All bloggers have their favorite tools and resources to help prepare their blog posts and build their following. Some bloggers swear by a written planner while others couldn’t live without the organization and productivity apps on their iPhone. I love being helpful so I sat down recently and compiled this list of websites every blogger must know.
After sorting through the obvious (like Gmail and all the social media accounts) then removing the clunky hard-to-use (like sites I shall not name) I narrowed it down to this fabulous list of the ultimate 17 websites every blogger should bookmark.
17 Websites Every Blogger Should Bookmark
Embed Code Generator
If you create, and post, visual content like buttons, infographics, or quotes then you’ll want to check out Embed Code Generator. It provides embed codes so your readers can easily share your content on their blogs (think embedding YouTube videos).
Have you ever seen a blog with a bar along the top of the screen with a great call-to-action (cta) like subscribing to their newsletter or following them on social media? It’s likely HelloBar. HelloBar allows you to customize cta’s to encourage greater interaction from your readers. There are both free and paid versions but no matter which way you decide to go there are insanely helpful analytics for you to review.
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What would we do without Evernote? I live by this app! You can install Evernote as an app on your phone and tablet (like I have) but you should also bookmark Evernote online. Use it to organize notebooks, record specific notes, bookmark websites or articles, and chat with co-workers or teammates.
I was introduced to Asana recently during the Captivate and Convert course with Kyla Roma. It’s an online task management tool that is just beyond incredible. It also has an app which I downloaded immediately from the App Store. If you haven’t started using it yet you’re missing out on something really amazing.
I only recently discovered Trello but I’m already in love with it. It is a collaboration platform you can use to organize your ideas, manage your to-do list, and see what the rest of your team is working on.
Do you love insanely in-depth and unbelievably helpful social analytics? Yeah, me too. That’s why I love FollowerWonk. This website allows you to review detailed statistics on your Twitter followers (and the Twitter followers of other users). You can even compare yourself to other Twitter followers, and compare your followers. Not that we’d ever encourage the comparison game but there is some amazing data inside this free resource.
PicMonkey / Canva
Any bloggers that are looking for a free alternative to PhotoShop should be familiar with PicMonkey and Canva. While both offer paid upgrades the free versions are great for basic photo editing and creating simple graphics.
What’s better than some serious data to back up your statements and claims? NOTHING, that’s what. Atlas is full of super helpful charts and graphs which contain data that you can either download or embed in to your own posts. What?! I know. For example, let’s say I’m writing a post about trends in the placement of orders for food delivery. I can go to Atlas, find this handy chart, click embed and…look how fancy that looks.
Google Trends may be on the best kept secrets in blogging. I’m always amazed by the number of bloggers I talk to who don’t know this handy little tool exists. Get over there right now and check it out. Not only will it tell you what topics are currently trending online (so you can capitalize on the popularity), you can also search for topics relevant to your niche and find out if they are trending up or down.
Google Webmaster Tools
I have a mild obsession with Google Webmaster Tools. From this site you can create a side index, set crawl times for search bot, run an analysis of your blog or website, review site errors, check for mobile compatibility, and so much more. If you want to confirm that your site is Google-friendly this is the place to go and look around.
Google Keyword Planner
In case you didn’t know, Google is good for more than just a search engine. Google Keyword Planner should be your go-to resource every single time you write a new blog post. This tool allows you to search keywords and key phrases for search popularity. Once you’ve done your research and identified your keywords you can write a SEO-friendly blog post and capitalize on search engine traffic.
Powered by CoSchedule (yet another tool that you should have as a blogger), Headline Analyzer works cooperatively with Google Keyword Planner to really up your SEO game. Consider this post. Which headline do you like better? 16 Websites for Bloggers or 16 Websites Every Blogger Must Bookmark! I think that pretty much makes my point for me. This tool helps you write headlines that grab the attention of your readers and make them want to click.
I have a love/hate affair with Hemingway Editor. At once, it is a writers best friend and harshest critic. Be warned! Running your writing through Hemingway Editor is likely to bring even the thickest-skinned writer to tears as it
tears apart reviews your writing. It is, however, very useful and you should know it. It will assign a grade level to your writing so you know how easy (or challenging) it is to read and comprehend. It recognizes use of passive voice, phrasing with simpler alternatives, unnecessary words, and hard-to-read sentences. It will make you a better writer but it will try to break you in the process.
What’s worse than a poorly written post? How about one that comes across as salty when you meant to be sweet? Or one that is received as rude when you meant to be witty? Enter…Tone Analyzer! You can copy your writing into Tone Analyzer and it will review it for emotional tones and make suggestions for improvement. This helps ensure that both your point, and your personality, shine. (Bonus! You can also use this tool for those sensitive work-related e-mails or that e-mail to your in-laws where you tell them that you plan on booking a hotel rather than staying in their guest room…)
Anyone who has ever blogged confirms that a basic knowledge of html coding goes a long way in designing your blog and building an audience. It helps you make simple customizations to your design and make your piece of the internet a little bit more you. If you haven’t learned basic html in high school or college W3Schools is for you. Browse around the site to find tutorials about changing fonts, customizing text alignment, and embedding graphics.
- What other tools or websites do you consider must-haves?