These are a few of our favorite things.
Want to learn more about what makes a brand successful on the interwebs, and what it takes to make that happen?
FYI, some of the links below are affiliate links, which means that if you click on one, and then you buy something, you may or may not be supporting our sushi habit. But even though we do get a little kickback here and there (and we really, really love sushi), we only recommend products and services we truly love, from companies we fully support. Click away!
GODADDY.com – I personally love, love, love their customer service. Anything you need to set up, they will walk you through. There are consistently great promotions out there for all of their products. AND, recently, they launched their “Managed WordPress” hosting plan (<– that link should get you $1/month hosting) that is the greatest solution for any business owner just getting started with WordPress. I highly recommend these guys!!!
GOOGLE APPS FOR BUSINESS –Another fabulous company that really makes the life of an entrepreneur sooo much easier. For a very small user fee, Google Apps offer not only email that is @yourdomain.com – but also a calendar system, cloud storage, branded YouTube channels, GooglePlus brand pages and more! They walk you through every step beautifully… it’s come a long way since I started and every step is for the better!!
FANCY WORDPRESS PLUGINS
SLIDER REVOLUTION – We love to use this tool to show off your beautiful imagery. This slider is highly customizable and moves seamlessly from one visual to the next so that your potential clients can have a visually pleasing way to see the amazing things that you can do!
YITH – We are in love with Yith Plugins. They have everything you could ever need for your WooCommerce website!
ESSENTIAL GRID – This plugin will make your website stylistically stunning. It’s super customizable and displays your photographs in a way that always looks fantastic. Not to mention it displays content in a mobile friendly way that will never warp your site and make it look ugly!
VISUAL COMPOSER- This plugin may very well have been sent from heaven. Visual Composer is something you will never be without once you’ve used it once. This genius plugin keeps your page neat, tidy, and easily changed up at the drop of a hat. It’s also extremely necessary with the mobile BOOM that is happening because it keeps your pages mobile friendly and pretty on any device.
YOAST- This fantastic little plugin kicks your site up to PRO level for sure. Every website needs good Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and this plugin makes creating good keyword SEO for your site quick, easy, and dare I say – fun?!
FORMIDABLE – If you’ve got a service-based business, you absolutely NEED formidable. This plugin gives you customizable forms for your potential clients to fill out and submit so they can inquire to use your awesomely unique services.
WOOCOMMERCE- If your business sells products, this plugin is exactly what you need on your WordPress site. This is what allows people to select 10 of those adorable little doo-dads that you sell in every color available! You can input all of the options for your products along with the price, any special sale, SKU number and all of that information. It basically covers everything you need to keep your inventory in check so you can handle all transactions seamlessly.
SOCIAL MEDIA TOOLS
VIRALTAG – This fabulous website will help you to maintain your Pinterest presence and be efficient!! Are you ready for this? They will help you to bulk upload and edit your images, and then schedule your pins to post whenever you tell it to!! If you don’t think you need ViralTag then I need to learn your secret…do tell!
HOOTSUITE – This is the go-to of anyone starting to strategize their social media efforts and schedule tweets and posts to G+ and LinkedIn pages. While they do offer scheduling of Facebook messages, I recommend using the actual Facebook app for that. Facebook hasn’t allowed 3rd parties to tag other vendors that you work with in your posts, but you can do it in Facebook itself and schedule right there.
EMAIL MARKETING PROGRAMS
MAILCHIMP – Similar to Constant Contact, this is a tool for setting up your email marketing list. It has a lot of the same functionalities, but is a little bit more user friendly. This tool makes it very easy to adjust photos and overall is great for customizing a beautiful email to send to your audience.
CONSTANT CONTACT – A great tool for setting up your email marketing list. While I am not the biggest fan of email marketing, I do believe that growing a list and utilizing it strategically can be effective for some industries. It’s a great way to stay in touch with your audience and hook them on continuing to learn more and more about what’s going on in your business.
