Set Up Your Online Business Using free and low-cost tools.
| |

The 4 Pillars of an Online Business

If you are a creator, coach, or solopreneur this post will show you some easy, free, and low-cost applications you can use to build a complete online platform that is *OWNED BY YOU.

*There are many platforms that do not give you control & ownership of your content or audience which is not good for a long-term business. The tools and applications I recommend give you ownership of the business you create for delivering your content, services, and products.

Get Hosting For Your Online Business

Imagine hosting as renting space on the internet where your website and other applications of your online business will live. It’s like having a virtual home where your website’s content, products, and services are stored so people can access them.

Hosting providers offer different types of plans, it’s like picking out just the right-sized home with the features you need or want. Good hosting ensures your site loads quickly, stays online, stays secure, and keeps visitors happy.

Hosting is the behind-the-scenes application that makes your website accessible to everyone on the web. I wrote a post about why I use SiteGround for hosting my business.

Hosting for your online business.

Hosting is simply renting space on the internet where your business will live. It’s where you build your digital home.

Hosting provides a space for your digital home for your website’s content, products, and services so people can access them.

Get A Domain Name

Your domain name is the unique address on the internet where people can find your online business. It’s what people type into their browsers to find you. It’s like typing in an address on Google Maps to go to a location.

Your domain name should be easy to remember and reflect what your website is all about. Most of time I encourage people to use their own name. As your business grows and you pivot, you may decide to go in a different direction with your business. Using your own name means you won’t need to change the name of your business. This isn’t always the case but think about the future when you decide.

Domain registrars are like the real estate agents of the internet, helping you secure the perfect web address. Once you’ve got your domain, it’s yours as long as you keep renewing it, giving your online home a personalized and recognizable identity in the vast digital neighborhood. So, whether you’re setting up a personal blog or launching a business site, snagging that perfect domain is the first step to making your mark on the web.

Think of your hosting server as the property where you’ll build your digital home and your domain name as the address where people can find you.

Get a domain name for your online business.

Your domain name should be easy to remember and reflect what your online business is all about. For most solopreneurs I suggest using your own name.

Install WordPress

Installing WordPress is like setting up the interior of your online home without breaking a sweat. It’s a content management system (CMS) that simplifies the process of creating and managing your website’s content, just like arranging furniture to make your place cozy. Many hosting providers like SiteGround offer a one-click WordPress installation, making it as easy as putting together a ready-made piece of furniture.

Once installed, WordPress provides a user-friendly dashboard where you can easily add and edit all of your website’s content, services, and products. WordPress can manage it all from posting to receiving payments online. So, if you want to build a stylish and functional digital home, WordPress is the master designer that makes it happen!

Install WordPress for your online business.

WordPress is the tool you use to design and decorate your digital home. It’s how your online business is presented to the world.

If you want to build a stylish and functional digital home from posting to taking payments online, WordPress is the handy designer that makes it happen!

Build A Website

Your website serves as the front door to your digital home, welcoming visitors into the heart of your online presence. Just as a front door sets the tone for the entire house, your website’s design, layout, and content provide the first impression for visitors. It’s the entry point where potential customers or clients can feel your brand, making it crucial to create a welcoming and memorable experience. Just as you would ensure your physical front door is well-maintained and inviting, your website should be visually appealing, easy to navigate, and reflect of your brand identity.

Beyond just aesthetics, your website functions as more than just a front door; it’s also the central hub where visitors can explore, discover, and engage with your content, products, or services. Just as guests in your physical home move from room to room, your website guides visitors through different sections, providing valuable information, entertainment, or solutions tailored to their needs. Whether they’re browsing your blog, shopping in your online store, or reaching out through a contact form, your website acts as the digital living space where meaningful interactions take place.

Your website serves as the front door to your digital home, welcoming visitors into the heart of your online presence.

