I created a blogging and social media resource to share the websites and apps I use and love! This way you can quickly access all of the tools you need to get your blog/business started, and you’ll save money (because who doesn’t like to save $$$).
Disclosure: There are some affiliate links below, but these are all products I use and highly recommend.
Blogger– I used blogger while I was in college and I liked it. Unfortunately, I forgot about my blog after a while and stopped using the platform.
It’s easy to use, and it’s free. You can also monetize your blog using Google AdSense.
WordPress– I would recommend this platform if you’re just starting out and want to blog for fun. It’s free, and if you ever want to upgrade your plan, WordPress.com has that option.
Note that if you want to monetize your blog, you shouldn’t upgrade your WordPress.com account, you’ll need to self-host.
I was using WordPress until I figured that I wanted to turn my blog into a business.
Site Ground– If you’re someone who just started blogging and either wants to monetize or turn your blog into a business, then I recommend self-hosting your site.
Out of all the other hosting providers that I looked into Site Ground had what I wanted. Domain registration was free, and they transferred all of my content from my WordPress.com site to WordPress.org.
The site is reliable, it’s inexpensive, and the customer service is excellent!
SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGEMENT
Later– Instagram currently doesn’t allow you to schedule and automatically post onto the platform.
They want things to be “Instant,” but Later is an app and website that will allow you to schedule your posts. It functions as a pop-up reminder on your phone to copy+paste and post.
I’m currently using the free version because I only post once a day. But for those who post a lot, you can pay for a premium account.
Buffer– The site is designed to manage accounts in social networks, by providing the means for you to schedule posts to platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Instagram (reminders only), LinkedIn, Pinterest and Google+.
TweetDeck– It’s a “personal browser for staying in touch with what’s happening now.” It allows you to see everything happening on Twitter on one page.
You can arrange your columns to show you things like your messages, timeline, scheduled tweets, any hashtags you want to follow and so on.
HootSuite– I would say that this software offers the most. It’s ideal for large businesses, but for individual bloggers, you can get by with the free version. Think of it as all of the above packaged into one site.
Not everyone has access to Photoshop, nor is everyone skilled in design, so here are some great photo editing alternatives!
Phonto– This is a free app that allows you to add text to photos. It’s perfect for quote images!
Canva- Canva is amazing! The site offers free and paid templates, and you also have the option to create customized templates.
I highly recommend giving it a try. You can be unskilled in design and still make quality graphic design images!
Spark Post– This is an online photo editor that lets you add text, apply filters, resize, and so on. You can create flyers, posters, and videos.
Just note that the app and the online version offer different things. The website offers more than the app; you can even design your portfolio!
What I like about Spark Post is that they have a gallery of free photos that you can use.
Grammarly- Best Plagiarism Checker & Proofreader! Regardless of whether you’re good at spelling and a native English speaker, the program is useful.
When you’re typing fast, you tend to make typographical errors.
Grammarly allows you to fix these errors quickly, which is much more efficient than having to go back and correct it yourself.
Hemmingway App– This app works a bit differently than Grammarly but serves the same functions.
The only difference being it highlights the problematic areas, and it doesn’t suggest synonyms nor does it check for plagiarism.
MONETIZING YOUR BLOG
ShareASale– This site allows you to find a sponsor for your website and get paid for your content! The application process is easy.
You do have to have a domain, so if you’re using WordPress.com or Blogger, you won’t qualify for the program.
It’s easy to apply, and so far I’ve only joined programs with companies that I use and trust.
I even got $25 for writing a post about Grammarly!
Amazon Affiliates– If you’re anything like me, you might use Amazon a lot. I figured, if I’m going to be buying these products, I might as well leave reviews for them and try to make some money.
Unlike ShareASale, you don’t need a domain. Although, if you don’t make money within a certain amount of days, I believe you get removed from the program.
You can check out one of my Amazon posts, here.