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Updated 28/09/18

Running a business can be tough. It doesn’t matter what sort of business you have, there is so much to think about. Websites, photos, accounting, social media, marketing, SEO. And that’s all before you’ve even got your first sale or client! I would like to share with you my Ultimate Checklist & Secrets – A Guide To Setting Up your WAHM Business with some of my favourite tools and resources for business I have used over the years that has helped my business and made it easier for me to achieve my goals.

I’ve also asked a bunch of business people what they use and come up with a great list of business tools that can get you on your way. Whatever you may need for your work at home business, you can find something here.

Remember, what works for someone else, may not suit you, especially when it comes to technology. So research and figure out what YOU need and are comfortable using (and paying for) to make your business run smoothly.

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are ‘affiliate links’. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, we will receive an affiliate commission (we have to pay for the website somehow). However, we don’t recommend anything we haven’t or wouldn’t use ourselves. Also some of the links give you great deals if you use it, rather than just going through Google.

tools for setting up your business

Website Builders

WordPress – A great platform if you want to create something exactly how you want it and you have a vision in mind. WordPress itself is free, but you will need to host the website somewhere which can vary in cost (see the hosting section for some suggestions)

Shopify – If you want to start an ecommerce store than this is a great option. You can read our review. Very user friendly and is generally pretty easy to muddle around yourself (although you can hire a professional to take your site to the next level). Starts from $29 USD per month but they offer a free trial to get started.

Clickfunnels – Designed as a one stop shop for sales funnels. Great for service based businesses or selling single products like ebooks, webinars, courses etc. You can start with a free 14 day trial.

Leadpages – Designed more for creating landing pages, this is probably best suited for people wanting to sell courses, ebooks, special offers or build email lists. Starting from $25 USD per month.

WIX – Wix can be used as a free platform to get you started if your struggling for cash, but most people find they outrgrow the free limitations pretty quickly. You can then go onto their premium plans which start at $4.50 USD per month however you really need to be on the $12.50 USD per month or above plan before it becomes useful.

Squarespace – Able to be used as a normal website (for blogging etc) or an ecommerce store, Squarespace allows you to pick a template and start designing. Starts from $16 AUD per month for a personal website or $25 AUD per month for a business website.

Neto – Another ecommerce platform designed to be an all in one. They are Australian based and can be used for an online store, physical store point of sale, and can link to eBay and Amazon. Starts at $79 AUD per month.

WebDesignApp  – Get a custom made website and pay by the month. From $99. Click Here

Domain Names

Crazy Domains – There are so many places to get domain names, but I’ve always found Crazy Domains quick and easy to deal with.

Website Hosting

Siteground – Starting at $4.95 AUD per month for hosting a basic website (generally all you need starting out). Their closest datacentre is Singapore which is fine for Australian website speeds, unless you’re planning on building the Taj Mahal of websites.

Ventra IP – An Australian company with their servers in Australia as well. Starts at $6.95 AUD per month for basic hosting.

Bluehost – Starting at $2.95 USD per month, although for a business website you would proabably at least need the $5.95 plan unless it’s very simple.

Hostgator – Starting at $2.75 USD per month for the simple stuff.

Wordpress

ThemeForest  – This website has themes available to purchase for virtually any website platform. The site has over 11,000 WordPress themes and over 500 for Shopify, with many more platforms supported. Prices vary depending on platform and design.

CodeCanyon – code scripts and plugins from $2

Elegant Themes – Elegant Themes makes themes and plugins, with the most popular by far being the Divi theme. This is one of the most versatile themes you can buy for WordPress, and in fact, Work At Home Mums uses it so we have complete confidence in its uses.

Etsy – Did you know you can buy website themes on Etsy? Just search for ‘website theme’, ‘shopify theme’, ‘wordpress theme’ (you get the idea) and a multitude of listings will come up from designers.

Creative Market – Like Etsy, this site allows users to sell the themes and templates they have created.

Buy and Sell Marketplaces

Etsy  – Designed as a marketplace for handmade and unique items. Not only can you buy and sell physical products, but digital products as well such as website themes, fonts, graphics and designs. A good way to get started if you are making something yourself and not ready for your own website.

