Mar 16, 2021
3 mins read
As an online entrepreneur, I need a lot of tools. For blogging, designing, sharing, and marketing my work. In this short post, I'll give you 3 of my most used tools for my blogging and design side-hustle.
Buy Me a Coffee
The first one - a recent addition - is Buy Me a Coffee*. Just a few weeks ago, I switched from only using PayPal. In the past, I had also used Patreon which is the biggest player in the field of creators support profiles. I wrote about my decision to not use Patreon in a Medium story.
While Patreon does have its merits, in my case Buy Me a Coffee makes much more sense to use. It has quickly become my favorite side-hustle tool to make some money for one major reason: One-time payments.
Patreon only offers recurring payments which for many creators is the perfect fit. For me, however, a service that offers one-time donations makes much more sense. My design work has no regular schedule. I upload new creations every now and then. Monthly payment doesn't seem to be appealing for this kind of work, in my opinion. On the other hand, I have already received one-time payments through Buy Me a Coffee and another one of my favorite tools that I am going to introduce in a minute.
Buy Me a Coffee does offer memberships with recurring payments (monthly or yearly) as well. As I see it, this is the best of both worlds: for regular content creation, as well as "here and there" ideas.
Additionally, you can sell your digital products via "Extras" on Buy Me a Coffee. Another plus for small designers and creators.
The next tool I want to talk about is Gumroad. Gumroad is a great online marketplace where small (and big) creators can sell their digital goods. I use this platform to promote and share my free iOS icon packs. The feature set of Gumroad is fantastic: It's free to use for as many products as you like. They take a fee on every sale, of course. But if you give away free products, it doesn't cost you anything.
Gumroad offers a mailing list, a list of your customers, and helpful analytics. The interface is pretty easy to use and the learning curve is extremely low. If you want, you can opt for a membership option that gives you a lot more features, as well as lower fees on sales. But for me, the free version has been enough so far.
If you sell digital products, I highly suggest trying Gumroad. It's a great place to set up a store for design work, art, e-books, and much more. The fees are very reasonable in my opinion. And Gumroad offers affiliate links, in case you'd like to market your products through other people. They get a little cut - an amount of your choice - for promoting your products. This is a great option to get more exposure.
You need a website? As a small blogger or content creator, I bet you do. Some of us don't know how or don't want to go through the hassle of developing our own website, however. Even a WordPress installation can get a little tough sometimes. But if all you're looking for is a small one-page design, a landing page for your followers, or a Linktree-like reference page with all the important links, try Carrd*.
Carrd is mind-blowingly easy to use. To play around with all the free features, you don't even have to create an account. A huge plus! I hate signing-up for services I have never tried before.
You can create a beautiful one-page website (or up to three separate pages on the free plan) in a matter of minutes, either by choosing from the great selection of free templates or by creating one from scratch. A couple of days ago, I build my own Carrd page within 15 minutes. And I'm pretty happy with the (colorful) result. So happy actually that I replaced my Campsite landing page with this new Carrd design. It simply provides more customization options and free features. This is why Carrd has become my favorite tool over the last week.
There you have it: My three recent favorites. Buy Me a Coffee* to make some money through one-time donations or membership payments, Gumroad to sell (or give away) digital products and to create a customer email list, and Carrd* to build beautiful one-page websites in minutes. Now, I'm super excited to hear what you have to say? Have you used any of these tools? Are you going to try them? Tell me!
*These links are affiliate or partner links.