Earlier this year I shared a post on the 5 must have blog tools every blogger needs. Today I’m back with 5 more tools for bloggers.
These tools, or rather categories of tools, are things that I’ve found helpful when it comes to blogging. Now keep in mind that you don’t need to actually use these. However, give them a try! You might find that they help you out with your blogging process.
1. To Do List
Blogging is so much more than just writing a post and publishing it. You have to brainstorm ideas, write a draft, edit the draft, gather images/graphics, and share on social media. The list goes on. And that’s just for publishing a post! What about all the other tasks that come along with blogging, such as writing weekly emails, updating your site, or writing guest posts?
That’s where you need a to do list. I’m personally a fan of to do list apps because they allow me to create recurring tasks for things that I have to do daily or weekly. Plus, I can categorize everything so my writing tasks don’t get mixed in with my site update tasks. Looking for the perfect to do list app? Here are a few favorites: Asana, Todoist, and Trello.
If going digital isn’t your thing, there’s always paper. Choose a pretty notebook or planner and some fun pens and get to work! And rather than just making a gigantic list and calling it a day, check out bullet journaling. There are tons of different techniques you can use to keep your notebook organized. Plus, I’ve got to admit, it looks pretty calming!
2. Analytics Program
Being a successful blogger means publishing content that your audience loves. But how can you tell if a blog post is doing well or not? Sure, you can keep an eye on the amount of comments or shares it gets, but that’s only a small part of the puzzle. Engagement isn’t the only metric you can use to measure success.
By using an analytics program, such as Google Analytics, you can keep an eye on exactly what people are doing on your site. From how many people viewed each post, to how long they stayed on the page, to what they did next, the information is all right there and ready to be analyzed.
Getting started with Google Analytics doesn’t have to be difficult and the amount of information it provides is more than worth it. Even if you’re not tech savvy, you can still gain a ton of knowledge from looking at your site metrics. And if you are more technologically inclined, there’s plenty of more advanced metrics too.
3. Idea Bank & Resources
I’ve mentioned the importance of having an editorial calendar before, but in order to keep one running smoothly, you need to have a list of blog post ideas that you can add to your calendar. Now I don’t know about you, but ideas always seem to pop up when I least expect them. But when I’m actually panning out my calendar? My mind is blank.
That’s why is so important to have an idea bank of sorts. This can be anything from a Google spreadsheet, to a Trello board, or even a small notebook. The key is to have somewhere where you can jot down all of your ideas as soon as they hit you. Otherwise, you’ll likely forget them. Ask me how I know.
And if thinking up blog post ideas at the most inopportune times isn’t enough, it pays to have other sources to go to that you can draw inspiration from. There are a bunch of blog post generators out there that allow you to enter a keyword and provide you with a list of post ideas. Of course, you should take these ideas with a grain of salt, but sometimes they’re a great starting point.
Beyond post generators, you can use tools such as Buzzsumo or even your Google Analytics account for more ideas. But perhaps the best resource for ideas is Facebook groups. Everyday tons of people are asking questions. If you see the same one popping up time after time, it’s probably a good idea to take note.
4. Focus System
You’ve brainstormed ideas, scheduled posts on your editorial calendar, but now it’s time to get writing. How’s that going? Is Facebook pulling you away from your blog writing? If it’s not Facebook, surely it’s your inbox or any number of other social media platforms.
If writing a simple blog post is taking you much longer than it actually should, you need to create a system that allows you to focus on the task at hand. There are a ton of apps available that can help you to focus in different ways.
Take Self Control for example. This Mac app allows you to block distracting websites so you can focus on that blog post. Then there’s Focus Booster which helps put you to work by allowing you to set pomodoros (small time blocks) for certain tasks. There’s something about knowing a timer is ticking that makes you put your nose down and work. And if you’re the type that needs sounds to be productive, Coffitivity brings the sounds of a cafe right to your office (or living room).
Knowing your focus weaknesses and finding the appropriate tools to help you overcome them will help you become a more productive blogger. And productive bloggers are successful bloggers.
5. Legal Knowledge
If you’re taking this whole blogging thing seriously, then odds are you want to turn it into a successful business, am I right? How familiar are you with the legalities of running a small business? I’m going to guess you could definitely use some help. I think we all could.
Luckily there are plenty of legal professionals out there who are realizing the need for legal services for bloggers and creative business owners. They’re creating products and services that can help us small business owners and bloggers make sense of all the legal jargon that comes with running a business.
One awesome (free!) product is the Pre-Launch Startup Kit, which teaches business owners what they need to do to start a business properly and why. This Startup Kit was created by Donata Kalnenaite, a licensed attorney and owner of LegalDepartment.co, a monthly subscription service that takes care of all business legal needs for a low monthly fee. She loves sharing her knowledge and helping small businesses and startups.
What blogging tools can you not live without? Leave them in the comments below!Tweet this: Check out these 5 tools every blogger should have in their toolbox.Click To Tweet