SYSTEMS. Systems. OMG systems. Tools for entrepreneurs can be the biggest help for us, but also such a nightmare!

For those of you that are brand new to the online space, finding the right systems can be a real head ache and that is why I wanted to share my favorite systems and suppliers with you!

I’ve seen my fair share of systems in my career, and I know what to look for in a good supplier. I also know how overwhelming it can be to try to find the best solution through Google.

That’s why I’ve created a list for you of the best systems I recommend for new online entrepreneurs, based on the following criteria:

  • Fair price (free, if possible)
  • Easy to use and easy to learn
  • Not too overwhelming in terms of what the system offers
  • Up to date with the latest trends in online land
  • Solid user base (so you know the system won’t disappear and there is a knowledge base available).

Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. I ONLY included systems in my list that I am using today (or have been using in the past and no longer need). I’ve tried tons of solutions for EACH of the topics I mention in the list and I added only options to my list that I 100% can recommend, even to newbie online entrepreneurs.

Website & ecommerce tools

So you want to start a website, here’s what you will need: website hosting (the place where your website “lives”), a content management system (the system where you create your website), a domain name, a theme (the thing that makes your website look good), an ecommerce platform if you want to sell online, and a payment platform if you want to sell online.

Website hosting: Siteground

For website hosting, I recommend Siteground. Why? Because they have the BEST customer service. Fast, friendly and very knowledgeable (which is rare in the online industry). Their prices are super low and my website has never been down. The only disadvantage of Siteground is that their system back end is a bit complicated for beginners. But, their customer service will always help and they are happy to fix things for you, and that is an absolute life saver.

Nerdy as it may seem, I really like Siteground. They are an example of what great customer service means and how you can grow your business through word of mouth.

Domain names: Siteground

For buying your domain names, I also recommend Siteground? Why? Because it is easiest and best to host your domain with the same company where you host your website. If you have 2 different companies then they can blame each other when there is a technical issue, when you use just 1, you can just contact them and they will fix it. And Siteground will fix it!

Website for service-based entrepreneurs: WordPress with Divi

For creating a website, I recommend WordPress. It is free (comes with your hosting), it is SUPER flexible and it can basically do anything. It has a bit of a learning curve though. 

Every WordPress website needs a theme. The theme defines what your website will look like. I am a bit of a theme addict, and I’ve bought quite a few themes, and I can hands down recommend Divi. Divi is a theme, but also a drag and drop website builder, that makes it very easy to build beautiful web pages quickly. You can buy a yearly subscription to Divi ($89) or a lifelong license ($249). Read more about why I love Divi here.

ps. If you are super non-techy, then you could consider Squarespace or Wix, or outsourcing your website building to a wordpress specialist. But if you are willing to spend a day learning wordpress, then you will be good to go and you can create a fabulous website that ranks well in Google and that can be extended to be able to do basically anything!

 

Website for product-based entrepreneurs: Woocommerce or Shopify
  • If you want to start a web shop with physical products and quite a large product portfolio, you are not too tech savvy AND you want to sell on mobile and on social media, then Shopify is the perfect solution for your needs. It is super easy to set up, it integrates with Facebook and Instagram and it follows all the latest developments in ecommerce.
  • If you want to sell a few products on your website / blog OR if you are super tech savvy and you want to make your store look exactly like your vision, then woocommerce is a great option. Woocommerce is a free plugin for WordPress that you can get with your Siteground hosting subscription. 
Payment solution (credit cards etc): Stripe
  • If you want to start a web shop with physical products and quite a large product portfolio, you are not too tech savvy AND you want to sell on mobile and on social media, then Shopify is the perfect solution for your needs. It is super easy to set up, it integrates with Facebook and Instagram and it follows all the latest developments in ecommerce.
  • If you want to sell a few products on your website / blog OR if you are super tech savvy and you want to make your store look exactly like your vision, then woocommerce is a great option. Woocommerce is a free plugin for WordPress that you can get with your Siteground hosting subscription.

Legal Tools

Privacy Policy: Iubenda

OMG I HATE legal stuff and it is so expensive to have lawyers draw up documents. That is why I adore iubenda. It is a ready made website solution that allows you to create a custom privacy policy based on the system you use, for just $27 per year. It also offers cookie policy and it is GDPR proof. Love it. My link will get you 10% off.