Build a website for your online business

Beyond aesthetics, your website functions as more than just a front door; it’s also the central hub where visitors can explore, discover, and engage with your content, products, or services.

Install Plugins For Site Functionality

Installing the right plugins for your online business is like customizing your digital toolkit, adding powerful functionalities that enhance the overall performance of your website. It’s the equivalent of selecting the perfect apps for your smartphone, tailored to meet the specific needs of your business. Whether it’s improving SEO, optimizing site speed, adding memberships and course functions, or integrating e-commerce features, plugins provide a seamless way to enhance your online presence.

Platforms like WordPress offer a vast library of plugins, allowing you to easily extend the capabilities of your website without complex coding. Think of it as building a digital Swiss Army knife, where each plugin serves a unique purpose, making your site more efficient and user-friendly. By choosing the right plugins, you streamline processes, boost functionality, and ensure your online business operates at its full potential. So, get ready to transform your website into a well-equipped online powerhouse with the perfect set of plugins!

Online business: Add plugins to your WordPress website.

Plugins are the tools that enhance your digital home, just like kitchen gadgets can elevate your cooking experience.

Whether it’s improving SEO, optimizing site speed, adding an online store, memberships, or courses, plugins provide a seamless way to enhance your online presence and customer experience.

Set Up A Professional Email Address

Securing a professional email attached to your domain name is like putting out a unique and personalized mailbox. Even though you run your online business from home, it is still a business. Having an email address that matches your domain (like yourname@yourwebsite.com) adds a touch of credibility and showcases a polished, cohesive brand image.

Many domain registrars and hosting providers offer email hosting services, making it a seamless process. With a professional email, you not only look the part but also establish trust with clients, collaborators, and visitors. It’s the virtual handshake that lets everyone know you mean business and are ready to bring your unique offerings to the digital stage. So, suit up your email, and show the world you mean business with your professionalism.

Just like homes with unique mailboxes standout in their neighborhood, your personalized email address helps your digital home stand out online.

Get a professional email for your online business.

Having a professional email for your online business such as yourname@yourdomain.com sets the tone for your brand, welcoming clients with a polished and trustworthy image.

Set Up A Blog

Launching a blog for your online business is like opening up a lively conversation hub in the heart of your digital storefront. It’s where you get to share your expertise, tell your brand story, and connect with your audience on a more personal level. Setting up a blog, whether on your business website or a dedicated platform, is like inviting customers into a cozy space where they can discover valuable insights, tips, and updates about your products or services.

It’s not just about showcasing what you offer but creating a community around your brand. Blogging lets you build relationships, boost your website’s SEO, and establish yourself as an authority in your industry. So, think of your blog as the friendly corner cafe where people gather to learn, engage, and become a part of your business journey. Get ready to share your story and create a dynamic space that resonates with your audience!

Set up a blog for your online business.

Blogging is like writing letters to people you want to connect with. It really helps you to build relationships in your digital world.

Blogging regularly helps you to stay in touch with your audience, boost your website’s SEO, and establish yourself as an authority. Each new post is like a personal letter that connects you to your online friends.

Build A Membership Site

Creating a membership site for your online business is like designing a cozy corner in your digital home. It’s where you invite subscribers to join your exclusive community, offering them access to a treasure trove of valuable content, personalized services, and ongoing support.

Just like decorating a welcoming space in your physical home, you carefully curate the member experience, ensuring that every interaction feels warm, inviting, and tailored to their needs. And as members gather around the virtual fireplace, sharing ideas, insights, and experiences, they become more than just subscribers – they become cherished members of your online family, fostering a sense of belonging and camaraderie that transforms your digital space into a true home away from home.

Build a membership site for your online business.

Creating a membership site for your online business is like designing a cozy corner in your digital home that is invitation only.

Members become more than just subscribers – they become cherished members of your online family, fostering a sense of belonging and camaraderie that transforms your digital space into a true home away from home.

