Without a doubt, Google’s Chrome web browser is currently being used more than any other single browser. I have no idea how many hours are spent each day peering intently at Chrome windows, but I know that for more productivity, chrome extensions – if they line up to your web browsing and Internet usage habits – can be important additions.
And, they are almost always free.
The first two productivity chrome extensions I’d like to mention function in conjunction with other productivity-boosting services or apps.
Evernote web clipper. I, and other small business experts, often recommend Evernote. It’s like a Swiss Army Knife for digital documents and communication. I use the Evernote Chrome extension to save web pages that I know I’d like to come back to later, or pages I’d like others I work with to see. You can save web pages or articles in a variety of formats or simply capture the URL.
Hootsuite (or Buffer) chrome extension. If you use a social media productivity booster, such as Hootsuite, get familiar with its chrome extension. This makes posting very easy. With Hootsuite, you can either schedule a post for a specific date and time or let the app “auto schedule” the post for you. Every social media platform and related app has an extension. Sandy Stachowiak has a good rundown of some of the others you might find useful.
Rescue Time. Think of this as the anti-social-media productivity chrome extension. If you feel you waste too much time browsing social media sites (or any other specific site), you can set up Rescue Time to measure how long you are on those sites. It acts as a kind of coach, leading you away from your bad habits and encouraging you to spend more time productively. Be Limitless is also a worthy competitor in this niche.
Marinara, a Pomodoro timer. You probably know about the Pomodoro technique for timing bursts of work followed by short breaks. The basic routine is 25 minutes of work followed by a five-minute break. Every fourth cycle, you take a 15-minute break. This app will cycle you through the routine.
Toggl. This is essentially a time clock extension. Keeping track of how much time you’re spending on activities such as blog writing, making cold calls, or on Skype, for example, can be very revealing. There is some crossover between Toggl, Rescue Time, and even Marinara. Toggl, for example, has a Pomodoro function you can use.
Gistnote. This productivity Chrome extension does the work of a highlighter marking pen in your browser window. It also helps you organize your highlighted passages. Gistnote speeds up your online research. If you’re like most of us and have several tabs open at the same time, it’s a great help to have relevant passages highlighted. Gistnote takes it a step further; by clicking on a passage in a “collection” you can go straight to that place on the web page.
There are some of my favorite productivity chrome extensions. Do you have some that have given your daily output a shot in the arm? If so, please share them with us in the comments.