Time is money. The more time you waste, the less you accomplish — it’s simple math. It’s pretty safe to say that the world of online business and marketing is one of the most distracting industries to be in. This is especially true if you are a blogger or someone working from home. Even if you are a salesperson or working within a company, being online all the time offers more distractions that anyone could possibly deal with. Throw social media and email into the mix, and it’s amazing any of us actually get anything done.
The art of spending your time wisely is something that many people just master over time. More often than anything else, it’s all about self-discipline and learning how to just get work done. However, there are some useful tools out there to help with both time management and automating solutions that would otherwise take up your time.
Today I’m going to share three of them with you. Be sure to try each of them out and see how much time you are actually working vs. doing other various things online.
1. Workflowmax Time Tracking
When it comes to making money in business, it’s all about how your time is being spent and what’s getting accomplished. This isn’t true for just entrepreneurs, employees, and brands — it applies equally to everyone but in different ways. For an entrepreneur who works for themselves, they simply need to be working all the time. For a business, they want their employees to be working at full productivity, otherwise, they are wasting money on hourly wages and salary. Even employees (getting paid hourly or on salary) should factor their own productivity into their own personal goals and work ethic as well.
With all of this in mind, the best way to track how much time is being spent on what is to actually track it! WorkflowMax has a time tracking software that can apply to each of the scenarios above, and even for outsourced team members as well. The more you know about your business team and employees, the better you can manage your costs and know who’s actually getting the most work done.
With technology taking over all components of our lives, gone are the days of taking a physical piece of paper to stamp your work time in, then check out when you leave. However, that same concept can be accomplished through the use of this software, which not only monitors time sheets, it can also provide quotes to outside contractors, enable start timers for team projects and also convert submit working times into billable invoices.
Workflow Max starts at just $15 per month and is available on both their web browser platform and mobile application.
2 – MeetEdgar Social Media Scheduling
With social media being a huge component of nearly every business and brand online, it can also be a huge time waster in the process. Sure, you’ve likely logged into Facebook and Twitter several times already today to check something or post a recent content update, but you likely ended up spending some additional time just looking around or getting lost in your friends latest social rants.
As time-consuming as social media can be, just from a management perspective, it can be a huge distraction at the same time. So essentially, the more time you spend away from social media, the more you can actually get done. But what about all of your social media marketing and branding efforts, you ask? Well… there are plenty of automation and scheduling tools out there to help with this process as well.
One such tool that I have been using for a while now is MeetEdgar. Instead of logging into each social network and posting my latest blog content, I can log into my MeetEdgar account and schedule updates to go out whenever I like. Not only is it an amazing platform for scheduling and automation, it also saves me hours of time every week, while also not requiring me to get distracted with more social media exposure than I need. Listen to my interview with Laura Roeder to learn more about the company and how it’s changing the way social media automation is done online.
MeetEdgar currently works with Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn and rates start at $49 per month.
3 – Remember the Milk Reminder Service
With so much going on in our daily lives and everything we are supposed to get done for our jobs or business… how are we supposed to remember everything? I personally have a notepad and paper next to my computer where I like to write everything down and cross them off as I get things done. I’m old school that way and like the physical interaction and writing down of what tasks I need to complete. Plus it also feels great to actually cross things out and it makes you feel like you are making progress.
While some people like to write things down, others will use their mobile devices and applications to have timers, checklists, and notifications to keep their productivity up throughout the day, while also reminding them of any important tasks they might need to accomplish.
Remember the Milk is a free tool that allows you to easily manage and track everything that you need to accomplish throughout the day — whether it’s for personal use or business. This tool is compatible with mobile devices, desktops, Gmail, outlook and more.
Get More Done by Staying Prepared
As with all things in life, the more prepared you are for anything, the better you will be in accomplishing your goals. The same holds true for your daily productivity and time management. Be sure to try each of the recommended tools above to improve not only your business performance and productivity but also your everyday life in the process.
