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Resources: Things I Use to Help My Freelance Writing & Affiliate Marketing Biz Operate Smoothly

Note: I am an affiliate for most of the products and services listed here. I use / have used most of them for years and still do to this day. Read my affiliate disclosure policy for full details.

Who Do You Recommend for This? How Can I Get That? Should I Use Them?

People ask me all the time about various aspects of running a web business, eg: what web hosting company to use; who designed my website; which newsletter service provider I recommend; etc. So, I created this page as a handy reference guide.

Note: The gold stars indicate the resources you need to invest in right away if you want to be succcessful. You can add the others as your online business grows.

Web Hosting

This, my main site, is hosted with HostGator. I’ve been with them since 2010 and here’s why. FYI, here’s a step-by-step tutorial on how to start a WordPress blog with HostGator.

I also have some sites hosted with Bluehost.

And, because I believe in diversification of web hosting companies and the above two are EIG-owned companies (info in this post on why this is important); I …

Recommend A2 Hosting.

Domain Name Registration

I have domain names registered with several companies (eg, Bluehost), but Namecheap is my go-to company of choice. I’ve registered dozens of domain names with them since 2007, when I first became a customer.

As of this writing, I currently have about a dozen domain names registered with them.

I like them because they’re affordable, their control panel is easy to navigate, and you can pay quickly and easily via PayPal. They make managing domain names easy, in my opinion.

Email Subscriber List Management Service Provider

I use AWeber; have since 2009. Although the set-up of their forms can be a bit sucky, their customer service is second to none.

They once recovered almost 2,500 subscriber names I lost due to an outsourcer I used who sabotaged my account. For this alone, I will always be loyal to them.

FYI, here’s an in-depth tutorial on how to set up your AWeber account (with graphics).

Grow Your Email/Subscriber List FAST

I use Udimi to buy solo ads. It costs, but is a quick way to start getting subscribers onto your list.

Web Design / WordPress

This site uses the Genesis framework, and is a WordPress blog. Here are some GORGEOUS WordPress themes to choose from to get a professional look. Mine was customized by my web designer.

Sell Ebooks from Your Site

I use and recommend e-Junkie; have since 2008. I have something like 70 ebooks I sell via the site, and have never had a problem with them. Learn more about selling with e-Junkie.

Need help with tech things like web design, Photoshop, ebook covers, etc.?

I use Fiverr to find giggers (the way freelancers are referred to on the site) to do stuff I either don’t know how to do (eg, a WordPress install), or that I don’t have time to do (eg, social media marketing for my ebooks/eclasses). It’s an ingenious resource.

Create Your Own Ebook Covers

I use MyECoverMaker to create simple ebook covers like this and this. I’ve used used them since 2010. For more complicated artwork like this (that required Photoshop), I hire someone from Fiverr because I never learned Photoshop — and have no desire to.

See the graphic in this post (the one with the honey on the lips)? Created with MyECoverMaker.

You see, in addition to creating all kinds of ebook covers, with MyECoverMaker, you can create banners, DVD covers, tablet covers, CD covers, iPhone and iPod covers, greeting cards, HDTV covers and so much more. And they can be laying down, standing up, twisted to the side, etc. So it’s not just for “ebooks.”

At the point in your freelance biz where you need to hire help? 

I recommend Gina Horkey’s referral program for VAs to find someone with the skill set you need, and who you can trust.

Create Passive Income as a Writer: Make Money in Affiliate Marketing

Blogger Who Earns Over $100,000 per MONTH! Who wouldn’t want to see how that’s done. I highly recommend Michelle Schroeder-Gardner’s Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing ecourse, for all the reasons listed in this review — and more.

Get Paid Twice: FYI, ShareaSale is a great affiliate marketplace to start with. It has thousands of products and services across hundreds of niches you can start promoting right away. They’re super easy to sign up with and pay you in two ways — on specific products you promote, and on leads you send their way. Can’t beat that!

Make Money Blogging on a Topic You Love: Ever wished you could make money from a topic you’re passionate about, eg, pets, martial arts, gardening, travel, etc.? Then you need to know about AuthorityHacker.  The guys behind it founded a successful digital marketing (SEO) agency, and put their extensive knowledge to use to help niche bloggers start high-traffic, money-making sites — usually in mere months.

As a SEO expert myself — I’ve used my knowledge to sell tens of thousands of dollars of my own products and affiliate products — I know it works. The case studies on the site will blow you away, like the one where a guy built a site earning over $100,000 per year talking about how to help people become better dog owners. Yep, that simple of a concept earns him over six figures per year.

Drive Traffic to Your Blog

Keyword research tool: Quickly discover hundreds of words and phrases that web suerfers are googling (keywords/keyword phrases) to put in your copy and drive more traffic to your site.

Pinterest: It’s one of the largest drivers of traffic to many blogs these days. Learn how to drive 10,000 to 100,000 visitors per month to your blog.

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