Build A Course

Creating an online course for your online business is like setting up a DIY studio in your digital garage. Students enroll, eager to dive into a world of self-paced learning, where they can explore new skills and techniques at their own pace. With each module, they unlock valuable knowledge and practical insights, transforming their curiosity into expertise. Just like a well-equipped studio, the online course provides all the tools and resources needed for students to unleash their creativity and achieve their learning goals with confidence and independence.

With various online platforms and tools, you can easily set up a course, complete with multimedia elements, quizzes, and interactive components. Think of it as becoming the digital mentor, guiding your audience through a transformative learning journey. Whether it’s a skill enhancement module or industry insights, offering a course not only positions you as an authority but also adds significant value to your brand. Get ready to be the educator who not only sells products or services but empowers your audience to thrive in their respective fields.

Creating an online course for your online business is like setting up a DIY studio in your digital garage.

Build a course for your online business.

Think of it as becoming the digital mentor, guiding your audience through a transformative learning journey.

Create A Podcast

Launching a podcast for your online business is like hosting a karaoke party in your digital lounge. As the host, you set the stage for an engaging experience, welcoming listeners to join in for a fun-filled session of entertainment and enlightenment. Each episode is like a song choice, carefully selected to resonate with your audience and keep them tapping their feet (or nodding their heads) along.

Just like at a karaoke party, there’s something for everyone. You might kick things off with an upbeat number – perhaps a lively discussion about industry trends or exciting developments in your niche. Then, you transition into a heartfelt ballad – a deep dive into a topic of interest or an interview with a special guest. And of course, no karaoke party (or podcast) would be complete without a few crowd favorites – those episodes that keep listeners coming back for more, eagerly anticipating the next hit single.

Create a podcast for your online business.

Launching a podcast for your online business is like inviting people over for a karaoke party.

Each episode is like a song choice, carefully selected to resonate with your audience and keep them tapping their feet (or nodding their heads) along.

Create Graphics

Designing graphics for your online business is like adding vibrant artwork to your storefront, instantly capturing the attention and imagination of your audience. It’s the visual language that communicates your brand’s personality, values, and offerings. Creating compelling graphics involves selecting eye-catching colors, crafting a distinctive logo, and designing engaging visuals for your website, social media, and marketing materials. Just as a well-designed storefront attracts passersby, visually appealing graphics draw in online visitors and create a memorable brand image.

With user-friendly tools like Canva, you don’t need to be a design expert to craft professional-looking visuals. Think of it as curating a digital art gallery that tells the story of your business. Whether it’s social media posts, banners, or promotional materials, investing in captivating graphics ensures your online presence is not only informative but visually captivating, leaving a lasting impression on your audience. Get ready to paint your brand’s narrative with a palette of stunning graphics!

With user-friendly tools like Canva, you don’t need to be a design expert to craft professional-looking visuals.

Online business: create graphics and visuals.

Think of it as curating a digital art gallery that tells the story of your business.

Create Videos

Creating videos for your online business is like hosting a fun game night in your digital den. Just like a skilled game master, you have the opportunity to set the stage, guide the action, and keep your audience engaged from start to finish.

With each video, you’re not just presenting information – you’re inviting viewers to participate in an interactive experience. Whether you’re sharing strategies, solving puzzles, or diving into friendly competitions, you’re creating a lively atmosphere where everyone feels included and entertained.

But the best part of hosting a game night – or creating videos for your online business – is the sense of connection it fosters. Just like gathering with friends for a night of fun, your videos bring people together, sparking conversations, igniting laughter, and building a community of fans who eagerly anticipate your next gaming adventure.

So grab your controllers, roll the dice, and get ready to level up your content creation game – because with each video, you’re not just entertaining your audience, you’re creating memories that last a lifetime.

Create videos for your online business.

Creating videos for your online business is like hosting a fun game night in your digital den.

With each video, you’re not just presenting information – you’re inviting viewers to participate in an interactive experience.

