RESOURCES FOR CREATIVES, DESIGNERS, AND ENTREPRENEURS

There are a lot of post here on my blog to help you start a blog/business, but I know looking through posts can get overwhelming.  Here are a bunch of resources I use/used, compiled on one page.*Disclaimer* Third-party products and services represented on lovetlhayden.com are not necessarily endorsed or recommended by TL Hayden| TLH Designsand lovetlhayden.com disclaims all responsibility regarding the performance or the use of third-party products and services. Read more of our policy, here.


BLOG PLATFORMS

  • Squarespace - After using wordpress, I moved on to squarespace. It has great templates and provides a domain, eCommerce capabilities, blog platform, analytics, as well as email options. It has a simple interface and their customer service is there to help. You can pay monthly or annually. Perfect for those who aren't tech savvy but want an awesome looking site. Wordpress can get a little glitchy sometimes. This can be a problem if you don't know much about coding.
  • Shopify - Offers domain and templates. Perfect for someone who just wants a simple online shop put up in minutes. It's a little more expensive but worth it with all their extra apps you can integrate into your site.

DOMAIN & HOSTING

If you think you may change from one website platform to another as you grow, I always recommend using one of these instead of purchasing a domain directly from a web-based platform like squarespace for example. If you choose to switch to shopify or wordpress later you may run into issues and spending more money just to transfer your domain over.

  • Bluehost - If you want to be taken seriously, you'll need a domain and email account. Bluehost is recommended by wordpress to use for hosting a wordpress site. I've been using them for years. They always have better deals than godaddy.

GRAPHIC DESIGN & PHOTO EDITING TOOLS

  • Adobe Photoshop - Perfect for graphic designers and creatives to edit photos, ad filters, effects, etc. Best program to use, but it will cost you.
  • Photoscape - This is free and easier to use than Photoshop. You can edit photos, create collages, and add text on images.
  • Canva - Awesome online graphic design program. It helps you stay consistent with your brands visuals, too. You can create Pinterest-friendly images, blog/social media designs, flyers, and more. You can also add a team of people to help with your designs. 
  • PhotoGrid - I use this app to place quick text on top of images. It's a cool tool to use when making signature images on instagram for my brand, but its meant for photo collages too.

FONTS & STYLED STOCK PHOTOS & TEMPLATES

  • Creative Market - You can find a ton of things here offered by other creatives. There's stock photos, styled stock images, blog templates, graphic design software add-ons, unique fonts, stationery templates, and more. They also offer weekly freebies to members.
  • Font Space - I go here to find free fonts. Some are for personal use only and others are for commercial use.
  • Font Squirrel - If you own an online shop and sell items, you'll need to use fonts that are for commercial use only. All fonts here are for commercial use and they're free.
  • Etsy - You can find all kind of things here: soap, party goods, clothes, accessories, design templates, etc. It's a great market place to buy and sell from all over the world. If you're a designer, creative, or hand made artist I'd even suggest adding items of your own to sell.
  • Freepik - I go here when I need quick vectors or templates to design invitations, flyers, banners, etc. They offer 100's of free things to download and use!
  • Haute Chocolate - I love her styled stock images. I used a lot of them for my clients websites and my own branding

MAKE MONEY BLOGGING

  • Commission Junction - One of the main affiliate programs to join.
  • Affiliate Window - Another top affiliate program to join with a low payment threshold of $20
  • Rakuten Link Share - Another top affiliate program to join.
  • Amazon Associates - I'm an amazon fanatic. I find so many awesome things there that I love to share with others. Why not get paid to share them.

PRINT ON DEMAND SITES | Want to sell your own designer products without having to ship anything. This is perfect for artist and designers.

  • Zazzle - There's a ton of things you can design to sell on here including stationery, home goods, nail art, and more.
  • Society 6 - I currently use this now to add more exposure to my brand and products.
  • Casetify - Here you can design your own cases for cell phones, ipads, mac books, and apple watch bands as well.

PRINTERS

  • Vistaprint- I don't offer printing to my clients anymore but I do recommend them to use vistaprint after I create designs for them. They are pretty cheap and you can receive your order within as little as 3 business days.

SOCIAL ORGANIZING

  • MailChimp - I use it to send out emails to all my followers about discounts and updates on products and services. I get alot of repeat customers by using email marketing. It's free for up to 1000 email subscribers. Once you go over you can upgrade.
  • BoardBooster- It's hard to update all my social networks everyday. I don't have the time to play on my phone all day so I use this online app to update my Pinterest for me at $5 per month. Most customers find my products through pinterest. So, I rotate pins almost hourly using this app.
  • Hootsuite - You can schedule updates for your twitter, instagram, facebook, and a few other social network accounts. For free, you can update a maximum of 5. It's cool to be able to update these all together using one app.
  • Plann App - I love this app. There isn't an app that will let you auto post to instagram but this one allows you to upload images, save your caption, see what your image will look like with other images in your instagram grid, and allow you to schedule your post. You'll get a notification/alert telling you when it's time to post so you wont forget. You can also save all your hashtags in categories as well.