MAILERLITE – We LOVE this amazing email marketing tool! If you happen to be part of our email subscription, which BTW you should be because ALL the cool kids are doing it, then you received messages using MailerLite. This tool has so many amazing features (photo editing, subscriber management, tracking results, and more!) that we have fallen head over heels for it.
ALL THINGS PRETTY
INKWELL PRESS – I just ordered my first planner from her inaugural collection for 2015. I can’t wait! But so far, I am thoroughly impressed with her email communications, designs, attention to detail in the planner productions. I can’t wait to receive my InkWell Press Planner in the mail and show it off!
POPPIN – Who doesn’t love all of their color! Poppin has some of the best desk accessories anyone could ask for. Their office supplies come in each and every color. You can mix and match or go with just one. I tend to like the look of mixing white with pops of two other colors. I’m still debating which ones are my favorite, so as soon as you figure yours out – let me know!
STICKER YOU – Who doesn’t remember the fun and excitement of receiving a gold star sticker at home! Now your clients can feel the excitement when they receive a branded sticker, appropriately (and professionally) labeling a cute gift, package or product. Stickers are the easiest way to have a ready-to-go logo, capable of being put on nearly anything!
ERIN CONDREN – You have probably seen her around – her work is so creative. Her brand is vibrant and I am completely drawn in by the endless number of color options and patterns. I have recently purchased many washi tape tabs from her site, I’m personalizing all of them! They work perfectly in my wall calendar and planner. LOVE!
SC STOCKSHOP – This stock photography website is perfect for our market. We tend to work with people in the wedding industry – a pretty industry, which calls for pretty imagery! They make it easy to shop stock images by color so you can make sure you’re always staying on brand.
FRESHBOOKS – Surely, this must be the easiest way to invoice clients, track your expenses and even send out estimates for prospects to approve. Since it’s online, you can sync it with your bank account, credit card… and access it from any computer!
QUICKBOOKS – This business accounting software is up there with sushi as greatest things ever created. Talk about a super easy way to manage and track expenses, stay organized, receive payments and track payroll – We have major HEART EYES for this tool!
GOOGLE MERCHANT CENTER – This is your e-commerce dream come true! If you’re ready to take your e-commerce to the next level, this tool is fantastic. Google Merchant Center allows you to upload your stores inventory to Google so it can become available for Google Shopping.
EXTENSIONS WE LOVE
KLOUT – This extensions is super important in our business! This tool measures how much of an impact you’re making on social media, and who you’re influencing. Measuring your online impact is so important because it tells you if you’re leaving an impression on the right people (AKA – your target market).
BITMOJI- Sometimes you just gotta keep life fun. This super cool extension allows you to make an adorable little personal emoji so that you can put a little piece of you every time you send a message to someone. Your little avatar can be changed with your look and it adds a personal touch to using emojis!
TOGGL – Time flies when you’re having fun, but it’s hard to keep track of that time! We are completely in love with this tool because it tracks the time it takes for us to complete tasks so we know how much time we’re spending on tasks for clients and even sends you a report at the end of the week with the total time spend on each project!
KNEW TAB- This extension keeps you perfectly “in the know”. This cool informational tool gives you the date, weather, stock information, a word of the day, your unread email count & more! It’s the perfect mix of fun & informative.
SCREEN CAPTURE- This extensions takes the perfect picture every time! Of web pages, that is. This tool allows us to take pictures of everything we find that inspires us in one easy click!
PAGE RULER- This extension is quite the handy tool for developers & designers. It allows you to draw a ruler and easily get pixel dimensions on web pages. Quick, easy, useful – We love it.
DROPMARK- There’s nothing we love like organization. This extension organizes all of you links, files & notes attached to images from the internet so you can keep your head on straight when it comes to things that inspire you, or that you want to look in at a later time so that you can keep things neat, tidy & organized.