ONLINE BUSINESS Peace of Mind
Simplero • Simple all-in-one solution: mailing list + shopping cart + e-course + membership site + CRM + landing pages + more! For $125/month! Read Ella's glowing review
Alternative: Aweber ($69) + 1shoppingcart ($59) + SendOwl for membership site ($24) + Aweber Pro for CRM tagging ($49) + LeadPages ($25) + Zapier (to integrate chunkily above 5 completely seperate platforms)... $240/month!!
WEB HOSTING Reliability
ICDSoft • Web hosting + used since 2003 + crashed only once during 14 years!! + super quick support ticket response time + my longest response time was 11 min (Business Plan $10/month)
Alternative: n/a (I wouldn't recommend GoDaddy or BlueHost, my colleagues have run into so many problems and hickups with not very friendly support.)
Acuity Scheduling • No more time wasting back-and-forth e-mails. No more double-booking with auto-synch. No more missed appointments with auto timezone. Multiple types of bookings. $15/month
Alternative: Calendly (free). Pretty, but client-side user interface requires one too many back-and-forth clicks
World Time Buddy • Never miss another international call! Pro tip: Always schedule the call in client/customer's timezone, and then convert to timezone that you'll be in. That way, the client/customer calls at their scheduled time and don't have to deal with timezone, just because you are a digital nomad.
Zoom • No more dropped calls, like Skype. Cleanest audio line I've experienced, in 60+ countries! I used it for coaching calls, webinars, screen-sharing, video conferencing, and even watching a movie with an overseas bestie. It also has international dial-in numbers, automatic recording, live chat and break out rooms.
Alternative: Skype (free). Popular, but call quality not as high, calls drop regularly and doesn't work in some of the 60+ countries I've been to.
Warning: DO NOT use WebinarJam. It has a 2 min delay between your speaking and your audience seeing/hearing you. Two ENTIRE minutes! So if you ask a question and have your audience answer in the chat window, the answers come in two ENTIRE minutes later when you might have already moved on. If you stay silent and wait for 2 min for them to catch up, then after they've typed their answer, they'll be waiting for 2 min of silence, wondering "are you still there?". And you'll only see that question when you're already 2 min ahead, talking about something else. Total lameness and madness!
Skillshare • Online education platform of millions of students who have a love of learning. An excellent channel for community building, wisdom sharing and influencer "becoming."
Interact Quiz • Interact is an elegantly simple way to turn strangers into friends, to play together and build the foundations of a relationship. Friendship fosters the best clients and/or referrals.
No more hidden exchange fees! Exchange between currencies instantaneously at the best foreign exchange rate. Smart cards and smart banking that knows to charge my GBP account when I'm in the UK, USD account when I'm in the US, EUR account when I'm in Europe. Otherwise, it default's to my primary EUR currency account.
Transferwise • Sends foreign exchange from bank to bank. Debit Mastercard free (but never works for day-to-day purchases while abroad). Top up Transferwise account in 4 ways: direct debit via online banking (2 min wait), credit card (7 min wait), debit card (2 min wait, with fee) or bank transfer (1-3 days wait). Customer service by phone (under 5 min wait). Has personal or business accounts in USD, EUR, GBP, CAD, etc.
Revolut • Sends foreign exchange from bank to almost anywhere (like paypal.me). Debit Mastercard 10€ (works for transit, restaurant and day-to-day purchases while abroad). Top up via credit card (instant), debit card (instant, free) or bank transfer (1-3 days wait), but no online banking option. No customer service by phone (4 hour wait for each chat reply via Revolut app!). Has personal or business accounts in USD, EUR, GBP, etc, but no CAD.
Wave Accounting • Automatic aggregation of bank statements. Simple tags for expense categories. Auto generated financial statements for year end taxes. Seperate login for accountant and/or bookkeeper.
Alternative: Freshbooks. Lacks financial statements for year end taxes.
digital Graphic beautification
Canva.com • Simple and beautiful digital graphic editing app. I love browsing their infographics and tables of content for design inspiration. Only downside is it only works if you're online. Free, some stock images or shapes paid. When I'm offline, my VA does what I need done. As of Feb 1, 2019, the Canva app on iPHone won't allow editing of Canva 2.0 projects, bummer. But sooo pretty! Warning: You may get sucked into design vortex and never come out ;)
Google Apps • Gmail customized to firstname.lastname@example.org, integrated with Gcal and Google Drive (gdocs, gxls) for file storage and transfer. Automatic back up of my entire computer on the cloud. Document syncing between laptop and mobile devices. $8/month
Alternative: Gmail email@example.com + Evernote for notes + Dropbox for file storage and transfer (free)
LastPass • Save your sanity with one master password to access all other passwords. This allows other passwords to be randomized and more secure. I feel 1.5 tons lighter. Free for 1 device, $12/month for multiple-devices.
Upwork • Hire freelancers with five star ratings + proven project history + portfolio only.
Alternative: Angeline Ambatali, my virtual assistant, she's super dependable, quick to learn any new e-system I teach her, and efficient with her work.
Asana • Multiple projects (to-do list, shopping list, reading list, ideas list, in progress list). Tasks and subtasks within each project. Swipe right to check off tasks (shot of dopamine), swipe left to delete a non-essential task ( wisdom)
Alternative: Trello. Gadgety and free, can do neat tricks, but I prefer simplicity and minimalism.
Mark 'O Travel • Keep track of countries visited with photo reminders and color-coded map.
Alternative: (meh) Hotels.com or Booking.com
TripAdvisor • Worldwide reviews of things to do, places to eat, experiences to have and hotels with great facilities to borrow for the day
VisaHQ • VisaHQ.com, Inc. has provided online visa services and U.S. passport solutions enabling travelers to apply online for visas to virtually any country in the world.