I’m often asked what Internet marketing tools, software, and services I use to help run my online businesses. So I thought it would be a good idea to provide you with a list of recommended blogging resources. Those I use to plan, build, and promote my website.
I’ve used many different tools and services over the years, some excellent, others not so good. To help prevent you from wasting your time and money on poor products, I’ll limit this resource page to include only those that I’d use myself.
To keep on growing and to adapt to change, I’ll continue to research and test more products. The more I learn, the more I can help you, so I will no doubt add to this page in the future. For this reason, I recommend that you bookmark this page for your convenience (Ctrl+D on Windows, Command+D on Mac).
To provide you with further value, I plan to create tutorials for each of the tools on this list. I’ll add links to the tutorials on this page once they’re done.
I hope that these resources help you as much as they’ve helped me. Enjoy!
Disclosure: Please note that some of the links below are affiliate links. This means that if you decide to make a purchase via one of the links, at no extra cost to you, I will earn a commission. Please understand that there are plenty of places that offer affiliate programs, but I only recommend tools, resources, etc., that I’ve personally used, continue to use, or come from companies/individuals that I trust. I’d never recommend anything I wouldn’t use myself. Integrity is everything to me. If you buy something through one of the links, I am very grateful for your support. Thank you!
- My Top Recommendations
- Domain Registrar
- Website Hosting
- Website Design
- Website Speed
- Website Security & Backup
- Email Marketing
- Social Sharing & List Building
- Landing Pages / Page Builders
- WordPress Plugins
- Membership Sites
- Content Creation (Writing Tools)
- Content Promotion & Social Media Management
- Images & Photos
- Audio (Podcasting)
- Product Distribution & Shopping Carts
- SEO Tools
- Productivity & Planning
- Computer Security & Backup
Please Note: The WordPress Plugins section of this page contains plugins that fall into many of the above filter categories. This section will only display if you select the ‘WordPress Plugins’ filter or have no filters selected.
My Top Recommendations
To run a business online, there are certain basics you need to have in place. Without them, your chances of success become less likely.
As you’ll see on this page, there’s a lot of tools you can buy to make running an online business easier.
I consider these the essentials:
- Website Hosting
- WordPress Theme
- Page Builder
- Email Marketing Service Provider
- Shopping Cart (not essential but deserves a special mention)
- List Building (not essential but deserves a special mention)
- The All-In-One (this could save you a lot of money)
They make my life a lot easier. They automate or make quick work of long-winded and often complicated tasks. Basically, they’re reliable time savers I’d rather not be without. If you try them I’m sure you’ll agree.
All my websites begin life being hosted on Bluehost. Why? Because they’re affordable, offer fantastic 24/7 customer support, (via phone, email, and live chat) and they’re extremely easy to use with “1-click” automatic WordPress installation.
If you’re just getting started or are on a budget, then I highly recommend using Bluehost for your first site. Also, if you plan on creating more than one website, you can host them all with just the one hosting account.
Did I mention you get a FREE domain as part of the package too? What better way to get started…
A professional website requires a professional theme. Premium WordPress themes come with support and regular updates. This keeps them secure and relevant.
Used by many professional bloggers, StudioPress themes are powered by their Genesis Framework. It’s written with the latest coding standards, which will make your site compatible with future changes to the web. Secondly, it’s mobile responsive and cross-browser compatible.
The Genesis Framework is search engine optimised and follows all WordPress security best practices. The themes are built with lightweight code for fast performance and customisations are easy.
I use a StudioPress theme here on Internet Habits.
Please Note: StudioPress themes often require coding knowledge to make modifications, so if you’re not a coder, please look at my other WordPress theme recommendations below.
Having an email list for your business is an absolute necessity. So it makes sense to have a tool that’ll help you to build a list. That’s where LeadPages comes in.
LeadPages is a super easy to use tool for creating high-quality landing pages. With tons of templates that are proven to convert your viewers into subscribers (or buyers), you’ll be able to create opt-in, sales, webinar, and thank you pages within minutes. It also comes with split testing, built-in analytics and conversion stats so you’ll be able to tweak your pages to capture even more leads. LeadPages works with both WordPress and non-WordPress sites.