Cookie policy & consent: Iubenda

Iubenda will generate a GDPR proof cookie consent and cookie policy for you. This is free if you also use their Privacy Policy tool (see above). My link will get you 10% off the annual subscription fee for Privacy Policy plus Cookie Policy plus Cookie Consent.

Social Media Content & Planning 

Creating pins / instagram pics / Facebook pics / banners of any kind

Canvaaaaa! If you are creating your own designs for Social Media or your website, then Canva is an absolute life saver. I use it every single day. There is a free version and  paid version that gives you access to a database of free images and let’s you store your brand colors and fonts. The paid version is well worth the money if you use it every day like me!

Resizing images: resizeimage

Sometimes you want to resize your images to make them smaller for your website. I use resizeimage for that.

Social Media Scheduling: Smarterqueue

Smarterqueue is a super nifty app that let’s you recycle your content. It can automatically post your content to Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Instagram and Pinterest. You create a queue of posts and once the queue has been posted, it will start posting again, so you can make the most use of your content! 

When you try Smarterqueue via my referal link, you will get double the time for your free trial!

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Video Tools

Editing videos: Camtasia

Editing videos takes a lot of time and it is worth investing in a tool that makes life easier… I decided to purchase Camtasia (for Mac) and I haven’t regretted it! I use it to crop videos, edit them, add overlays, add subtitles, and even to create GIFs! 

Livestreaming videos with screenshare or interview: Manycam

There are a few tools out there that allow you to do a screenshare or interview on live video, and they require a monthly subscription. As a super affordable alternative, I recommend manycam! It is only $29 (one off) and it allows you to share your screen, livestream a zoom interview, add overlays to your videos, even live and much more. Not super easy, but worth the investment if you want to do more advanced things in your videos! You can livestream to Facebook and Youtube simultaniously by the way!

Email marketing tools

The first and most important recommendation I have about email marketing systems is: do not go with Mailchimp just because it is free! Because honestly, that is the only positive thing I hear users say about Mailchimp. If you are serious about your email marketing efforts, then I highly recommend you invest in a paid tool

 

Easy email marketing: Convertkit

If you like easy and fast, then Convertkit is the perfect solution for you. It is easy to learn and easy to implement and it does everything you need: forms to capture email addresses, delivery of your lead magnets through email, email sequences and automations.

Complicated email marketing with fancy automations: ActiveCampaign

If you are details oriented and you love creating a fully automated and complex email automation (with lots of if…then…else statements), then ActiveCampaign is for you. It can do more than Convertkit and it has CRM functionality too. What I also like about ActiveCampaign is that it can send out emails in the users’ timezone, which is nice if you have a global audience. And their customer service is excellent.

It is however more complicated than Convertkit and it will take more time to create an email marketing campaign.

 

Coaching & Courses

Here are my recommendations for coaches and course creators:

Online Call Scheduling: Acuity

Acuity is one of my favorite tools. It allows you to let clients automatically schedule a meeting in your calendar. You can create categories that each have their own availability. So for example, if you want sales calls only on Mondays, then acuity will only show Mondays for sales calls, but can show any other day for other calls. It syncs with your calendar (I use my gmail calender) and it can also take payments for paid calls (integrated with Stripe, see above under “website”.)

Notes and actions per client: Trello

I use a old fashioned paper notebook to take notes during client meetings. For some of my clients, I also use trello, which is an online planning tool where you can store actions on “sticky notes”. It is also fabulous for managing your own ideas and actions by the way!

Client calls: zoom

Zoom is an alternative for Skype, and in my experience much more stable with better sound and video quality. The free version works perfectly for client calls!

Courses & Memberships: Kajabi

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Files, Actions and productivity 

Cloud solution to store all your files: dropbox

I use dropbox to store all my files, especially the larger ones like videos. You can use “smart syncing”, which means that files won’t be saved on your computer, but you will still be able to see them, so you always know which docs you actually have.

Collecting ideas: trello

Trello is an online sticky notes tool that allows you to collect and structure ideas and actions on lists and boards. You can use it with a team and there is a ton of functionality to help you get organized, like labels, deadlines, color codes, stickers and more. Highly recommended, try it now if you have never tried it!

Client calls: zoom

Zoom is an alternative for Skype, and in my experience much more stable with better sound and video quality. The free version works perfectly for client calls!