At Modern World Consulting our job is to know the best programs out their for our clients. We spend a lot of time researching and testing and we feel strongly about the programs we choose to refer. Below is our list of programs that prove to be the most valuable in growing an online business:
If you are not actively trying to grow your email list, your business will never be as successful as it should be. Email marketing is still one of the most effective marketing tools. So choosing the right email marketing platform is crucial and it can save you a massive headache in the future. Don’t fall into the trap of choosing free programs like Mailchimp. You’ll find your business out-growing your platform and you’ll be forced to make a switch to a platform like Aweber, where you should have been to start with. Aweber has amazing analytics to help you make smart email marketing choices, it has an advanced autoresponder system, and it has the best integration with PayPal, which makes it easy to email with clients and create passive income products such as online courses. Amy at SavvySexySocial put together a video on why all small business owners should be using Aweber. Plus get your first month free by watching the video!
I’m always telling by business coaching clients that the best way to turn a prospective client into a paying client is to get them on the phone. It’s much easier for someone to say “no” in an email than when they’re talking with you on the phone. It’s your opportunity to connect with that person, answer all of their questions that may be giving them doubt, and to let them know how you can help them. That’s why offering a complimentary call or a mini-session is such an effective marketing strategy. But with that comes the hassle of spending a lot of time on scheduling those calls and sessions. I dove into research finding the best scheduling program out there (plus it’s my job to know the best programs out there!). Acuity Scheduling offers more value than any competing service out there. I now spend no time at all on scheduling. Acuity Scheduling books my appointments, sends confirmation emails and reminder emails, and it even allows for payment for my appointments that aren’t free. Did I mention the plans are super affordable?
Landing page programs allow small business owners who know the importance of online marketing but don’t have a lot of technical or design experience, to create beautiful and persuasive landing pages such as webinar registration pages, sales pages, and free gift optins. There are quite a few landing page programs out there and clients often ask us which we prefer. Instapage….and here’s why. It is SO easy to use. Everything is drag and drop and easy to design with your brand in mind. It was truly made for people who are not designers. One of the biggest complaints with other landing page programs is that it’s nearly impossible to add your branding to their pre-made templates. It’s difficult to move and add text and images. It ends up taking quite a bit of time to create your vision. A few other reasons to love Instapage is that it’s mobile-friendly, they have zero click optin forms, and it integrates with WordPress. Read more about why we love Instapage for small business owners.
This one is for the Do-It-Yourself-ers and freelance designers out there. If you’re hands on with designing your own website and if you’re constantly adding the newest trinkets and plugins to your site, then you will love this one. Elegant Themes owns the market in creating the most beautiful WordPress themes and Plugins. They are also the ones that created Divi, by far the best WordPress theme out there. Their designs are strictly feminine and to put it simply….they are gorgeous. We have at least one Elegant Themes plugin or theme on every client website we’ve designed. For just 1 small annual membership fee, you get instant access to every theme and plugin they have. We are OBSESSED with Elegant Themes.
I know it may seem tempting to use a nice image you find on Google Images somewhere on your website. And maybe you tell yourself you won’t do it often and that nobody will ever know. But the truth is, that businesses get fined for it all the time. And it’s not a small fine. And if you’ve made money from a page that has that illegal image on it, you could owe royalties on top of that. Let’s avoid that scenario all together. I know that stock images are expensive and for some small businesses just starting out, they can be just plain unaffordable. But we have good news for you! 123RF Stock Images offers super affordable stock images. There is a great selection of amazing photographs and it’s a great option for small business owners. 123RF Stock Images are high resolution and they keep you legal.