DreamHost’s Ultimate Small Business Resource Guide
We see you, small business owners! You bring character and diversity to your hometowns and spice to your niche on the internet. You create jobs. You build local economies and provide unique products and services with a personal touch big corporations can only try to replicate. Plus, you are living your dream, turning your passion into a money-making venture that improves the world and gives you the chance to be your own boss.
We know how hard you work to make this dream a reality. It’s never easy to run your own business, but the COVID-19 pandemic has been a particular plague on small businesses.
Thankfully, the strict social distancing measures aimed at slowing the virus’s spread are now easing as the vaccine rollout heats up. Of course, there’s a long way to go before it’s “business as usual” again, but it finally feels like there is a light at the end of this economic tunnel.
Here at DreamHost, we believe in small business, and we are proud to provide a platform and digital home for so many of you. To help you get some ideas for how to build and boost your business, we’ve collected our best advice for small business owners — all in one place.
Read on to find essential tips about:
- Building a Small Business Website
- Building an Online Store
- Small Business Advice
- Small-Biz Tools and Resources
- Ways to Make Money Online
- Small-Biz Marketing Tips
Feel free to use the links above to jump around to the most pertinent articles for you as a small business owner, or read straight on through for an overview of all the advice we have to offer.
You Can Build a Website
Whether you want to start a blog or run a small business, DreamHost makes it easy to begin your online journey. Our shared hosting plans give you everything you need to thrive online at an affordable price.
In the small-business world, your website is everything. It’s your homestead on the frontier of the web. It declares your brand to the world and is often the first impression potential customers have of your business.
For many of you, your website is your business.
Even if your business is a brick-and-mortar operation — such as a restaurant or antique store — your company’s website needs to be helpful, optimized, and updated and maintained regularly. Your website provides valuable info, including where to find you and when, and drives customers off their couches and into your stores.
The internet is where your customers spend most of their time. Use these resources to learn how to build a beautiful website from the ground up and tailor it to fit your own business.
- Quick Start Guide: Website Building 101
- What Are the Different Ways to Build a Website?
- How Long Does it Take to Build a Website?
- How Much Does It Cost to Set Up a Website?
- What Makes a Good Website?
- What Is Web Hosting?
- 7 Different Types of Web Hosting Explained
- How to Choose the Best Web Hosting for Your Site
- How to Sign Up for a DreamHost Account
- How to Log in to and Navigate the DreamHost Panel
- What Is a Domain Name (And How Does It Work)?
- Understanding the Different Kinds of Domains
- How to Choose the Best Domain Name (11 Key Tips)
- What Is ICANN and What Does It Do?
- How to Register a Domain for Your Website
Create a Site for Your Niche
- How to Create a Freelance Writer Website
- How to Create a Real Estate Website
- How to Create a Restaurant Website
- How to Start a Fitness Blog
- How to Start Your Own Food Blog
- How to Start a Photography Blog
- How to Create an Online Portfolio
- How to Start a Review Site
If you have an online business — or if you want to start selling your products online in addition to your physical store — a reliable and attractive online shop is what you need. Your customers want to browse, find the products they want, and check out without a glitch. To make that happen, you need to build an online store with a trusted platform in addition to your business’s WordPress website.
It’s surprisingly easy to get an online shop up and keep it going — you just need the right tools and tips. We love WooCommerce and Shopify, and you’ll learn about both, plus more tips and tricks for selling online, in the helpful guides below.
Online Store Setup
- How to Start an Online Store in 1 Hour with WooCommerce
- How to Build an Awesome WooCommerce Store with OceanWP
- The 10 Most Popular Online Payment Gateways for Your Website, Compared
- 5 Amazing WooCommerce Templates to Increase Sales
- How to Add a Quick View Option to Your WooCommerce Products
- How to Run a Successful Sale on Your WooCommerce Website
- How to Use Printful to Sell T-Shirts and Other Swag with WooCommerce
- How to Write Product Descriptions That Really Sell: 8 Simple Tips
- 11 Ways Your Online Store Can Compete with Mega-Retailers
You small business owners are a scrappy bunch, and much of what you know you learned through good, old-fashioned experience. There’s no education like the one that comes from getting out there and making your own mistakes.
As valuable as mistakes and failures are, we want to set you up as much as possible for success. In this section, you’ll find a roundup of our best advice for entrepreneurs and from entrepreneurs who are using DreamHost to build their biz. Learn how to manage everything from your stress to your small business website and beyond.
Small Business Guidance
- Building Your Own Business Website? Don’t Make These 10 Mistakes
- The Top 15 Benefits of a Website for Small Businesses
- 21 New Year’s Resolutions for Small Businesses
- Ready To Start an Online Business? 5 Traits of Successful Entrepreneurs
- 8 Ways Small-Business Owners Can Manage Stress
- 6 Reasons Why Your Small Business Needs a Website Now
DreamHost Entrepreneur Stories
- L.A. Taco Shines a Light on the People Behind the City’s Best Eats
- Door Sixteen: An Old-School Blog With a DIY Heart
- From Blog to Biz: Quilty Love Crafts Bright, Modern Quilt Designs
- Longhand Pencils Creator Uses a DreamHost Site to Push Pencils and Pop Culture
- This Colombian Clothing Brand Is Tackling Fast Fashion’s Environmental Problem
- “Power Outage” Brings Tabletop RPGs to Young Players (And Their Grown-Ups)
- Herald and Sons Publishing: The Ultimate Father-Son DIY Project
- Corporate Gigs to Freelancer Freedom: How msloydwrites Made the Switch
- Line and Grid: Building Brands and Breaking Boundaries
- Sofia Kaman Fine Jewels: Treasured Beauty, Sustainably Crafted
- RetroSupply Co. Creates Vintage Tools for Modern Designers
You want your small business to reach its full potential — and so do we! No person is an island, and the same goes for businesses. We all need a little help and support sometimes, and when we use available tools, we can get more done in less time.
