How I spend Money in my Business : My Monthly Expenses Breakdown
When you're first starting your small business one of the toughest choices is where to invest your money and to choose what monthly services you absolutely need to be successful. When you have limited funds ever penny counts and if you do just a little bit of research you can save a few pennies while still growing your business.
In my free guide 7 Tools I Use Everyday to grow my business I give you the inside scoop on the tools I can't live without and why. You can snag that freebie here!
For this post I am going to share the resources that use monthly and how much I am spending. Keep in mind that we are all at different points in our business journey so your needs may be a bit different. That's OK! Don't feel like you need to use all of these tools or necessarily buy a subscription for services if you are not ready to take that step. I do have some affiliate links which means that I get a little credit towards my own accounts if you sign up through my link. (Which I would so appreciate!)
Ready to get started?
E-Mail Service Provider - Mail Chimp FREE
I have been using Mail Chimp for my businesses for several years and I have been really impressed with the platform. Mail Chimp is free to sign up if you have less than 2,000 people on your list. Once you reach 2,000+ e-mail subscribers they offer a tiered pricing structure based on how many subscribers you have on your list. If you are just getting started
One of my favorite features of Mail Chimp is the ability to set up automation sequences that your subscribers will receive once they opt in to your list. You can also create different lists or segments so that you know what particular free content your audience was interested in.
Sales Pages/Lead Magnets - LeadPages $300/year or $25/month
OK, I know what you're thinking....$300?! That sounds steep, I know. BUT LeadPages is a must when you are building an online business. Probably one of the most important things you do in an online business is acquire e-mail subscribers and or deliver free content to your audience. LeadPages allows you to create as many landing pages or lead boxes (like pop up boxes) to help you reach your ideal clients, grow your e-mail list and make sales. I use LeadPages for my online courses business and my brick and mortar business so I actually get a fair amount of value from it.
Now, if $300 seems steep think about how much each lead is worth to you. Imagine you collect 3,000 leads over one year you are paying just $.10 per each lead. That's a pretty great price per lead. If you are also able convert your audience into paying customers and you sell just one or two courses or books or product from a landing page you probably just covered the cost of the service for the year!
Website - ShowIt $24/month
If there is one thing I do a little strange (ok, not strange but different) in my business it's that I pay for a website service (which includes the hosting) and I also pay for a separate blog. Why do I do this? Well, I love ShowIt. I am just totally hooked on this platform for websites. ShowIt really targets photographers but you can use their websites for any niche. The reason I am so hooked is because it is so simple to use and has so many different ways to customize your site.
I was so comfortable using ShowIt that I decided to use it for my brick + mortar store Graced and my online business Natalieweberhamilton.com. You can have a Word Press blog integrated with your website so if you have an existing blog don't worry, you can still use that WordPress blog and not lose any of your content! I don't blog for my brick + mortar store but I do for Natalieweberhamilton.com - but I was starting a blog fresh and did not want to use Word Press (I had used Word Press in the past and just didn't love it - I hate plugins). That leads me to using SquareSpace for my blog.
Blog - SquareSpace $26/month
Take note friends....because of my own preferences I choose to pay for both the website and the blog but the two can be combined and you can save $$$. Like I mentioned, ShowIt doesn't offer their own blogging platform but you can use Word Press and then link your blog through your ShowIt site. I have also used SquareSpace in the past and loved the clean look and options for the blog layout. For me, it just worked but you do not have to do it this way.
You can use SquareSpace to host your website and your blog - so if you want to use SquareSpace instead of ShowIt you can totally do that. Both platforms are super intuitive and easy to use. You can also purchase your domaine names and use it for the websites you create on ShowIt or SquareSpace.
E-mail - Google $5/month
One of the simplest things to set up for your business is your custom e-mail address. I use Google business apps to host my e-mail. I use gMail for my personal e-mail so it is great to be able to use the same platform for all of my business accounts. For just $5/month google will host your e-mail address that is connected to your domain. For example - my e-mail is firstname.lastname@example.org (so I used my natalieweberhamilton.com domain name for my e-mail address.)
Domain Names - GoDaddy $11.99 for each domain name per year
I kind-of have an addiction to domain names. I just LOVE buying up domain names for my businesses. If I think of a domain name that relates to anything I am doing in my business I search to see if it's available and if it is I'll grab it. It's pretty easy to do when domains only cost about $12/year. You can save even more money if you buy a domain for 2-3 years at a time. You really only need one custom domain name for your website. You want the name to be fairly short and easy to remember. You can buy domain names on many sites around the web but I have been using GoDaddy for years and their service has been great!
Course Platform - Teachable - $34/month
There are lots of different options out there for e-course platforms. I've actually taken courses on Kajabi, I liked the platform but it's a bit more expensive. Teachable has a great basic plan for only $39/month so if you are just starting out with online courses and you don't have many students this is a much more affordable option.
Social Media Scheduling Application - TailWind -$14.99/month
I've used several social media scheduling programs in the past but I recently started using Tailwind to help me build my Pinterest following and exposure. Tailwind helps you easily schedule pins so that you are posting throughout the day without having to think about it.
To get a FREE month of Tailwind you can click the link below and try it out! I promise you'll be glad you did!
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