Ebay – Buy and sell electronics, cars, fashion apparel, collectibles, sporting goods, digital cameras, baby items, coupons, and everything else on eBay, the world’s biggest global marketplace.

Fiverr – The world’s largest marketplace for digital services. Get logo design, marketing services, whiteboards and more, starting from only $5.

E-Commerce

Shopify – If you want to start an ecommerce store than this is a great option. You can read our review. Very user friendly and is generally pretty easy to muddle around yourself (although you can hire a professional to take your site to the next level). Starts from $29 USD per month but they offer a free trial to get started.

Big Commerce – Read my review. Click Here  15-day FREE trial. BigCommerce is a true all-in-one ecommerce platform with the power to grow your business & help you sell more.

Oberlo is a dropshipping application created for Shopify users. Import products from AliExpress directly into their store and ship directly to their customers – in only a few clicks. This is brilliant.

Brilliant Directories – Start a directory website. Proven Directory Software. Profitable, Easy, Launch in Minutes.

Email Marketing

Mailchimp – A very popular email marketing program. Allows you to organise and send out emails to your mailing list. Easy to use drag and drop template system to create any typre of newsletter or email. Intergrates with many website platforms including WordPress and Shopify. Use this link to sign up and get a $30 credit on your account.

AWeber  – Email automation, templates and moreCreate and send beautiful, engaging emails in just a few minutes.

Get Response Complete online marketing platform. I used to use this for emails and marketing before switching to Mailchimp as I found I wasn’t using enough of the other features (such as webinars) to justify the extra cost but was happy with the platform itself and would probably go back if I find I need the other features.

Active Campaign – Another marketing platform that can create smarten up your email campaigns but can also support text messaging.

SendInBlue – Leverage email and SMS marketing campaigns to inform, engage and convert.Use custom marketing workflows to guide customers through a personalised buying journey.

Digital Publishing & Downloads

DPD Publishing is a digital publishing platform for helping creators sell and deliver downloadable content like ebooks, software, music, and more. Upload you content, link to your website, social media etc and DPD provides the shopping cart and digital fulfilment. Easy.

Remarq. Create stunning e-books, documents and proposals without fighting Word or Pages.

AudioJungle  – Royalty free music and audio tracks from $1 Click Here

Squeeze Pages & Landing Pages

Leadpages – Designed for creating landing pages, this is best suited for people wanting to sell courses, ebooks, special offers or build email lists. Starting from $25 USD per month.

Clickfunnels – Designed as a one stop shop for sales funnels. Great for service based businesses or selling single products like ebooks, webinars, courses etc but can be used for selling anything. You can start with a free 14 day trial.

Wishpond – Marketing tools designed to quickly and easily scale a business. Use it for landing pages, contests & promotions, popups and email marketing. Read our review here

Sending Proposals & Presentations

Proposify. Streamline your sales process, impress your clients and get faster sign-off.

Slideteam –  Premium PowerPoint presentation templates designed to help you present your best.

Slidebean. Presentations that design themselves. Add your content, define a look and you’re done.

Writing & Blogs

Blog Hands – Get blog content delivered to your inbox each month. Certified Blog Writing Service For Business Growth.

Scripted –  Expert writers ready to supercharge your inbound traffic with outstanding blogs, website pages, and more.

DMCA – Protect your content and Blogs from CopyCats. A simple solution for protecting

Social Media

General

HootSuite  – Manage and connect with more than 35 popular social networks, including Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn and Twitter to schedule social media posts.

Loomly – Create and schedule content for Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Google + and LinkedIn. Can also give you ideas for content such as theme days.

Animatly – Animated GIFS for Social Media. Create and personalise animated GIF’s to use on your social media accounts.

Heyo –   Use to create Sweepstakes, Contests, and Campaign apps that publish to Mobile, Facebook, and anywhere on the web.

Publicfast – Social Media Influencers. Build campaigns with famous influencers pay for performance

Shortstack –  Create Facebook apps and build engaging social media marketing campaigns – such as contests, promotions, newsletter sign ups, quiz’s and much more.

SumAll – Social media scheduling and automation.

