I’ve been working in the online business for more than 10 years. I’ve tried a lot of different platforms, apps, software, and websites, and I feel confident sharing my favorite online tools that have changed my business game in a significant way. These tools have also helped me start and grow my business successfully over the years. (Showit is the only exception here as it’s a more recent discovery).
So, here's my list of faves:
Shopify is an e-commerce platform that allows users to build their online shop in a super simple way. It’s specially designed for small business owners and works well with bigger companies too. From developing the storefront design to the implementation of the payment platforms, and all the possible integrations with third parties providers, Shopify is the best when talking about the e-commerce experience for all, sellers and buyers. And I love it!
I can boast that I’m already a senior customer at Shopify as I signed up in 2012. Years after I signed up with them, they changed their payment plans to add commissions per sale; however, they have honored my premium plan at the same cost without adding commissions, so I’ve been incredibly proud to stay with them over the years because we’ve had a two-way relationship based on loyalty.
Before starting my website on Shopify, I had an Etsy shop where I sold my digital templates. I loved Etsy because it’s where my brand born, but I wasn’t getting 100% of my earnings due to commissions. When I launched my website (Birdesign), I saw a huge boom, for my customers and me. I certainly didn’t expect to make $20K in the first 3 days of launching, and best of all I was getting 100% of the earnings for every sale.
So, if you’re looking to build an online shop take a look at Shopify, and all of its offerings and payment plans. You can even sign up for a free trial. Looking through their Themes is an excellent way to feel inspired and get in the mood to rebrand or launch that "new something" you may have in mind.
Showit is the most recent discovery for me, but one of my favorites! Believe me, you will do a happy dance once you realize what I'm talking about.
I’ve used Squarespace, Wix, Shopify, Wordpress, all kind of themes, but nothing else is as flexible and user-friendly as Showit. Basically, it’s a “drag and drop” website builder. They promote the app like a “website builder for photographers,” but the truth is that it's perfect for anyone who wants to create their online dream home.
It’s also incredibly easy to use, and to sum it up easily: YOU CAN DO WHATEVER YOU CAN IMAGINE with your website. For my own site, I bought a premade theme from Tonic, because I was very new at the platform and I wasn't savvy enough to build something from scratch. And I can tell you that in just a couple of days I was pretty confident using the platform, customizing pages, redesigning my home page, adding my own content, and making this site my new home.
First impressions are crucial while doing business, so having a cohesive online presence is a priority for me. Showit is the tool that has allowed me to give my customers a unique experience while perusing my website. There’s no website like mine, it’s unique! And that makes me so happy that I want to dance every time I share it with someone.
Oh! I have to add here that the Showit support team is incredible. They’ve solved every single issue and question I’ve had in less than 24 hours, even sooner when someone is available to chat. So if you decide to go for it, I'm sure you’ll always be taken care of through their outstanding customer service.
Pinterest has been my business’s #1 source of new visitors and buyers. It looks like Pinterest is the perfect search engine for creatives when looking to achieve something in the prettiest way. Have you stayed there for hours like me? It’s clear that Pinterest is a key tool for creatives with an online business.
But why has it specifically been such a bit help for my business? The best strategy has been combining Pinterest with valuable content like my monthly freebies. Clients and readers save my freebies to their accounts, so in no time I have pin after pin (and repins too!). The content becomes very popular and brings in potential clients to my website to enjoy my freebies and products. After trying my products for free and getting to know my offerings, they eventually become paying clients. Simple right?
I used to pin a lot of my content plus the things I love most, however for several years I didn’t have a strategy around my Pinterest account. I was getting a lot of traffic from Pinterest, but I wasn’t making the most of it. Making some tweaks has allowed me to drive even more Pinterest traffic to my site and therefore my revenue. (check out this free guide to improve your Pinterest strategy)
You may already know this one, but I just wanted to let you know how ConvertKit and having an email list has impacted my business.
I began using Mailchimp to grow my list for several years until I reached 57K subscribers, recently I switched to ConvertKit and I'm just in love with it. One of my favorite features is that allows me to create email sequences, segment my subscribers and create opt-in forms in a heartbeat for my website freebies.
Email marketing has been key for my business and ConvertKit is now my partner in crime to my list building and communication with my audience. I'd recommend it first and foremost to anyone looking for email marketing solutions.
The payment plans begin at just $29 a month and increase accordingly to the subscriber's number, and believe me it worth every single penny!
Running a business online is a lot of work, and like any new skill you have to tackle, it gets easier when you have the right tools. I’m sure I wouldn’t have been able to achieve some of my significant milestones without these useful platforms. Check them out for yourself and let me know your thoughts. Do you have game-changing online tools you can share here?
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