Business Software and Tools

Best Web Agency Tools

We rely on a few key tools and resources to help us build websites. Here's a quick rundown of software and tools that we use on a regular basis.

Some of the links on this page are affiliate links. We may earn a commission if you purchase through our links. Our recommendations are based on real-life experience and we recommend only products we use and trust.

Website Design and Development Tools

Building a website used to be a cumbersome and complicated process that required a team of coders and developers working for weeks (if not months) to get everything just right. However, thanks to the proliferation of site-building tools, those days are long gone. Now, anyone with a basic understanding of computers can create a professional-looking website in a matter of hours.

Our web agency is constantly on the lookout for new tools and resources to help us build better websites for our clients. We all know that building a website can be a daunting task. There are so many things to think about, from the initial design to the finished product. We use only the best tools and resources available. Here’s a list of our current recommendations.

Best Website Builders

WordPress for Most Small Business Websites

If you’re running a small business, you need to be able to rely on your website to bring in new customers and help grow your bottom line. So what’s the best website builder for small businesses? WordPress is our website platform of choice. WordPress is user-friendly and extendable with plugins, making it perfect for businesses of all sizes. As of June 2022, WordPress is used by over 64% of websites that use a content management system.

Elementor Page Builder

This powerful tool allows us to create beautiful websites quickly and easily. With its drag-and-drop interface, we can create custom pages without having to code anything.

Shopify for Online/eCommerce Stores

If you’re looking to set up an online store, there’s no shortage of options available. However, when it comes to finding the right provider for selling online, we recommend Shopify. Shopify is a leading eCommerce platform that offers everything you need to get started, including a customizable store design, secure payment processing, and robust shipping tools. In addition, Shopify makes it easy to manage your inventory and track your sales. They currently account for about 6% of websites.

Our Favorite WordPress Plugins

If you’re looking to add some extra features to your WordPress site, then you’ll want to check out our recommended plugins. With hundreds of plugins to choose from, it can be difficult to know where to start. But don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. Our top picks are:

Fluent Forms

This WordPress plugin helps us create custom forms and surveys that are easy to use and look great.

WP Social Ninja

Social plugins like WP Social Ninja help us to integrate social media feeds and reviews into our clients’ websites. This is a great way to add fresh content and keep visitors engaged.

Envato Elements

This massive resource is a treasure trove of website elements, including templates, graphics, fonts, and more. We can easily find everything we need to build a professional website.

Table of Contents

Web Hosting Companies

Flywheel

Flywheel is the agency hosting platform of WPEngine and is our preferred hosting provider. They offer fast, reliable, and secure hosting services. Plus, their customer support is top-notch. Anytime we have an issue with a website, one of their experts is available to chat within a minute or two. We only want the best website hosting services to make sure our client’s websites are always up and running smoothly.

WP Engine

They offer excellent uptime and helpful customer support. They offer a free Global CDN, automated backups, and automated SSL on every plan. Use this link to get 2 months of free hosting with WP Engine

Domain Registration

NameCheap

They are currently advertising $5.98 domains (August 2022). Domain registrations will be increasing in price soon. Use this link to register your domain name with NameCheap for their current promotion.

Google Domains

They advertise their domains starting at $7/year. As of August 2022, most of their .com domains start at $12/year.

Website Content Creation

Jasper.ai

Are you struggling to create content that resonates with your audience? Are you finding it hard to come up with new ideas or simply don’t have the time to write? If so, you may want to consider using an AI content writing tool like Jasper. We all suffer from writer’s block sometimes. But AI tools can help you generate high-quality content quickly and easily, freeing up your time to focus on other tasks. You should always have a human guide and edit your content, but Jasper can help you come up with ideas when you’re stuck.

Another favorite tool is WordTune editor because it can give you variations of each sentence when you want to word something differently but are not sure exactly how you want to say it.

SEO Content Writing

Surfer SEO

If you’ve ever tried to find something online, you’ve experienced the power of search engine optimization firsthand. That’s because when you type a few keywords into a search engine like Google or Bing, the results are ranked using a complex algorithm that takes into account dozens of factors. One of those factors is the quality of the content on a website. Surfer SEO is a tool that helps you write search-optimized content.

Important note regarding using AI tools for SEO content: You should only use these tools as a guide and make sure you write content for humans to read rather than bots. Google’s new “Helpful Content Update” rolling out in 2022 will target sites creating content for search engines so sites that have content written only for SEO may lose ranking. Focus on people first when writing content for your website.

We have a detailed post about some of the best AI Writing tools available in 2022

Grammar and Spelling

Grammarly

We’re not perfect. That’s why we use Grammarly every time we edit a website or post to social media. Grammarly is the best way to check your content for grammatical errors before you publish it.

Hemingway Editor

As any writer knows, the editing process is essential to produce quality work. But who has the time (or patience) to sit down and comb through every sentence, looking for errors? That’s where Hemingway Editor comes in. This powerful tool not only highlights potential problems in your writing but also provides clear, concise guidance on how to fix them. In addition, Hemingway Editor can help you to streamline your writing by cutting out unnecessary words and phrases. As a result, it’s an invaluable tool for anyone who wants to produce clear, concise, and error-free writing.

Search Engine Optimization

If you’re like most people, you probably don’t spend a lot of time thinking about search engine optimization (SEO). But if you’ve ever tried to find something on the internet, you know how important it is. Search engines use algorithms to index and rank web pages, and if your content doesn’t match what people are searching for, it’s likely that your page will never be seen.