Grow Your Affiliate Business with Lorem Marketing Experts
Affiliate marketing is one of the most lucrative business models of the 21st-century. Despite its incredible scalability and ability to get started with limited startup costs, affiliate marketing is not easy. It requires a tremendous amount of work and a wide range of skill sets, while also integrating with different platforms, freelancers, and experts around you. Without these tools and partners in place, it would be hard to compete in this saturated online market.
At some point in your affiliate marketing career, you are probably going to need to outsource certain tasks. You can try using a platform like Fiverr, but the results are usually hit or miss. At the same time, when going for the cheapest solutions or freelancers around, you are likely going to get hurt in the long run. If you need the assistance of qualified contractors, it is better to turn to a platform that is better known for consistently delivering high-quality services.
Use Lorem for your affiliate marketing contracting needs
One such example of an online platform and solution for connecting with other industry experts and freelancers is Lorem. Not only with their site allow you to connect with trusted and proven experts within the industry, it’s also ideal for hiring and managing qualified freelancers as well.
In a never-ending effort to always provide my readers with the latest options and method for growing their businesses and scaling in size, today we are going to look at the many features and benefits of using a solution like Lorem for your growing affiliate marketing business.
You will only work with highly skilled service providers
As an affiliate, you can’t afford to work with contractors that do a shoddy job. Whether you need to create a new landing page, write fresh content or build a list of keywords for your AdWords campaign, it is essential to make sure the task is completed to your specifications.
Contractors on Fiverr, UpWork, and other freelancing sites often lack the skillsets and professionalism to do the job to your satisfaction. You don’t need to worry about that when you purchase services through Lorem, as they heavily vet and approve all of their experts on the site.
Lorem carefully screens every professional that joins their network. They only accept three out of every 100 applicants. When you purchase services through this platform, you know that you are working with the very best.
Choose from a large pool of professionals with a wide array of specialties
You need a lot of different skills to create a thriving affiliate marketing business. There are experts at Lorem that can help you with any of the tasks you will need to complete. Here are some services that you can purchase through Lorem.
Website and landing page design
Carefully designing your website and optimizing your landing pages is key to succeeding as an affiliate marketer. If you don’t have much expertise as a web designer or simply don’t have the time to build your site and landing pages on your own, then you can turn to the experts at Lorem for support.
Google Analytics and tracking setup and support
Affiliate marketers need to depend on one or more analytics and tracking tools. Google Analytics is commonly used by affiliates that rely on organic traffic that is driven to their own website. Affiliates that run paid search, Facebook ads, PPV or other types of paid traffic will also need to use tracking tools such as CPVLab or Prosper202.
Setting them up can be a huge pain. If you don’t do it right, your data may be incomplete or unreliable when you are trying to optimize your campaigns. The good news is that you shouldn’t have any trouble finding an analytics or tracking expert on Lorem to assist you.
Generating marketing creatives
You are probably going to need a variety of creatives to promote affiliate marketing offers. While you can always try testing the banners provided by the advertiser, it is often better to test your own custom creatives, especially if you have a specialized type of traffic that requires pre-selling.
There are a lot of design experts on Lorem that can help you develop custom creatives.
Developing the right layout for your email newsletter
Building an email list is an important part of many affiliate marketing funnels. Unfortunately, building an email list alone is not going to guarantee that you will have profitable campaigns. You need to make sure that your emails are carefully optimized to your audience.
There are experts at Lorem that can help you develop the right layout for your email newsletter. This will keep people from unsubscribing and make sure they stay engaged, which is essential to the profitability of your email funnel.
Installing and updating WordPress plugins
Using the right WordPress plugins can make your life much easier. However, keeping up with the newest plugins is not easy. Making sure that all of the plug-ins you have already installed have an updated is also a chore.
The WordPress experts at Lorem can help you:
- Choose the right plugins for your site
- Deal with any troubleshooting if they aren’t working properly
- Go through the list of installed plugins and update them when necessary
- Remove any plugins that are no longer operational and find suitable replacements
- Find out whether any plugins are interfering with each other or the functionality of your site and find replacements my needed
You can have trouble with this if you aren’t a seasoned WordPress developer, so it is good to have a team of WordPress experts from Lorem at your side.
