My Essential List Of Blogging Resources

My Essential List Of Blogging Resources

Blogging has been quite the journey. I’ve made big mistakes, celebrated small victories, and learned many new and exciting things.

It can also feel pretty overwhelming when you’re a newbie and currently suffering from information overload.

This fact makes it even more important that I share what I have learned with you. Therefore, I’ve compiled a list of the blogging tools and resources that have proven to be invaluable to the growth of my blog.

I will be updating this resource list throughout the life of the blog…so bookmark this page!

Note: This blogging resource contains affiliate links. If you click on one of these links and decide to make a purchase, I will earn a small commission. This commission does not affect your cost in ANY way. Please understand that I only provide affiliate links for products and services I have personally used and or currently use and enjoy. I will always keep it real with you guys.

Now let’s get to it!

HOSTING PLAN: BLUEHOST

When Coffee Break Talk began, I used GoDaddy. However, after annoying issues with functionality and app integration, I  transferred my hosting to BlueHost. I never looked back, and the entire process was amazingly smooth, mostly due to BlueHost’s great support team. One of the website support technicians took the time to personally enter critical files required for my blog’s final transition. This service was after I screwed everything up. I’m all about customer service, so this was super important to me. FYI: The annual cost was a lot cheaper than GoDaddy and BlueHost offers a convenient one-click install script for WordPress installations… excellent for new bloggers.

THEMES: PIPDIG

I struggled for quite some time in search for the perfect blog theme. I wanted a theme which was clean yet contemporary, and most of all, fully functional. I love my Pipdig theme and as of yet, I have had no desire to switch to anything else. The installation was seamless, and customer service is outstanding. Pipdig is continuously improving their themes, and most themes are functional with popular WordPress plugins. Pipdig has themes for WordPress and Blogger/Blogspot.

FONTS: EASY GOOGLE FONTS

If you are looking for additional fonts when creating your blog, look no more. Easy Google Fonts is a WP Plugin which allows you to add over 600 Google fonts to your blog without any knowledge of coding. If you are not a techie, this will save you so much stress. You can thank me later:-)

EMAIL/AUTORESPONDER: CONVERTKIT

I used to use Constant Contact to manage my newsletter and email marketing. I was pretty satisfied with the performance of Constant Contact until I had the desire to perform more advanced automation tasks. I soon found that I needed something not only easier to work with but which offered state-of-the-art technology. Convertkit was my answer. After reading many positive reviews from successful bloggers, I made the change. Now I know without a doubt, that Convertkit will help grow my email list and improve my bounce rate through its advanced tools and custom email sequences.

IMAGE EDITOR: CANVA

Looking for an image creation tool/editor? I could NOT function without Canva. I cannot count the number of graphics I have created with Canva. It offers premade and pre-sized templates for most social media sites. It is my go to editor for professional blog images. Simply amazing…period.

IMAGE EDITOR#2: PICMONKEY

PicMonkey is my second most favorite photo editor. If you don’t know Photoshop, and you have no desire to learn, PicMonkey can help you to look like a pro. Create collages, add fonts, shapes, etc. to create amazing images. PicMonkey also offers a FREE 7-day trial if you want to try it out.

LEAD GENERATION: THRIVE LEADS

Thrive Leads is a WordPress plugin that can significantly help you to grow your email list. My main reason for purchasing Thrive Leads was the outstanding lead pages and opt-in forms. I needed sign-up forms that were attention-getting and easy to edit. I don’t mind a little bit of techie stuff, but I prefer easy peasy. As a bonus, Thrive Leads integrates seamlessly with Convertkit. For me, that was a huge bonus.

BLOG POST TITLES: PORTENT

Portent has to be the coolest thing. You simply enter a topic, and it spits out multiple cool headlines. If you don’t like it, simply hit the refresh button as many times as you like. So neat it just makes me smile. 🙂

GRAMMARLY:

Unless you’re an English teacher, you probably second guess your grammar skills from time to time. Grammarly allows you to paste your article or blog post into its checker, and it checks your text for spelling, proper sentence formation, punctuation, and good writing style. The free version may seem a bit limited, but there are paid plans if you need a bit more functionality.

IMAGE AND FILE STORAGE: DROPBOX

Dropbox is like my blog’s personal organizer. I store almost EVERYTHING in my Dropbox! Images, files, documents, my backups… they ALL go into my Dropbox. Enough said. The free version is usually sufficient if you’re just starting out but the paid version is very affordable as well.

PINTEREST: TAILWIND

Struggling to find time to pin as much as you like? With Tailwind you can schedule your pins ahead of time! What will you do with all that extra time? Devote it to all of the other important things you need to do or spend time with your family. Tailwind can cut your pinning time in half and quickly multiply your Pinterest followers.

What other blogging resources are you using? I’m ALWAYS willing to learn. Let me know in the comments!

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17 Comments

  1. September 21, 2016 / 12:41 am

    This was an incredibly valuable resource for a new blogger! I never thought of so many blogging options.

  2. September 21, 2016 / 1:07 am

    These are great resources! I was recently introduced to Canva and it’s amazing! I’m using it to make a media kit at the moment. And I used a Pipdig theme on my old blog and it was lovely. I’ve moved to Squarespace now but was sad when I couldn’t use that theme any longer.

    • September 21, 2016 / 1:27 am

      Thanks for your comment! I’ve heard great things about Squarespace, I may give it a try some day. Yep, Canva is amazing.

  3. Nisha
    September 21, 2016 / 1:21 am

    I’m a newbie and yes this is all overwhelming but exciting as well. I will definitely be checking out grammarly. Thanks for the info!

  4. September 21, 2016 / 1:46 am

    Great list and your blog is so neat and clean. Really makes me want to check out some of these that I don’t already use. Thanks 🙂

    xx

  5. September 21, 2016 / 2:11 am

    These are great resources! I used to use CoSchedule as an editorial calendar, and it gave me the know how to get more blog traffic. For Pinterest I use BoardBooster as well as Tailwind, and I’m obsessed with Buffer for social media management!

    • September 21, 2016 / 11:16 am

      Hey Angela! Thanks for your comment! I really need to get into Buffer for my social media management. I think I’m going to give it a go.

  6. September 21, 2016 / 2:50 am

    Great post! I was familiar with several of these resources but very excited to learn about some new ones! I’m off to check out Portent, thank you!

    • September 21, 2016 / 11:16 am

      Thanks! Portent is a great tool. Let me know your thoughts.

  7. September 21, 2016 / 3:55 am

    Thank you Norlisha for a couple of extra tips I didn’t know about – CovertKit & Portent. Will start looking at these for my blog posts too now. (SBB – new fan) See you soon x

  8. November 9, 2016 / 1:27 am

    This was so useful!
    I’m seriously considering switching to WordPress soon, as I can’t stand Blogger any longer and was thinking of Go Daddy..looks like Bluehost it is!
    I’ve never heard of tailwind either, I’ll defo check i out~
    Thanks x
    itsYemmi

    • November 11, 2016 / 12:09 am

      Definitely! I love WordPress! It’s so functional and you can do almost anything with your blog.

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