It is hands down the easiest way to build landing pages.
Click the Try LeadPages button below to check out their demo videos and see all the useful features.
Email Marketing Service Provider
A modern tag-based email marketing automation solution that allows you to send an unlimited number of emails each month.
They have a well designed user-interface and a much easier learning curve than the majority of their competitors.
Their email editor is easy to use and provides access to custom email templates, and they have a user-friendly visual automations editor that enables you to set up powerful automations. There’s also pre-built automation templates so you can be up and running in no time.
Other features include broadcast resend, forms, landing pages, and A/B testing on automation emails. Plus, ConvertKit integrates with the majority of other software platforms and plugins mentioned on this page making it an excellent choice.
If you’re new to email marketing, there’s a Free Plan.
An excellent shopping cart platform for selling products online. There’s so many features to help you increase your sales: professionally designed cart templates, 1-click upsells, 1-click bump offers, coupons, A/B testing, a funnel builder, an affiliate centre and much more.
ThriveCart integrates with all the major email marketing platforms, page builders, membership apps and of course, PayPal and Stripe. It even takes care of tax and customer receipts.
This plugin will cover all your lead generation needs. Its easy to use drag-and-drop editor allows you to create pop-up lightboxes, “sticky” header bars, opt-in forms, multi-step opt-in forms, slide-ins and content upgrades. It also has great segmentation and built-in split testing to help boost your conversions further.
If you want to grow your email list, try ConvertBox.
Page Builder + Email Autoresponder + Shopping Cart + List Building + Affiliate Referral Program + So Much More…
If you find you need or want a lot of the products on this page, you could save yourself a lot of money by getting ClickFunnels.
ClickFunnels could replace your page builder, list building tools, email autoresponder, shopping cart, funnel builder, affiliate program and automated webinar software, plus more.
That’s a potential big saving per month.
Also, because ClickFunnels supplies you with all these tools, they integrate seamlessly. It’s easy to build a marketing funnel with ClickFunnels.
They offer a 14 day Free Trial. Give them a try.
Internet Marketing Tools
This is where you buy your domain name, also known as your website’s address. e.g. internethabits.com
This is where I register the majority of my domains. They’re cheap, easy to use and they provide free WhoIsGuard privacy protection. This keeps your confidential information safe, helps reduce spam and protects you against identity theft.
They are very similar to NameCheap but offer almost every domain extension (i.e. .com, .org, .us, .co.uk, etc.) you could want. I registered my shortened domain name (i-hab.it) with GoDaddy because NameCheap didn’t offer the extension I wanted.
Website hosting is a server that’s set up to keep your website visible on the internet. Every website needs hosting.
The hosting you need will depend on the requirements of your website. Large, busier sites will need higher levels or storage and bandwidth.
It’s good advice to go with a large well-established web hosting company for long-term stability.
If you’re just getting started with a self-hosted website, I highly recommend you go with either BlueHost or SiteGround. They’re both excellent companies that offer a high level of support and several low-priced plans.
Whilst it’s true that you get what you pay for and there are better web hosts available, when you’re just getting started, unless budget is not an issue, you should save your money and choose a cheap hosting package from a well-established company. Bluehost/SiteGround are both great value for money.
Note: If you need help to start a website, I’ve put together a step-by-step tutorial on how to start a self-hosted WordPress blog.
If you need a more powerful hosting solution and have a larger budget, check out the higher-priced recommendations listed below (or click here for the TL;DR version). I’ve done a lot of research on this this topic to save you the hassle. It will also save you from all the affiliate sites that make recommendations based on the commissions they receive, rather than having your best interests at heart.
Recommended Website Hosting
All my websites begin life hosted on Bluehost. They’re affordable, offer fantastic 24/7 customer support, and they’re extremely easy to use with “1-click” automatic WordPress installation. I highly recommend using Bluehost for your first site.
You get a FREE domain as part of the package too.
A great alternative to BlueHost, especially if you plan to upgrade your hosting in the future and don’t want the hassle of changing to a different provider.
Not only do SiteGround offer excellent cheap hosting, their more advanced plans score favourably amongst the top hosts too.
