THE TOOLS YOU NEED TO SUCCEED ONLINE
Having the right tools and resources for your online business can make a huge difference!
That's why I've compiled a list of my favorite business tools, programs, equipment, and services. This will help you find most of what you need to grow your online business all in one place!
I am providing these recommendations because I use these products and love them. I don't add anything to this list that didn't meet my high standards of function, service, and value. Bookmark this page so you can use it as you navigate your own online business journey!
Some of the links below are affiliate links. That simply means that if you click through and decide to purchase something I recommend, I get a small commission at no additional cost to you.
My Guides to help you grow
I've developed numerous Guides to help you grow your list of leads and your business. Click to download them!
- Power List of Facebook Groups: I've put together a comprehensive spreadsheet of over 75 Facebook Groups that I consider the best for business owners & bloggers (many groups didn't make the cut). I include links, host names, group focus, size, and a simple-to-understand Promo Day schedule grouped by day. It will change the way you use FB Groups!
- Ultimate Guide to Getting Traffic: Get the ULTIMATE guide that shows you how to drive free high-converting traffic to your website, create awesome lead magnets that convert like crazy, and build your list with thousands of warm leads who are dying to buy from you.
- Guide to Getting More Likes on Your Facebook Page: Get the ULTIMATE Guide that shows you how to grow the engagement and likes on your Facebook page for business. This guide will equip you with the exact steps you need to take you get past the limited reach your Facebook page is currently getting and grow your fanbase.
- Grow Your Influence and Build An Audience: Want my secrets to getting BIG VISIBILITY? Get the ultimate Guide that shows you how to grow your authority and build a following of engaged fans.
Livestreaming and video
Blue Yeti USB Mike: I plug this right into my computer and use it for my videos, livestreams, masterclasses, and course recordings. The quality is amazing!
Blue Snowball USB Mike: I purchased this mike before I got the Blue Yeti. It is made by the same company and more affordable. The recording quality is not as good as the higher-end one (above), but for the price, it can't be beat!
Camtasia - I use this and love it. It's great for a PC or a Mac. You can use it to record your screen, your webcam or both together.
LimoStudios Lighting Kit: An affordable lighting kit that delivers amazing soft light so you can still livestream in the evenings and on cloudy days, or is you simply have a darker office.
Logitech webcam: This is my favorite webcam. I use it to film my videos and to broadcast to Facebook Live. It has amazing HD quality, good sound, and it's well under $100!
Pop filter: I use this in conjunction with my mike for recording videos and courses that are free of pops and hisses.
Headphones: These headphones are great for listening to music while I work or listening to the playbacks from my course creation. The also cancel out the surrounding noise (which is sometimes important when my kids are playing loudly in the other room).
Fujitsu ScanSnap Scanner: Ready to be paper free? Then, you NEED this scanner.This scanner will allow you to fully digitize your life. You can easily and quickly scan documents, receipts, invoices, bills, tax info, manuals, warranties, etc. And...are you ready for the best part? You can completely integrate your scanned documents with Evernote. This scanner has made my life so much easier.
MacBook Air: Can I say enough good things about this computer? Not only does it have incredible memory and speed, but it's light enough that I can travel with it. This is my everything computer. I used to have a desktop and a laptop, but this sleek little number replaced both of them.
Linksys Router AC 1750: Who know a router could make such a big difference? It's reliable, speedy, AND it makes it possible for multiple devices in our home to receive high-speed Wi-Fi at the same time. It also has parental controls to keep my son safe from stumbling onto unsafe content.
Online course delivery
Digital Product Delivery (DPD): DPD is an easy-to-use, affordable digital publishing platform for helping creators sell downloads and deliver content like ebooks, Webinars, software, and more.
Teachable: It can be difficult to decide which online course platform will work best for your business. I did a lot of research on the options and decided to go with Teachable because it had all of the features I wanted built in.
- I can easily keep track of payments and transactions
- Each student can login through their own account and track their individual progress
- I can see analytics and reports of lecture completions, quiz scores, video engagement, and more
- My sales page takes students right into the curriculum after purchasing
- I can offer free and paid courses
- I can drip content to my students each week
- I can add affiliates
Note: I use both PayPal and Stripe for processing payments.