SocialDashboard –  Social Media Scheduling & Marketing Tool for Agencies and Social Media Professionals. Click here for a 60 Day Trial. This is one of my new projects, would love to to come and check it out

Instagram

Plann – Plann is an Instagram planning app. You can design, edit, analyse and schedule your Instagram account and stories. Available as an app on Apple and Android, but in the planning stages for a web version too. WAHM doesn’t currently have an Instagram account but I know a lot of people that swear by this tool for Instagram planning.

Tailwind – Tailwind started as a Pinterest scheduler but now does Instagram too! Discover Content, Schedule Posts, Monitor Conversations, Amplify Reach, and Analyse Results.  All with One Tool. Get a $15 credit to your account by signing up using this link.

Hopper  – The Fully Automated Instagram Scheduler. This is a scheduler you can use on the web, or it also comes as an Apple app.

Facebook

Post Planner – This allows you to schedule and post to Facebook and Twitter with your own content, but also find content to share.

Pinterest

Tailwind – One of the most widely used Pinterest tools. You can pin your own posts or re-pin others. Schedule your pins and sync with Instagram and Facebook as well. Get a $15 credit to your account by signing up using this link.

LinkedIn

Twitter

Post Planner – This allows you to schedule and post to Facebook and Twitter with your own content, but also find content to share.

Video

Animoto – Make great videos easy. Marketing video’s, slideshow video’s, even create videos from your own personal photos. Start with a free trial.

VideoHive   – Video effects and stock footage

Graphic Design, Logos & Banners

20 Dollar Banners –  Branded custom web graphics give your product and business a unique look and feel from $20 bucks.

Canva – A fabulous graphic tool designed for you to be able to create virtually anything you want, from logos to Facebook banners, website graphics, ebook covers, social media posts. The list could go on for a while. If you are a little bit tech savvy, then it’s super easy to use, and even if you’re not, the drag and drop features make sure that it’s not that hard. Created by Aussies too!

Stencil – Very similar to Canva, with a drag and drop interface to make any design you would like. Use their templates or create your own. Add pictures, icons quotes and more.

Snappa  – The fastest way for marketers and entrepreneurs to create graphics. Another tool in the same vein as Canva and Stencil, introducing Snappa.

99 Designs  – They can create logos, branding, websites, packages and more.

Clipping Magic – Have you ever taken a photo that you would just love to remove the background from? Clipping Magic is and easy to use web based tool that does exactly that. Fabulous for removing the background in product shots for ecommerce stores.

Adobe Photoshop – If you really want to get into photo editing, rather than just using photos in graphic design programs, you’ll need to use something like Photoshop or similar. This will allow you much more ability to edit photos properly. Adobe also has other programs in their creative suite, allowing you to do pretty much anything you can think of in regards to images.

Stock Images & Photos

Remember when choosing photos, check that the licence enables you to use the photo for the purpose you want. The free sites will generally have limited use (website or blog use only) but some of the paid sites will have different options allowing various uses from websites to use on products to sell.

Deposit Photos – One of my personal favourites and where we get a lot of photos from for this website. You do need to pay for the photos, but you have a much better range to choose from than free sites.

PhotoDune –  Royalty free stock photos from $2

Creative Market – A fabulous site where people sell their photos and designs.

Pexels – A free source for photos to use on your website.

Unsplash – Another free site for stock photos.

Shutterstock – Another site where you pay for the images but they have a great range of photos, videos and music.

Stocksy – Tends to be a little bit more expensive than some of the other sites, but their licence can sometimes enable you to do more things with the photo.

Storyblocks – Based on a monthly or yearly subscription system, but you have unlimited downloads during that time.

Stock Graphics – A smaller site with a yearly subscription fee but they use their own images so seem to have less restriction for the uses of the graphics on it.

Fonts

Etsy – Etsy is a great place to find all sorts of things. Just search for fonts and away you go.

Creative Market – Just like graphics and themes, Creative Market has thousands of fonts to choose from.

Dafont – Sort of a directory of fonts. They will link to where you can find the font you like.

Font Squirrel – A list of free fonts you can download and use.

General Business Help

Legal123 – Provides easy to use legal templates as well as other legal services. Their website legal package provides a privacy policy, website disclaimer and terms and conditions all for one price. You just choose your type of business and fill in the details. There’s also other great templates for small business and freelancer use such as contractor agreements, letter of demand and confidentiality agreements.