With all the features they provide such as SSD storage, the latest stable versions of PHP, HTTP/2 servers, free SSL certificates and CDN, you really can’t go wrong with SiteGround. They have some of the best support available too.
If you’re looking for a LiteSpeed hosting provider, look no further than NameHero. They are a great alternative to both BlueHost and SiteGround. If you’re a beginner, but your budget can stretch a little further than the cost of BlueHost, then I’d choose between SiteGround and NameHero.
There are many benefits to using a LiteSpeed server for your hosting, but their free LiteSpeed Cache (LS Cache) plugin is the most popular. This is a powerful and flexible server-level cache solution built directly into LiteSpeed Web Servers.
I currently use a LiteSpeed server to host Internet Habits.
If you want affordable managed WordPress hosting, look no further than Lightning Base. Like the name suggests, they provide lightning fast hosting. They will set up caching and configure their CDN to make sure your website loads quickly for your visitors.
You get automatic backups on multiple levels to help protect your site against hardware failures and hacking. Security is also excellent with regular security scans of your site plus server and webapp firewalls in place to prevent malicious code.
As for their support, they only work with WordPress which allows them to provide a much more comprehensive service than most hosting companies.
Another company that know how to do managed WordPress hosting correctly. Like Lightning Base, they provide blazing fast performance and automatic backups.
You’ll be able to set up a staging area so you can test things before launching changes on your live website. Plus, WPX Hosting offer a malware scanning and removal service. If your site is hacked, WPX Hosting will remove the malware for free.
Managed WordPress hosting at its finest.
Their features include; Nginx, HTTP/2 SSL support, SSD storage, PHP7, MariaDB, multi caching for speed and performance. Plus free site migrations, staging sites, free SSL certificates and automated backups for convenience, testing and peace of mind.
Cloudways post consistent top tier WordPress hosting performance benchmark results year on year, so their industry-leading platform really is an excellent choice.
Cloudways allows you to choose from a number of cloud providers. Options include; DigitalOcean, Linode, Vultr, Amazon Web Services and Google Cloud Platform.
Cloudways also includes a really affordable CDN add-on that you can easily enable in just a few clicks. You can then rest assured in the knowledge that your content will load fast for your visitors all around the globe.
If you want a hosting platform that offers reliable, secure and scalable managed WordPress hosting with first class support, check out Cloudways.
If you have the budget, you won’t find a better WordPress host than Kinsta. Their architecture is powered by Google’s Cloud Platform which provides significant speed boosts, automatic scalability and protection via Google’s infrastructure.
Kinsta have partnered up with KeyCDN, a real-time HTTP/2 powered CDN, to speed up delivery of your assets (images, JS, CSS) around the globe.
Kinsta consistently delivers faultless top scores on WordPress hosting performance benchmark tests.
You only need to check out their features to understand why they offer some of the best website hosting. They provide expert support and if you buy their hosting, they’ll save you a headache and migrate your site for free.
Kinsta also boasts a hack fix guarantee. If your site is somehow compromised, they’ll fix it for free. How’s that for service?
If you have a bigger budget or are established in your marketplace, you’ll likely need to consider upgrading your hosting to a plan that can scale to your requirements.
Liquid Web is the hosting company I see recommended the most within the Internet marketing community, though that seems to be slowly swaying in favour of Kinsta. With consistently impressive performance benchmark results, there’s a reason they have built up such a good reputation. Their support is top-notch too.
TL;DR Version: Recommended Website Hosting
BlueHost: You’re just getting started and want a reliable low-cost solution.
SiteGround: You need a low-cost solution but you’re happy to spend a couple of extra dollars each month on a shared hosting provider that takes extra care to improve WordPress page speed.
NameHero: You need low-cost hosting and want to take advantage of all the performance benefits that come with being hosted on a LiteSpeed server.
WPX Hosting: You need high-performance managed WordPress hosting and require multiple WordPress sites at an affordable price.
Cloudways: You need high-performance managed WordPress hosting and a CDN in an affordable package.
Kinsta: You want the highest-performance managed WordPress hosting and CDN package available. Speed, security, reliability and support are extremely important to you.
Liquid Web: You want high-performance hosting but prefer to manage the server yourself.