Local SEO

BrightLocal

When it comes to tracking local search ranking on Google and Bing, BrightLocal is the name of the game. We use BrightLocal to help our clients get the visibility they need to succeed. BrightLocal provides detailed reports that show how your ranking is improving over time. Plus, they offer citation builder campaigns and reputation management. So if you’re looking to get ahead in the local search rankings, BrightLocal is the way to go.

For more local SEO tips, see our complete guide to Local SEO Software

Organic SEO

Rank Math

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is an essential part of any web agency’s toolkit. And when it comes to SEO tools, RankMath is one of the best. RankMath helps our agency to get our clients’ websites to rank higher on search engine results pages. And that means more traffic and more business for our clients. But SEO is not a one-time thing. It’s an ongoing process that requires constant attention. When using AI tools such as Rank Math, remember to focus on people first when writing your content so that your site won’t be affected by the helpful content update that Google will be rolling out soon.

Keyword Research Tools

Keywords are the heart of SEO. Without proper keywords, your website will never be found by people searching for the products or services you offer. But with the right keywords, you can rank high in the search engines and attract a steady stream of targeted traffic to your website. Of course, finding the right keywords is essential to success.

Keywords Everywhere

This handy Chrome extension provides instant keyword ideas and related search terms as you browse the web. Just enter a seed keyword and see a list of relevant keywords and phrases, along with their monthly search volume.

We use the Keywords Everywhere Chrome Extension or the free Keyword Surfer Chrome Extension when searching Google and SEMRush for detailed keyword research.

Graphic Design Apps

Canva

Canva is an online platform that makes it easy to create beautiful designs. With a user-friendly interface and a wide variety of templates and tools, Canva is perfect for creating high-quality graphics. We love using Canva because it saves us time and money. Not only is it easy to use, but it also has a wide variety of templates and tools that make the design process quick and simple. Plus, with its affordable pricing, Canva is a great value for any business.

Jasper Art

Jasper Art is an AI tool that creates images based on your text input. We have been testing it out and have created some cool images with it. Read about our experience with Jasper Art here. You can read about some other AI image generators available here.

Adobe

We use Adobe Photoshop, Acrobat Pro, and Illustrator for editing and creating website graphics. Here’s a link to a free trial of all of the complete suite of Adobe products

Colorcinch

Colorcinch (formerly Cartoonize) is an easy-to-use creative tool that has photo editing features such as background removal, text masking, and image overlay tools.  

Email Newsletters

ConvertKit

ConvertKit is a great tool to manage your newsletter subscribers and turn them into loyal customers. With ConvertKit, you can easily segment your list and send targeted emails based on their interests. Plus, ConvertKit integrates with all the major email providers, so you can be sure that your messages will always reach your subscribers. ConvertKit also offers a wide range of landing page templates that you can use to grow your list even further.

MailPoet

MailPoet is a great plugin for managing your website’s email list within the WordPress dashboard. It’s easy to use and has a lot of features, including the ability to send automated emails after publishing a new post. We’ve used MailPoet on a couple of our client’s websites.

Podcasting

BuzzSprout

If you’re looking to start a podcast, you can’t go wrong with BuzzSprout. They offer everything you need to get up and running, including a WordPress plugin that automatically publishes new episodes to your blog. And if you’re not a fan of WordPress, don’t worry – they also have a standalone app that’s just as easy to use.

Video creation software

We love creating videos for our clients. And we’ve found that the best way to do that is to use the right tools for the job. That’s why we’re big fans of Loom and Pictory.

Loom

There’s nothing quite like seeing something for yourself. That’s why, when it comes to explaining how to edit websites, we often find that a video is worth a thousand words. With Loom, recording a screencast is quick and easy, so we can show our clients exactly how to make the changes they need without having to rely on lengthy written instructions. Plus, the videos can be easily shared via email or social media, making it convenient for our clients to reference them at their leisure. In short, Loom has become an invaluable tool in our business, and we’re grateful for all that it helps us accomplish on a daily basis.

Pictory

Pictory is ideal for creating short, engaging social media videos. With its drag-and-drop interface, it’s easy to add images and text to your video. And the built-in templates make it simple to create stylish videos that will grab attention on social media. We use Pictory to create videos from blog content to post to websites, YouTube, and social media.

Accounting and Payroll

FreshBooks

There are many accounting and invoicing solutions on the market, but we’ve found that FreshBooks is the best fit for our needs. Not only is it easy to create and send invoices, but it also helps us track receive and track payments and keep up with our income and expenses. The software is user-friendly and has a wide range of features such as online invoices, making it ideal for small businesses like ours. They also have a neat feature for adding online payments to websites.

Gusto

We use Gusto for our payroll software. Gusto makes it easy to pay our team and stay compliant with tax laws. It offers direct deposit and generates paystubs and tax forms. We’ve been using Gusto for over a year now and we haven’t had any issues. Overall, we’re really happy with Gusto and would recommend it to any small business looking for a good payroll solution.

Business Telephone and Text Messaging

OpenPhone

OpenPhone is the business telephone solution we use at our web agency. It’s great because we can forward our calls to our cell phones and see that it’s a business call before answering. We can also set business hours and do not disturb if we’re in a meeting. It’s great for voicemail, and business texts.

Online Scheduling and Booking

Book Like a Boss

We use Book Like a Boss. Check out our online appointments page to see a demo of how it works.

These are just a few of the tools and resources we use at Roe Digital. Feel free to contact us if you have any questions about any of our recommendations.