"Essential Tools Every Online Entrepreneur Needs"
Are you an online entrepreneur? If you
income or part of your income on the Internet,
you most definitely are. With more and more people
earning an income online,many tools and software
have been created to help them with their online
If you know about these tools, they can make your
life as an "online warrior" a lot easier. There's
a lot of work involved with running your own
Internet business. You need to wear many different
hats and be at least slightly skilled in many
Let's take a look at some of the resources you
should have in your "Entrepreneur Toolbox."
1) Websites: The structure and design of your
site is very important. It needs to look "clean"
and professional. You can use software to create
your site from scratch, pay someone else, or
use an online template.
A) Some resources for learning HTML:
Dave's HTML Guide:
W3 Schools- Online Tutorials
B) For Templates, see:
C) For Software, some free:
The Free Site
A handy tool to check your website for broken
To make sure you haven't created an overblown site
that takes forever to download, use this online tester:
2) Utility Programs: There are a few basic utilities
you'll need to have on hand for everyday tasks. These
include a good FTP program for uploading your files
to your web server and a program to zip and unzip
files. You'll need to zip files when they are large,
to compress them for Internet downloading.
Zip It Fast: http://www.zipitfast.com/
3) Email: As your business grows you'll come to
rely on email as your primary means of communication.
The most common email programs are Outlook and Outlook
Express which come standard with Windows, and Eudora,
which many power users prefer:
Whatever you use for an email client make sure you're
familiar with how it works, and how to create folders
and autoresponders. With today's spam problem, you'll
have to use a good filtering program, such as:
or a third party service like:
4) Mailing List Management: Any website owner
his salt knows the importance of collecting visitors'
email addresses. It doesn't matter if you'll be sending
out a monthly newsletter or just periodic site updates,
you need software that's up for the task. Make sure
whatever you use is capable of handling multiple
lists, as when your online business grows you may
need to keep lists for different things. For example,
you might have one for those who like to swap ezine
ads with you, one for those who have expressed an
interest in advertising with you, etc.Here are a
few great resources:
Groupmail: (the one I use) http://www.infacta.com/
Subscribe Me: http://www.siteinteractive.com/subpro/
Here's a list of some others:
With everyone using filters on email these days
make sure you download this program that checks
your email for "trigger words" and improves
chances of making it through to the inbox. It's
called Email Advisor
5) Graphics Program: You'll find you need graphics
for many of your online activities. Maybe for your
website, a banner for an exchange, a cover for
an ebook, etc. The two most popular online today
are Photoshop http://www.Adobe.com
If you don't want to part with your cash, there
is a free one:
When you create your fancy graphics, do make sure that
they aren't too large and cause delay in downloading.
You want them tight and compressed. Run them through
an online check at Spinwave:
6) Autoresponders: An autoresponder works much
Fax on Demand and automatically replies to any email
sent to it with a pre-formatted message. For example
you might have a "thanks for emailing me" response
that replies to all incoming messages or you might
want to set one up for "price lists," "product
information," "advertising rates," etc.
are very powerful and can help to automate many
aspects of your daily email chores. You can use
a third party service, or install software on your
server, or configure them from within your email
Get Response: http://www.getresponse.com/
7) Online Payments: If you're going to be doing
business online, you'll need to be able to accept
online payments. If you don't want the expense
of a merchant account there are plenty of other
inexpensive third party services you can use.
2 CheckOut: http://www.2checkout.com/
8) PDF Software: If you want to offer downloadable
documents from your website or create and sell
ebooks or reports, you'll need a way to convert
Word and text documents to PDF. There are many
other options besides Adobe:
PDF Moto: http://PDFMoto.com
9) Ebook Creators: Ebooks are very popular
and can be sold or given away for free.
If you give them away, they become very powerful
viral marketing tools that can generate a consistent
traffic flow to your site. If sold, they can produce
a nice income for you. Most ebooks come in PDF
(portable document format) or .exe. To create an
.exe format you'll need what's called a compiler.
HTML Executable: http://www.gdgsoft.com/htmlexe/index.aspx
Ebook Generator: http://www.ebookgenerator.com/
Ebooks Writer: http://www.ebookswriter.com/
Nice directions on how to create PDF Ebooks:
For professional ebook covers see:
Cover Software http://www.coversoftware.com/
Ebook on Making Covers: http://tinyurl.com/2l4o2
10) Virus/Firewall Protection: It's a dangerous
online and you need to protect yourself from the "bad
guys" who create and send out viruses. You'll need
to install a good virus protection program and keep
it running constantly in the background in order to
steer clear of infections. If you have a "constant
on" Net connection like DSL or cable, you'll also
need to run a firewall program to keep out hackers.
Take a look at:
Spyware Remover: http://lavasoft.de
11) Accounting Software: As an entrepreneur, you'll
need to be able to generate invoices and track your
income and expenses for the "tax man." Three
Internet Tax Helper: http://www.internettaxhelper.com/
12) Marketing/Promotional: It may have worked
Kevin Costner in "Field of Dreams," but online,
saying "build it and they will come" is just
true. You need to be proactive by promoting and marketing
your website constantly to bring in the paying
customers. Here are some excellent resources:
Self Promotion: http://www.selfpromotion.com/
Jim World: http://www.jimworld.com/
Bruce Clay: http://www.bruceclay.com/
13) Typing Shortcuts: At the end of the day you
you've typed so much your fingers will fall off.
Repetitive typing comes with the territory. You'll
find yourself answering the same questions about
your products and services, as well as posting
your sig line to hundreds of posts in discussion
boards...all of which adds up to a lot of repetitive
typing. A typing shortcut tool stores short snippets
of text for you so when you need them you just hit
a key or a combination of keys, and it will type
out your pre-stored text for you. This really saves
a lot of valuable time.
Type It In: http://www.wavget.com/typeitin.html
14) Misc: Here are some tools that don't categorize
easily -- but can be extremely useful to you. As
you move around the Net, you'll find many useful
tools and software that can help you in your daily
entrepreneur life. Make sure you bookmark or down-
load them for later use.
TextPad: A more powerful alternative to Notepad
FeedReader: RSS is becoming very popular online so
you'll need a reader to subscribe and read them.
Music: For your musical enjoyment while doing
your web work I highly suggest..
WebBBS: A shareware discussion board to install
on your website.
The Directory of Ezines: A pay for membership site
that will give you access to over 800 newsletters
you can purchase ad space in or swap ads or submit
articles to. http://www.lifestylespub.com/
ICop: If you'd like to join a group of online
professionals you'll want to take a look at
this organization: http://www.i-cop.org/
Being an online entrepreneur involves juggling a
lot of balls to keep everything running smoothly.
By using the right tools for the job you'll save
yourself a lot of time and energy that can be used
to grow your business in a very successful direction.
"Must Have Marketing Resources" Ebook by Merle
is loaded with valuable online resources you need
to know about, when it comes to running your web
business. Get your copy now at ...