Professional Website Consulting since 2001

Professional Website Consulting since 2001

Recommended Website Tools

There’s an array of website tools, tech, services, and software to choose from today. Here are our recommendations for a better website.

After 20+ years of planning, designing, developing, managing, hosting, and scaling websites — we've seen it all.

We've gathered the best of the best below. From tools and software to help you plan a website, to the best website hosting for stability and support. These are our very best recommendations.

We use, or used, ALL of these website tools below. We have many years experience with each and only recommend tools that we feel are essential to helping you have a better website.

Also, don't miss our articles, videos, or free website guides & checklists.

a ProtoFuse Proverb

"It is essential to have good tools, but it is also essential that the tools should be used in the right way.”

– Wallace D. Wattles

ProtoFuse Proof

Websites that actually work

Client headshot Tom R.

"Anyone can slap together a website these days, but not all website consultants are created equal. ProtoFuse has the expertise to create smart, user-focused websites that actually work."

Tom R.
Export Solutions

Planning, Strategy, Architecture

Project Management

  1. Teamwork. We've used this for years at ProtoFuse and never felt the need to leave and try another PM software.

Sitemapping, Flow Diagramming

  1. Slickplan. Their software also offers functionality in diagramming, content planning, and mockup management. But, their bread and butter is sitemaps and the only sitemapping tool we recommend.
  2. Gliffy. They do one thing REALLY well, flow charts and diagrams. If that's all you need, this is exactly what you want.

Content

  1. GatherContent. This software does just one thing — help you craft, organize, and approve content for your website. Excellent for teams with many writers/editors.
  2. Grammarly. Who needs an editor when you have this tool? It has saved our butt too many times to count.
  3. Rev.com. Speech to text services, great for video or podcast captions and transcriptions.
  4. Convert Case. Handy little resource when working with weirdly formatted text. Copy/paste, choose how you want to convert.

UX, Design

Wireframing, Prototyping

  1. Axure. We've used nearly every prototyping tool out there. Axure is the most powerful, collaborative, and easy to use.
  2. Balsamiq. Want just a basic wireframing tool? Can't beat this one.

Visual Design

  1. Canva. For graphics, content creation, etc. Excellent collaboration features.
  2. Invision. Great for presenting/approving design mockups. Also offers prototyping.

Data, Measurement, Testing

  1. Google Analytics & Google Search Console. We hesitated to put this on the list because most people have adopted them. If you haven't, do it today.
  2. UserTesting.com. The gorilla in the testing space, but they're truly the best.
  3. Hotjar. Heatmaps, recordings, surveys, and more. This is powerful software critical to helping you see how people are actually using your website.

CMS, CRM

  1. WordPress. 43% of the Web runs WordPress as their CMS. Why? Because with the right people, framework, and customization — there's nothing you can't do. Also, the community and integrations at your fingertips is unmatched. See all WordPress recommendations below.
  2. Pipedrive. We've used a variety of CRMs, but this one stands alone in pricing, ease-of-use, and flexibility.

Website Hosting, Tools

  1. WP Engine. WordPress-only hosting. There's just not a better infrastructure, pound for pound, out there. And their support is AMAZING.
  2. UptimeRobot. Simple & cheap service to monitor uptime of your website, SSL, and more.
  3. Cloudflare. The most powerful and secure DNS host service available.

SEO (Search Engine Optimization)

These two tools are at the top of every SEO professional's list. They help with keyword research, ranking tracking, and competitive research.

  1. Ahrefs
  2. SEM Rush

Image Optimization, Tools

  1. Image Extractor. We recently used this free tool during a website redesign to save images quickly and easily straight from the browser.
  2. Kraken.io. The best service for image optimization & compression. Their "Web Interface" is lightning fast with drag and drop functionality, and also offer an API/plugin.

WordPress-specific recommendations

Development

  1. Codeable.io. The only WordPress-specific freelancer platform. We rarely offer website development services and recommend trying to find a WordPress developer here before going anywhere else.

Theme, Page Builder

  1. Beaver Builder. The absolute best page builder. Easy-to-use, well supported, big community.
  2. Astra Theme. Fast, popular, and fully customizable.

Plugins

  1. We are in the process of creating an article detailing our WordPress plugin recommendations.

Need website help?

protofuse-website-consulting_supporting-reporting-scaling_04

We're all about websites — especially websites that are loved by people and Google.

Since 2001, we've been helping clients nationwide turnaround their outdated and under-performing websites.

20+ Years Website Experience

Friendly, Results-driven, Collaborative

Multiple options for hiring us

Client headshot Steve L.

"Our website is generating quality leads every week thanks to their website consulting."

Steve L.
Cactus Technologies

Pro Website Consulting
“The difficulty lies, not in the new ideas, but in escaping from the old ones.” – John Maynard Keynes
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