Getting started with Lorem
Lorem is a very easy platform to use and install. Here are the steps that you will need to take:
- Install the Chrome extension. This extension is necessary to start projects and make payments after they are completed. You will need to give the extension permission to read and alter data as necessary before can be installed.
- Begin a chat session to discuss your first project. Before you launch your first project, a Lorem customer service provider will need to connect you with the right expert. You will need to open the chat window and spend a few minutes discussing the specifications first. At the conclusion of the chat, you will be paired with the most qualified expert.
- Provide the details and oversee the work. You will work closely with a professional that you are assigned. You can provide detailed feedback throughout the process. You will not need to make a payment until the work is completed to your satisfaction.
- Make the payment. Once you are happy with the work, you will make a payment and conclude the project.
Lorem structured process to make sure it is as easy as possible. You shouldn’t have any trouble getting started.
Lorem makes running an affiliate marketing business easier than ever!
Handling everything on your own as an affiliate marketer isn’t going to be easy. As your business grows, you are going to need to lean on other experts to assist you. The good news is that there is a large pool of talented contractors at Lorem.
Getting started is easier, so feel free to download their Chrome extension and create your first project! Sign up and mention ZAC10 to get 10% off your first project on AskLorem.com!
Free Cloud Managed Hosting and Resources from SkySilk
The cloud is benefiting online brands in amazing ways. Organizations are investing in cloud platforms to improve the cost-effectiveness of data storage, scale online resources in unprecedented ways and minimize disruptions while pursuing customers internationally.
However, with so many users, brands and businesses relying on the cloud, costs can quickly add up if you are relying too much on it. Even with hosting costs being quite competitive and low cost, it’s still an extra added cost that some might not be able to absorb. The good news is that there are more options out there than ever before — not just for cloud hosting, but also for saving money in the process.
One such solution is Skysilk, a top cloud-based solution for evolving brands. To learn more about the service and what they have to offer, here are some of the ways SkySilk is changing the hosting industry and how users and brands store data in the cloud.
Highly affordable and Versatile VPS
SkySilk has a new VPS that is currently in beta. While it is still awaiting its hard launch, users can sign up for the beta version of the VPS for free. All plans are freely available under the temporary beta program, except for the premium subscription.
Here are some of the primary benefits that the free version of the SkySilk VPS (which will still be available after the beta period ends) offers:
- You have access to free lamp stack.
- You can store up to 25 GB of SSD memory.
- You have access to 512 MB of RAM.
- You can have bandwidth speeds of 12 MB per second.
- You can take advantage of WordPress and over 40 other Linux-based apps.
- You will have access to triple replicated backups.
- You can earn rewards with the loyalty program.
SkySilk offers some of the most generous features of any affordable VPS on the market. It is even more impressive that they are free during the current beta period.
The biggest limitation of the free plan is that it only allows you to create one VPS per user. This is an issue for bloggers that want to manage multiple domains and plan to scale their traffic with a VPS. Though the option is always there to upgrade and find the necessary resources and growth plan for your individual or business needs.
If you want to purchase a standard plan, you will be able to get an unlimited number of VPSs for every user. This is one of the most compelling benefits of their plan. You will also have a bandwidth limit of 200 MB/s, instead of the 12 MB/s that is available under the free plan.
You can purchase the standard plan for only $5 a month. It is a great deal if the extra bandwidth and unlimited VPS configurations can help. However, you may want to stick to the free version if you are running a single blog at the beginning with limited traffic.
You also will be able to take manual backups and snapshots of your VPS data at any time. The free version doesn’t currently allow any backup or snapshots at all.
Highly Intuitive Interface
According to reviews by users that previously had little or no experience with VPS systems, SkySilk was very intuitive and easy to set up. Users that have never created a VPS environment before were able to complete the process in under 15 minutes.
