The Tools I Use to Run My Business
As you may know, I don’t think new tools are key to success - hard work is. That said, coming from someone who loves to try out all the new shiny things, I think it make sense to compile a list of the tools that stuck with me.
My website is a static generated website which is technical lingo meaning that it’s not Wordpress and it doesn’t require a database. This is great because it allows it to run a lot faster and there’s nothing evil people can hack into. I’m happy with the setup I have now, I can write content on both my computer and my iPad and as soon as I commit the changes to Github, Netlify automatically builds and publishes a new website. I could not recommend Netlify higher and the fact that it’s FREE is one of the great wonders of the world. Their application looks amazing, performs great and they offer things like a great CDN, free SSL and image optimizing.
I use GoSquared for analytics as I think they offer the best graphical interface for understanding my visitors in a clear and easy way. This site no longer tracks you through any Google service. GoSquared is one of the biggest costs I currently have for my website but I use their tool every day.
I just started using Fathom too and it’s one of the products that you immediately can tell that it’s built with love. If you want dead simple analytics that respect your users privacy - Fathom is for you. (Fast Company listed them as one of the options to ditch Google Analytics which, let’s be honest, no one really knows how to use.)
My newsletter is sent through Mailchimp (after trying Mailchimp, Drip, Convertkit, Mailerlite and then Mailchimp again, and then Convertkit again! And the Buttondown!). You see, I’ve done my fair bit of testing and for most people, I’d say Mailchimp is the best bet. If you want to learn more about how to utilize Mailchimp, check out Paul Jarvis’ Chimpessential.
After using Dropbox for years, I wanted to reduce the number of services I use (and pay for) and ultimately decided to move my backups to iCloud (both through iCloud drive and Time Machine). If my computer would crash, I’d have a new one fully restored within a couple of hours. There’s no price tag on that.
I do all my design work in Figma. I was really hesitant to the whole “work-in-the-browser” setup but their app makes me forget about that. It does offer some clear advantages as developers on PC can access my files and there’s no need for Zeplin or Invision anymore.
Whenever I get a new device, be it a computer or a phone, the first app I install is always 1Password. It stores all of my password and their 2FA-logins. This is a life-saver as it allows me to have custom, full-length secure passwords for every website I use. It’s the one app I don’t think anyone should be without.
I’m tracking my time with Harvest and use them for sending invoices too. It’s great to get automatic reminders of invoices that aren’t paid!
One of the goals I set for myself for 2020 was not to begin projects without signed contracts. For all of my contracts, I rely on digital signing through Docusign. I think their experience is awesome and signing on my mobile is effortless!
I keep track of things to do in Things. I don’t have a fancy GTD systems all set up, rather something far simpler.
For writing, I like Notion. It’s simple and lightweight. It exports markdown and it’s easy for me and my editor to co-create in.
I’m blessed with having my own office space and the tools I use here are carefully selected. After years of using a Macbook Pro with an external monitor, I finally took the leap in 2017 to switch to an iMac. The iMac is one of the best Apple products there is imho; the screen is amazing, the computer looks great and works like a charm. I use a Macbook Pro 13” for traveling and an iPad Mini for entertainment.
Doxie Go is perhaps one of my best tech purchases. I use it to scan receipts that sync to a Dropbox folder (that my accountant has access to). The Doxie Q looks great but I’ve used Doxie Go for years and years and it just keeps going. This purchase has paid itself multiple times over.