Recommendations, resources & tools to help out entrepreneurs & small business owners.
"I can do this."
Do not doubt that for a minute – but the real question is, do you really want to do it? Or would you rather spend your time & energy growing your business, tending to your customers, and creating more opportunities for your company?
If you are still reading this, then you have a fire & ambition to get this done! Fair & we applaud your drive. Since our primary focus has always been in supporting small business owners, entrepreneurs, and sole proprietors compete in the world of big corp, we’ve put together a few resources & tools that should help you create your online presence.
Things to Prep
First things first, you are going to need to secure website hosting.
What is it? It is a set of computers that will store your website and when visitors type in your domain address, your site appears on their screen.
There are a ton of hosting companies to select & your job will be to research the best one for you in terms of price, features & service.
Don’t make your choice solely on price because the last thing you want is to have old inefficient and slow technology.
We’ve done some research for you and can offer you some good website hosting options. These are just recommendations!
If you don’t already have a domain name (that’s the address you type in to get to a certain site), then you are going to need to register one.
There are many different domain registrars out there and they all pretty do the same things, so the only thing that really differentiates them are the pricing models.
Savvy Web Services does offer domain registrations, ID Protect, and Business Listings for convenience. Contact us for registration information.
Domain names can be a useful tool when honing in on your overall marketing strategy, ranking and visitor recognition.
Popular domain extensions are .com, .net & .org, but other extensions are beginning to surface as well.
The market is flooded with tons of different WordPress themes. The hard job is searching through the marketplace to find just the right theme that you would then customize.
Themes play a critical role in the buildout of your website. You need to be careful about selecting a theme that doesn’t have a good user rating, hasn’t been updated in a while, and has disorganized coding. All of these factors can play a huge role in the speed of your website & in this day and age, speed is key.
For those that are just starting out, we recommend the Astra Theme. It is lightweight & completely customizable. The Pro package comes with entire starter sites that you could then customize with your own products & services rather than coming up with them from scratch.
You may have selected a theme but now you need to figure out how to bring all of the ideas in your head to life. Selecting the right page builder will either give you a smooth & exciting design experience or it will tank you & frustrate the heck out of you.
The key to a good page builder is the availability of online tutorials, the price (free or pro versions), and the underlying simplicity. We like Elementor. There are numerous YouTube tutorials on using this page builder. The free version is packed with a ton of elements! Elementor Pro opens up a trove of elements that will really add a pop to your site.
Elementor integrates beautifully with the Astra theme for a seamless website building experience.
Please note that this post contains affiliate links. We are not offering it here for purely that reason, but rather we are informing you because we genuinely believe it will help you and your business and that again, is one of our core principles.
Many of our client have asked us for tips, advice and support in their startup journey and we are glad to have developed the kind of trusting relationship that would allow them to ask us for help – knowing we will not try to sell them a bunch of things they don’t really need. That said, here are some companies, tools & business ideas that we have tested and show here for your information.
For our clients that run a 100% online business, one of the most important suggestions we can make is to obtain an alternate mailing address in lieu of using a personal home residence.
They offer real street addresses, appropriate for filing business registration papers (ie LLC) and receiving other business mail.
Print on Demand
There are several Print-on-Demand companies that you could sign on with, but we found that Printful offers not only a wide variety of products they also offer a ton of video tutorials to guide you through the process.
We like them because of their commitment to the environment from their eco-friendly facilities to their zero-waste manufacturing processes and water-based ink. Good for you, good for the planet.
Start your PRINTFUL PRINT ON DEMAND STORE quickly and get to work making your dreams come true.
Dropshipping is another quick & low-cost way to start up a business. AliDropship has a host of products and premium add-ons to get you up and running with your own dropshipping store that connects you directly with suppliers in China with global shipping locations. This plugin integrates nicely with a host of different platforms and shopping carts and provides a solid semi-automatic.ordering process.
ALIDROPSHIP also has a wide variety of other plugins to maximize your sales & engagement and even automate your social media marketing plans.
For the organizations that want to step up their fundraising capabilities, we have found that GiveWP offers a host of really great options to mount a very robust donation campaign. While the free version is packed with options, the premium add-ons will take your fundraising to a whole other level.
Create any kind of campaign for events, peer-to-peer fundraisers, and general fundraising - all directly on your own site.
anyone on WordPress can use GiveWP for online fundraising. You don't need to be a registered charity to accept online donations. This software is perfect for any online giving need, small or large.
Social Media Marketing
On the days you wish you could clone yourself, you may be seeking opportunities to find little efficiencies that give you back precious hours in the day. This premium plugin will fully automate your site's social media account posts, while making them look like you've spent hours on thoughtful planning & crafting of very post.
SOCIAL RABBIT will promote your social media (Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest & Twitter) pages 24/7 without your constant control. Using relevant hashtags and keywords chosen by you, the plugin will post, follow, like, and comment.
NOTE: You do NOT need to have the AliDropship plugin to use Social Rabbit.
The Facebook Business plugin is another premium plugin offered by AliDropship that will integrate your entire product catalog right into Facebook.
With the FACEBOOK BUSINESS add-on, you can encourage customers to buy products they have viewed or added to their cart. With retargeting, these products will show up on your follower's Facebook & Instagram feeds as a reminder to check out. You can also utilize ads featuring related products, upsells, or new arrivals. All you need to do is set up a Facebook Dynamic Ads account, then add your Facebook Pixel code to the FB add-on settings to get going.
NOTE: The AliDropship plugin (for either Woo or WordPress) IS required for this premium plugin.
When you need an extra set of hands, perhaps a virtual assistant, or maybe you need some specialized services like content writing, blogs, business card, or logos to name a few.
FIVERR is the place to go. Fiverr is a marketplace of freelancers that offer a wide range of services for just about every type of business. Hire out what you cannot get around to and free yourself up to focus on your customers & building revenue.
Though all of these pieces may look a bit overwhelming at the surface, with good planning, a concise business plan & a clear strategy for success – you can turn your ambitions into your own business.
We have experience in designing & launching Print-on-Demand shops, fundraising, and charities 501(3)C’s and dropshipping businesses for many of our clients, so if you have the fire to jump in but need a partner to walk you through it, contact us today for a free consultation and how we might assist in unleashing the entrepreneur in you!
Don’t forget that if you decide to build out your website on your own, you may still consider adding on a web maintenance plan to manage the ongoing operations of your new website.