Resources we love — a roundup of Moonsail North’s favorite free and low cost online resources

resources blog

By Sedora Tantraphol

We love to share resources here at Moonsail North. Because we work with both for-profit and non-profit organizations, we have included resources for both in this edition of our resource guide. Platforms constantly change, so we’ll update this list in future editions from time to time.

What are your favorite resources?

Team Performance

We couldn’t work without these! Perfect for our small startup team, they also work great for larger nonprofits and companies. Get your communications, customer relations management database, and file sharing in order with these gems.

  • Slack: Streamlined team communications that keeps you connected anytime, anywhere. Declutter your inbox by moving conversations out of email and into the appropriate public or private channel. ICYMI, Slack fangirl Rose wrote about her undying love for the platform here. Log in on the web browser and/or download the app.
  • Insightly: A free or low-cost online based CRM database with the ability to handle lead generation, export reports and lists, create tags for different types of clients, and automatically assign sets of action items (i.e., standard processes you go through with each client). For our small team, it’s perfect for what we need.
  • Dropbox: An online solution to store, sync and share files. Great for teams working in the same office or in different locations. Always have access to the latest version of the file. We love using Dropbox to share project folders with clients. Free for up to 5 people; small monthly per user fee for the business plan.
  • Toggl: Free, easy to use web-based time tracking system. Set up users, teams, clients, and projects. Keep track of time with the stopwatch function, or manually enter in a chunk of time. Creates visual summary or detailed reports and exports into .csv or excel. We love it because it’s great for keeping track of time for our different clients. Log in on the web browser and/or download the app.
  • Doodle: Simplify scheduling by proposing a set of dates and times and let users check off their availability.

Project Management

Sleep easy knowing that nothing is slipping through the cracks! Take the stress out of managing several projects using these project management solutions.

  • Asana: A free, online project management tool. Create projects or clients, assign tasks, due dates, team members, and keep everything related to the action in one place with comments and uploaded files. It’s a great way to manage lots of projects at once! Asana integrates with a ton of other apps and platforms, including Slack! Log in on the web browser and/or download the app.
  • Trello: A visual project management tool that lets you arrange lists of lists and easy move items around to show progress. Free or small monthly subscription fee. Log in on the web browser and/or download the app.
  • Wrike: Advanced project management, interactive Gantt charts, time tracking, and more. Free or $10/user/month. Log in on the web browser and/or download the app.

Nonprofit Capacity Building

Stay up to date with the latest news and resources to excel in the nonprofit sector.

  • Nonprofit Quarterly: A trove of curated news articles and webinars on everything nonprofit, from management to philanthropy to fundraising to policy. Sign up for their fantastic newsletter to stay up to date on the latest in the nonprofit sector.
  • Nonprofit Tech for Good: Sign up for their free newsletter to get helpful tips, trends and reports related to social media and tech for nonprofits.
  • Board Source: A great source for templates, articles, and thought leadership around creating effective organizational leadership.
  • Guidestar: Search Nonprofit Profiles for the information you need to build connections and make decisions, like organizational 990s.
  • Blue Avocado: Sign up for their free newsletter to get news and practical, fun, food-for-thought insights for nonprofits.


Get updates and alerts on philanthropy-related news.

  • Philanthropy News Digest: Sign up for a free daily digest of philanthropy-related news, updates, jobs, and RFPs.
  • Giving USA: Their The Annual Report on Philanthropy reports on the sources and uses of giving in the United States — helpful information to fundraisers and nonprofit leaders to understand the changing landscape of funding and where funds are going. (Report highlights are free.)
  • Foundation Directory Online: A comprehensive database of over 140,000 grantmakers, updated weekly. Subscription required. (Or contact Moonsail North to use ours!)
  • Find federal government grants.
  • Razoo: Crowdfunding platform for causes.

Social Media Tools/Management

Manage your social media easily and get the news and stats to stay on the leading edge of this quickly-changing field.

  • Hootsuite: Manage all your social media profiles through one platform. Schedule posts ahead of time, track key words related to your work, and more, all in one place! A great time saver for busy social media managers.
  • Buffer: A very visual, user-friendly social media management platform that’s free to use. Paid options offer additional functionality.
  • Facebook debugger tool: Fix missing thumbnails by entering the URL and clicking “debug” to force an update of your Facebook’s cache and make the thumbnail appear.
  • Twitter’s built-in analytics tool: Find out how many people are engaging with your tweets.    
  • Social Media Examiner: Sign up for the free newsletter to get social media tips, keep up on newest trends and updates, and get great reports and statistics.


A captivating image sells a story, but online photo sites are pricey. These sites make your life prettier without breaking the bank.

  • Pexels: High-quality, completely free photos and HD videos. New photos added each day. (#TeamMoonsail’s go-to source for stock photos!)
  • Canva: Probably the best online design program for non-designers. Create fantastic looking social media infographics, quotes, photos, social media headers and icons, posters, and more! (#TeamMoonsail’s go-to source to create our blog post headers and Monday Motivation quotes!)
  • Picmonkey: Think free Photoshop for Dummies — resize, create collages and add text.
  • Search for photos you can use and modify.
  • 17 of the best free stock photo sites
  • 7 free stock video loop backgrounds


Creativity and innovation requires an open mind. Here are some resources to foster fruitful reflection:  

  • Brainpickings: A treasure trove of inspiration for writing, art, reflection and developing your personal narrative.
  • Buddhify: Looking to dip your toes into meditation and mindfulness? This app is a great place to start. $2.99
  • Ted Talks: Search for talks by topic and by how much time you have to listen. It’s a great way to make the most of a break, walk, commute, and to infuse a little food for thought into your life every day.


  • Uber Conference: The free version is a great teleconferencing option (crisp sound, no lag or interference) with screen share capabilities. Just click the link and you’re ready for the conference call– no PIN required. It’s a great way to do a quick presentation. Unlimited calling and available as an app as well. The main drawbacks are that you can’t upload files ahead of time, live cast webpages, or do video conferencing. Free or $10/line for business plan.
  • Skype: Call and chat for free. Skype just unveiled group video on mobile devices. A solid choice for video conferencing, although our team sometimes experiences lag. There are no screen share capabilities, though.
  • WebEx: The free version allows you to upload documents ahead of time, which we like to take the pressure off last minute technical difficulties or tight schedules. It’s a great way to do a quick presentation. The chat/question function is nice as well. We’ve found that WebEx can seem a bit overkill for a meeting or presentation (it lends itself more to trainings) but we like that you can store documents to use again in the future and keep meetings and all related documents organized.
  • Free Conference Call: Create an account and get a standing conference call number you can use over and over again. They recently rolled out video conference calling, which also has chat feature and screen share, but our team didn’t like it as well as other options available for video and presentation.


What are some of your favorite resources? Share them with us on Facebook or Twitter!