This is a series on the services and tools I use to get my projects up and running. Inspired by Andrea Hill’s Medium article.

I have a lot of interests…that have now turned into a lot of projects! From blogging, launching Pepper, go-to-market consulting, teaching yoga and starting a Denver-based foodie newsletter, I’ve picked up a few tips on how to get more done with less.

I recently spoke on a General Assembly panel on the topic of “Nothing Ventured, Nothing Gained”, and one of the questions asked was regarding the tools we’d recommend for those starting up their side hustle, passion project, and small business.

This series covers all the websites, apps, services, free stuff, and hacks I’ve learned along the way to help you get to where you want to go faster (and cheaper).

  • Part 1: Foundations
  • Part 2: Networking & Learning
  • Part 3: Marketing

Part 1: Foundations

Business Formation

LLC Formation: Filed directly on the Colorado Secretary of State website for $50. Took 10 mins.

Delaware C-Corp Formation: Highly recommend getting the advice of legal counsel for this one. We started as an LLC in our humble beginnings, and then recently re-formed as a C-Corp to better position us for fundraising.

Registered Agent (to register your entity in a different state): Harvard Business Services

Legal counsel: Rubicon Law

Tax advisory: Grant Daffin, CPA

Accounting: QuickBooks

Bank account for my independent contractor business: FirstBank (very friendly to small businesses, primarily serves Colorado, California and Arizona)

Bank account for Pepper: Bank of America (we chose BoA because they had branches in Colorado and New York)

Website

The Jaclynventures Blog – A personal blog

  • Website hosting: Siteground – if you ever plan on monetizing your blog, you NEED to self-host. Siteground was the most highly recommended from other bloggers, and their customer support is top notch!
  • Content management system: WordPress.org – different from WordPress.com!
  • Domain registration: Namecheap – Cheapest and most user friendly

Pepper – An e-commerce website (Some of our platforms will be changing when we re-launch at the end of year)

  • Pre-Kickstarter launch landing page: Wix
  • Domain registration: Wix
  • Email mailbox: Google Apps (Use my code 6AHRUCYXX99PM9A for 20% off your first year)
  • Online store: Shopify

Productivity

Team messaging: Slack (there’s a free version!)

Audio conference: UberConference (there’s a free version!)

Office suite: Google Apps (Use my code MA9DT4LP3ELDC6M for 20% off your first year)

To-do lists: Moleskine ruled journals and Trello

Freelancer contracts & proposals: Bonsai (get 1 month free using this link)

Business cards: Moo (20% off your first order with this link)

Other Practical Stuff

Health Insurance: Medicaid (Putting my tax dollars to work!)


I would love to hear what’s on your list! If you’d like to get Part 2 of this series, make sure to subscribe via email updates or follow my Facebook page.