Below are some of the tools I use in my business which may help you too – some are VA specific but most are not.
Please note some of the links are affiliate links meaning I may receive a small percentage when you click through and purchase an item. Rest assured I only recommend items I know and personally use.
Email List Building
If you have been trying to understand what all the fuss is about MailChimp I highly recommend changing to Mailerlite. Userfriendly, very cost-effective and great support.
Building your website
Photos & so much more
Ivory Mix is a stock photo membership but also offers social media courses and templates to save you time. I use the photos for blogs and social media and the variety of photos is so varied I don’t need to head down the tunnel of free photo sites that generally produce photos that are used too frequently by other businesses and have little impact or interest. The membership is incredible value and I wouldn’t be without it. Kayla Butler who owns Ivory Mix has a fantastic Instagram account too chock full of business tips!
The ultimate Virtual Assistant Training
Are you interested in becoming a Virtual Assistant?
The first place to start is Amanda Johnson’s Virtual Assistant Coaching & Training. Amanda is a VA powerhouse. She has a no-nonsense approach to training and acts as a mentor and cheerleader as she guides you through all the training you need to start a VA Business. Whilst you, of course, need a solid admin and/or PA background this course really does walk you through the business set up like nothing else I have found.
Other resources I used are:
Legal Documents that are affordable & effective
Contracts, non-disclosure agreements, confidentiality clauses…this is an area where an expert is a must. KoffeeKlatch provides accessible and affordable legal documents.
Small Business Insurance
I have always used PolicyBee and found them to be responsive, efficient and good value.
Tech & Design Training
Bucketlist Bombshells – these ladies are living the dream and teach tech & design skills online. They are very inspirational & knowledgeable for those who are looking to learn & travel. I purchased both the tech and design skills courses. The tech course was great for helping me with website and blog set up plus a range of other skills. The design skills course is still on my To Do List! Not only are Cassie & Shay extremely knowledgeable they are proof that you can turn a dream business into reality as they have done just that.
Project Management Tools
There are so many project management tools it can be hard to know where to start. I use Trello for my own workflow and Asana for client workflow as it allows for greater task management and is more in-depth. I have just discovered ClickUp though which is much more intuitive and visually appealing so watch this space…
Diary Management without the faff
Managing a calendar can be frustrating, back and forth emails to agree a time that works for you is laborious and time-consuming. Using a tool like Acuity is a huge time saver, just link up with your diary, input the slots you wish to make yourself available and off you go! I use Acuity alongside Inamio which is the only diary I’ve found I get on with! It has a 24-hour calendar perfect for time blocking all of your tasks, personal and work-wise and doesn’t feature all the various goal-setting and deep weekly reflection that some practical diaries seem to incorporate. I like a straight forward planner without the fluff for work!
It’s so much quicker to send a quick video instead of screenshots and an email. I love Loom for sending quick videos to help clients.
As a Virtual Assistant time tracking is a must. I love Clockify which tracks my client hours effortlessly.
Website Support (but keep it quiet please!)
I was lucky to come across Simon Graves through my VA trainer Amanda. Simon is brilliant. If you find website hosting complicated as I did he’s just what you need. Although I built my site it needed tweaks I couldn’t do and I was overpaying for my hosting. Simon saved me a small fortune and is always on hand for questions as required. He can also build you a brilliant WordPress website! Simon is one of those people you slightly hesitate when recommending – as you want to keep his time all to yourself and know if word gets out he may be too busy for you!