If you want to choose one of their premium plans, you can easily use the custom configuration to choose the scope of the services that you were looking for. You will receive a quote in real time and can adjust your configuration to your budget.
Keep in mind that the service is currently free, except for the highest tier premium plan. However, this doesn’t mean that the quoted price is irrelevant. The platform will eventually go out of beta mode and you will need to pay a monthly fee for the configuration unless you choose the free plan option. It is a good idea to choose a configuration that will be compatible with your future budget, so you don’t get used to using features that will no longer be available to you.
Since the free VPS will still be available after the beta period has ended, you may want to test this version of the plan if you don’t intend to pay a fee for your future VPS services. However, it may be worth testing a slightly higher tier plan that you will be willing to pay for.
Every VPS customer needs a strong support team because you never know what issues you encounter will be. So, how does the SkySilk customer support team stack up against their competitors?
There aren’t any comprehensive reviews that compare the SkySilk support team to their competitors. However, based on anecdotes from other users, their support team appears to be very dependable and timely. They also have a detailed support section on their site that covers most of the frequently asked questions that users have, along with a community support forums for anyone that can’t find answers on the site. The option is also there to submit a support ticket through their site as well.
Users that created an account with SkySilk said that they received replies from the support team within minutes of sending a request.
Emphasis on security
With the growing number of data breaches that occur every year, digital security is a priority for every online business. Don’t worry – Skysilk takes security extremely seriously.
Here are some of the measures they have taken to ensure your security is protected.
– Minimizing staff access to your data
Many security breaches occur because employees are negligent or willingly choose to engage in fraud. Limiting employee access to data is important. Skysilk recognizes this, so they make sure their staff doesn’t have access to backend hypervisors. This means the technical support team can’t control or manipulate virtual server data, containers or images on any of the cloud-based storage systems under their control. Only the Skysilk engineering team can access any of the backend servers and will do so only when necessary.
– Carefully encrypting credit card data
Credit card fraud is another serious concern. You want to make sure that any VPS service that you use takes it seriously.
Skysilk uses Authorize.net for all payment processing. These transactions are conducted through encrypted HTTPs connections, thereby significantly limiting the risk of fraud.
– 24/7 physical onsite security
The security team at Skysilk monitors the premises 24 hours a day, seven days a week. They constantly monitor for any known risks and take all necessary precautions.
Skysilk is an excellent VPS for bloggers on a tight budget
If you are looking for an affordable VPS, Skysilk is a great option to consider. They offer reasonable bandwidth, exceptional security and dependable support that rivals any other low-cost VPS provider. It is a good idea to try it out during the beta period, since you won’t be charged a fee for the standard plan that will soon cost $5 a month.
Grow, Nurture and Engage Your Email List & Customers with MailOptin
It happens to all new bloggers and site owners at some stage in their career. They work very hard to build a steady stream of traffic to their website. Then they get incredibly frustrated that 70% of their visitors will leave and never return. It is even harder knowing that many of their visitors will convert.
With this in mind, it’s important to realize that you only have one shot to make a great first impression, while also grabbing the email address of your site visitors in the process. This is simply one of the most effective ways to increase repeat traffic to your site, while also building a powerful mailing list in the process.
There are several tools and solutions out there for accomplishing this, but some are clearly better than others. Gone are the days when you simply have a pop-up or subscription form on your site, now it’s all about customization, split-testing and being able to improve your results over time. One such solution that is focusing their efforts on exactly this, is MailOptin, which is a powerful WordPress plugin that allows site owners and bloggers to build a subscriber list and start boosting your email conversions.
With so many different tools and methods for growing a mailing list on the internet today, let’s take a look at what makes MailOptin stand out from the crowd.
Use MailOptin to Grow Your List
MailOptin can be managed directly through your WordPress dashboard. You can create your own custom optin page to build your subscriber list.
