We have touched on various topics on our blog, subjects related to internet marketing and digital marketing such as website design, niche research, SEO, social media presence etc. For individual beginners, usually they are just figuring out if internet marketing is for them, so I suggest they only invest in their domain name and web hosting.
For serious internet marketers or you have decided to take the next steps, then I suggest you consider investing into more paid stuff while leveraging on free tools that still do a decent job, wherever possible.
Do note I am not doing a comparison of available tools out there but listing down what I have used and satisfying my needs. Also, I am not a fan of paying monthly subscription for services. I source for products which I can pay one-time fees.
I will link to my other articles if I have already written about them.
Web Hosting Provider
Spend some time thinking of a killer name for your domain name but don’t spend so much time that you don’t move on to the next step! It is essential you choose a great web hosting provider, I have a recommendation if you are targeting the Singapore audience.
I do suggest you invest in a good paid WordPress theme (you can read Free Vs Paid WordPress Themes to understand why). In the same article, I have indicated the various stores offering paid themes.
I have used a number of paid themes from StudioPress and would recommend that you check them out.
The key reasons why I use them are:
- support is superb
- they provide detailed step-by-step documentation of how to set up the theme. Paid themes can be difficult to configure or there is some learning curve
- themes are beautiful and professional. The collection is not huge but for most purposes, you should be able to find one that is suitable for your use
- it is a one-off fee that you pay and you can use one theme for unlimited number of websites
Other than your usual plugins, do have the following:
- All-In-One SEO – an essential
- Pretty link – this allows links to other url but it looks like link is coming directly from your own domain
Optin Form and Email Service Provider
Depending on your expected email subscriber volume, I would suggest you use Mailchimp. The plan is available free for those who have fewer than 2,000 subscribers or send fewer than 12,000 emails each month.
If you foresee you will exceed this volume, Mailchimp also has paid options which allows for your expansion.
The Mailchimp optin form builder is not great though. As such, when you are prepared to invest more and grow your emailing list quickly, you can consider Thrive Leads which you can pay a one-time fee. It has a superb form editor with many built-in templates. You can also integrate this with Mailchimp.
I can’t stress the importance of keyword research when doing SEO and if you want page 1 ranking for your keywords.
I have already suggested a few ways of doing keyword research. There are many keyword research tools the most primary one being Google Keyword Planner.
The issue with Google Keyword Planner is that it does not tell you how difficult or easy to rank a particular keyword. For that, I am currently using Kwfinder. The free account works fine for me now though I may get a paid service later if I need to do more keyword research.
Fortunately, you enjoy the analytics free. The essential analytics tools are of course Google Analytics and Google Webmaster Search Analytics.
I think these tools offer you enough insights which will keep you occupied for some time.
Images And Photos
I use Canva to create many of the images that I use for my blog posts. You can also check out some of the free photo sites below.
I will be updating this article from time to time with new tools useful to me, so check back in future as well.
Do check out the digital marketing services provided by Anspire Consulting.