Here is a list of companies that I recommend. Some of them are billion-dollar companies. All of them are highly reputable services in their own fields.
Setting up your website
WordPress: WordPress is a content management system that powers half of the websites out there. It’s free, easy to use and beautiful. It doesn’t matter what kind of company you are, I’ll suggest you use this platform.
This blog also runs on WordPress.org. Not WordPress.com. I don’t want to bore you with technical matters but the same company owns them while .com version offers you templates and hosting. That’s great but you won’t have the full control on your website in that option. I wouldn’t want that. I wouldn’t suggest that. It’s better to go for the WordPress.org.
Siteground: What we’ve been using for the last 3 years. Runs 90% on green energy. Starting from $3.95/month.
Bluehost: I used it in the past and liked it. This one is also what most popular bloggers use. Starting from $3.95/month -1 free domain name for 1 year is also included.
“WordPress is the engine of your website where themes are the body.”
StudioPress: Owner of the quote above. Apple of WordPress themes. Choice of some of the most popular bloggers and websites. One-time payment of $99.95 or $129.95 for a single template. Or, buy all of the templates with the Pro Plus package and save $1,200. Or maybe, choose the All-in-One package: Get the legendary WP Engine hosting service and they’ll give you those themes for free. It’s over $2,000 worth of value for $35/month.
Here’s my $0.02: If you are starting/running a company with a limited budget, always opt for affordable options without losing your sense of style. Just pick one template and execute your plans. The first stage of a business is called “survival” for a reason. Get a beautiful Studiopress’s template from here.
Avada: All in one template. Sells like crazy in the last few years. 525.000 and counting. One-time payment of $60. Get Avada from here.
Flatsome: We used it in our jewelry e-commerce business before and liked it. Then we customized it for an educational institution and they loved it. Although it’s originally designed to be used for e-commerce businesses, this blog also runs on Flatsome. I recommend it if you work with a developer. Lightning-fast, suitable for further development, easy to customize. One-time payment of $59. Get Flatsome from here.
Grammarly: This one is my secret weapon. My mother used to proofread the blog posts that I wrote in my native language. Yes, I’m not a native speaker, I’ve only been to a foreign country for 3 days, and although I scored 82% better than the Grammarly database in my first attempt to write, my English is far from perfect. Now I’m using this beautiful add-on and it gets better and better.
But watch out Grammarly, my mother is learning English now.
Finding photographs, images, videos, and sounds
iStock & Getty Images: For some people who want to pay for breathtaking stock photos, images, and beautiful videos.
Shutterstock & BigStock: For other people who want to pay for breathtaking stock photos, images, and beautiful videos.
Adobe Stock: Yes, it’s a thing.
Pixabay: For people who don’t have the means or want to pay for stock content.
Unsplash: King of vertical images. Also for people like the ones above. A little bit fancier.
Video Stock Websites: Pexels, Pixabay Video, Envato Elements, VideoBlocks.
Epidemic Sound: This one is my other secret weapon. Epidemic Sound is my go-to place for beautiful audio. I’d invest the whole company if I had that kind of means. Also, many popular influencers use it. Starting at €13/mo.
Image, photo, video and audio editing
PicMonkey: It’s the easiest and one of the best photo editing tool I have ever seen in my entire life. Starting at $7.99/mo
Canva: Top player with 15 million users. People say very nice things about this one. I haven’t used it myself but it’s on my list. Canva also has its own stock photo, illustration and template library, and a free design school. Free or go pro $12.95/mo
Adobe Photoshop: You don’t need an explanation for this one.
Adobe Illustrator: Use this one for things that are going to be printed.
Adobe Premiere Pro: It’s possible to create both Star Wars effects and a Youtube video with this one.
Final Cut: Video editing tool for Macbook.
Handbrake: Use it if you capture videos with your phone. Thank me later. Free.
Microsoft Paint & PowerPoint: Never underestimate what you can do with them.
Convertkit: Use this one if you are a content creator or a blogger, especially if you are serious about selling something from your blog. $29/mo
MailChimp: Use this one if you are an e-commerce website or a small company that doesn’t sell a thing from its website but still needs mailing. Everyone needs mailing. Free for the first 2500 subscribers.
Infusionsoft by Keap: This is an overkill for most people who read here. It’s a customer relationship management software that happens to have a strong marketing and sales automation platform.
Because you never know who’s watching -especially when doing the things in the next section.
Those are 2 of the most well-known and respected companies in the VPN world. I read a multitude of reviews about VPNs and those names come up over and over again. Some websites give a slight edge to one, while other websites give a slight edge to another.
NordVPN is more affordable.
ExpressVPN is the pricier option. They accept PayPal. And their website gives an inch more trust.
Although all of the companies on this list are highly reputable globally, I don’t feel that I have enough experience to make any suggestions for this section. Yet, here’s a list of payment services that I’m shortlisted among others. I mentioned the ones I’m using and the ones I’m planning to use in the near future.
Paypal: You don’t need an explanation for this one. Free to open an account.
Payoneer: The one I’d choose -oh wait, already did that- over Paypal. Free to open an account.
Stripe: Online payment processing tool that allows individuals and businesses to make and recieve payments. Free to open an account.
Stripe Atlas: The global service of the one above for people who want to set-up a company in the USA for $500. Free to open an account.
Transferwise: Money transfer services that I use. Their Borderless Account is especially beautiful. Free to open an account.
N26: Mobile banking service that gets a lot of praise recently. I haven’t used this one but it’s on my list. Free to open an account.
Slack: It’s a cloud-based team collaboration software that lets you communicate with your team, share files and integrate many useful tools.
Discord: Choose this one above the other if you are a gamer.
Zoom Video Communication: Apart from the fact that CEO of the company, Mr. Yuan, seems to be a nice person; he’s the top-approved CEO while his company Zoom is the top-rated company to work for in the entire globe. Plus, it’s service is destroying the big names these days. Free for personal meetings. Starting from $14.99/mo/host for teams.