DMCA Website Protection – Protecting your photos, videos, written content and more.

GSuite – Business email, calendar, storage and more. An all-in-one-suite to communicate, store and create.

Accounting & Finance

Xero – Starting at $25 per month if you don’t need many invoices. Comes with a 30 day free trial.

MYOB – Starting from $27 per month for the basics.

Wave – Wave is a free accounting tool which is great if your starting out and have a limited budget. One of the drawbacks is it doesn’t seem to have bank feeds which the paid services do.

Quickbooks – Starting from $5 per month for a basic self-employed app and $10.50 if you need a bit more.

Freshbooks – Invoicing, expenses, project management and time tracking. Basic plan starts at $15 USD per month.

Sage – Streamline and automate your accounting processes.

Poindexter – An Automated Forecasting and Budgeting Software for New Business Plans.

BillDog – Simple, free invoicing for freelancers.

Recruitment, HR & Employees

Screenshot Monitor  – Track employee’s time and screenshots. See it on the web. Get a clear picture of time and money your remote or office team spends on each task.

CakeHR can control and automate your HR needs. Leave management, timesheets, shift scheduling, expenses and performance all in one place.

Breezy HR. Optimize your recruiting process.  End-to-end recruiting software to help you attract & hire great employees with less effort.

WorkBright. Give new hires a better first day with digital onboarding software for new hire paperwork! Drive efficiency and mitigate liability.

Analytics and Data

AgencyAnalytics is an all-in-one reporting platform designs for marketing agencies including: SEO, PPC, Social Media, Web Analytics & more.

SocialDashboard –  Social Media Scheduling & Marketing Tool for Agencies and Social Media Professionals.

Improvely – Built To Optimize Your Marketing, Improvely identifies the source of every signup and sale, whether it’s from a marketing campaign or any other channel.

Live Chat

CometChat. The easiest way to add audio, video & text chat on web, mobile & desktop and enable your users to communicate with each other.

Crowdstream. Turn visitors into signups, close sales faster and make customers happy. All-in-one live analytics and live chat for online businesses.

SmartSupp –  Free Live Chat with Visitor Recording.

Payments & Subscriptions

Square – Accept card payments from tap-and-go cards, mobile wallets and chip cards. Absolutely fabulous for people selling at markets but can be used anywhere. You no longer need to only accept cash. Simple alternative to a full EFTPOS terminal.

Stripe & PayPal – The two most well know payment processors for ecommerce and websites.

Pin Payments  – Accepting online payments is easy, no merchant account required

SecurePay  – Australia’s simple, secure and efficient online payment solution.

Manage Your Business

Hellotracks helps businesses schedule, manage and follow their service delivery in a simple, cost effective and scalable way.

UpListing –  Uplisting is a property management system for Vacation Rental owners, operators and managers. Syncs with AirBnB and others to give you control over bookings and easily manage properties.

Trello – Keep track of all of your projects. Use boards, lists and cards to organise and prioritise all of your projects.

Wrike – Exceed customer expectations with an easy-to-use marketing project management solution.

SEO

The Recipe for SEO Success – Kate Toon is your go to lady if you want to learn about SEO yourself. There’s even a free SEO Nibbles course to get you started if you’ve got no idea.

Yoast – Once you get your head around the basics of SEO, if you have a wordpress site then Yoast has a great plugin to let you know if your website copywrtiting is on the right SEO track.

Moz – There’s lots of informative articles and a few free tools to get you started on here.

Affiliate Programs

LeadDyno – To build your own Affiliate Program and track Affiliate Sales.

Commission Factory is everything you would expect from the fastest growing Australian Performance Marketing and Affiliate Network.

GrowSumo Turn customers, affiliates, and resellers into a powerful marketing team to grow your business faster.

TapAffiliate  – Affiliate tracking software for E-commerce and SaaS

Webinars

Click Meeting – Webinar Your Way. Run custom-branded webinars to convert, reach, educate and engage your audience.

Building a Course

Thinkific – Create, market and sell your own online course. Set pricing, schedule lessons and automate content.

Teachable – Get a fully functioning school with learning management, payment gateways and sales & marketing tools.

Buying & Selling Websites

Flippa – Designed for buying and selling websites, apps and domains.

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