Building an online business from scratch can be challenging to say the least. In fact, while plenty of people go on to create hugely successful online businesses, the startup process is never as easy as people make it out to be.
That is, unless you have the right tools to help every step of the way.
There really has never been a better time to build an online business. Despite the fact that competition is at an all-time high in all industries, so too is online consumerism. And, with the demand for online products and services continuing to boom, there is no better time for you to join in and reap the rewards for having something valuable to offer your customers.
Having the right set of tools can help take your startup to the next level, before you even get your business off the ground. That’s why today, we are going to share with you some of the best startup tools available for launching a successful online business.
So, you have decided you want to launch an online website but aren’t sure where to start. Well, a great place to start is with your domain name. You have to have a domain name if you are going to launch an online website.
Using The Business Name Generator, you can easily search for unique domain names and social profiles for free. Simply type the name you are interested in and watch the dots change color. If green, the name is available. If red, that name is already in use.
If you don’t know by now, you should be made aware that 28% of all websites use the content management system WordPress. From hobby blogs to fully functioning eCommerce sites, WordPress offers website owners enough power and flexibility to create anything the mind can imagine. Easily customizable, fully responsive, highly secure, and SEO friendly, WordPress websites will provide powerful, fast, search engine optimized content to your site visitors in a user-friendly way.
That said, your website is only as strong as your hosting provider. That’s why choosing from the top hosting providers on the market today is crucial to your online website success.
Take the time to compare speed, performance, features, security, support, and of course, price when picking you site’s hosting provider. Some of the best options to choose from include WPEngine, SiteGround, InMotion, and Flywheel.
You may not think that website design is a tool per say, but if you go the popular route and choose WordPress for the foundation of your website, you will definitely start thinking of web design as a form of tool.
When you use WordPress to build your online business, you must choosea suitable theme to structure the overall design and function of your website. A theme is a collection of templates and stylesheets that define the appearance and display of your WordPress website. Each one comes with a unique set of designs, layouts, and features. This means things like blog layouts, fonts, color schemes, and more are all attributed to the type of theme installed on your business website.
Some themes are broad based and multipurpose, meaning they can be used for any type of website you are building. On the other hand, some themes are specific in nature and work best for eCommerce shops, magazine websites, blogs, photography sites, etc.
One of the best marketing tools you can take advantage of while launching your online business is an email list-building plugin for encouraging site visitors to subscribe to your mailing list or newsletter. These are easy to come by if you run your website on WordPress, since as mentioned before, WordPress offers website owners a significant amount of flexibility.
Here are some of the most important features you should look for when choosing the perfect mailing list tool:
- Ability to integrate with your preferred email service provider (e.g. MailChimp, Aweber, or Get Response)
- Customization options such as drag & drop editing
- Reports, metrics, or statistics for monitoring success
- A/B testing capability
- Pop-up message templates
- Advanced technology for increasing conversions (e.g. exit intent)
In the end, having a large email list will help drive sales, bring more traffic to your website, and create a successful foundation for your newly created online business.
For your online business to function properly, you are going to need an eCommerce shopping cart tool to help customers make purchases. This is true even if you only plan to sell premium content in the form of a membership to site visitors.
Allowing you to connect to popular payment gateways such as PayPal, Authorize.net, and Stripe, a shopping cart tool will let you accept many forms of payment securely through your website. Having a proper shopping cart in place, that collect payments the right way, is essential to building a successful online business that generates real revenue.
Social Media Management
In addition to staying in contact with your site visitors via email, you can also use popular social media platforms to share your website’s content, push new products and services to your target audience, and even interact with those that might benefit from what you have to offer.
You will want to pick a solution that allows you to manage multiple social media accounts from one location, schedule blog posts in advance, reply to comments made on any network from the dashboard, and even track metrics such as social shares, like and follows, and more.
Here is a starter list of good options:
Using social media is a great way to expose your brand to a wider audience base. In allows you to stand out amongst your competition, establish yourself as a reliable expert in your industry, and humanize your company.
Launch Your Online Business Now
In the end, starting an online business can be tough if you don’t know where to start. From choosing a domain name, to finding the right platform, to picking the perfect web design, it can all become overwhelming. Not to mention growing your business from the start with things like social media and email list building.
However, building your arsenal from the start with solid tools designed to help you launch your online business successfully will make starting out much easier. So, before you launch your online business, take a look at the above-mentioned tools and create a plan that will set you up for nothing but future success.