PayPal: PayPal has become the standard and people feel comfortable with the system. It's secure, easy to set up, integrates with almost every online tool and platform, and is accepted in many countries.
Stripe: This payment processor has fewer additional fees than PayPal. It is extremely secure and is available in multiple countries. It has no set-up costs and customers can pay you using any major credit card. Stripe easily integrates into all major eCommerce platforms as well as Wordpress and SquareSpace.
90X Goal Planner: Oh my gosh, the BEST planner ever! It has pages for a vision board, for tracking your income streams, top 5 goals for each 90-day period, and then you can break everything down into weekly and daily actions.
Amazon Prime: This link includes a free 30-day trial. Oh my goodness, what would I do without my Amazon Prime? I order diapers and shampoo and detergent via PrimePantry (and get 20% discounts), I get business books and equipment delivered in 2 days with no shipping costs, I get free Prime Kindle books, and I love all of the movies and series I get via Prime Video. And there are a ton more benefits that I haven't used (yet)!
Acuity Scheduling: This software provides easy scheduling for your clients. You can block out your schedule to let people know when you are available. AND, the biggest features that I love about Acuity Scheduling are that 1) it allows you to take payments from clients using your Stripe and PayPal accounts and 2) you can set up an intake form that takes your prospects through a series of questions.
Audible: This link includes a free trial and 2 free audio books. I use Audible to get business books so I can listen to them while I work out or go for walks. I also use it for audio books for my 8 year old (believe me, this is also a productivity hack!)
Create Blog and Editorial Calendar is a planning and editorial system by Meera Kothand designed for ambitious bloggers and solopreneurs to create intentional content, grow and nurture an audience and build a business around your blog. It can be used at any time of year to hold you accountable, track your progress, and create major momentum in your blogging efforts.
Evernote: I started using Evernote in 2015 and I didn't realize it would become such an integral part of my life. I use it to store important documents (I quickly scan them using the Fujitsu ScanSnap Scanner). I also use it to draft blog posts, store ideas, keep notes from courses, post social media updates, and so much more. One feature that I love about Evernote is that you can search keywords and tags - this is great for someone like me who can't always remember how they set up their filing system.
The 12-Week Year redefines your "year" to be 12 weeks long. In 12 weeks, there just isn't enough time to get complacent, and urgency increases and intensifies. The 12 Week Year creates focus and clarity on what matters most and a sense of urgency to do it now. In the end more of the important stuff gets done and the impact on results is profound. Author Brian Moran.
Your Best Year is a productivity workbook and online business planner by Lisa Jacobs designed to make your most ambitious goals come true. It is for entrepreneurs who are ready to stretch their comfort zone and make it happen already. I am loving it - it's a very powerful book that helps you work through ALL areas of your life.
Stock photography and tools to make them lovely
Canva: I use Canva to design most of my lead magnets. It's a great tool and fantastic for those of us who aren't designers. I use the upgraded version, which is $12.95/month because it allows me a lot more options over the free option - including the ability to save all of my brand colors. I use this WITH PicMonkey (see below) but if I were to start with just one, I would go with Canva.
Creative Market: Oh how I love thee! This company brings together amazing designers who sell gorgeous photography, fonts, illustrations, and design tools. Their style is crisp, friendly, and clean. One of my favorite things to purchase from them are flatlay photographs - you can buy one at a time, or they have bundled deals that are frequently offered at incredible discounts.
PicMonkey: It's only $5 per month for the upgraded version (there is a free version too) and compliments Canva perfectly. While both platforms do a lot of the same things, they each have strengths and features that makes it so I can't live without either one! PicMonkey has tons of photo effects, image retouch options, overlays, textures, and cool text options that Canva doesn't.
Smart Mockups: This software is an incredible deal at only $49 (one-time payment). You can use it to easily create mock-up shots of computers, laptops, mobile phones, and more.
Equipment: Scroll up to the Livestreaming and Videos section for my hardware - I use the same ones for my Webinars.
Zoom: I looked into a lot of Webinar platforms before choosing Zoom. And, there are a TON out there. I chose Zoom because it's not only cost effective, but it has a lot of features such as a webcam videos, auto-start recording, registration-free webinars, and more PLUS it allows you to do webinars via Facebook Live.