There are so many tools out there to help you manage and grow your business and optimize the whole enterprise for success. Stop doing things the hard way. Here you’ll find all of our favorite tools, apps, plugins, and more for making the work of running your business a little easier.
- 36 Brilliant Blogging Tools to Help You Write Better, Publish More, and Increase Traffic
- 30+ Best Social Media Tools for Your Website
- 11 Best Web Management Tools for Small Business
- 30 Best Small Business Apps
- The Best SEO Tools to Optimize Your Website for Success
- 10 WordPress Plugins to Maximize Your Lead Generation
- 5 WordPress Plugins to Drive More Conversions on Your Website
- 15 Essential Plugins and Features For Your WordPress Website
- 10 Handy WordPress Plugins For Improving Your Workflow
- 10 of the Most Popular WordPress Plugins
Thanks to the internet, there’s never been a better time to start a side hustle. Money-making opportunities abound online, from blogging to affiliate marketing.
Whether you want to build up an extra income source on top of your full-time gig or are looking for ideas to build up your business, we got you. Let’s walk through our favorite — not to mention lucrative and legitimate — ways to make money online.
- 16 Ways to Start Monetizing Your Website
- 25 Legit Ways to Make Money Online
- 13 Lucrative Side Hustle Ideas
- Set up an Online Course With WordPress
- How to Start a Podcast with WordPress
- How to Create a Crowdfunding Campaign
- How to Add Google Adsense to Your WordPress Website
- How to Sell Ads on Your WordPress Website
- How to Get Started with Affiliate Marketing
There are more than 1.8 billion (and counting) websites on the internet today. So how does your humble food blog or photography portfolio get noticed, by the right people, amid all the noise?
One word: marketing.
“If you build it, they will come” is an adage that doesn’t hold up so well when it comes to your business’s presence online. Merely having a website just isn’t enough; you need to draw people to it to do any good. You need some smart strategies to bump your website up to the top of search results, find and engage social media followers, and encourage positive reviews.
Do you want your brand to get noticed? Find your target market. Drive traffic to your website. Do some smart social media and email marketing. Create killer content and optimize your site for top search engine results. How? We thought you’d never ask. Learn or brush up on these skills with our handy dandy guides to marketing your small business.
- How to Find a Target Market for your Business
- 19 Tried-and-True Ways to Drive Traffic to Your Website
- 12 Marketing Strategies to Promote Your Local Business
- How to Create a Media Kit for Your Website
- How to Create a Content Marketing Strategy
- How to Create a Social Media Marketing Strategy for Your Website
- What Are Web Analytics and Why Do They Matter?
- How to Navigate Google Analytics
- What Are the Most Important Website Metrics to Track?
- How to Install Google Analytics on Your Website
- The Website Owner’s Guide to Email Marketing
- How to Create an Email Newsletter
- 5 Reasons You Need a Custom Email Address for Your Small Business
- The 14 Types of Emails You Need to Send to Grow Your Website
- Build an Email List With Your WordPress Website in 3 Simple Steps
- The Ultimate Guide to Website Localization
- How to Write Meta Descriptions That Get Clicks
- How to Get Your Website Visitors to Fill Out Lead Forms
- How to Run an Online Giveaway on Your Website
- How to Add Customer Testimonials to Your Website
- What Is SEO and How Does It Work?
- What Are Keywords?
- What Is PageRank? A Quick History Lesson
- How to Determine the Most Valuable Keywords to Target
- How to Do Keyword Research for Your WordPress Blog
- Let’s Take a Look at SEO Trends: How to Rank Higher
- The 11 Most Important SEO Metrics to Track
- 17 SEO Tools to Optimize Your Website for Success
- 13 Simple Ways to Boost SEO on Your WordPress Website
- The Top 11 SEO Best Practices for Domains
Social Media Tutorials
- 6 Reasons Why Social Media Matters for Your Website
- Which Social Media Platforms Should You Use for Your Website?
- Create a LinkedIn Company Page to Promote Your Small Biz
- 5 Ways to Pick the Best Social Media Platforms for Your Business
- 10 Social Media Tips for Small Businesses
- How to Start a YouTube Channel
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You’ve Got This
There you have it — everything we’ve ever written to guide, inform, and inspire small business owners in one handy guide. We know that you’ve got what it takes to succeed even in the face of the COVID-19 crisis, and we hope these resources can help you get there.
Now, we have a question for you: How can we help? What small-biz-related questions are keeping you up at night? Holler at us over on Twitter or join our Facebook community to let us know which additional topics and resources you’d like us to cover for small business owners.
Are you a business owner wondering where to get started? You can easily build an online presence for your small business with shared hosting. Our affordable plans offer all the tools you need to reach your customers