FREE RESOURCES FOR SLICKER WEBSITES & KILLER-ER COPYWRITING.

Why buy the cow when we give away the milk for free? Because some people don't want to buy a cow. This isn't milk. And I've always thought that expression was pretty gross anyway.

Basic Website Setup

STEP 1. CHECK AVAILABILITY ON NAMECHECKR.COM

Before you start working on your website, head over to namecheckr.com and type in your brand name. See if the domain and social media handles you want are available. And if they're not, start thinking of ways to change it. It could be adding your industry, city name, or choosing an alternative to .com.

STEP 2. GET YOUR DOMAIN ON NAMECHEAP

GoDaddy. Namecheap. Google Domains. There are tons of places to buy your "domain name" - the URL people will type in to find your website. I don't have a strong preference, but use Namecheap more often than not. Most important, never register your domain with your site host so you'll have the most flexibility.

STEP 3. WEBSITE HOSTING WITH SITEGROUND

Your "site host" is the service you pay to host your website files on the internet. There are a lot of site hosts out there, and they most certainly are note created equal. My go-to is Siteground for their *truly awesome* customer service and affordable starting rates. A2 is another solid alternative for lower prices.

STEP 4. BUILD YOUR SITE WITH WORDPRESS

A Content Management System (CMS) is where you'll build your website. Think Squarespace, WordPress, Wix, etc. For me, it's always WordPress for its many plugins, flexibility, and ability to scale. For a gentler learning curve, go with Squarespace. Note. Most hosts will give you an option for one-click installation of WordPress.

BUILDING YOUR SITE

WHAT'S A THEME?

Your "theme" is the tool that you use to change the look and layout of your website. Rather than starting from a blank page, you might choose a theme that looks a lot like you want your website to look. From there, you can swap in your own imagery, copy, and colors to make it your own. Some themes are available within WordPress, but you can also buy premium themes on Envato that will make your website look slick with minimal effort.

A DRAG-AND-DROP WEBSITE BUILDER

Squarespace and Elementor are the most popular visual page builder, and a great way to customize your website. This means rather than editing from a dashboard, you'll be able to drag, drop, and add sections. Squarespace's drag-and-drop functions are built in. Elementor is a WordPress plugin that must be used with a theme, and is only compatible with some themes. It's available in a basic free version or with different pricing tiers for pro plans.

FREE! DEFINING YOUR DAMN BRAND + BRAND GUIDELINES TEMPLATE

COPYWRITING STUFF

COPYWRITING FORMULAS

Great copy may seem divinely inspired, but even the best copywriters use prompts to create structure and story in their prose. Take a look at these 27 copywriting formulas to kickstart your brain when you just cant figure out what the hell to say.

FINDING WORDS

This site doesn't look too fancy, but it's a goldmine for word choice. Why settle for a common thesaurus when you can look up synonyms that start with certain letters or follow other patterns. You'll be a master or alliteration and power words in no time.

FEATURES & BENEFITS

It's the oldest trick in the copywriting book, but dang if it doesn't work like magic. Learn the difference between "features" – what your product does – and "benefits" – what impact it has on your customer – to take your copy up a notch or ten.

BRAND ARCHETYPE

Is your brand an explorer? A sage? A hero? Knowing thyself is the key to having a brand voice that cuts through the noise. Start off with some branding exercises like the Brand Archetype to figure out how your messaging can fit in with an overall brand strategy.