Curious what I use to manage my business? You’ll find my favorite tools here.
This lightweight little tool saves me about three hours every month by automating the words and phrases—and even entire emails—I type most often. I use it to quickly fill in forms, email my accountability partner and coaching clients, and to remember things like my bio and my tax ID number when I need them.
I’ve tried lots of different note-taking apps, and I keep coming back to this one. If I want to save something—whether it’s a random thought or an entire web page—Evernote is where I put it.
For workflows and resource sharing, Trello gets my vote. I love the drag-and-drop design as well as the ability to embed checklists, graphics, and other useful tools.
This is my number one pick for tracking everything from email campaigns to product launch schedules. You don’t have to be a database geek to appreciate how easy it can be to see everything in one place.
Email Marketing and List Building
This is my number one recommendation for email management. It has all the power of the big guns like Infusionsoft, but without the hefty price tag.
Click here to get my email marketing systems comparison chart.
For creating beautiful landing pages and automating your funnel set up, you can’t do better than ClickFunnels. You get full control over your designs, without having to do all the heavy lifting of linking up the various pages.
Prefer a self-hosted landing page builder? Thrive gets my vote for ease of use and connectivity. It’s what I personally use here at CindyBidar.com as well.
Newbie friendly and cost effective, too? Yes, please! LeadPages paved the way with their innovative landing page builder years ago, and they just keep getting better. Plus, they help make sure your landing pages perform their best by continually testing their designs and sharing the insights with you.
Click here to get my landing page builder comparison chart.
This handy little plugin makes it easy for your blog readers to download PDF versions of posts they want to save or read later. It’s easy to install and configure, and the PDFs make the perfect content upgrade to help grow your list!
Shopping Carts and Payment Processing
The default payment processor of the web, it’s easy to use, trustworthy, well-recognized, and where nearly everyone gets started. You can run your entire business with this alone.
If you’re looking for a fully managed cart option, SamCart is my absolute favorite. It works with both PayPal and Stripe, integrates with Wishlist Member and Active Campaign, and is a breeze to set up and use. Highly recommended!
A great low-cost option for affiliate management and product delivery. aMember integrates seamlessly with PayPal, your autoresponder, and your WordPress website, and offers a simple shopping cart that helps you track your sales and referral commissions.
The only hosting company I know that manages to be both newbie-friendly and infinitely scalable. Start with their single site plan at just $5 per month, and grow all the way to a dedicated server if necessary. Support is fast, personal, and unbelievably helpful.
In a world of commoditized hosting, with hundreds of websites crammed onto a crowded server and hours-long hold times just to reach the support desk, LiquidWeb stands out. Fully managed WordPress hosting takes away all your technology worries, while rock-solid VPS and dedicated servers make enterprise-level hosting easy.
Easy to customize, rock-solid code, and plenty of designs to choose from. Studio Press themes are my top choice for 98% of all websites, including this one.
I bought a new web cam recently, and I was so impressed with the video quality that I recorded a demo to post on Facebook. Watch to see the difference yourself. Links to both camera and mic are below the video.
I love Dropbox because it allows me to access my files from any connected computer, or by logging in to their site. Plus I get 1TB (yes, that’s a terabyte!) for just $9.99/month. And their free plan is pretty generous, too.
Google Drive is my top choice when I want to collaborate on a document and allow others to edit without losing my changes.
Teamwork is my top pick for managing a team. It not only helps you create and manage projects, but it includes “notebooks” where you can store your procedures and other details, plus it has built-in time-tracking and invoicing capabilities.
Put an end to back and forth emails just to schedule a discovery session or client appointment. Let your clients and others choose the time that works for them, and it will automatically appear on your calendar.
No time to blog, email your list, or create new products? Pre-written content lets you get your work done in a fraction of the time.
Don’t let the name fool you! These rebrandable workshops, webinars and planners are perfect for freelancers who struggle to find the time to blog, build an email list, or create client-attracting events.
Focusing on social media marketing and blogging, White Label Perks offers a wide variety of topics, including many that are suitable for your blog or email series.
With content about business, finance, health, self-help and plenty of others, Piggy Makes Bank is a one-stop shop for all your done-for-you content needs.
Sharyn Sheldon spent 20 years creating training materials for Fortune 500 companies. Today she creates training materials you can share with your community, and I can’t even tell you how many of my friends sing her praises. Check her out if you need done-for-you business content.
Books About Business
Continuous learning is critical to business growth. Here’s my list of “must read” books on business, mindset, and more.
The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business – Charles Duhigg
Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity – David Allen
Books About Content Creation
Everybody Writes – Ann Handley
On Writing – Stephen King
Bird by Bird – Anne Lamott
On Writing Well – William Zinsser
The Artist’s Way – Julia Cameron