One of the hardest things about starting up any business is deciding on systems and processes. Some people jump in with no idea about how they want to organize the business.
#1 – Accounting Software
If you want to do freelance work and start taking on clients, the very first thing you have to be able to do is get paid and track your income versus expenses. There are a lot of solutions out there to get this done. If you don’t have any money and need to work barebones for a while, Wave is an awesome solution. They offer a free accounting platform with premium add-ons. The basic system will get you started and allow you to invoice clients for free.
The product I started using very quickly (even when I couldn’t afford it) was 17Hats. It really is an all in one solution. It offers client bookings, invoicing, time logging, project management, customer relations management (CRM), automated workflows, recurring invoices and a lot more.
Another solution is Freshbooks. It’s extremely popular, easy to use and has a great reputation for being a rock-solid platform. I’ve never used it but added it here based solely on recommendations by people I respect in the WordPress and Divi community.
#2 Project Management
If you go the 17Hats route, project management is already built into your Accounting Software. If not, you have a few other options that work incredibly well. Asana is a great tool that gives you most of its functions for free. They do have more premium tiers which bring more functionality, but I’ve found the basic version works for just about anything you’re trying to do. In fact, we have a project template available to you. Fill out the quick form below and we will send the Asana template to your inbox.
Starting a website development business and using anything other than WordPress is a decision I can’t understand. It’s not that other CMSs are bad. I don’t have a real opinion on them one way or the other, to be honest. I do know that WordPress makes up the majority of the internet for a reason. Flexibility and an incredible network of high-quality plugins make it the clear winner.
Learn The Differences between WordPress.com and WordPress.org here
#4 Amazing Hosting
Finding the right web host is a long tough journey. It depends on what you’re trying to accomplish and budget always plays a part. As a good friend of mine, Time Strifler from https://divilife.com always says “If you’re serious about your business, you need to be serious about your hosting.”
We partnered with Flywheel a long time ago after trying a lot of other hosts. None have compared in terms of site speed, hosting quality, optimization, ease of use and customer support. They are an incredible brand ran by incredible humans who want to help.
Finding the right theme framework is maybe the hardest decision when you first start. There are a ton of themes on ThemeForest and many of them look so good. The tough part is getting your information into that design. Admittedly, there is always a learning curve with a new theme. That’s why we found one we love and bend it to our will with each new project.
Divi has been our go-to theme for almost 4 years and it just got even better with the release of the Theme Builder in Divi 4.0. You can learn more about the Divi Theme and its incredible visual builder here.
Starting a business should be about passion. You should absolutely love what you do because when you bring money and deadlines into the fold, it can quickly suck the fun out of it. Passion will keep you pushing through the tough times.
These five tools are things I wish someone would have shown me when I was starting. They can and will save you massive amounts of money and time from the trail and error of system exploration.