For those that are interested, I currently manage my own VPS provided by DigitalOcean. Unless you know what you’re doing, this is not something I recommend. Cloudways is probably the best choice if you want to go down a similar route but with a team of experts to manage the VPS for you.
In WordPress, the design of your website is based on the theme you select. There are tens of thousands of themes available for you to choose from. I recommend buying a premium theme as these are supported and updated regularly to keep up to date with WordPress upgrades and new trends. This will help to keep your blog secure. Plus, your blog will immediately look more professional with a premium theme.
The themes I recommend below are purposely listed in this order. It’s the order that I currently rank the themes, with my favourite being at the top.
The Genesis Framework powers all StudioPress themes. This robust framework is written with the latest coding standards and makes sure your theme is secure amongst other features. It also makes future development of your blog easier. StudioPress have a very strong user community and high-quality customer support. Their themes are popular amongst many pro bloggers. For these reasons, I chose a StudioPress theme for this blog. I highly recommend them.
Though I should add, if you’re not able to code, you’re likely better off choosing one of the following themes.
If you want a lightweight responsive theme that’s focused on performance, look no further than GeneratePress. It’s easily one of my favourite block-based freemium themes. It has everything you’d want from a theme and comes with access to their priority support forums if you get the premium version, which I strongly recommend.
GeneratePress has a great library of professionally designed website templates to help you get started. It also follows Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 standards to ensure that no visitor is left out.
It’s the most mature of the available DIY themes for WordPress, and it’s for that reason I’ve listed it before most of my other recommendations.
I’ve recently used GeneratePress for another project and I love it.
Blocksy is a lightweight, fast, fully responsive, Gutenberg ready WordPress theme. It’s well coded and was built and designed to work with the most popular WordPress page builders.
It has a very intuitive drag and drop header and footer builder, a variety of layouts, WooCommerce integration, and a tonne of other features which allow you to create nearly any design you can imagine.
The Blocksy developers are very responsive and quickly reply to questions and inquiries. They’re also extremely passionate and care about their work.
At the time of writing, I’d argue that this is currently the best free theme available for WordPress. In fact, the free Blocksy theme will likely be more than enough for many WordPress users.
The StudioPress theme that I’m currently using on InternetHabits is no longer being developed, so I’ll be likely be changing my theme in the near future. Blocksy Pro is currently top of my list for the theme I’ll be switching to. Need I say more?
There’s not much I can say about Kadence that I haven’t already said about Blocksy. There are a lot of similarities between the two themes. They both have a free and pro version of their themes. Kadence has also released Kadence Blocks, which will help you build websites easily with their block builder, no code required. There’s also Kadence Conversions that will enable you to create pop-ups and banners, etc. though that isn’t free, so I’d only consider it if you’re planning to purchase the Full Bundle package from Kadence.
If you’re settled on choosing this type of theme, I’d take a look at the features and site templates that Blocksy and Kadence have to offer and choose your favourite theme of the two.
Thrive Theme Builder comes with their conversion focused theme, Shapeshift. It’s bundled with a light version of their page builder too, Thrive Architect, so you’ll have a fantastic-looking blog in no time. It’ll allow you to build landing pages, sales pages, etc. Think LeadPages but at a lower cost.
Update: Thrive Themes have updated their business model so now you can get access to all Thrive’s plugins as part of Thrive Suite.
This involves paying an annual fee (unless you buy the lifetime access) but it gives you access to all their professional themes, including the extremely popular Divi, making it a fantastic bargain.
If you can’t find what you’re looking for from the options above, the final place I recommend you take a look is MyThemeShop. Fast, responsive themes that are easy to customise and compatible with all major browsers. To make things even easier, MyThemeShop provide their customers with narrated video tutorials so you’ll have no problems changing your website layout. Plus, they offer 24×7 support, just in case.
The following companies are content delivery networks (CDN). A CDN will make your website load faster for your readers all around the world. Without a CDN, your website files load from your hosting server. The further your readers are from that server, the slower your site may load for them. A content delivery network solves this problem by keeping a copy of your website’s files on servers located worldwide. It will load your site’s files from the nearest server to your reader. This will make your website pages load much faster.
