Resources for SMB Digital Businesses [Free and Paid]
We all get emails and/or questions on social media asking for tips and/or recommendations on a variety of topics such as: digital marketing, SEO, tools, IT service providers and more. To save time, I decided to put a digital resource list/topic page together in order to help you make a quick informed decision.
Templates and checklists are among the top 5 downloaded resources. No surprise, as these are essential to help you manage your content marketing, strategy, social media and more. Hope you’ll enjoy it.
Herein, I will share the must have and/or essentials tools. Make sure you know where your priorities are in order to achieve your goals, don’t spend time with things you don’t need. Note that I only select the industry’s best tools to organise, promote or help you (and me) build our businesses.
Tools to help you grow and manage your business
- Linkedinfluence – is the ultimate Linkedin training course. Everybody knows that Linkedin is simply the most powerful social network for any size business.
This [brilliant] course will show you how to quickly secure more leads, clients, and investors.
It also provides you with detailed instructions on how to promote yourself and profit from live events that build your brand with more fresh leads, and boost your online revenue. Voted the best Linkedin course on Internet with over 30,000 copies sold!
You should try it. To get more out of your strategy invest $100 and quickly make more leads and money. It’s well worth it. I was impressed with the practical advice leading to some quick results. If you aren’t happy with the course, after 60 days, just ask and they will initiate a refund.
- Pipedrive: Perfect for small/ medium sized businesses. Pipedrive is a cloud-based CRM & pipeline management tool. Very easy to use, thus intuitive leading you to focus on actions that matter. Was created by sales pros. You can really grow your business quicker with Pipedrive. It also connects/integrates with several other tools (Google apps, email marketing etc..).
- Streak -CRM: If you are on a budget you can start with the free CRM version. It connects with all Google apps, communicate, and manage your contacts/ business from one central place. What else?
- Rapportive: Allows you to discover personal details about your contacts. Click on any email address in your inbox and youo’ll see the person’s contact details and social connections appear in the sidebar. A very handy tool for verifying or validating email addresses. When the person’s contact information shows up then you know you’ve got the right email.
- Content marketer: Allows you to find email addresses and reach out to influencers. You can find and send emails via your Google account. Use their pre-built templates and enjoy your work by scheduling and automated follow-up sequences.
- Business Strategy Planning Infographic 2018: Visual business setup reminder if you are just starting your business from scratch. Email me if you need the guidance or help.
- GanttProject: Schedule and manage your projects. GanttProject is free, written in Java and features Gantt chart, resource management, calendar mode, you can also import/export (MS Project, HTML, PDF, spreadsheets…)
» Startup/Technology Sites
- Hacker News: crowd-sourced tech/ Startup content.
- Alistapart: is a bit like going to your local library so you can ask clever people to explain/talk about CMSs. They’re talking about content strategy and how you can improve your site, design and optimisation.
- Startups directory Europe: Leading startup in E.U. Find jobs, new startups, data-driven analysis, know-how etc.
- ProductHunt: I am addicted to new technology. If you want to grasp what’s new and who is doing well visit the site.
» SEO / Lead Generation
- Distilled.net: The very top notch to find what SEO consultants are talking and sharing knowledge.
- Search Engine Land: Like the name says – the land of fresh news on the search industry.
- SEO Book: Smart analysis of the search field and SEO.
- Thrive Leads: The ultimate list building plugin for WordPress.
» Plan, write, edit, curate Content Marketing
- Digital marketing guidelines: Kindly provided by the University of Edinburgh. Writing for the Web needs proper guidance – Content student or small business owner, you can download the guidelines that cover good practice in writing and structuring the information for the Web.
- Mind42: Free online mind mapping tool – fantastic tool to help you visualise and organise information. The mind maps can either be private (by default) or shared. >> Possible Downloads.
- BuzzSumo: Analyse industry topics that work or look out for competitor’s.
- Listly: is another (useful) free platform for curating and sharing all your lists. You can enter any topics you like, from social media marketing to science fiction – you name it. The plus side: online users can follow your lists, if they like what they see, they can upvote your list pushing it to rank higher. Create your best Listly and start promoting it and/or upvote your favourites.
