Tech Stack Case Study: How I Helped This Solopreneur Simplify The Tech Behind Her Online Business And Reduce Her Recurring Expenses By 295%

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Here's what the client had to say...

After 10 years of dealing with the online world ‘flake factor’ of false representation of skill sets, late delivery by months ++, ghosting… all resulting in long and costly delays of launches and promotions… to say nothing of the frustration, I was at the point of either learning all the tech myself  or walking away!

Then I started working with William, and with that came productivity, integrity and relief!  Wow, a person who knows what he's doing, does it well & on time! Pinch me!  He listened, wrote an outline to be sure we are both hearing the same thing, we made a plan, and he got it done!  He came through 100% of the time, whatever he promised happened just as we agreed to.  The relief I feel is enormous, and with William now covering all the tech bases, I am free to focus my energies on what a business owner should be doing…listening to and solving their ideal clients problems!

Thank you William!

Heather Beathum / Solopreneur


The Challenge

Heather is a solopreneur that founded RidingforWomen - an online space for mature women horse-riding enthusiasts that want to ride better, with fluidity, feel and confidence. Heather has created several courses and other resources, and also runs a couple of related communities on Facebook.


Heather first contacted me out of a bit of frustration with her then tech person.. she was in the process of launching a new online course, but they had essentially ghosted her, and left her trying to figure things out on her own (not cool!)


After meeting with Heather about her website, her overall business goals and challenges, we identified a few key things that needed to be done.

Key Challenges

Essentially, we needed to simplify the tech set up for Heather's online business, so she could run it more efficiently as a solopreneur, and reduce her monthly expenses.

  • Heather wanted an easy way to set up bump offers and up-sells in her sales funnels.
  • The existing tech set-up on her website was complicated and overwhelming, especially for a non tech savvy solopreneur. Also, there were just too many moving parts (for example, there was over 60 plugins installed on the website!)
  • Heather's monthly expense for the tools she used to run her membership site was already relatively high, and she had gotten notified from her then email marketing platform that prices were going to be increased significantly soon.

The tech stack behind Heather's online business consisted of 3 main tools:

  1. 1
    WooCommerce - for selling her online courses
  2. 2
    ActiveCampaign - for contact management, email marketing and automations
  3. 3
    ActiveMember360 - for managing her membership area and access to her online courses.

Now, these are all great tools and are the backbone of many successful online business. But, they just weren't the right fit for Heather's particular situation... and other solopreneurs and small business owners like her.

Here's why...

WooCommerce - it's free, it's good at what it does and it's efficient. But, once you want to do more than just the basic checkout process like having bump offers, up-sells, high-converting checkout pages, etc (which are necessary if you're looking to boost your revenue), you'll need to install a few add-ons (extensions), which aren't free.

ActiveCampaign - it's robust and really shines when it comes to doing complex automations, but it's relatively expensive, complicated, and most of the complex features aren't used (or needed) by small business owners and solopreneurs.

ActiveMember360 - it does a decent job of protecting your content, but it really isn't the most intuitive or user-friendly option. And, it only works with ActiveCampaign; you can't use it with any other email marketing platform.

The Approach and Solution

After listening to Heather talk about her challenges, frustrations and her goals, and reviewing her tech set-up, it was clear that was a scenario where I could migrate her membership website and business over to what I refer to as the the Ultimate Budget-friendly Tech Stack for Growth-Focused Entrepreneurs.

This is a combination of tools that are very well suited for solopreneurs and small business owners, as they have great features, are affordable, easy to use, and provide good customer support.


Plus, together they allow you to grow your business by improving your conversions, generating repeat sales from your customers, and increasing the amount of money you make per sale transaction.


The tech stack consists of:

  • Thrive Suite
  • MailerLite
  • ThriveCart

Thrive Suite is a collection of feature-filled, easy to use, intuitive, and affordably priced, conversion-optimized WordPress plugins and themes that you can use to build, run and grow your online business. Of particular interest to Heather's case is that it includes Thrive Apprentice which allows you to create, manage and sell online courses, memberships, and other digital products.