CloudFlare is one of, if not the largest CDN company in the world. Their free plan provides you with their CDN, caching and basic DDoS protection. You’ll have to upgrade to a paid account if you want access to their advanced features, including better front-end security for your website.
You could combine their free account to take advantage of the DDoS protection with one of the better CDNs listed below.
If you pick up hosting from my recommendation above, BlueHost, then you can get CloudFlare for free as part of your hosting package.
A brilliant CDN that unlike CloudFlare focuses entirely on speeding up your content delivery. If you want to speed up your site, improve user experience and reduce your server load, I recommend checking out Bunny.net. Plus, Google have stated that faster sites tend to rank higher in search engines.
Bunny.net offers two pay-as-you-go plans with a $1 minimum usage each month. A blog with a good amount of traffic is usually in the 20-25GB bandwidth range. If you have this amount of traffic or less, it will cost you just $1 per month to get started with Bunny.net and have them supercharge your site from multiple servers, also known as points of presence (PoPs), all over the world.
Website Security & Backup
Do you want your website to be hacked and risk losing all your hard work?
No, me neither. That’s why it’s important to secure your website and perform a regular backup. Then you can restore your site if disaster strikes.
iThemes Security Pro is a WordPress plugin that makes it easy to secure and protect your website. It will help to prevent WordPress hacks, security breaches, malware and more. Its WordPress malware scan feature is powered by Securi SiteCheck. This uses a 10-point check to scan your site for known malware, blacklist status, website errors and out-of-date software.
Add an extra layer of protection to your site and keep the bad guys out.
If you want to keep your blog secure against cyber attacks then check out Securi. They’ll secure your website and prevent future break-ins. If your site becomes infected, they’ll clean and repair it. Securi will also send you alerts if their monitoring service finds anything you need to know about. It’ll give you peace of mind.
Let’s face it, even with the best security, there’s still a chance your site could get hacked and infected with malware. That’s where Malcare comes in. It scans your website for malware using its own servers to make sure no load is placed on your hosting server. That way, your website will always run at peaks speeds. A less resource intensive alternative to the popular WordFence plugin.
The premium version boasts a 1-click malware removal feature for instant automatic cleanup if your website is infected. It also has security and website management features such as login protection, website hardening and a powerful Web Application Firewall (WAF).
The new kid on the block for website security. Not only will Astra keep your website secure via their 24×7 real-time firewall, they also have an automatic malware scanner that will help to identify and remove every kind of malware without slowing down your website.
There’s also blacklist reputation monitoring, DDoS protection, bad bots protection and much more. A fantastic all-in-one solution for securing WordPress.
It doesn’t get much simpler than this. Install and activate this free plugin to protect your site against malicious URL requests.
The best security for your website is an up-to-date backup. You definitely want to back up your blog regularly. Why risk losing hours, days, weeks, months… (you get the idea!) of hard work? If you want automated backups with reliable customer support, then you’ll want to check out BackupBuddy and BlogVault.
For small to medium-sized websites, I recommend BackupBuddy. This WordPress plugin is easy to use and allows you to save your backups to an off-site location, such as Dropbox, Google Drive, Amazon S3 or their own cloud storage ‘BackupBuddy Stash’. It also includes an easy to use restore function and a migration tool that allows you to move your entire site to another domain or host.
I currently use this plugin on my websites that don’t have an automated backup performed by the website host. I am “grandfathered in” thanks to a special lifetime offer from iThemes.
Like Backupbuddy, BlogVault offers backup archives and real-time incremental backups. This means that after the initial full backup, it only creates a backup of the files that have been modified instead of copying all your files each time a backup runs. This helps to prevent overload on your hosting server. It performs your backup almost instantly instead of at a scheduled time.
BlogVault also provides free offsite storage and inbuilt free staging so you can safely test your website updates and changes before you make them live.
You may have heard the money is in the list. It’s true. Building an email list is key to running a successful online business. It should be one of your top priorities from the get-go.
When choosing an email marketing service, you’ll want one that’s easy to set up and manage, offers awesome automation, and doesn’t break the bank.
