Starting an online business and looking to build a lasting online presence? Here is a quick list of resources that will help you get started. These are tools and services that we use ourselves to build and grow our businesses as well as helping other with theirs.
The core activities surrounding a successful online business includes:
- An online presence – a purpose built and designed website for your audience
- Engagement – reach out to existing and potential clients through social media
- Building a mailing list – as means of communicating with existing and potential clients
We will look at the essential tools that will help you get started on the right footing.
For a suitable host for your website, we use GoDaddy for audiences based in the US and 1and1 Internet for the UK and European market. They are affordable, offer round the clock support and reliable.
For websites, we recommend using WordPress, the world’s most popular website creator. There are plenty of free plugins and themes right ‘out of the box’ available to install from the dashboard.
- WordPress: download the WordPress installation file, access support forums and get help. Your host may support 1-Click installation for WordPress
- Themify.me: here is a theming framework that we use with WordPress. It offers great flexibility, customisation and ease of use through the drag and drop builder and live preview. The themes are also responsive making your site more accessible from desktop, tablets and mobile browsers
- ThemeForest: a marketplace for themes where you will find a huge collection of WordPress themes.
For further development or administration of your website, don’t be afraid to get professional help. Don’t be surprise that they don’t really cost an arm and a leg. Post your jobs on these leading resourcing sites create your own virtual team.
- Elance: Hire anyone from programmers, mobile developers, designers, marketers, writers to administrative staff to help you with your website, projects or business in general.
- oDesk: Another freelance community marketplace similar to Elance, hire, manage and pay experienced freelance talents to help you with web development or administrative tasks.
When you are on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ managing the different social media platform can be a task by itself. Use these tools to schedule posts in advance to make it easier.
Start building loyal audience using one of these tools to automate the sign up process to build your email list of potential customers.
- AWeber: We use AWeber to send broadcast emails safely to your audience keeping them informed
- MailChimp: similar to AWeber, MailChimp is another email marketing campaign tool
Hungry for more. Check out the Tools section and Sign Up to receive more resources and update for free.