We are often asked what are our best tools and applications for managing our websites. We tested a lot and built this article both as a list of tools that we would have liked to know when we started but also as a “reminder list” on our side.
We have 2 remarks as a foreword:
- Everyone has their own list and preferences. We did not add the alternatives to the applications we use although there are always 2 or 3 competing solutions. Either because we tested the competitors and we were not satisfied, either because we did not test them precisely. In both cases, we do not want to add them to this list.
- This list is updated regularly and it follows the evolution of our uses and our development.
This list is ideal if you wish to:
- automate your processes
- simplify the admin side of your business
- save time on research and testing tools
THE LIST OF OUR BEST TOOLS
- Shopify: we tested Prestashop and Woocommerce and Shopify is clearly our favorite CMS to manage our e-commerce sites.
- Free Shipping Bar by Hextom (Shopify App): a dynamic “top bar” to indicate the amount remaining before being offered the delivery costs.
- Order Printer Emailer (Shopify App): the easiest and fastest way to automate the sending of invoices to our customers. And besides, it is free.
- Plug in SEO (Shopify App): we use the free extension for the moment. The minimum to check for possible SEO problems.
- Stamped.io (Shopify App): the best customer feedback app, which automatically sends requests for reviews and give the opportunity to our customers to reply directly via email. The App is freemium, which is perfect to test it.
- Sales Pop by Beeketing (Shopify App): What’s worse than an empty restaurant? Sales Pop allows visitors to know who buys at the same time as them and gives credibility to your shop.
- Boost Sales – Upsell & Cross sell (Shopify App): the best way to increase your average basket is cross and up selling. This can be very laborious to set up, or very simple with this application.
- WordPress.org: the best CMS to create a website. Perfect for launching a site easily whether it is basic or complex. Open source really makes sense here thanks to the number of users of the solution.
- Envato Market: hard not to talk about envato market which is a market place to acquire paid themes and plugins. For themes, we use Santiago for Kool Stuff and Meth for CodeStag for Kool Corp.
- Yoast SEO: one of the wordpress essentials to check your SEO and readability.
- Polylang: to manage a multi-language site, it’s a simple and free solution.
- Mango Buttons: to create call-to-action buttons easily and quickly directly in the editor.
- Easy Social Share Buttons: a very good plugin to facilitate the sharing of its content through effective sharing buttons. Easily customizable.
- Google Analytics Dashboard for WordPress: having direct access to your analytics in wordpress is the best way to find out what works fast.
- Page Builder by SiteOrigin: a simple way to build pages a little more complex than usual without coding.
- Disqus: a good way to manage a community and the comments of a site through a well designed interface. The only problem is the advertising that it includes (still unactivable).
- Contact Form 7: the most popular contact form on WordPress and probably the easiest to set up.
Sales & marketing 📈
- Facebook Ads: difficult to do digital marketing without facebook ads today. This is one of the best tools to acquire a specific target audience.
- Google Adwords: it is an essential tool whether through advertising or keyword planning tools.
- Sumo : we use Sumo for our “email catcher” whether pop-ups or top bars. It’s freemium and it’s a good tool to start.
- Opt-in Panda : the plugin thanks to which we can reserve content exclusively to our subscribers. This is the one we used for this list.
- Mailchimp : There is a lot of “auto-responder” on the market and Mailchimp is one of the leaders. Many say its deliverability is not efficient and expensive. We continue to use it on our side because the interface is user-friendly and any web application can be integrated with Mailchimp.
Business Management 👔
- Slack : to communicate quickly in the team without sending email or mixing private and pro discussions.
- Trello : to manage our projects collectively.
- Gsuite : just better than Microsoft can do for our emails with Gmail (and apps that are developed for), our cloud with Google Drive and document creation (Docs, Sheets & Slides).
- Pinterest : to share and collaborate on the visual aspect of our projects.
- Upwork : to recruit our freelancers.
Accounting & Finance 💶
- Intuit Quickbooks : a financial reporting and accounting software. Quite simple and intuitive but need an accounting expert to put it completely in place for e-commerce.
- Receipt Bank : to automate and simplify the management of invoices and expense reports.
- Paypal : the easiest way to set up an online payment system. He repels some customers but he reassures a lot thanks to his buyer guarantee.
- Stripe : for those who absolutely do not want to use Paypal, Stripe is the best alternative to accept credit card payments online. Simple, effective and without any fixed fees.