12 Essential Resources for Becoming a Stronger Blogger
Blogging is a lot of work. And, if you want to be a stronger blogger, it is going to take consistency, time, and effort. After all, your goal is to craft compelling content your site visitors want to come back for time and again.
Today I am going to share with you a host of free blogging resources that you can utilize to streamline every part of the blogging process. Find brandable domain names, create catchy titles, improve your SEO results, share visually stunning images, and more with these beneficial blogging resources.
So, let’s get started.
Tools All Bloggers Should Have in Their Arsenal
Looking for the perfect domain name can be tough if you are new to the blogging business. That’s why tools such as FlameDomain offer easy-to-use tools to help generate popular, valuable, and brandable domain names. The great thing about this tool is that not only can you use it to determine your own blog’s domain, you can also start a side hustle and sell profitable domain names to supplement your income.
Seems obvious right? Well, it turns out that not all people use the popular WordPress blogging platform. That said, WordPress does take the number one spot when it comes to content management systems. And for good reason. Here are a handful of reasons why you should use WordPress for your blogging platform:
- It’s a free software – free to download, install, use, and modify
- 48,000+ plugins and thousands of free themes aiding in design and functionality
- Easy and affordable to use
- SEO friendly due to high compliance code
- Security is a priority
- Utilize multiple media types
- Receive continual updates
- Enjoy a tight knit community
Even the best of the internet’s bloggers get stuck in a rut sometimes and have no idea what to write about. Thankfully, HubSpot provides bloggers a free online topic generator that is simple to use and provides quick and useable topics within seconds. Simply enter three nouns related to what you think you want to write about and receive approximately one week’s worth of relevant blog titles.
If you are looking for a quick scan of your blog to make sure it is secure and free from malware, blacklisting, website errors, and out-of-date software, try using Sucuri’s free Website Malware and Security Scanner. Although they do not claim to be 100% accurate, this is an efficient tool for understanding where your security measures may need boosting.
Brought to you by the amazing CoSchedule team, this free headliner analyzer will score your overall headline quality. It will clue you into your title’s effectiveness to be shared across social media networks, its ability to increase your blog’s traffic, and even includes an SEO value, all of which is very helpful when constructing the perfect blog post title.
Readability is essential when it comes to sharing quality content with your readers. Many visitors want to easily scan your posts, or at the very least read them quickly and understand them fully. The Hemingway Editor is a great proofreading tool meant to reveal your fragmented sentences, your use of passive voice, and even show you complicated words that hurt your readability score.
There are many places to get free high-resolution stock images for your blog. However, this lesser-known option is a bit unique. Using the Flickr API to find Creative Commons images, simply enter search terms and see your results. From there, choose from nine different sizes and easily place the provided HTML in the caption box of the image for proper attribution on your blog, which all of these images require.
Speed and performance is the name of the game when it comes to your blog. In fact, website performance is the key to a great user experience and a lower overall bounce rate. Using GTmetrix to test the speed and performance of your website will quickly provide you details on how your website stacks up. In addition, you will receive plenty of suggestions for improving your test score with techie information for those that are interested.
Analyzing your blog on a regular basis is important for boosting traffic, growing your email list, and crafting compelling content that will provide value to your readers. Using Google’s free metric analysis tool, Google Analytics, will provide you enough information to get a deeper understanding of your site visitors. Here are some of the things you will be able to collect and evaluate so you can become a stronger blogger:
- Number of daily visits to your site
- Geographic location of visitors
- Ad performance
- How traffic arrives at your site
- Bounce rate
- Conversion metrics
- Campaign successes
- Social media traffic
- Content popularity
- Time spent per page
- Site speed and performance metrics
- And so much more
As with most blogging resources, there are plenty of choices available when it comes to content management tools. For instance, Evernote, DropBox, CoSchedule, and Google Docs are just some of the most widely used tools. However, one of the simplest and easily understood is Trello.
Trello allows bloggers to collaborate with others to get more done in the most efficient way possible. In the end, you can use Trello’s boards, lists, cards, and intuitive color-coding system to set up all of your blog’s goals from brainstorming content to completion.
TinyPNG is a great online tool that is free to use and works wonders when it comes to optimizing your blog’s images. And the best thing is, you can use this in tandem with most WordPress image optimizing plugins (such as WP Smush Image Optimizer) to get the ultimate in compression, clarity, and visual appeal.
Simply drop your images into the onscreen box and let TinyPNG do the work for you. Once optimized, download the final image, save it to your computer, and later upload it directly into your blog’s Media Library. Using lossy compression techniques on both PNG and JPEG files, TinyPNG reduces your image’s file size significantly with very little image degradation.
The appeal behind MailChimp as an email service provider is that it is initially free up to your first 2,000 subscribers. This means you can begin building a large blog following, and even expand into a business, without having to pay a monthly fee to use their services. And speaking of services, here is some of what is included when you decide to use MailChimp for your email marketing provider:
- Drag & drop designer to match your blog’s style
- Pre-made templates for inspiration
- Marketing automation with segmentation capability
- Exceptional reporting features for monitoring success
- Integration with popular apps and services including several eCommerce platforms
Becoming a stronger blogger is something that all website owners should strive for. And, taking advantage of the many free blogging resources available only makes sense for getting ahead of the competition.
It is important that all bloggers gather their favorite blogging resources and save them for later use. In the end, a strong arsenal of blogging tools will ultimately make you a stronger blogger.
Have you ever used any of the above-mentioned blogging resources to improve your blog? Have you used something not on the list that is worth mentioning? I would love to hear all about it in the comments below!