnce can support you.

                        ScheduleOnce allows you to create multiple users and multiple calendars. I use one calendar for booking podcast guests with automations set up to prep my guests for our interview. I use another calendar for strategy sessions and coaching calls.

                        ScheduleOnce also has embeddable widgets so you can keep the scheduler inside your own website.

                        Starting at $7 a month and a 14 day free trial, ScheduleOnce can fit a variety of needs in business.

                        Available on Web

                        2. Calendly

                          Calendly stands out for its clean, easy to use interface. If you like clean design, Calendly might be your choice. It too has robust automations and integrations for individuals and teams alike.

                          You can try Calendly free for 14 days. Their basic plan is free while their most robust plan is only $12 a month.

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                          Available on Web | Google Chrome Extension

                          3. Assistant.to

                            For those who use gmail, Assistant.to is a super simple solution.

                            From inside an email, you click on the Assistant.to icon and pick times your free. Assistant.to embeds the times directly into the email so the recipient can quickly pick a time that works for them.

                            While it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles of apps like Calendly or ScheduleOnce, Assistant.to is completely free.

                            Available on Web

                            4. Acuityscheduling

                              Acuity is a robust meeting scheduler very similar to ScheduleOnce. It integrates with CRMs, Email Marketing platforms, Analytics tools and accounting software.

                              It comes with a 14 day free trial. They have a free solo account but if you want the benefit of the integrations, you’ll start as low as $15 a month and can cost up to $50 a month.

                              Available on Web | iOS | Android

                              5. Pick

                                Built for simplicity, Pick is direct and easy to use. You can create your own url extension like pick.co/yournamehere and it integrates with Google calendar and Office 365.

                                At $3 a month, this is a great tool for quick scheduling.

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                                Available on Web

                                6. X.ai

                                  For those who are early adopters of AI, this may be the solution for you. X.ai created two AI assistants they call Amy and Andrew Ingram. After setting up your account you simply CC them on your emails with the person you’re wanting to schedule and the AI assistants will email your guests from there until your appointment is set.

                                  This type of scheduler feels more personal because of the dialogue. There are stories on their site of people thinking Amy and Andrew are real people. X.ai integrates with Google, Office 365 and Outlook.

                                  Starting at $29 a month for an Individual account and $39 a month per user for a Team account, Amy and Andrew are ready to schedule meetings for you. Want to try it out first? They do have a free trial.

                                  Available on Web

                                  7. YouCanBook.me

                                    is another competitive solution for scheduling meetings online. You can manage the calendars of your entire team, configure booking forms, and integrate with your calendar.

                                    They have a free account branded with their company name or you can have some control over your branding and appearance at $10 a month for all their features. Either way, this company is worth a look.

                                    Available on Web

                                    8. Doodle

                                      Doodle is unique in the space of meeting schedulers because it helps groups of people find a time to meet that works for everyone.

                                      It integrates with your calendar and allows you to send a poll to all invited. Once people vote on the poll you can see which time works best for everyone.

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                                      You can also run polls for food preferences if you’re scheduling a lunch meeting or a section of town if people are coming from all over.

                                      While there is a free account, you’ll unlock it’s potential starting at $39 per year.

                                      Available on Web | iOS | Android

                                      9. WhenAvailable

                                        WhenAvailable is another scheduler that works for groups of people. You can use it to schedule a pickup game of basketball, decide on your next book club or book your family reunion.

                                        Their free account allows up to 20 guests, unlimited events and one contact group. For $15 a year you unlock all the goodies including reminders and chat messages.

                                        Available on Web

                                        10. Rally

                                          Like Doodle and WhenAvailable, Rallly is helpful for scheduling meetings and events with multiple people involved. You create a poll and everyone votes. It’s quick and easy.

                                          Unlike Doodle, it doesn’t have as many features, but it’s entirely free.

                                          Available on Web

                                          11. NeedtoMeet

                                            Finishing strong, NeedtoMeet is our last app that allows you to schedule meetings or events for multiple people. It has mobile apps, custom urls, easy polling, notifications and commenting.

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                                            NeedtoMeet also allows 1:1 Meetings for things like performance reviews for your whole team. You send out the your calendar slots to your team and they can only pick 1 slot, minimizing the amount of emails and scheduling you have to coordinate.

                                            While they have a free account, you can unlock all features for only $19 a year.

                                            Available on Web

                                            Bonus: Don’t Make These Common Mistakes When Using Meeting Schedulers

                                            In the excitement of streamlining your scheduling process, it can be easy to forget the feelings of those you’re inviting to meet. I know. I’ve done this.

                                            To say “Hey, schedule time on my calendar” feels colder than “Hey, here’s my calendar. To avoid all the back and forth, pick a time that works best for you.”

                                            Always make sure to frame your invite with your scheduler app with the benefit to them and why we’re doing it this way rather than the old fashioned, personal way.

                                            A little finesse goes a long way. Without it, you risk seeming transactional and cold.

                                            Some meeting scheduler widgets you can embed in your site can take a couple seconds to load. If you go this route, make sure there’s text just above the widget that lets your guest know the calendar will appear below and to wait for it to load.

                                            If you use an online meeting tool like Zoom, it’s also important to explicitly let them know the meeting will take place on Zoom and include the Zoom link in the email reminder. Many make the mistake of not clarifying where the meeting will actually take place which can create last minute chaos at the time of the meeting.

                                            Should you require special settings, like ethernet, external mics or lighting, let your guests know that on your thank you page and reminder emails so they are prepared for the meeting and you end up with the best meeting possible.

                                            With clear communication in your automation, your meeting scheduler tools can almost perform like a virtual assistant for a fraction of the cost, or free, depending on the app you choose.

                                            The Bottom Line

                                            Meeting scheduler apps are diverse in features and unique in design. Before committing to one and realizing it’s not a fit, I recommend exploring which 3 might best fit you and then doing a trial with each of them at the same time so that you can see how they feel as you use them side by side.

                                            Scheduling meetings the old fashioned way can be tedious. Conversely, finding a scheduling app that works seamlessly in the background is heavenly.

                                            Like cell phones, meeting scheduler apps are moving from a nice-to-have luxury to must-have necessity in the lives of productive people. As you explore your options, stay true to your brand and the tools that have worked well for you to this point and simply find a meeting scheduler app that plays well with what you have created.

                                            Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

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