Business Tools I Use
Business Support Tools
This is my support network. I can vent, share successes, and get critiques of my work when needed.
Need a little help with your grammar and spelling? Who doesn’t? This is not your ‘Word’ editor, no it’s an editor on steroids. You can read a review I wrote on my other blog Grammarly Review
Content for Bloggers
PLR is a business owners’ friend. Knowing great writers with integrity is the key to purchasing quality content to use in your courses, on social media, or on your blog. Nicole Dean, the marketer behind EasyPLR always puts out quality content and hires quality writers.
This is another quality PLR provider. It is run by Alice Seba, another business owner with integrity. She specializes in providing illustrated content i.e. content with graphics. Yay!
Smart Curation Skills *affiliate*
When clients come to me with content creation worries I always suggest curation. It will solve many of your problems. It saves time, you become “the source” of quality information for your topic, and you drive traffic back to your site. Kelly McCaussey (starting to a pattern here?) created this little system which I use here and on other sites. It’s simple, quick, and she adds a special little trick that will help you drive the traffic back to your site.
PicMonkey is a free (and paid $4.99/mo) photo editor and collage maker. Perfect for those who enjoy DIY social graphics.
Another fantastic photo editor and graphic creator with templates perfect for advertising, social media, presentations, and print.
Email Autoresponder Marketing
This is a Plugin for WordPress.org users on self-hosted sites. It is a powerful plugin that assists you in getting subscribers and traffic. It also has some tools to show where your visitors are clicking and integrates with Google Analytics. There is a free and paid version. I currently use the free version.
This little plugin by Ambitionally.com is “the polite popup”. There is a paid and free version plus a 30-day grow your email list challenge.
Get Response *affiliate*
An autoresponder and CRM (customer relationship management). Send broadcast emails, schedule emails for future delivery, learn to use landing pages, and more. Lots of integrations with this system. There is a 30-day free trial so you can try all the bells and whistles out including the landing page option. They include a 90-day grow your email challenge to 10,000 subscribers free.
MailChimp is a popular CRM which many creatives use. There is a free version for subscribers under 2,000 and paid versions as your list and company grow. Lots of features and integrations and easy to use.
This CRM autoresponder is one of the oldest and most reliable (in my opinion) for marketers or those with large lists. Includes a 30-day free trial and lots of integrations including LeadPages.
One of the simplest autoresponders and CRM’s to use. Try the free version out to see if you like it then upgrade as you need.
Hosting, Domains, and WordPress
Genesis Framework *affiliate*
I’m a fan of Genesis. It is the framework on this site as well all my other sites. I have tools that enhance your SEO, make it easier for new WordPress users, and the company offers frequent updates and support.
StudioPress – Theme of the Month *affiliate*
StudioPress (aka Genesis Framework Themes) are like fashion for your blog. It is the colors, the cool tweaks, and design of your blog.
This company is run by Lindsey the designer of the Modern Blogger Pro child theme. She designs feminine themes for creatives and women bloggers.
One of my favorite host providers. Excellent customer service, stellar tech support, newbie friendly, simple plans starting at $5/month. I’ve been with MomWebs for 10 years.
Name Cheap *affiliate
Great for shared hosting, SSL certificates, and Domain names. Customer service and tech support have always been great. I’ve been with this provider for 4 years.
A free and paid version of this plugin is available. It is a MUST HAVE to keep your WordPress blog/site safe from brute attacks.
I’m still recommending this, but know that it has not been updated in a long time. (12/15/2015 updated 4-days ago). It locks out those who try to access your account multiple times – usually due to brute force attacks.
This is my ‘timesheet’. I use this to track my time on various projects and estimate how long a project will take me to complete. You can color code projects and have multiple users. For the paid version you can invoice your clients too.
A lovely little application that lets you block certain sites. It can be used personally or professionally. I’ve used it to block social media or other sites that interfere with my productivity.
A project management system. Excellent for working with teams.
This plugin helps shrink your images so that your site runs faster. Google likes fast sites and so does your visitor.
If you create a series of posts that use the same information over and over again, this is a nice plugin to use. I use this for my content curation posts.
Some of the links on this site are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”