Earlier this week I had a lengthy chat with an old friend that asked me “Cesar, what online tools do you recommend to start an online business?”
I will try to summarize the information I provided him and share it with you all.
Many will recommend you to start with a website builder. Not me, I would say start with a WordPress theme. WordPress has a variety of themes that can suit your business. What I especially like about WordPress is their plugins features. An example of a plugin that may help your audience feel exclusive is the “membership like” plugin. This plugin will help you create few paid membership options. This is significant if you are thinking of creating a newspaper look-a-like site with exclusive articles.
If you are starting an e-commerce platform, you will be considering using a payment gateway. Research what is the right platform for you. It must fulfill your needs such as currency, type of payment and information you need to collect from your customer.
Get the right training:
You may find WordPress difficult to understand. To resolve this issue, I also recommend you to start with Lynda.com. They have a variety of tutorials that help you navigate from building a site with pages, posts, adding videos and images. Having knowledge on CSS, Java, and HTML can contribute to customize your theme further.
I always say: “WordPress is like surprise bag. You must explore each theme to see what it brings”
Start with the basics:
Always start with the basics, especially when you are testing the market. When you are searching for domain and hosting, I would recommend to get it for the year! Sometimes a domain can be under $20.00 depending on the site and a year of hosting can be around $150.00 – both Canadian dollars.
Communicating with your vendors, customers, and the general public is necessary. If you do not have your website set up, you can still set up your email by using a small business account with Google called the G-Suit, which is about $5.00 Canadian per user. It will use your domain name to email, anyone, you need, as well as give you other perks for your business!
Of course any business requires a master plan. Never underestimate a good brainstorming session and of course your business plan!
What tools have helped you? Share below!