I’ve used all of them (some on this website and some on other projects I’ve started). All of them are worth the time or money it’ll cost to invest in them.
Before I dive into the resources, I’d like to issue an important disclosure:
Some of the links below are affiliate links, which means that if you choose to make a purchase, I will earn a commission. This commission comes at no additional cost to you. Please understand that I have experience with all of these companies, and I recommend them because they are helpful and useful, not because of the small commissions I make if you decide to buy something
Your hosting is an important choice. IF you choose wisely then you’ll be able to sleep at night. If you choose wrongly then you’ll always be worried about whether or not your website is online. That’s not a fun experience.
This is the best starter hosting for new blogs and businesses. Why? There are a few reasons why I recommend it.
This is a step up from Bluehost in terms of speed and power. I use this WPX hosting to take care of my mission critical sites that have outgrown shared hosting. It’s about 10x more expensive than Bluehost so it’s not for everyone.
It’s important to note that they’re a dedicated WordPress host. That means your website has to be on a WordPress installation. That comes with a few advantages like knowledgeable support staff, high uptime, and an infrastructure designed to speed up your website.
Once your website grows a bit or you want to go big from the beginning then WPX hosting is a great choice.
You know what they say. The money is in the list. This is a true statement. Your mailing list will share your content, buy your products, and leave insightful comments. Don’t neglect them.
I have a confession. This is my software company. We built it from the ground up to serve your list building needs. You can create popups, quizzes, and surveys to build your mailing list, segment your subscribers, and understand what they really want from you.
When you start your free trial, mention you came from The Experiment and we’ll hook you up with a lifetime discount. It’ll be our little secret.
I’ve written a review on ActiveCampaign because I like it that much. I use it for almost every single project I have including this website.
It’s my number one pick for managing your mailing lists because it can do a lot. For example, when someone signs up, you’ll want to send them through a nurturing campaign. That’s normal. From there, depending on what they open and click, you’ll want to start sending more tailored messages.
ActiveCampaign lets you do this with a few button clicks. It starts at $9/m too.
What can I say, Leadpages works well when it comes to building landing pages to capture email subscribers. The have tons of templates, great support, and are rolling out a lot of neat features. I like them because they have a large integration ecosystem and has a direct WordPress integration.
You don’t need much to build a WordPress blog. We’ve already covered hosting and email marketing so I’ll just focus on a few other pieces of software that can make the difference.
What can I say, WordPress has ruined me. I don’t like any other content management system. All of my websites take only a few hours to build an I use the same stack. The reason I mention WordPress.org is because WordPress.com limits your ability to do just about everything.
Always go for self-hosted WordPress websites if you want to truly control your brand.
This should be available as a one click install through your hosting account.
There are tons of themes to choose from and Themeforest has the largest collection. Prices range from less than twenty dollars to over $70. What you decide depends on your budget and goals. Take your time and choose one that fits your specific needs. If you’re curious, this website is running on Impreza.
This is a freemium WordPress plugin that’ll help you get the basics down when it comes to SEO. It analyzes your articles for readability and SEO best practices and gives you recommendations in real time.
The free plan should meet most of your needs if you’re starting fresh. You can access it from the plugin directory in your WordPress installation.
Research is the backbone of all successful websites. You need to know your competition and the different ways you can get in front of your audience. I don’t use many tools for this, but the ones I do use work quite well.
This tool, quite literally is a powerhouse. It allows you to research the ads, organic keywords, traffic, authority, and so many other things of your competitors.
For example, you can see what your top competitors are ranking for, the content that ranks, and the people linking to it. From there, you’re able to make something better and know where to look for links.
You can start for free and upgrade when you need more power.
This tool has lost a lot of its utility over the years but it’s still worth starting your search here. You can get an idea of how popular a niche is based on search volume but they’re in ranges. What I like to do is use this one as the starting point then moving on to the other tools on this list to get more accurate information.
This tool is indispensable when it comes to understanding your website performance in the search engines. It’ll show you want people are searching for, your position in the rankings, and how many people are clicking through based on those terms.
With that information, you can go back and optimize content in order to get more clicks and traffic.
This is a suite of SEO tools that help you track your rankings, find keywords you can rank for, understand the competitive landscape, and so much more. It’s basically an all in one SEO tool without the hefty price tag.
You can get started for free and upgrade when you need more power. Highly recommended if you want to increase your search rankings in the shortest amount of time.
There are many pieces of software available for you to sell your products and services online. Here are a few that we use and should help you unlock your true income potential.
Teachable allows you to host your courses online. They take care of payment processing, landing pages, membership permissions, and all that good stuff. All you have to do is create the content and promote it.
If you want more control of your website and the way it looks then Memberpress is a good choice. They allow you to turn your WordPress website into a membership portal. There you can set permissions, lock content, and set up different products.
Wistia is a software application that lets you host your videos. You can also use the videos to generate email subscribers. It was built with online businesses in mind and does more than YouTube could ever hope for.
Use this platform when you want more control of who has access to your videos and their presentation.
Samcart is a virtual shopping cart that allows you to sell almost anything. You can sell courses, Ebooks, and memberships through Samcart. You can also manage your own affiliates. What I like the most about Samcart is their optimized checkout flow and the ability to add upsells without friction.
Even if you have a good host, there are things you can and should do to speed up your website and secure it.
Wordfence is a WordPress security plugin that has a free and paid version. It allows you to catch security vulnerabilities early on as well as secure your website from hacking attempts. If anything does happen, you can reach out to the team and they’ll help you get sorted out.
This is another WordPress plugin. Its focus is on speeding up your website by creating caches of static files. The end result is a faster website and better experience for your visitors.
Again, a WordPress plugin focused on speed. Instead of loading everything on the page at once (which can slow down your website) this plugin only loads what’s already on the screen.
That means if someone doesn’t read the entire page, images below the fold won’t be loaded which speeds up the overall load time.
All of these are WordPress plugins and are accessible through your WP dashboard.
On this page, we’ve given you our top choices but it doesn’t cover everything that’s possible or all the resources out there.
In this collection, we put together tools and resources to cover every aspect of building your business. You’ll find tools that do everything from help you create mockups to understanding content marketing.