You should also choose a tag-based system over the dated list-based system. Tag-based systems allow for easier and much better management of your subscribers. They also make easy work of tasks such as sending a broadcast email to select subscribers. It’s for these reasons that I no longer recommend list-based email marketing providers such as AWeber, MailChimp, etc.
Taking the above into consideration, I recommend that you choose one of the following:
For a more detailed comparison of these three email providers, check out my step-by-step tutorial on how to start a WordPress blog. The section that follows the comparison walks you through how to set up your email autoresponder to start collecting your visitors’ email addresses and send automated emails.
ConvertKit is a wonderfully powerful and cost effective tag-based email marketing service that has been built from the ground up for bloggers.
They offer a similar service to the alternatives listed below but with an easier learning curve. If you’re not comfortable coding, then ConvertKit may be a better match for you.
When building your email list, you can tag your subscribers based on their actions and interests. This allows you to send highly targeted emails specific to their individual needs. Targeted emails lead to better open rates and thus improved engagement with your subscribers.
Once you have subscribers, ConvertKit have an easy to use email editor with access to custom email templates which you can use to send unlimited emails.
Thanks to their user-friendly interface, setting up automations is extremely easy.
ConvertKit allows you to set up powerful automations via their visual automations editor. In addition to this, they provide tried and tested pre-built automation templates that allow you to have your autoresponder up and running in no time.
In other words, if you’re looking to get up and running quickly and easily, ConvertKit is a great choice.
Other notable features include: good integrations with 3rd-party apps, broadcast resend, forms, landing pages, and A/B testing on automation emails.
ConvertKit’s live chat and email support is second to none. Plus, they have an extremely active community in their Facebook group. Lots of happy users all helping each other out.
If you think ConvertKit would be a good match for you, head over to their website and sign up for an account. I highly recommend them.
They offer a Free Plan or a free trial of their paid plans. They also have a 30-day refund policy so if you decide they’re not for you, simply let them know within 30 days of signing up and it won’t cost you a penny.
If you’re on a tighter budget, MailerLite may be email marketing solution for you.
At the time of writing, they offer a very similar feature set to ConvertKit. They too have a free plan for up to 1,000 subscribers but there are quite a few key features missing and you’re limited to 12,000 emails per month, so I’d take that into consideration before you decide. However, their free plan includes email automation and that’s a massive plus!
MailerLite provide 24/7 live chat and email support for their paid plans and 24/7 email support for their free plan so should you run into any problems, you’ll always have help on hand.
If you’re looking to introduce email marketing into your business whilst on a budget, look no further than MailerLite.
ActiveCampaign is another tag-based email marketing system that is arguably the most powerful in terms of automation.
As I mentioned in the hosting section of this page, I see the internet marketing community recommend Liquid Web more than any other host. Well, ActiceCampaign gets that crown in the email marketing space.
They have great integration with 3rd-party apps, a lovely workflow visual editor, and A/B testing on automation & broadcast emails.
One of my favourite features is their automation marketplace. It allows you to share and install other users automations. This is extremely powerful and can save you a lot of time.
ActiveCampaign offers great support via email and live chat. They don’t have a Facebook group but instead choose to host their community via a forum on their website.
Social Sharing & List Building
You create your content for others to read, right?
Social sharing tools make it easy for your current readers to share your content with their friends and followers. This increases the likelihood of your content being seen by a wider audience.
Do you want your new audience to join your email list?
Of course you do. The money is in the list:
This social sharing WordPress plugin is a newcomer compared to the likes of Social Warfare, but it’s packed with a lot of functionality. There’s social sharing buttons for over 30 of the most popular social networks that you can place in multiple places on your blog, style customization, share counts, social meta tags, click-to-tweet, advanced statistics and a number of handy add-ons.
In comparison to a lot of its competition, it’s very easy to set up. Plus, Social Snap was carefully built with performance and security in mind so it won’t slow down your website.
You know the social media share buttons that are at the top, bottom and hovering at the side of blog posts? That’s what this WordPress plugin does. You can also create in-post shareable quotes for Twitter, via the click-to-tweet function. It supports all the popular social networks and you can customise the look of the buttons to match your website branding. It’s also built with performance in mind so it won’t slow down your site.
