Here is a list of blogging tools and blog resources that I use to power this site and my business.
When it comes to blogging, there are tons of choices of products and services that you can use to manage just about everything.
It can be overwhelming.
So, I thought it might be helpful to share with you a list of tools that I actually use on this blog.
WordPress Resources and Hosting
I use BigScoots Managed WordPress Hosting for my site, because I really want to focus my time on creating content and not the technical back end of things.
I use the Genesis Framework for WordPress because it is continually updated, flexible and search engine friendly.
If you use the Genesis Framework, you need to have a child theme as well.
I use the Brunch Pro Theme by Feast Design on this site.
I like the clean and simple look, and it is very easily customizable – especially if you use the Feast plugin (which includes ALL the Feast WordPress themes!).
Site speed is very important for SEO – and using large images can seriously slow down your site.
ShortPixel is a service and a plugin that will compress your images for you.
Grow by Mediavine (formerly Social Pug)
To get more blog traffic you have to make it easy for your readers to share your posts.
Social Pug is a WordPress plugin that adds attractive social sharing buttons to all your posts.
PrettyLinks Pro is a WordPress redirection plugin that you can use to create neat and tidy affiliate links.
You can't use this with the Amazon Associates program but you can use for many others (just check the terms of service for each program).
It makes inserting affiliate links into your content very easy.
The Feast plugin is a premium plugin that adds lots of useful features to any of the themes created by Feast Design – it also includes ALL the Feast Design themes.
I use the Brunch Pro theme – but Feast also makes the popular Foodie Pro WordPress Theme and others.
Photo Editing and Stock Photography
I recently started using Adobe Creative Cloud for photo editing. Although there is a learning curve, it is very powerful and makes most of my blog photos look much better.
You can read why I decided to use to Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom here.
My go to tool for creating images for Pinterest and other social media is the Stencil App.
This app is so easy to use and you can add text overlays and resize images very quickly.
Picmonkey is a great Photoshop alternative. It is also easy to use and has many powerful photo editing features.
If you don't want to take the time to learn the Adobe suite, then you might want to take a look at Picmonkey.
See my Picmonkey Pricing Guide here.
I tend to use a good amount of stock photography on my blogs.
Haute Stock is a subscription service that offers lots of feminine styled stock photography – this is the one that I predominantly use.
DepositPhotos has a huge library of stock photos.
I also use this service for my blog photos.
Social Media Schedulers
When it comes to Pinterest scheduling, there is nothing easier than the Tailwind App.
I use this to schedule out all the pins for my posts and it is a huge time saver.
Tailwind is also on the list of Pinterest approved partners, so I feel confident in using this app.
Read my Tailwind review here and if you can't decide find thoughts on whether Tailwind is worth it here.
CoSchedule is a social media scheduler, editorial calendar, and task manager all rolled into one.
Not only do I use this to schedule out my Twitter and Facebook posts, but I also use it to plan my blog content and it keeps me so organized.
Mailerlite is a powerful and affordable email marketing platform.
It has lots of features that you can use to segment your list, create automations, and generally connect with your audience.
Other Blogging Tools
TextExpander is actually an app that creates keyboard shortcuts on your computer for lines of repetitive text and even long snippets that you use over and over again.
It saves me so much time! You can read my TextExpander Review here.
I am pleased to be able to offer my readers a TextExpander coupon for 20 percent off – simply click here.