- 1 Domain registration & Web hosting (by providers in & outside Kenya)
- 2 Data bundles / internet access
- 3 Keyword & backlinks tools (free & paid)
- 4 Amazon Kindle books to buy and start reading now
- 5 Online courses on freelancing, marketing, blogging & lead gen
- 6 Tools to use when typing
- 7 Premium WordPress themes to buy (and page builders)
- 8 Premium WordPress plugins to buy
- 9 Payment processors / sending invoices / getting paid
- 10 Email marketing service providers
- 11 Storage for files and client work
- 12 Incorporation services
Use this tools and resource page to find products and services that can help you along the way as you:
- Get started with online freelancing
- Grow your freelance career / business
- Hire new people to help you on various projects
Note that Niabusiness has linked to some of the resources on this page using affiliate links. When you click on something and purchase it, Niabusiness will receive a commission from every successful sale / referral, at no extra cost to you.
Domain registration & Web hosting (by providers in & outside Kenya)
If you want to start your own website, blog or online shop you will need help with things such as getting a domain, hosting and SSL certificates. Here is a list of some reliable and popular providers you can use for your site:
- Kenya Web Experts. One of the top web hosting companies in Kenya. Get anything and everything hosting from shared hosting to VPS servers to dedicated servers. Register a .co.ke or .com domain for less than KSh 1000/year and get a Starter hosting plan (highly recommended) for KSh 2100/yr. It is big enough for your needs. Also get cPanel & Softaculous.
- Garanntor Kenya. Also another hosting company in Kenya you can use for your domain and hosting needs. Pay monthly for hosting if you want. Plans start from as low as KSh 150 per month, though the KSh 220/mo plan (and above) is recommended. Also register domain names with various extensions. And issue free SSL certificates to your domains easily from within cPanel. Also has Softaculous script installer.
- HostGator and Bluehost. Two foreign web hosting companies popular in Kenya. Both are owned by the same company, Endurance International Group. You can use either to start your own blog or website.
- Namesilo and Namecheap are also two other popular domain registrars / hosting companies you should know about. Use the BP coupon code on Namesilo.com to get a dollar off .com domain registrations.
Different hosting plans by some of the companies mentioned:
- HostGator Hatchling plan at USD 3.95/mo for 12 months (or $10.95 if paid monthly). Baby plan at USD 5.95/mo for 12 months (or $11.95 if paid monthly).
- Bluehost Basic plan at USD 5.95 per month for 12 months. Plus plan at USD 7.95 per month, paid annually.
- Namecheap Stellar plan at USD 1.44/mo (or $33.88/yr). Stellar Plus plan at USD 1.88/mo (or $57.88/yr).
- Namesilo Starter plan at USD 2.99/mo. Premium plan at USD 4.99/mo. Turbo plan at USD 8.99/mo.
Data bundles / internet access
Since you will be spending a lot of time online doing freelance work, here are some recommendations for internet bundles you can use via a USB modem, MiFi router or via the Mobile Hotspot / WiFi option on your smartphone / tablet. To purchase most of these bundles on your prepaid line, dial *544#.
- 2GB daily bundle at KSh 99. Airtel Kenya has one and so does Telkom Kenya
- 1 GB Giga Bundle at KSh 99. A daily bundle by Safaricom.
And then there are some popular monthly bundles such as these:
- From Airtel: 3GB (KSh 300), 5GB (KSh 500)
- From Telkom: 30GB (KSh 1000)
- From Safaricom: 2GB (KSh 500), 5GB (KSh 1000), 15GB (KSh 2000) & 25GB (KSh 3000).
Also check your Tunukiwa bundles (*444#)
Other internet providers freelancers in Kenya use include Faiba and Zuku.
- SmallSEOTools. Just visit the site and use any of the free tools listed on the homepage.
- Google Keyword Planner. If you have a Gmail account just login to this tool to start doing your research.
- Other paid tools you can use: Ahrefs, KWFinder and SEMRush.
Amazon Kindle books to buy and start reading now
- How to Get Great Freelance Clients by Carol Tice, Linda Formichelli & Chris Marlow.
- The Step-by-Step Guide to Freelance Writing Success by Carol Tice & Laura Spencer.
- Getting Everything You Can Out of All You’ve Got by Jay Abraham.
- The 10X Rule by Grant Cardone.
- The Ultimate Sale Machine by Chet Holmes.
- So Good They Can’t Ignore You by Cal Newport.
- Living the 80 / 20 Way by Richard Koch.
Online courses on freelancing, marketing, blogging & lead gen
Niabusiness.com has two free email-based courses. One, with all the tips you will need to get your freelance career / business up and running. And the second one, with all the tips you can use to start hiring other freelancers.
- The Quick Freelancing 101 Guide: A 5-Day Course on How to Get Started with Online Work.
- Freelance Hiring Best Practices: A 5-Day Course For Clients on Getting the Most Out of their Money.
Tools to use when typing
- Capitalize My Title – a title capitalization tool.
- Wordcounter.net – A web-based editor you can use to check word count for any document. You can also use it to type your work right there in your web browser before copy pasting it to MS Word.
- Grammarly – A web-based tool to help you spot and correct spelling and grammatical errors.
Premium WordPress themes to buy (and page builders)
You don’t to purchase a theme for your WordPress site if you don’t want to. There are thousands of free themes you can install. Find them via the Appearance > Themes > Add section of your WordPress dashboard.
However, if you want to purchase a theme for your site, do check the following marketplaces: Elegant Themes, Genesis Framework / StudioPress, Thrive Themes, ThemeForest, MythemeShop, Yithemes (if you use WooCommerce) and Mojo Marketplace.
Premium WordPress plugins to buy
Before I tell you about plugins you can buy, I have to tell you that you don’t need a paid plugin to start your site. You can usually just do fine with these free plugins: All in One SEO Pack OR Yoast SEO, Contact Form 7, Classic Editor, Fast Secure reCAPTCHA, Juiz Social Post Sharer, Pixabay, Mailmunch, No Self Pings, Pretty Links, Really Simple SSL, SEO Friendly Images, Table of Contents Plus, WordPress Popular Posts, WP External Links, YARPP, WP Optimize, Updraftplus & WordPress Importer.
I use most of these on Niabusiness.com as well.
However if there is a feature you want to add to your site and the only way to do so is to buy a premium plugin (or hire a developer for custom code), do check and buy these plugins: Thrive Architect, Thrive Leads, WPForms, MonsterInsights & OptinMonster.
Payment processors / sending invoices / getting paid
To handle payments, send invoices and get your money, use:
- PayPal. You can easily send invoices using PayPal and get paid. You can withdraw the money to your Safaricom M-PESA account or use the Equity Bank PayPal withdrawal service to withdraw money from your PayPal account to your Equity Bank account / Equitel line.
- Safaricom M-PESA. If you are hired by a client living in Kenya, you can skip all the PayPal fees by just using M-PESA.
- Payoneer. Another service popular with freelancers. It is similar to PayPal. Clients pay you and then you can withdraw money from your Payoneer account to your bank account in Kenya or use your Payoneer MasterCard debit card to make cash withdrawals from any ATM machine in Kenya. Click here to sign up for your Payoneer card.
For debit cards to verify your PayPal account, use:
- KCB account ATM cards
- I&M Bank Visa M-PESA Prepaid card
Email marketing service providers
Storage for files and client work
Use cloud based providers such as Google Drive and Dropbox.
To formalize, your freelance business, use any of the providers listed below to register a business name, sole proprietor, partnership or limited company in Kenya:
- Canva – for graphic design. You can use it for free.
That is all.