This awesome plugin makes it easy to create opt-in forms with its simple drag-and-drop editor. You can create pop-up lightboxes, “sticky” ribbons, opt-in forms, 2-step opt-in forms, and slide-ins all within the same plugin. It also has great segmentation and built-in split testing to help boost your conversions further. I’m very glad I found this little gem. Highly recommended!
You can get access to Thrive Leads as part of Thrive Suite.
With similar features to Thrive Leads, Optin Monster is one of the best lead generation softwares available for your website. With the ability to create beautiful opt-in forms in minutes, you’ll be well on your way to growing your email list in no time.
Take your opt-in form creation and lead generation to another level with this software platform. ConvertBox is the new kid on the block and it’s hands down the easiest to use.
As with the alternative solutions, there’s multiple styles of opt-in forms you can choose from to deliver high-converting messages. There’s lead segmentation, deep integration with your email marketing software, and the ability to show you message to the right visitor at the right time. You can even target specific visitors with personalised messages using powerful behaviour targeting rules.
Plus, if you really take your marketing seriously, you can split test your opt-in forms and track everything in real-time with their detailed analytics.
The flexibility of what you can do with this platform is outstanding. In fact, there’s too many features to list here. I highly recommend you check out ConvertBox.
Face it, people love to take a quiz. They’re much more fun than a survey, and they make you curious to find out your result. Interact is a tool for creating online quizzes. You can use it to segment your audience based on how they answer a question or dependent on their results.
Interact can also be used to personalize your website and most importantly, to grow your email list/capture leads. It integrates with most major email marketing and marketing automation systems.
If you need additional ways to interact with your audience, check out Involve.me below.
If you need to create interactive content for your website such as quizzes, surveys, calculators, and forms, Involve.me could be the platform you need.
It’s a great tool for gathering feedback from your audience and used correctly, it can be used to rapidly grow your number of email subscribers. Involve.me can even be used to create payment forms, landing pages and sales funnels.
Do you want to run viral giveaways, contests and sweepstakes? What about a viral product launch? You can do it all with UpViral. Get your visitors to bring you even more visitors by enticing them with a prize or reward if they invite their friends or followers. UpViral will then follow-up with those that take part, emailing reminders, setting goals, and providing ongoing incentives to keep them promoting to increase their chance of winning.
The result? A potential huge increase in traffic and subscribers. Powerful!
This is an alternative to UpViral. Viral Loops is an all-in-one referral marketing platform that helps you create viral giveaways, contests, and rewards. They provide tried and tested templates that let you design custom referral programs in minutes without having to reinvent the wheel.
Referrals are one of the most powerful marketing and sales tools available.
Note: Also see LeadPages below. It’s a list building and landing page creator all-in-one.
Landing Pages / Page Builders
If you will be promoting products and services or running webinars and competitions, you’ll need a way to create landing pages.
Landing pages are pages on your website that a visitor can arrive at or “land” on. They’re designed with a single goal in mind and should have no menus or links to take visitors to other pages on your site. The limited options help to keep the reader’s focus on the goal of the page. In most cases, the goal is to collect a name and email address and/or make a sale.
By default, it’s unlikely WordPress and your theme will be good enough to create a high-converting landing page. Fortunately, these tools make it easy:
This is the best tool available for creating high-quality mobile responsive landing pages with ease. With a huge selection of templates that are proven to convert your viewers into subscribers (or buyers), you’ll be able to create opt-in, sales, webinar, and thank you pages within minutes. If you want to customise these templates or build a page from scratch, you can via their drag-and-drop visual page editor. LeadPages has an awesome built-in split testing feature and works with both WordPress and non-WordPress sites.
There’s also a list building feature they call LeadBoxes that allows you to create pop-ups, 2-step opt-in forms and exit pops.
As a key goal of a landing page is to collect email addresses, LeadPages integrates with all major email marketing providers, plus other marketing and sales applications.
With regards to building landing pages, ClickFunnels is similar to LeadPages. It too provides a large selection of templates, a drag-and-drop page editor and list building features. There’s also integrations with all major marketing and sales applications.
