I purchase my Domain (url) from NameCheap.com. This is an annual fee.
My monthly website hosting is through Surfside Web. They’re local to me, but I’ve had better service for less money than the original national provider I started with.
I manage my website content in WordPress. There is no additional charge for this. If you’re starting a new website, ask your hosting provider for help or tutorials.
Here are the plugins I use in WordPress. While working on your site in WordPress, go to Plugins > Add New > and search their name:
- All In One WP Security – a security plugin
- Broken Link Checker – checks for broken links on my site. This is good for if a webpage I link to changes.
- Cloudflare – I use Cloudflare as my DNS. I can’t explain more because it’s a little over my head.
- Contextual Related Posts – at the bottom of my blog posts, you’ll see “Related Posts” with three bullet points. This plugin does this automatically for me on each blog post and chooses what it thinks is the most relevant.
- Easy Forms for Mailchimp – I’m currently using Mailchimp as my email provider because it’s free for < 2,000 contacts.
- Insert Headers & Footers – this allows me to add codes (like Facebook Pixel) to my website header without having to access all the coding.
- Limit Login Attempts Reloaded – Another security plugin, it limits people & bots from trying to break into my website when they try all the passwords.
- Redirection – When I change urls or delete a page, I manually add a new redirection for new page I want people to land on if they click an old link.
- Social Warfare – I use this to add the social media share buttons at the top and/or bottom of my blog posts.
- UpdraftPlus – Backup/Restore – This backs up my website content. Also check with your hosting provider to see if they offer this before you pay twice.
- WP Fastest Cache – This helps me speed up my website when I don’t know how to do technical stuff.
- Yoast SEO
For any of these, I recommend doing what I did and Google “how to set up [plugin name] for beginners.” I follow these to make sure I choose the appropriate settings, especially when I don’t fully understand them.
Yes, you can also do this when your files are too big to upload to Constant Contact.
Social Media Tools
I know you’re shocked, but I use Canva to create any custom images/graphics I want to post. I have since spent personal money to upgrade to the pro plan.
There’s also WordPress plugins like WooCommerce or Shopify. They would give me more control & more money, but I think it’s like 2% more money to do work. Right now my focus is just getting started, so I chose the path of least resistance. Eventually I might move stuff back over to my site.
Click here to learn about planning your first course.
And of course, if you’re really into your website, there’s WordPress plugins (or other options) to host your own courses on your own site. I’m guessing this is closer to what Frank Kenny does for his Chamber Pros Education.