Create Tutorials

Developing tutorials for your online business is like becoming a friendly guide, helping your audience navigate and master aspects related to your products or services. It’s a thoughtful way to provide step-by-step instructions, share expertise, and empower your customers. Crafting effective tutorials involves breaking down complex processes into manageable steps, using clear and concise language, and incorporating visuals to enhance understanding.

With platforms like YouTube, blogs, or dedicated tutorial sections on your website, you can easily share valuable knowledge. Think of it as becoming the go-to mentor in your industry, offering solutions and insights that make your products or services more accessible and user-friendly. Tutorials not only showcase your expertise but also establish your brand as a helpful resource. So, get ready to be the guiding hand that turns customers into confident users, fostering a sense of loyalty and trust in your online business!

With platforms like YouTube, blogs, or dedicated tutorial sections on your website, you can easily share valuable knowledge.

Online Business: Create Tutorials

Think of it as becoming the go-to mentor in your industry, offering solutions and insights that make your products or services more accessible and user-friendly. Tutorials not only showcase your expertise but also establish your brand as a helpful resource.

Create Digital Products

Creating digital products for your online business is like crafting virtual treasures that customers can access anytime, anywhere. It’s the art of packaging your expertise, creativity, or unique offerings into downloadable or online-accessible formats. Whether it’s e-books, online courses, software, or digital art, developing these products allows you to share your value with a global audience.

Building digital products involves careful planning, creating compelling content, and ensuring a seamless delivery experience. Platforms like Etsy, Gumroad, or your own website can serve as digital marketplaces. Think of it as creating a virtual shelf where customers can explore and purchase your innovative creations. Digital products not only expand your business reach but also provide scalable and passive income opportunities. So, get ready to transform your expertise into digital delights, offering valuable solutions to your audience and establishing your brand as a digital trailblazer!

Digital products are like the art and photos you use to represent your personal style in your home; they reflect your uniqueness and serve a specific purpose.

Think of it as creating a virtual shelf where your customers can explore and purchase your innovative creations. Digital products not only expand your business reach but also provide scalable and passive income opportunities.

Build An Online Store

Establishing an online store for your business is like opening a 24/7 digital marketplace, allowing customers to explore and purchase your products at their convenience. It’s the virtual storefront where you showcase your offerings in an organized and visually appealing manner. Building an online store involves selecting a user-friendly platform, customizing the design to align with your brand, and setting up product listings with compelling descriptions and high-quality images.

With e-commerce platforms like Shopify, WooCommerce, or BigCommerce, you can create a professional and secure online space for your business. Think of it as crafting a welcoming space where customers can browse, select items, and seamlessly proceed to checkout. An online store not only expands your reach beyond geographical boundaries but also provides a centralized hub for customer interactions, order management, and payment processing. Get ready to transform your website into a bustling digital marketplace, making shopping a delightful experience for your online visitors!

Build an online store for your online business.

Your digital storefront should be as welcoming as your home – letting your online guests know just how much your appreciate their presence.

Just as guests feel at ease when they step into a well-decorated home, online visitors are more likely to engage and make purchases in a thoughtfully designed digital storefront.

Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing stands as a lucrative avenue for coaches, content creators, and solopreneurs seeking to monetize their online presence. It serves as a strategic partnership that leverages your credibility and audience to promote products or services relevant to your niche. By affiliating with reputable brands or products aligned with your expertise or topic, you not only earn passive income but also enhance your own authority. Unlike traditional advertising, affiliate marketing allows for a more organic integration of product recommendations within your content. The low barrier to entry and minimal upfront investment makes it an accessible option to create revenue streams as you build up your content, services, and products.

With affiliate marketing, you can monetize your efforts without the need to create your own products right away or manage inventory. This frees up time and resources to concentrate on your core activities. Overall, affiliate marketing empowers online business owners to monetize their expertise and audience while maintaining control over their brand and content.

