When you are starting or developing a business online, there are a lot of FREE tools available if you know where to go and how to use them.
It is quite possible to create your branding, and a website and build up your social media completely free of charge to test out or begin your business online.
This may suit you if you have the time available and the relevant skills.
However, when you find that you are spending far too much time trying to do it all yourself and you are not getting the desired results for your business, it may be time to consider paying for an expert so that you can concentrate on the areas of the business that you know best.
Social media is a rather “shouty” place, there are thousands of experts trying to grab your attention.
It can be very distracting, and time-consuming to work out who the best people are to follow or trust online.
My advice is to start locally.
Find someone willing to look at what you are trying to do and who communicates with you in a way you understand. It’s much easier, to begin with, to have someone you can talk to or call on.
In Ireland, your Local Enterprise Office is a great source of low-cost and FREE support and training. It is another great place to start. They also offer grant funding of up to €2500 to pay for expert advice and get your business set up trading online.
The difficulty often arises in seeing how to put all your newfound digital skills together and this is often when you are ready to invest in expert advice.
When to pay:
If you have no experience.
If something is taking too much time.
If you are not getting results that look as professional as your competition.
If you are confused and don't have a clear plan.
When to use a FREE option.
If you can achieve the results you need.
If you want to test out an idea before you invest further.
If your business is developing and you are making money.
These are my 3 recommended Free tools:
1. Meta Business Suite For scheduling and posting on Facebook and Instagram
2. Canva. Design tool for creating all visual aspects of your business.
3. Sumup free website (€30 for the card machine, Free website included)
If you would like further support with any of these free tools or an experienced person to ask for advice, contact #thenonscarytechylady.