“These are services that I wouldn’t be without as an Internet marketer…”
Here is a list of basic services that I wouldn’t be without as an Internet marketer.
Please note that the services I use and recommend are listed in alphabetical order – not in order of importance. If you are just starting out, the “must-haves” are marked with ***, although in time you will likely discover that they are all “must-haves”. 🙂
- Autoresponder ***
- Blog Templates and Themes ***
- Graphics / Stock Photography
- Hosting Service***
- Market Research Services
- Marketing & Advertising Services
- Outsourcing Services (Find Programmers, Designers and Writers)
- Webinar & Meeting Services
1. Autoresponder Service ***
If you don’t build a list, you’re not building a business — pure and simple. Your list will become your most important business asset.
And don’t even consider building that list without the services of a third-party autoresponder service. My autoresponder of choice is Aweber — no holds barred. I’ve been doing business with them for almost 10 years (at the time of writing) and they’ve never lost a lead and their service is fabulous. And yes, I have sampled a number of the other services, but always came back to Aweber. Sign up for Aweber Autoresponder now or read my review. More autoresponder service options are listed here.
2. Blog Template / Theme Suppliers
3. Graphics and Photos
You can add visual interest to your blog posts as well as give your readers clues about content by adding clipart, graphics and photos. Don’t be tempted however to copy and use any image that you find online. Most images often are copyright protected, and you need permission before you can use them on your site, and many webmasters will not give you permission to use their images.
So, rather than spend time emailing other webmasters and then waiting for permission, I highly recommend using iStockPhoto where you can pick up images for as little as $1 a piece.
4. Hosting Service ***
You’ve taken the plunge and decided to get your own website. Excellent!!! Find out which hosting services I currently recommend for having top-notch features and services.
If you’re still debating whether or not you actually need a web site, please consult the section on Site Building which answers questions such as “Do I Really Need My Own Web Site?” and includes cautions against using some site builder packages.
5. Keyword & Niche Market Research
Which keyword phrase is more popular? “Dog training collar” or the more generic “dog obedience training“? Don’t know? Knowing which keyword phrase gets the most searches is very important if you want to reach the largest possible audience and hence, increase your sales.
I use and recommend a service called Wordtracker, which lets you optimize your website content by finding the most popular keywords. You can also use Wordtracker to generate thousands of relevant keywords to improve your organic and PPC search campaigns. Last but not least, most marketers use Wordtracker to research online markets and find niche opportunities before they spend valuable time and money building a site around a niche market that may be too small to be worthwhile, or worse not even exist.
Wordtracker offers a FREE trial service, which for starters, may be all you need.
6. Marketing and Advertising Services
Don’t waste days trying to optimize each of your articles for keyword density only to show up on the 30th page of Google search results after a month.
Write the article, then drive traffic to it today with pay-per-click advertising. Sure, it costs money to advertise your site, but in many cases it will cost only pennies per click and the return on your investment should be many, many times greater.
To learn more about how effective PPC (pay-per-click) advertising will be for your online business, please check out the articles in our PPC marketing section.
7. Outsourcing Work to Programmers, Designers and Writers
Having trouble getting that plugin work? Do you want to tweak your Amember membership software but don’t know where to begin – or are scared that you might break something?
Every so often there will probably be something you want to accomplish with your site that you just don’t know how to do — or don’t have time for. For example, although I like to do basic design changes to my own websites, I will not even attempt to design an ebook or report cover. For that work, I prefer to use professionals such as Vaughan Davidson of Killer Covers Design Service.
If the company that sold you the script offers only installation services but leaves ‘tweaking’ up to the individual webmaster, it’s time to hire a professional programmer. I’ve had good luck hiring programmers and other freelancers through Freelancer and Fiverr.
Here are a few of the categories under which you can post jobs for freelancers:
- Data Entry
- Graphic Design
- Multimedia Script Installation
- System Admin
- Website Design
As you can see, the freelancers’ skills aren’t limited to programming. So, for example, if you wanted to have 25 articles ghost-written for one of your sites, you can post jobs for that type of work as well.
8. Webinar and Online Meeting Services
My partners and I have been using GoToMeeting for exactly that purpose for a few years now — and it has proven to be another huge time-saving tool.
You can perform live demos in real-time to multiple customers, collaborate on projects with your colleagues and host meetings on-the-fly with sales prospects. You can also have up to 10 attendees per meeting. We also use GotoWebinar to hold online seminars and demonstrations – with up to 1,000 people at once.
Both services offer a Free Trial.