PEOPLE OFTEN ASK ME...
How I run a business without spending a lot of money. What's not-a-lot? Less than $100 CAD, which at the moment, is about $75 USD. Thanks, Canada.
Of course, I don't have:
- huge web hosting costs
- massive amounts of inventory and office supplies
- office rent
And many of the other expenses that come from running a traditional brick and mortar business. My business doesn't exist in meatspace (although I have long dreamed of opening a bookstore/tea emporium. I make great scones).
However, I do have:
- a successful online business
So what do I pay for each month and why?*
Mailchimp ($20 USD):
Mailchimp is the core of my business. Without Mailchimp, I wouldn't have any clients at all. Mailchimp allows me to give the best content to the most important people (yes, you there), on a consistent schedule you can rely on. It let's me build a closer relationship with my audience than I would otherwise be able to do. It allows me to familiarize my audience with my work and my writing, and it delivers my ecourse Mission System.
DPD ($10 USD):
DPD is the platform allowing me to sell my digital products like The Passion Project, Blogging Better, as well as packaged coaching sessions. It's super simple, super easy, and it also allows you to create affiliate programs and presell products— hurray! DPD is brandable, and integrates fairly seamlessly with my website.
Death to Stock ($15 USD):
I get my stock photos with a subscription to Death to the Stock Photo. It's almost always important to have visuals on your website, and not all of us has the time or inclination to spend hours taking photos. DTS has lovely photos suitable for just about any niche, and they have been incredibly useful for both my blog and creative products.
Bluehost ($7.99 USD):
Bluehost is how I host my Wordpress.org website. Is Bluehost my favourite thing ever? Nope. Will I switch to something like Flywheel eventually? Yep. Does it work for now at a low cost that is accessible to almost anyone (and the first year is only about $25 for the whole year)? Definitely.
Freshbooks ($12 USD):
Freshbooks is the amazing service I use to track time and bill my clients— payment is super easy, professional, and beautifully branded to look like it's coming from you. And it's way less sketchy than PayPal. I personally have Freshbooks integrated with Stripe, my favourite credit card processing service.
Tailwind ($10 USD):
So firstly I want to clarify that you don't need automation to grow a wicked Pinterest following (1,000,000+ views monthly, hell yes). With a good Pinterest strategy, you can get the word out about your blog at the top of your sales funnel with only 10-15 minutes of active work a day.
However, endless pinning is a little lack-lustre, and so now I use Tailwind so I can set it and forget it, baby.
Give Tailwind a try for absoluuuutely free and see how it transforms your following!
The best thing about the very bare list of monthly expenses is that it has taught me how to be resourceful. It has taught me how to build real connection with my audience in an authentic, one-on-one way without dumping hundreds of dollars into advertising in order to get to these people.
There is always a way.
DID YOU FIND THIS POST HELPFUL? SHARE IT WITH YOUR FRIENDS.
I want to know: What are your business must-haves? Let your fellow muses know in the comments!
* Some of these are affiliate links, friends, but if I'm using it for my own business, you know it's good.