MailerLite is an email marketing and automation platform. ThriveCart is a powerful online cart and checkout platform.

Membership Management

Thrive Apprentice creates and manages online courses and membership sites. It's easy to use, but packed with advanced features, and gives you full design customization control.


Also, unlike AM360, which only works with ActiveCampaign, Apprentice integrates with several popular email marketing and automation platforms.

Email Marketing & Automations

ActiveCampaign is intimidating... MailerLite is not. It has an intuitive, logical and easy-to-use dashboard, and is extremely functional with tons of great features. And, it costs significantly less than ActiveCampaign.

Online Cart & Checkout

ThriveCart is one of the most elegant and popular online cart platforms. It integrates seamlessly with Stripe, PayPal and other payment processors, as well as email marketing services and membership platforms.


It allows you to quickly and easily create bump offers, upsells and high-converting checkout pages.

The Results

Moving over from the old tech stack to the new tech stack brought with it several advantages, including reduced expenses, increased efficiency, simplicity, and a better user-experience for Heather's customers

Reduced Expenses

With the switch from ActiveCampaign + ActiveMember360 to MailerLite + Thrive Suite Heather reduced her yearly expense on tech tools from $2158 per year to just $731 per year!... that's 295%

Increased Efficiency

What also came with the switch to Thrive Apprentice, MailerLite and ThriveCart were better and more intuitive dashboards that were more logical, easier to navigate and use, and extremely functional... and didn't require pulling out the manual every time you want to do something.


For example, Thrive Apprentice has an in-built easy setup wizard that allows you to set up your course environment in just a few minutes.


This means that Heather can run her business more efficiently on her own, and be much less dependent on getting tech help.

Complexity to Simplicity

WooCommerce required several add-ons to achieve what is done by ThriveCart on it's own. Similarly, ActiveMember360 would have required even more 3rd party tools to do what can be done with the advanced features in Thrive Apprentice.


By switching to ThriveCart and Thrive Apprentice the number of plugins installed on the website was reduced from 64 to 23! This means reduced load on the website, and lower security risks.

Better Member Experience

One of the common concerns that course creators have is how the course environment feels for the students. Thrive Apprentice creates one of the best possible user experiences for your students, with:

  • Beautiful login and registration flows.
  • The power to create courses in any language you require!
  • Dynamically updating progress bars and lesson completion indicators
  • The ability to create personalized dashboards for students that give them easy access to courses they've purchased and other available courses separately, update their profile, support and billing info.

Added Advanced Features

flexible drip functionality, the ability to offer personalized certificates to students upon course completion, quizzes to improve student engagement, protected downloads, and much more.


Plus, with all the tools within Thrive Suite Heather can manage continue building her website, creating landing pages and funnels, creating online courses, managing her membership sites, capturing leads, creating scarcity campaigns, split testing, creating online quizzes and more to optimize and grow her business.

CLIENT'S TESTIMONIAL

Wow, a person who knows what he's doing, does it well & on time! Pinch me!


After 10 years of dealing with the online world ‘flake factor’ of false representation of skill sets, late delivery by months ++, ghosting… all resulting in long and costly delays of launches and promotions… to say nothing of the frustration, I was at the point of either learning all the tech myself  or walking away!

Then I started working with William, and with that came productivity, integrity and relief!  Wow, a person who knows what he's doing, does it well & on time! Pinch me!  He listened, wrote an outline to be sure we are both hearing the same thing, we made a plan, and he got it done!  He came through 100% of the time, whatever he promised happened just as we agreed to.  The relief I feel is enormous, and with William now covering all the tech bases, I am free to focus my energies on what a business owner should be doing…listening to and solving their ideal clients problems!

Thank you William!

ready to simplify Your tech Stack and Reduce Your Monthly Expenses for your digital business?

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