Build an online store for your online business.

Affiliate marketing makes earning income easier by allowing you to monetize your online business without having to create your own products.

Affiliate marketing turns your passion into profit, letting you earn by recommending products you love to your audience, while you are building and growing your business.

Payment Systems

For online coaches, creators, and solopreneurs, navigating the world of payment systems can feel overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be! Traditional payment processors like PayPal, Stripe, and Square offer easy-to-use solutions for accepting credit cards, debit cards, and bank transfers, making transactions a breeze for both you and your clients. Plus, digital wallets like Apple Pay and Google Pay provide a seamless checkout experience, allowing customers to pay with just a few taps on their phones—super convenient, right?

But wait, there’s more! Subscription and membership platforms such as Patreon, Memberful, and Substack let you monetize your expertise and content through recurring payments. You can offer exclusive perks and rewards to your loyal subscribers, creating a sense of community and connection. And if you’ve got a big project or idea you need funding for, crowdfunding platforms like Kickstarter and Indiegogo are there to help you rally support from backers in exchange for cool rewards. With a mix of these payment systems tailored to your needs, you’ll be monetizing like a pro and growing your online business in no time!

Build an online store for your online business.

With so many payment systems available you can easily transform your online business and seamlessly accept payments from customers worldwide

Online payment systems facilitate transactions between buyers and sellers by securely processing electronic payments, typically through credit cards, debit cards, digital wallets, or bank transfers.

Sales Funnel

Creating an online sales funnel is like hosting a housewarming party for your digital storefront. You invite guests with targeted ads, social posts, and emails, welcoming them warmly as they arrive on your landing page.

Guiding them through your website’s pages is like giving a tour of your home, showcasing products and services along the way. With each step, you offer special deals and personalized recommendations, making their journey enjoyable and rewarding. When they find something they love, you make checkout easy, ensuring they leave satisfied and eager to share their experience with others.

Creating an online sales funnel is like throwing a housewarming party for your digital storefront.

Build a sales funnel for your online business.

An effective funnel is not just about making a sale it’s also about cultivating a relationship and ensuring a positive and memorable experience for your customers.

Create Your Social Media Accounts

Social media for your online business is like hosting a vibrant block party in your digital neighborhood. Just as you’d mingle with neighbors, social media allows you to engage with your audience, fostering connections and conversations.

Decorating your digital space with engaging content is like setting up lively activities at the block party, drawing people in and encouraging participation. And much like a successful block party it boosts community spirit. Effectively leveraging social media can strengthen your online presence and foster a sense of belonging among your followers.

Create social media accounts for your online business.

Social media for your online business is like hosting a vibrant block party in your digital neighborhood.

Effectively leveraging social media can strengthen your online presence and foster a sense of belonging among your followers.

READ MORE

Email Marketing

Email marketing for your online business is like curating a private members-only club. Just as you’d carefully select individuals who align with your club’s values and interests, email marketing allows you to target subscribers who resonate with your personal brand.

Your emails serve as exclusive invitations, offering members access to valuable content, special promotions, and insider updates. Much like belonging to an esteemed club fosters a sense of exclusivity and belonging, effective email marketing cultivates a loyal community of subscribers who feel privileged to be part of your inner circle.

The service I choose to manage my email marketing is Flodesk. Here are a few reasons why, but I also wrote a post about this service:

  • Flodesk offers intuitive drag-and-drop design features for effortlessly creating visually stunning emails.
  • Stylish templates and customizable options ensure emails reflect your brand’s unique personality.
  • Automation tools streamline the process, allowing you to set up email sequences and workflows with ease.
  • With Flodesk, you can deliver timely and targeted communication, enhancing engagement with your audience.

Email marketing for your online business is like cooking up a special recipe for your friends, making them feel special.

Set up email marketing for your online business.

You’re not just sending emails – you’re crafting memorable experiences that keep your audience engaged and eager for more.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *