Recommended Blogging Resources & Tools
Do you know that technology is changing the way we live, work and do business? That’s why I am regularly asked by business owners, start-up founders and budding entrepreneurs to recommend different tools, resources and services required to start and grow their businesses. I know people are particularly interested to know the tools and resources I’ve used to build my website and businesses.
Well, I’ve put together a list of recommended tools and resources that I’ve personally used (in most cases) and some which are highly recommended to me by some of the experts I have trusted and worked with.
Note: Some of the tools and resources listed below aren’t free. You need to pay for them. Also, I will update this list regularly when I come across new tools and useful resources.
If you want to build a website for your business, blog, charity organisation etc. there are few platforms/resources that you can use:
According w3techs, WordPress is one of the most used Content Management System (CMS). About 63.6% of all the CMS websites are built using WordPress. Also, out of 1.3 billion active websites on the internet, 38.4% of them are run on WordPress . To put it in context, about 499,200,000 websites are using WordPress right now. I have been using WordPress since 2012, and I’ve developed several websites for my clients using WordPress, hence, I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend WordPress to anyone who is interested in setting a website.
Other platforms, of course exist including:
- Blogger – another free hosted option – owned by Google.
- Wix– another website building platform.
- Squarespace – another website building platform that started in 2003 .
Over the years, I have used several web hosting companies, but I highly recommend the following:
- SiteGround – SiteGround is my preferred hosting platform. I have used SiteGround to host all of my websites, including this one. SiteGround is ranked top of all web hosting companies for both uptime (99.99%) and speed (673ms). They offer exceptional service and their customer support team are knowledgeable, fast and friendly. SiteGround allows you to host multiple domains under one account, which is super convenient. Hosting is only £5.99/month!
- BlueHost – This is another good hosting company. With BlueHost, you can setup your website with 1-click WordPress installation, 24/7 support, and a super affordable rate.
Website Templates & Themes
As WordPress is one of the favourite Content Management System (CMS), there are tens of thousands of website themes and templates readily available – that you can use to build your website.
It is worth noting that not all templates/themes are updated regularly, so you need to choose a theme/template that is updated regularly. I’d recommend you use premium template/theme to build my website – reason being that you’ll get regular updates and features.
Two of my go- to- places for WordPress themes/templates are:
- Envato/ThemeForest – This is one of the marketplaces where you can buy all the themes/templates , video, graphics, codes, plugins etc. you need to build your website.
- Astra Templates – This is another marketplace where you can buy your templates/themes. Note: Astra runs a subscription based plan.
Tools for Graphic Design
- Canva – Canva is an online graphic design tool that anybody can use to create great design! This tool is great for creating graphics for social media.
Tools and Services for Email Marketing
- GetResponse – this is one of the leading email marketing solution available.The platform allows you to create a mailing list, newsletters and you can automate your emails to subscribers. The platform also provide an ‘all-in-one’ marketing solution- this include e-commerce features, webinar hosting, landing pages and automated sales funnels.
- ConvertKit– If you’re beginner in email marketing, I’ll recommend you use this email service. Converkit includes landing pages, lead magnet delivery, tagging and automation.
- Mail Chimp – Again, if you’re starting off, I’ll recommend you use mailchimp if you have limited budget to spend on your start up business.
Tools for Social Media Management
- Buffer: This is one of the good social media management platforms trusted by many brands, businesses, and individuals. I’ve used this tool to help my clients achieved meaningful engagement and results on social media.
- Hootsuite: This is another good social media management tool, probably the biggest social media management tool used by over 15 million people. However, the tool is a bit expensive.
- Agora Pulse – this is an all-in-one social media platform with scheduling and reporting features. Again, this is another great tool but it is expensive.
- Sprout Social: Another great social media management tool with Customer Relationship Management (CRM) feature.
- Other social media management platforms are: Sendible, Social pilot, Falcon.io and HubSpot.
Tools for Productivity and Team Management
- Evernote– This is a good tool for brainstorming, note taking, capturing of ideas, writing of blog posts and more!
- Slack– This is a good tool for our team’s internal communications.
- Trello– This is another good tool that you can use internally for communications and project management.
Other Digital Marketing Resources and Tools
- BuzzSumo – This is a fantastic tool for analysing how well content is being shared on the internet.
- Easy Digital Downloads – This is a good solution for anyone who is interested in selling products on their WordPress website. It’s what my clients are using to sell their eBooks.
- Zoom– Great tool for webinars.
- ScreenFlow– This is one of the tools you can use to record training videos. Screenflow is only available for Mac users.
- Grammarly– This is a chrome extension that checks your spelling and grammar.
- Google Analytics– this is a free metrics/statistics/data analytic tool that you can use to check your website traffic and analytics.
Video Streaming Tools
- StreamYard – This tool allows you to stream directly to social media platforms like YouTube, Facebook, and LinkedIn. You can bring up to six guests, share your screen, and add custom graphics like your company logo etc.
- Restream – This one of the live streaming platforms that lets you stream to more than 30 social platforms at the same time. I have used this tool on several occasions.
- OBS Studio – This is one of the open-source and free live streaming video platform. You can use this tool to stream videos.
- WireCast – This is another good live streaming tool that allow you to stream to multiple platforms. This is a professional tool for live TV streaming.
Video Editing Tools
RightMessage is a website personalisation software. This is a useful tool that will help make your email strategy more personal. This tool will display your website content based on the user/audience preference. If you want boost your conversion rates or show your website visitor contents that are relevant to their needs, then this tool is the right tool to use.
GetResponse is one of the leading email marketing solution available.
The platform allows you to create a mailing list, newsletters and automate your emails to subscribers. The platform is an ‘all-in-one’ marketing solution. This include e-commerce features, webinar hosting, landing pages and automated sales funnels.