One great thing about MailOptin is that it has plenty of premade sign-up forms. You can easily tweak them to your liking. Some features that you can modify include:
- Popup lightboxes
- Sidebar widgets
- Call-to-action buttons
You can alter the colors and sizes to maximize conversions. It is a good idea to run a split-test to see which styles have the best conversion rates.
In addition to using a carefully optimized email opt-in form, you must also make sure your landing page copy matches what your visitors are looking for. If you are offering a free e-book to entice visitors to join your email list, your landing page needs to clearly outline the benefits, as well as any long-term benefits of signing up to your list.
When you are testing different landing page styles and forms, it is a good idea to use this split testing tool. It will tell you when a specific MailOptin landing page outperforms another to varying degrees of statistical significance. It is a good idea to start with two entirely different landing pages before testing less important elements, such as different colors for your call to action buttons.
Integrate MailOptin with your favorite email marketing automation tool
MailOptin isn’t a standalone email marketing automation platform. You are going to need to use it in conjunction with another email automation service.
This tool will sync with your marketing automation platform whenever a predefined event is triggered. You can also use it to automatically send an email message. One of the most common uses of MailOptin Is to email your subscriber list each time a new post is published.
Create beautifully designed custom emails
You can build a list of thousands of subscribers. It won’t do any good if your emails suck. You need a well-designed layout that will appeal to your readers.
MailOptin has a number of email templates to choose from. You can choose different styles for newsletter emails, sales emails or any other conversion goal.
Excellent analytics features
Other marketing automation tools lack decent analytics features. Fortunately, MailOptin has you covered.
The dashboard keeps detailed data on your visitors and conversions. You can easily figure out which forms and landing pages convert the best. You won’t have any trouble optimizing your campaign with MailOptin. All of this data can be accessed directly from your WordPress browser, unlike most other email marketing optimization tools.
Setting up MailOptin
Setting up MailOptin is a quick and easy process. You simply need to take the following steps:
- Download MailOptin and install it on your WordPress plug-in page. From there, you can easily activate it to start using it.
- You will see a new menu item for MailOptin in the sidebar of your WordPress dashboard. If you hover over it, you will see links to the settings and features for the plug-in.
- Click the Connections tab and enter your API to sync with your email marketing automation service.
- Click “New Optin” on the Optin Campaigns tab. You will see a number of different types of forms that you can use for your subscriber page. You just need to click the desired form to get started.
- Browse the form features and optimize form however you please.
- Activate the form to start using it on your landing pages.
It is as simple as that.
Choosing the right subscription plan for MailOptin
There are three different subscriber plans that you can choose from:
- The lite plan, which is currently free.
- The standard plan, which is available for $69 a year.
- The pro plan, which is available for $199 a year.
Which plan is ideal for you? If you run a small blog with a single, unsegmented email list, then you may find that the free plan is the best. You can run up to three campaigns at a time and register up to 100 conversions every month. You can take advantage of most of the form features, such as lightbox pop-ups and sidebar forms. You will also have access to a free support service and email branding options.
As your blog grows, you may need to upgrade to the standard plan. It will allow you to manage an unlimited number of campaigns and record an unlimited number of conversions. You will also have access to a few extra form features, such as notification bars and slide-in boxes. You also have an advanced lead segmentation option. This is a great feature if you are generating subscribers from a variety of different landing pages with different angles.
The pro plan is great for power bloggers that run a lot of different websites. It has a few additional features that aren’t available on the free or standard plans. You can also take advantage of third-party app and WooCommerce integrations.
Get Started With MailOptin Today!
When it comes to turning site visitors into subscribers, it’s all about aggressive call to actions. Since roughly 70% of the visitors to your site are going to leave after their first visit, you might as well give them something to act upon.
MailOptin is one of the best email marketing optimization tools for accomplishing this. You can download the plugin, install it on your WordPress site and create your first form in less than ten minutes. Once you get started, you can start testing and creating some great forms that will grow your optins faster than you ever expected.
Be sure to try it out and see the many different lead generation and call to actions available through the software.
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