Web tools to help you grow your marketplace.

I get asked a lot about what tools/software/resources I use, when it comes to building a website, growing an email list, getting traffic to my shop, etc.

So, here’s a big list! I’ll add more as I go. I also have an entire Website Tutorial Library that will show you how to use all of these resources (it’s free).

I hope this is helpful to you!

 Building Your Site/Blog

(and if you’d like to learn how, HERE is a starter guide I’ve written, just for crafters):

Buying your domain: GoDaddy

Hosting your site: Host Gator

Free WordPress Themes: http://wordpress.org/themes/

The Thesis Theme (This is the theme I SWEAR BY – When you are ready to upgrade to a premium theme, this is the one to look at.)

Choosing fonts for your site: Google Fonts Directory

Adding fonts to your site: Google Fonts Plugin

Finding colors for your site: HTML Color Codes

Simple contact form: Contact Form Plugin

Simple sharing buttons for your posts: Simplified Social Sharing Plugin

Backing up your site: Backup Creator

Growing Your Newsletter List:

Email list provider: AWeber. (HERE is why I use AWeber for my ornament business.)

Adding optin boxes to your posts: Magic Action Box

Getting Found in Search:

Keyword Research: Google Keyword Planner

WordPress SEO plugin: Yoast WordPress SEO plugin

Other Resources:

External Shopping Cart Solution: Indiemade or Ecwid (I use Ecwid now, and I love it. You can see it in use on my handmade ornament website, right HERE.)

Creating PDF files without Word: OpenOffice.org

 

  • Please be aware that a couple of the above links are affiliate links! Almost everything I do here on this site is free, and getting a commission from a couple of these tools helps me to fund the site and all the tutorials I’ve created. But, just know that ANY product or service I recommend, I love & use myself, in my own handmade business….. otherwise it wouldn’t make the list.
2 Responses
  • Andrew Santos
    February 23, 2016

    Hi Staci,

    Let me start off by saying I love the fact that you are show people how to setup their blog/shop/website and you do it in terms that even a newbie can understand. Thank you for taking the time to layout the foundation for starting an online business in the simplest terms.

    I found the link for “Backing up your site:Backup Creator” under the heading Building Your Site/Blog does not send you to the correct page. Your missing the colon between the http and the two back slashes.

    I like to hear about the shipping software your using and the ones you considered. If you would like to use all or any part of this in your testimonials/comments please do. Thank again.

    Andrew Santos

    • Staci Ann Lowry
      March 25, 2016

      Thank for letting me know about the link, Andrew, I appreciate it!

      Right now I am using ShippingEasy (http://shippingeasy.com). It integrates with my Ecwid shop so that makes it really easy, and it’s also a very simple software to learn. I’ve been very happy with it.

      Unfortunately, I now also have a recurring subscription thing going, and Ecwid does not handle recurring payments. Other solutions I’m considering to take its place do not integrate with ShippingEasy. So, I might be trying out some other shipping softwares soon. (Sounds like a good future blog article :) )

      Thank you again, Andrew!

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