It took me such a long time to piece together the jigsaw puzzle when it came to everything I needed for running my business, especially when your business is online.
The stress this caused and the time wasted trying to just figure it out on my own over the years has been huge. After many years of trying different platforms and online tools, I want to share with you the tools that have helped me and that work for me in the hope that if you are setting up an online business or have an online business but struggling to make it all work that these help you in some way.
Social Media Post Images - Canva.com has always been my go to place for creating images. With a free option too, you can also keep your design costs to a minimum and create beautiful graphics. Whether you need an image for Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn or other social media platforms, Canva is the place to go. It also has so many free templates that you can use if you're looking to create posters, business cards, YouTube thumbnails...all in one place.
Social Media Calendar - OMG, this is a big one. I used to feel so overwhelmed with trying to figure out what to write in my posts as I couldn't afford to pay someone to look after my social media...I just felt tied to it. In the beginning, it would take me hours just to write one post that would go up on Facebook so when you are on multiple platforms you can feel like you just spend all day on it. Having a plan, a calendar of what to write about which is of benefit to my clients has saved me so much time and allowed me to "get in and get out" of the social media platforms and focus on the business. As a small business, you don't want to be spending all of your time on social media so having the tools is key. I don't want you spending all your time on social media either so when I found this lady @AngieGensler and her social media tools, this just felt like a game changer for me as it allowed me to give more to my clients, and provide more value without spending hours on social media. Feel free to check it out here - Best Social Media Calendar
Stripe for Money - www.stripe.com - When I first started running my business, everything was in cash, because it seemed easier. Part of my business was running fitness classes in the community and clients would pay on the door. Sounds simple doesn't it. Well, when you look at the bigger picture it isn't. Filling in spreadsheets after classes, travelling to the bank to pay money in, putting accounts etc together was a nightmare. And if you take into consideration now the germs that can pass between money. Just taking cash isn't the best option! Every time it came to doing my accounts it was a major headache and would take so much time to sort out. So setting up Stripe with a booking system (I will go into that next) was key to making life easier.
The great thing with Stripe is you have an app which goes into detail about income generated each week, month, quarter, year to date. You can view payments received, new customers, when money is due in your account and add multiple accounts so if you have different income streams you can set it up to separate them. At the end of the year, you can export this information and send it over to your accountant. So much easier and saves so much time.
Bookwhen Booking System - www.bookwhen.com - If you have a business that requires clients to book on then I would recommend Bookwhen. I have used this booking system for several years now. It allows me to list my classes, set maximum numbers of attendees, link it to ZOOM for online classes, provide me with client details, insert parQ forms all in one place. Again, in the beginning I was just taking a note of who was at class and this was such a time suck.
Kajabi - Website - For so many years I was working with different platforms for my business. I was using MailChimp for my emails and newsletters, had a separate website for enquiries and no option to build courses or membership sites.
After so many hard years of trying to manage it all, I knew I needed to invest in a system that would offer everything in one place and that would allow me to set up systems and automations to save me time. This is where Kajabi has just blown me out of the water with its functions and offerings. Within Kajabi, I have my website, I have my email marketing, I have access to creating landing pages, blogs, sales funnels, sales pages, create my own courses and membership sites, link payment options for webinars, events and one to one coaching calls, undertake online business training included in the price...the list is endless.
The great thing is if you are wanting to take your own business online, whether that be as a fitness professional, cake maker, hairdresser, accountant, HR provider, sales trainer...whatever your area of expertise, this platform gives you the ability to do that.
As a small business, setting up systems is key otherwise you will find yourself working in the business rather than on it.
I hope this blog helps you to build your online business systems.
I use these tools every day and without them I don't think I would still be here as a business.