- Apester: is another great free interactive tool. Create and start collecting data whilst engaging with your readers.
You can use polls, quizzes etc.
- Content Marketing plus Social Media Editorial Calendar Template : Once open, go under “File” and “save as” whatever .xls version you have.
- Canva: is another epic Free tool. Amazing what you can do with this visual content creation tool. Canva will allow you to create and download professional looking visual content images from: Infographics, social media headers to presentations, business flyers, banners and business cards.
- Quadrant-Channels-Keywords : write and log ideas onto same screen and plan.
- Go to Google spreadsheets: share and track everything you want.
- Camtasia: screen recording and video editing plus sharing.
- Jing: simple way to share images and short videos- and its free.
- Share images: quotes, triple likes, favorites, and retweets.
- Online image editor: great free tool to resize, edit, crop, add text or convert your images.
» Hosting + Storage Plans
- Linode: Just log in and start deploying and manage any SSD server in the Linode Cloud. Select and get your server up and running.. in seconds with your choice of Linux distro, resources, and node location.
- Cloudflare: Set up your own cloud under 5 minutes. No need to change web hosting provider. You can protect your DNS and you don’t need coding skills at all. They have over 115 Data Center across the Globe.
- Heroku: Innovative platform as a service (PaaS) enabling developers across the world to build and run applications entirely in the cloud.
» Fast Hosting services for WordPress Businesses
Looking for a professinal, super fast, and secure Web hosting? I would if I were you. Without hesitation I highly recommned WPX for its genuine, trustful Web hosting services.
Traffic Planet hosting was rebranded (in November 2016) to www. wpxhosting.com [WPX] but I can assure you that their speed and quality support works 24/7 no matter what.
Grab their latest offer and see by yourself
Free Bonus: When buying a WPX hosting package you’ll get Free SSL certificate installed whether this is for one or even multiple sites.
Note: The SSL certificate is renewed automatically month after month, so you don’t have to go through the long process yourself.
Also, they offer a free site migration service. Difficult to believe right. All you have to do is grab the mousse and press the button. Your site will be up and running under 1-2 hours.
Fancy reading and learn more about web hosting and why it’s important to have a fast site? Then read review here.
» Best WordPress themes
Looking to create professional looking WordPress websites? The first (and the cheapest) thing to do before setting-up a WordPress is:
Very important: Write a content strategy plan and then pick or find a theme to publish your content!
Here are some that we use and recommend. Whether you are starting a blog, or setting up a complex website, these names below know what a WordPress platform needs. They will keep your WordPress fast, scalable, and secure.
- StudioPress themes: Our website is built on this platform – a Studiopress theme. Simply because they are secure, robustly built on Genesis framework and of course mobile responsive.
» Landing Pages Course
Build your own business brand/blog from scratch and get a professional look. Perfect when you need to (must) create mail lists.
In other words enticing people to sign up to your mail list, by just creating landing pages with beautiful opt-ins. Try Thrives course below.
Get your hands on the best landing page courses :
- Mini-Course for Rapid landing page creation
» Web Security
- Wordfence: The WordPress security plugin that provides free extra layer of protection, it keeps your website safe from hacks and malwares.
- Authy: Protects people and businesses against malicious hacking with two-factor authentication security.
- Tinfoil Security: is a website application security solution built by a team of MIT graduates. This app will keep monitoring and checking for vulnerabilities using a constantly updated (algo) scanner. Audience: medium-large businesses.
» Paid and Free books – Courses
- Project Gutenberg the first producer of free e-books. Find all sorts of books – updated daily.
- Amazon – Books I highly recommend reading
- Good to great (was recommended to me by Felix Velarde.. many thanks sir)
You can also grab our premium resources
Please note that some of the products listed or recommended on this page are affiliate links.
Should you be concerned with it? No. This simply means that if you purchase one of the products it will have no additional cost to you whatsoever. I only earn a small commission from it.
I hope you understand that I only recommend softwares and/or products that I have tested, used or heard from influencers. Also bear in mind that, when I do recommend one of these products, I literally put my business reputation on the line, and that is something I highly protect.
Note: We’ll update this page with many other useful resources as frequent as possible. Feel free to share this useful page with your peers.
Thanks for visiting.