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Whoa! Where do I begin? There are so many amazing resources that go into blogging I’m a bit hard pressed to list everything on one page without wanting to overwhelm beginner bloggers.
The ones I have found that work the best, save me the most money, make me the most money and that I currently use myself are listed below.
It’s designed just for bloggers and creators. I am amazed so far at all the ways it’s been helping me to automate and build my email list.
It’s an easy learning curve, their customer service is amazing and it provides so many incredible ways to build a platform, cultivate relationships and automate your email so it’s all on autopilot.
My first blog was built on Squarespace which is great if you want a simple type of website. They do have some beautiful themes to choose from. But for Bloggers there’s no doubt that you’ve got to have a self hosted site on WordPress.org.
WordPress has unlimited themes, a ton of free and paid for plug ins to make your site operate exactly as you want, it is super easy to use, there is a ton of help for anything you need to do and the best thing is that you OWN it. It looks completely professional and most importantly – No one can take it away, it can’t be deleted! If you opt to have a free site the fact is that it’s limited, looks less professional and can be deleted at any time.
For hosting I chose Bluehost. There are many other hosting companies to choose from but I found Bluehost to have very low competitive prices, only 3.95 per month, top speed, 24/7 support, excellent security and it’s trusted by more than 1 million domains! I’ve never had an issue and switching it over from a more expensive hosting company was flawless.
Update! I have switched to Siteground! Their customer service is excellent, site speed superfast, and they check to make sure your site is clean and free of any viruses, spam etc.
How to Blog
Exact steps on how to you can start a blog in less than 30 minutes.
For monetizing your blog read my post. Filled with guaranteed strategies to make money from your blog even with low traffic!
Small Business Accounting
Freshbooks: Freshbooks is a small business accounting software service (similar to QuickBooks) I use for my side business. It helps you keep track of your income, send invoices, and more. You get a HUGE amount in savings with FreshBooks as compared to the ridiculous rates that PayPal charges.
My theme is from a UK company called PipDig. They have beautiful magazine style themes, seamless integration from other hosts and fantastic customer service. Not to mention great prices! I’ve heard they’ve had some issues recently – sad to hear that because they were great for me when I used them.
Update – I had my blog redesigned by Corina Ramos Designs recently. She did an amazing job and fast!! It’s built on the Genesis Framework.
For feminine WordPress themes I recommend Bluchic themes for a beautiful website that you can have up and running fast.
For simple yet professional videos I recommend Animoto. Turn your photos into marketing videos for business or for personal use. They also have various budget tier levels and offer a free trial. You can also use vimeo app for simple video storage and sharing.
I always turn to Picmonkey and Canva they have everything you need for the beginner or expert to turn make your image ideas turn into life – photo editing, collage making, graphic designer.
Design Wizard is an intuitive program with impressive templates that can be instantly personalized in minutes to create the exact look you need.
If you’re looking to turn your blog into a full time or even a part time business I’d definitely recommend Deluxe Business Services. They have all the tools you need to help you with the trillion different details of running a small business from logo and website design, business forms and office supplies, to SEO services, to Payroll, to Marketing Business Kits and more. Plus they have a quick turn around time and low prices!
There’s also Fiverr whom I recommend for great rates and quick turnaround if you need a logo, help with graphics, web development or marketing.
They’re also great if you have skills that you want to market if you need to earn some cash!
I primarily use Share-A-Sale. They have thousands of merchants to choose from. I increase my sales, generate interest in my site and pick products that I actually use.
They have a very easy platform to understand, it’s simple to sign up and there are tons of merchants to choose from. I also use Clickbank and Skimlinks.
Here’s a tutorial for Clickbank which is one of global leaders for affiliate products:
Make Sure to Read my post:
This invaluable course has shown me and others:
- How to build a six figure blog without millions of visitors or selling your soul
- how Michelle went from $0 in affiliate income to over $50,000 per month
- The step-by-step affiliate marketing strategy course that shows you how to increase your affiliate income and make more money blogging
If you’re interested in building an affiliate marketing blog then I recommend 2 other popular programs; Wealthy Affiliate and Affilorama I’ve tried them both out, you can read my review below. I like them both because they offer you a FREE trial so you can get a sense of them before you decide.
Revive Social is a very useful tool for increasing your traffic. Revive Social Network can help you to build a strong social circle and grows your professional network by sharing content from other websites in your industry on your Social Media accounts.
Set it and watch your social circle grow automatically. Revive Old Post helps you to keep your old posts alive by automatic sharing them and driving more traffic to them from social media networks. Set it up once and you’ll never have to worry about your old posts again.
Tailwind for Pinterest and Instagram has helped me go from 200 views to over 400K in a matter of months! It is the best autoscheduler to amplify your Pinterest/Insta following, simplify your pinning, grow your blog’s reach, expand your presence, analyze and build your new business.
This is one of my favorite plugins that I use on Socialbuzzhive. It includes social share buttons that make it easier to share your post and also keep count of how many times your post has been shared. Social traffic is so important to bloggers and this plug in can really help.
After I installed this plugin I saw an immediate increase in shares. I have it setup to include Facebook, Twitter, & Pinterest but you can customize it to whichever social networks you prefer and even change the style and the colors.
Like most services, the paid version is the one you want if you are a professional blogger… the features are quite limited without it. Get Social Warfare HERE.
Jaaxy Keyword Tool – There’s no comparison when it comes to keyword tools. Keyword research is time consuming! And Google tools in my opinion are confusing. I like Jaaxy because it was made for bloggers. You can’t get a more advanced and useful platform for managing all aspects of keyword research, website, competition all in one place.
Miscellaneous Sites That Help Me Make My Life Easier
Resume Writers – Top rated resume service for students, professionals, freelance writers and executives or anyone who needs to make a career change.
Virtual Receptionist – If you have a small business and don’t have time to answer the phone yourself, don’t want a machine to do it and don’t have the budget to hire a full time receptionist why not hire a virtual one? Gabbyville has awesome live receptionists and answering services for reasonable rates! Try them for FREE for 14 days.
Print Friendly & PDF – I love this extension because you can make any web page into a PDF – it’s so cool! It removes junk like ads, gives you an editable preview and still has clickable links. Get more shares, saves and love!
Now that blogging has taken over my life who has time to cook? I also found I was spending a bundle on eating out as well as shopping for food and always getting more than what was on my list – I started a free trial of the $5 Meal Plan – and my wallet is really happy I did.
It’s a great way to save money and it’s a much healthier choice than eating out. If meal planning is not your thing though, I highly recommend trying the $5 Meal Plan. This is a weekly meal plan service that can make your meal planning super simple.
For just $5 per month, you will receive a delicious meal plan, where every meal will cost about $2 per person (or less). It’s a great way to save time and money, plus they offer specialty plans, including gluten-free and vegetarian meals. Click here to try it free for 14 days.
Sunbasket is another time saving meal site that does home deliveries. It’s Organic produce, clean ingredients, and delicious recipes delivered weekly. They specialize in Paleo, Lean & Clean, Gluten Free, Vegan and more. They are really delicious and awesome!!
They won second overall in delivery meal kits in the country. I hate taking the time to shop, prep and cook so this makes it totally worth the price. You get $45 off your first order if you click the link!
I hope this list of resources helped! For a detailed list of exclusive blogger secret methods grab my Ultimate Checklist for how to promote your blog posts. You’d have to search all over the internet to find this all in one place. And here it is!
Please like and share this post on social! Thanks!:) Emily