20+ yrs of experience to offer you education and business services that launch and grow your business
Disclosure: Note that some of the links below are affiliate links, and are no additional cost to you. I may earn a commission if you decide to make a purchase. However, I only recommend them because they are great tools and companies who I have experience with and because I feel they are beneficial. Only buy them if you believe you need them or if you feel that they will help you achieve your goals.
Local Drip consists of a team of passionate website designers with the goal of creating professional websites for small businesses that convert visitors into customers.
The video acorn team will help you edit raw footage videos for your YouTube channel, optimize your YouTube channel, design click-worthy thumbnails, and manage your channel so you can focus on the high-value tasks!
Podcast Color can help you with your podcast art work, professionally edit your audio files, or create show notes to save you time so that you can focus on what you love, recording your podcast!
Are you an author and need some professional help to finish and publish your book? The 5 Star Author team will help you with your book cover, proofreading, editing, formatting, and anything else needed to take your book to completion!
To get your business online, the first step is registering your domain. Porkbun.com is my go-to — they include free WHOIS Privacy with every domain, their prices are reliably low (for renewals especially), and their support continues to impress. Use this link to choose from more than two hundred new domain extensions (like .live, .ninja, .contact, etc.) and register your first domain name for free.
The second step would be to get your website hosted. Here are some hosting companies that I recommend.
Blue Host is a great hosting company to start with if you are new to building a business online. It is very simple to setup a website, plans are cheap, and they have great support.
LiquidWeb is my go-to hosting now. I am on a dedicated server as my sites use more resources. However when you are new or getting started this is a bit overkill. Once you have some traffic you can move over to LiquidWeb.
MailerLite is my current favorite tool for building and managing your email list. It has automations with flow diagrams, fair priced, and awesome customer service! Aweber would be my second choice.
Aweber is my second favorite tool for building and managing your email list for people who are getting started in the online business world. It’s simple and easy to use. Constant Contact is another alternative.
ConvertKit is a newer comapny for building an email list. It is a bridge between Infusionsoft/Ontraport and Aweber where it allows you to do triggers based on user actions. The downside is they don’t like stock trading lists :( so we don’t use them. The other companies above actually look at your open rates to accept / deny you.
Crowdcast.io is my go-to webinar platform. You can create events paid, call to actions, create multiple session webinars, integrate it into your website, and more! After trying dozens of platforms – it is my favorite webinar tool! Clickmeeting is my second favorite that I liked when I did my testing.
Xero Accounting and Quickbooks are the top accounting tools for your business and keeping your books straight. We currently use Quickbook as we started before Xero was around. However both work well.
Freshbooks is an accounting tool geared for self-employed individuals or more freelancers. It is developed for smaller businesses for things like invoicing, time tracking, and project management.
Acuity and Calendly are great tools for scheduling appointments, consultations, or time-based events. They both have a free plan, but each one has their advantages.
Looking to create landing pages quickly? Great for book offers, promotions, or lead collection.
Live chat software for your website can be fantastic to boost your customer service. We currently use Crisp.chat. Choosing a service comes down to your needs. Other good ones include: Live Chat Inc, Chatra.io, & PureChat.
This is hands down my favorite camera! I know many vloggers love the Canon 70D/80D for YouTube (I used to be a Canon fan) – but the GH4 kills the Canon for video. You can record for 30+ mins, 4K video, & use it as my web cam for webinars with the HDMI port!
This camera is the best pocket camera for vlogging, video, and photos around. The picture is amazing for a travel size camera. The only downside is there is no mic-input (hence why it isn’t my primary camera).
This is my go-to all around lens! If I had to pick one lens for the Panasonic GH4 this one would be it. You need longer arms to vlog with this lens (so for vlogging the Panasonic 7-14mm is better in my opinion). Otherwise for everything else this lens is awesome!
This is my primary tripod that I use. It is heavy duty, incredibly adjustable, tall, and has an extension arm that can be parallel to the ground (great for overhead shots).
This is the lighting kit that I use to light up my studio. The lights are great as they have multiple bulbs so even if one burns out you can continue to film (compared to some other kits that only have one special bulb).
You’d be pleasantly surprised if you choose to pair the AMD RYZEN 2700X with the ASUS ROG Strix X470-F Motherboard. With this pair, you are surely to get the most of the features they provide.
The Elgato Stream Deck with 15 keys is a good addition to my computer system. This Stream Deck includes a simpler free software with more built-in functions compared to its predecessor.
Shopify is similar to WooCommerce, but it is its own platform. It is a bit easier to get started if you are new to online business. However a bit tricker to customize once your store requires customizations.
PayPal is one of the best credit card processing tools on the internet. The other two that I like are Stripe and SquareUp. Stripe is great for integrating with API or other apps. SquareUp is wonderful for retail merchants.
Upwork.com is typically my go-to place when I am looking to find team members. You can hire people simply for one project or you can build a relationship with them for the long-term. It is a great starting point if you need a helping hand.
Fiverr.com is great for micro-tasks. People post what they are willing to do for $5 and you can hire them for tasks like design eBook covers, business cards, podcast editing, and more. The great thing is you can also do tasks for other people if you are looking for some side-hustle money.
Freelancer.com is a great place to find hired help. If you are struggling to figure out something you can post your project or what you need done and people will submit their application.
#Slack is our team communication tool. It is similar to a chat program, but for teams internally. You can directly message people, chat as a group, or video call. The app works fast, flawlessly, you can integrate apps, and it has a mobile app that kicks butt!
The software is a huge timesaver. You speak and it types. Hands down – one of the easiest ways to write your book! I speak into my HyperX II Headset with this software and its quite accurate.
You need an audio interface if you are using a mic like the Heil PR40. This is great for individuals. If you need interview or multi-inputs then Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 (2nd Gen) Audio Interface is another good one to check out.
Adobe Photoshop CC is a high quality imaging and design app. It allows users to create and edit photos with precision, versitilaty, and creativity. This software is perfect for graphic designers, photographers, and retouchers.
Adobe Premiere CC is the premiere video editing software on the market. This program is you to make impressive professional content at an affordable price. Adobe Premiere CC truly sets the bar for creating and editing exceptional videos.
FileZilla FTP Client is free, multi-platform software that allows for the transfer of files between clients and servers. This product is especially useful for reliably transferring large files.
Mouse Recorder is free software that allows you to record your mouse and keyboard movements as well as function as an automation tool. The automation feature allows users to create scripts that can automate tedious, repetitive tasks.
OBS Studio is free software that allows for fantastic screen recording and live streaming. This open-source software allows you to create one seamless video from varying sources including piecing together different videos, video game footage, a webpage from your computer, and much more.
SyncBackPro is a very powerful backup, restoration, and synchronization tool. This software is one of the best on the market, which is why many individuals, businesses, hospitals, and police stations all use SyncBackPro to backup their files.
Project Fi or Google Fi is one of the best cellphone networks out there due to the ability of crediting you back for any unused data. That means if you are on WIFI 100% of the time during the month, you pay $0 in data fees. The second great thing is that the data rates are the same rate regardless of which country you are in which makes it great for international travelers.