With a dizzying array of shiny objects out there to choose from, how does an Internet Marketer know which tools they should use for making money online?
Here is a â€œshortâ€ list of must haves if you are trying to market your business or product on the Internet.
The Internet Marketing Tools I Use For Making Money Online
WordPress + StudioPress
I donâ€™t think many people will deny the Google friendly power of a WordPress fueled website. Not to mention the fact that it is easy to add new posts and pages.
Skip the â€œfreeâ€ WordPress themes and skip hiring the kid down the street wearing a helmet. Letâ€™s not create something that looks like everyone else right out of the gate if we donâ€™t have to.
Get your own hosting account. Why? Because if you go the free route with WordPress, you will be limited from using some bells and whistles I know you are going to want down the road. Hosting is only around $10 a month â€“ so it wonâ€™t cut into your Diet Pepsi budget.
As for choosing a theme, I highly recommend you start with StudioPress. They have some great themes and the support board is off the charts helpful! It is like having your own programmers on standby to help you out. Most of your answers will already be on the board somewhere â€“ if not, you can always add your own post.
Special Note: Grab the â€œFullâ€ version that gets you all themes. You can thank me later.
Yoast WordPress SEO Plugin
Want your friends to think you are an SEO ninja? Ditch the old All-in-One SEO and grab this new WordPress SEO plugin by Yoast.
You may already know about H1â€™s and H2â€™s, Keyword density, blah, blah, blah. I mean really. Who has the time?!
Well, you better have the time (or pay someone to do it for you). Why spend all that effort getting a site together only to have it win at a game of hide and seek?
Frankly, I hate doing the SEO stuff (my wife is the SEO Diva) but with the Yoast [insert wicked smart guy here] Plugin I can, easily, get most of the way there.
I love that it tells me specifically what I am missing (and what to do about it).
Takes a bit to set up, but well worth it! (Oh and did I mention it is a Free plugin?)
Internet Marketing Graphics Toolkit
I would love to have a full time graphics designer on hand to make cool headlines and images at my beck and call â€“ oh yea, and I donâ€™t want to pay them.
As much as I love playing around in Photoshop, it just doesnâ€™t pay for exotic vacations. I would have given my eyeteeth to find this Marketing Graphics Toolkit sooner.
Max Rylski created a toolkit full of ready-to-use headlines, graphics, you name it. And here is the kickerâ€¦he sold it for under $10.00.
We are talking PSD, JPG, and PNG filesÂ â€“ the whole bit! This package has literally saved me hundreds, if not thousands of dollars. I also signed up for his monthly program, but you donâ€™t have to. Seriously, just grab the starter package!
I canâ€™t promise he still has the package available by the time you are reading this, but if it is, here is where I picked it up.
Sharebar or Sexy Bookmarks Plugin
Hey, you might be surprised how many people share your stuffÂ (and I am not talking about your late night karaoke fest captured on an iPhone). Just give your visitors an easy way to pass the message on to friends and loved ones.
Sexy Bookmarks is the easier of the two to use, but lately, I tend to lean towards Sharebar (as long as it fits into the theme).
Sharebar has some nice counter features as well as allows for custom coding (like adding Google+ for example).
Whichever you use, donâ€™t go overboard. Pick a few hot share techniques and move on (you donâ€™t need to list them all). I tend to stick with Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Digg, and StumbleUpon. But hey, you decide what is best for you.
Kajabi is the 800-pound gorilla the big boys use for product launches and membership sites. But here is what most people donâ€™t knowâ€¦
You donâ€™t have to be selling a $2000 program to make Kajabi feasible. I have a couple programs under $100 and it works out great!
With a solid help desk and new features coming online all the time, Kajabi has become a serious option for Internet Marketers.
It has great looking sales funnels, ability to capture names/leads, and a kick ass social interaction membership section for your buyers.
I have also seen people pitching affiliate type stuff or even providing a free membership site â€“ so use your imagination.
If you want more tips on using this Internet marketing program check out my Kajabi Reviews site.Â As a user and original beta tester Iâ€™ll admit to being a bit biased but I also provide suggestions for lower budget Kajabi alternatives.
Quit snagging photos off the Internet hoping you donâ€™t get caught. It is not fair to the people that are supposed to be getting paid for them.
Deposit Photos runs roughly $ .50 a photoÂ – so it wonâ€™t break the bank.
Sure there are some other sources out there, but many of them are getting pretty pricey. Bring back the old days when we could just buy a disk full of photos and use them all we want!
Easy Video Player (EVP)
Stop limiting your video playing abilities because you only know how to embed YouTube.
Why? The YouTube technique (although an easy and fun way to share) eventually takes traffic off your site.
Easy Video Player is wellâ€¦easy. Not only does it seamlessly integrate with your Amazon S3 account (which only costs pennies), it has a nifty plugin for WordPress.
Once active, you have a TON of cool features that go well beyond choosing the color of your player. Embed html or links at the end of the video to take someone to your sales page. Add watermarks or even track how well the video performs for conversions.
Having wrestled with the pros and cons of numerous so-called â€œbolt-onâ€ video players, I think EVP is the best by far for making money online.
Email Marketing Service
Look, if you are getting traffic then you HAVE to start capturing some names. Think of it as college and going home from the bar without phone numbers (loser)!
There are many out there and it all depends upon what you want to do. For simplicity, Aweber is a solid choice. IContact and Infustionsoft are also some good alternatives.
MailChimp has a free version, but I hate the name.Â Plus youâ€™ll need to upgrade to a paid plan if you want auto-responders (at least at the time of this writing) so you might as well spring for Aweber or one of the others.
Each of them will enable you to run double opt-in lists. â€“ Yes, you should be doing double opt-in 99% of the time (especially if you donâ€™t want to get blacklisted).
The fact of the matter is that people are going to click the SPAM button even though they double opted-in (the bastards)! With double opt-in, you are protected because there is proof.
Whomever you use, check out things like split testing subject lines, sending to non-opens, and try using a variety of widgets. [Hint: The key to making money online is having a list and building a relationship with people].
Yea, I know thereâ€™s a host of other must have Internet Marketing Tools â€“ but I had to cut this list to my top eight.
Think something else should be on the list when it comes to building a real online business and making money online? Have an example of a great site using these techniques you think we should look at?
Just leave a comment below!