Recommended Online Tools and Resources
Here is a list of tools and resources vetted by top Entrepreneurs across the world. These have proven effective time-and-again in their businesses, and will surely help you in yours.
Just to ensure we provide you with full transparency we wanted you to know that some links below are affiliate links, which means we’ll earn a commission if you purchase that particular tool or service through our link. If you do, thank you in advance for supporting us and this site.
There are lots of blogging platforms out there, but in my opinion the best choice is WordPress. WordPress has the greatest variety of themes, plugins and services of any blogging platform. There are two ways to get started with WordPress:
- WordPress.com — With WordPress.com, you can get up and running almost instantly and they offer a lot of different themes to choose from. While you don't have much control over design or plugins etc., it is completely free and fast to get started, and for only $18 a year you can use your own domain name. Plus, because you can export all of your data at any time down the road if you choose to upgrade to a custom self-hosted WordPress site, this is a great choice for brand new website owners, bootstrapping startups, and hobby bloggers.
- WordPress.org — If you're serious about your website and you're using it as part of your main income stream or to grow a successful business, you want to use this self-hosted version of WordPress — which just means that WordPress exists in your own website hosting account instead of in a blog network like WordPress.com. The great news is that you don't have to worry about downloading anything from WordPress.org because it comes already installed in most WordPress hosting accounts. And because it lives in your own account, you have total control over the theme, the design, the code, the plugins and more.
Website / Blog Hosting
HostGator is one of the world's top 10 largest web hosting companies with more than 8,000,000 hosted domains. Every web hosting plan comes with a 45 day money back guarantee, 99.9% uptime guarantee. Web hosting features include unlimited disk space and bandwidth, flexible and easy to use control panel, unlimited sub domains, FTP Accounts and Email accounts. 24/7 support via phone, live chat or ticket system. Weekly off-site data backups. Plus over 500+ video tutorials and 680+ help articles.
Storage and Backup
Amazon S3 offers inexpensive storage that is great for videos that you use on your website. Its scalability in that you only pay for what you use and you can increase your bandwidth as needed without configuration changes. Data is accessible from any location. Allows you to host your videos so you stay in control of them as opposed to storing on you tube or another video site.
Note: Watch your traffic spikes during big launches, as your fees could skyrocket during that time.
Google Analytics allows you to track the visitors coming to your site, what sites they are coming from, what geographic location they are in, how long they stay on your site, which pages they visit and more.
Google Analytics lets you measure your site traffic and growth to figure out which website marketing strategies are working for you and which need to be tweaked. Google Analytics is a solid free choice that I use and recommend. It’s easy to use and provides some great data.
WordPress Themes and Plugins
WooThemes is a great WordPress theme solution. They have tons of options, a solid and easy-to-use interface, and a design style that just works. If you’re a beginner and don’t have programming skills then consider WooThemes. Some themes are free, and some cost a reasonable price considering what you get.
StudioPress is a collection of premium WordPress child themes powered by the popular Genesis Framework (which also powers many other WordPress themes and custom themes). The StudioPress WordPress themes leverage the SEO tools and friendliness of the Genesis Framework. You can get started with a theme right off the shelf, or if you want to customize a theme, you can do that too. This site is a completely custom, one-off child theme build from scratch on the Genesis Framework.
Pretty Links allows you to create “pretty” URLs for marketing campaigns, affiliate links and more.
For example, instead of using a long, ugly affiliate link like domainname.com/blah/blahdieblah.php?12345, create a redirect that forwards the ugly URL to a pretty URL like expertelevation.com/link. Or to track incoming website traffic from a specific marketing campaign, create a unique URL for that campaign like expertelevation.com/campaignname.
Aweber is a very reliable email marketing system. It has an extremely good delivery rate of 99% and above. It cost less to use than Mailchimp if you have more than 2000 subscribers. It has good tracking of clicks so you can see exactly who opened each email, how many times they opened it, and which links they clicked on. It has very good templates and forms that can be customized and embedded on your website.
Infusionsoft is for users that prefer an integrated system for their email, customer relationship management system (CRM), shopping cart, analytics then Infusionsoft is fast becoming the standard. It has a visual interface to build auto responder campaigns, a huge tutorial library with weekly tutorials and very good support. This software can be challenging to learn however and will take some time to learn all the functionality but is well worth investing some time.