Disclosure: While this post sponsored is by Virb.com, the direction of the post and features highlighted are based off my own recommendations.
One way for fashion bloggers to monetize their site is to run a shop. Or one way to market your shop, is to have a blog. I myself ran an Etsy vintage shop to support my blog ‘The Coveted’ years ago. It was a great way to dive into the world of full time blogging. However, I did not like having to point my readers to Etsy to buy my goods. Luckily there is a way to seamlessly set up shop right along with your blog, so your readers can get an inclusive website experience.
Virb, A website builder that makes it easy to build your own site
Virb is a website builder that offers built-in Etsy and Big Cartel shops with their packages. All you would have to do is set up your account, and adding your Etsy or Big Cartel shop is as easy as adding a “Store” page and connecting your existing shop with just a couple clicks.
I tested out Virb’s tools, and interviewed the Virb staff, and discovered that if you can just click a few buttons, you can create and design your own website. Here are a few points I was able to find:
1. You never have to deal with code
Even though I really recommend getting to know HTML and CSS, I realize some people just don’t gel with code. Setting up a blog and tinkering with CSS to customize themes is really intense. Here, you can select one of their pre-designed, mobile-friendly themes and customize the colors and branding according to your taste. They even have a wide selection of fonts that you can use for a more unique look.
2. You can use your own URL
My general advice with blog platforms is to use whichever platform speaks to you. Just be sure to use your own URL. While you do have to purchase your own domain, the instructions for customizing your URL in Virb are simple and easy to find. Note: Like with many blog platforms, you will have to use an external email host like Gmail.
3. Integrates seamlessly with Google Analytics
A lot of platforms offer analytics services, but really there is only one that everyone knows and trusts, and that’s Google Analytics. Virb offers a way to keep tabs on your traffic directly in the platform, so you don’t even have to open a new window.
4. Import your blog in a snap
Say you’re on WordPress or Blogger, you can export an XML file of your blog and import it directly into Virb. I tried this with Eat, Sleep, Denim’s content and it took about two minutes. It was pretty impressive. Remember that you'll have to move your images too, since they’re probably hosted somewhere else.
5. Unlimited bandwidth, traffic and image hosting
For those of you who have more complex sites (ie. ecommerce) running out of bandwidth or having too heavy of a traffic load is an issue. One of the great things about Virb is that they offer unlimited bandwidth and traffic, so no more battles with the hosting company! (Trust me, it sucks.)
6. Widget friendly
Virb offers many widgets for Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and offers a page to house your Tumblr feed as well, which are each designed to look great with your chosen theme. You can also add your own custom widgets for things like hosting ads or adding a newsletter sign-up just as easily.
7. Mobile friendly themes
In addition to never having to touch code, each of Virb’s themes is custom-designed to work great on both mobile and tablet just as well as they do on your computer. Which is great if you have an ecommerce component, because finding responsive themes are hard enough.
8. Reasonable price
At $10 per month, this inclusive package is very reasonable. If you are moving from a free platform site, you would have to factor in costs like hosting, theme, and possibly developer fees (you don’t want to see IFB’s hosting and developer fees). $10 per month especially for a site with such simple management tools, varying page types, and mobile friendly themes is certainly a reasonable price to get started. Don’t forget, Virb also offers a 10-day free trial so you can quickly test things out. Because it only takes about 5 minutes to build a website at Virb, 10 days is plenty of time to get started and begin testing it out.
For a look at a few sites that use Virb’s great features, click on the sites below!