Where ClickFunnels shines is its ability to link all of your marketing pages together to form smart sales funnels. With a few clicks of your mouse, you can create a load of different sales funnels, including opt-in funnels, sales funnels, webinar funnels, membership sites, and more!
For those of you that want a cheaper alternative to LeadPages, I recommend OptimizePress. Although it’s not as easy to use as LeadPages, it’s a lot more flexible so you’ll be able to create pretty much any kind of page you need. Please note that unlike LeadPages, OptimizePress only works with WordPress websites.
Another cost efficient choice is Thrive Architect. The team at Thrive Themes provide you with dozens of conversion optimised landing page templates. You can edit these and build pages from scratch with the drag-and-drop page builder. I’ve used this WordPress plugin to build entire websites. You can get access to it as part of Thrive Suite.
Thrive Architect will work on any WordPress theme. It’s not limited to Thrive themes.
On the subject of page builders, Beaver Builder is a great plugin that makes modifying existing themes easy with their drag-and-drop builder.
Let’s say you have a theme but you can’t get your homepage (or any other post or page) to look the way you’d like it to. Activate Beaver Builder and edit away. No coding required!
Their front end editor allows you to see what you’re doing and gives you total control over the layout of your pages. It’s as easy and dragging and dropping.
The Beaver Builder page builder can be used with any theme. In fact, Beaver Builder also has an optional framework theme. It’s great if you’re looking for a highly customisable, well-supported, theme.
When I say well-supported, I mean it. Their support is amazing. They really do go above and beyond.
I couldn’t mention Beaver Builder without also mentioning Elementor. They’re both great WordPress page builder plugins. You’d have to compare both to see which best suits your individual requirements.
Elementor is another page builder with drag-and-drop functionality that becomes even more powerful if you purchase the Pro version. It unlocks the page builders full potential and allows you to design and build high-quality websites without having to edit complicated code.
This includes the ability to design Headers and Footers which means you really can control the look of every single part of your website.
As you’d expect, it works seamlessly with almost any WordPress theme.
One of the great benefits of WordPress is that you can easily add to its functionality by installing WordPress plugins. They save a lot of time and money in development costs. Here are some of the more useful plugins:
The less spam you have to deal with on your blog, the better. Akismet will help you in the fight against comment spam.
If you want an easy way to promote your content on Twitter, take a look at Better Click To Tweet. This allows you to create a message that you’d like others to share into a custom link. When that link is clicked, the visitor will automatically have your message added to their Twitter status box. Then they simply click to tweet the message to their followers.
BJ Lazy Load prevents all images on your page from loading at once. Instead, it loads them when your site visitor scrolls to that section of the page. This improves page load times.
This is a really easy-to-use WordPress cache plugin that will improve the performance of your website. It works really well with a number of other WordPress performance plugins.
Simple, easy to use contact form plugin that’s free.
If you want to change the default comments on your WordPress blog, you need to check out Disqus. It will help you fight against spam and reduce server load to prevent website slow down.
If you use the Amazon affiliate program, EasyAzon will help you make more commissions and save you a lot of time in the process. You can add Amazon affiliate links from within your WordPress dashboard. If a user visits your site from a different country, using link localisation you can redirect them to their local Amazon store. This way you won’t miss out on your commission (you need to be a member of each countries Amazon affiliate program for this).
There’s also an “Add to cart” feature that increases the number of days you can be credited for a sale if your website visitor makes a purchase from Amazon. To see the plugin in action, visit My Bookshelf.
This is a lightweight competitor of Gravity Forms. Creating a form is easy with the drag-and-drop builder and huge choice of templates. There’s so many features and plenty of key third-party integrations. It’s a very powerful WordPress forms plugin.
If you need a form for pretty much anything on your blog, Gravity Forms has you covered. This is more advanced than Contact Form 7 (mentioned above) with added functionality.
This plugin makes it extremely easy to add Google Analytics to your blog and always stays up to date with the newest features in Google Analytics.
If you want to add responsive tables to your WordPress site, this plugin is what you need. It’s from the same team as the developers of WP Fluent Forms and it integrates with it too. There’s so many different styles of table you can create with this plugin and its optimized for performance, so it’s blazing fast! Highly recommended.