Web development resources
It’s tough to sift through all of the resources that can make your website more effective. I thought I’d share with you some of my favorite ones here. A few I use and I’m an affiliate (if you click on the link and purchase, I’ll get a small ‘kickback’ at no additional cost to you) with, a few I’ve used in the past and a lot I use on a regular basis.
WordPress: WordPress has quickly become the software to use for customers who want to make changes themselves. Yes, there is a learning curve, but it’s not as bad as some of the other CMS (content management systems) out there. The main gotcha when it comes to WordPress is having plugins and themes that are incompatible.
themeforest: (affiliate) Get your WordPress site rolling quickly with a theme from themeforest. They also have a great selection of plugins that will make your WordPress site look like it came from Barnum and Bailey – if you want! If you’re looking for other graphics or pieces of code (Flash or Flex), etc. they have those, too. The code that they sell is submitted by users but goes through an approval system before it’s released for sale.
Adobe Creative Suite: I don’t use all of the programs that are offered here – wish I had time to use more! I pay for the monthly subscription and mostly use Photoshop, Dreamweaver, Illustrator, and Fireworks. Paying for a subscription isn’t my favorite thing to do, but the programs are always kept updated.
Authorize.net: (affiliate) Gateway for processing credit cards online. A gateway makes the connection between your website, the customer’s bank and your Merchant Account (bank). They’ve been around for years and are a reputable company with high standards for security.
LeadPages: LeadPages is a great resource for bringing people through a ‘funnel’ in order to get a desired action. One example is a newsletter sign-up. You can quickly set up a LeadPages account and use one of their pre-designed templates to embed on your site to lead users to a sign-up form to a newsletter.
SeoBook Keyword Tool: This is a tool that I’ve used a bunch of times to do keyword research before bidding on keywords in Google AdWords or another place.
Google Analytics: For years I’ve used this tool to do see how effective your keywords are and to get a feel for how your website visitors navigate your website. It’s free to use. All you need to do is place a block of code on your site and you can start to get information regarding your visitors.