Last updated on August 3rd, 2018 at 06:38 am
5 Blogging tools that will help you grow your blog. Chances are you cringe when people talk about investing in your blog. After all, it’s hard to spend money on a blog that hasn’t made any money.
I get it, when I started my very first blog several years ago, I didn’t spend a dime. At that time, I was completely new to the Internet marketing world.
The last thing I wanted to do was spend money on a blog that I had no clue would be successful. Well, guess what happened, that blog failed.
My Second Blog
After my first blog, I started a second blog and I went the opposite route. I bought anything and everything that promised to teach me how to make money.
Well, that blog failed too. In fact, I failed a few more times before I realized that it isn’t the tools or online courses that make you successful.
Yes, they can help make things easier, by teaching you how to do things better and faster. But the truth is that no tool or online course is going to make you successful unless you are willing to roll up your sleeves and work hard.
What it really takes to grow a successful blog is staying persistent and not wavering, no matter how long it takes you to earn money.
This Doesn’t Mean
Now, I know what you’re thinking. Why should I spend money if you’ve just told me that no online course or tool will make me successful?
Because these blogging tools will make your life a lot easier. In fact, they will do the work for you, so while you are taking time off to spend time with your family.
You’re still being active on Pinterest and other social media sites. People are able to share your images to social media without any issues.
As bloggers, we need all the help we can get to make our lives easier. That’s why I am going to share the blogging resources that I gladly pay for and why.
5 Blogging Tools That Are Worth Your Time and Money
These tools are in no particular order of importance. I use all these tools in my online business and have been using them for more than a year now.
Tailwind is an automated Pinterest and Instagram scheduler. (I personally have not used the Instagram features) but I do love using it for Pinterest.
It is a paid monthly subscription that is billed at $9.99 per month. Since I hate monthly subscriptions, I pay the yearly subscription.
Without Tailwind, there would be no way that I would be able to pin on a regular basis. While I do some manual pinning, there’s no way that I would be able to do it without the help of Tailwind.
Related: How to Use Pinterest for Business
Not all my traffic comes from Pinterest, but a majority of my traffic is from Pinterest. Of course, if you do invest in this tool, make sure that you learn how to use it. I really didn’t invest a lot of time into learning Pinterest my first year. In fact, I just really started focusing more on Pinterest this year. Give them a try and click here to get your free month of Tailwind.
#2 Board Booster
Update: As of June 2018 Board Booster is no longer available to help with your automated scheduling. They went out of business.
I love the looping feature on Board Booster and that’s really all I use it for. I’ve been paying for the $5 plan for about 6 months. It took me a while to really understand how to use it. In fact, for several months, I had no clue what I was doing.
At one point, I almost canceled my account. I even contacted their support, but they were nice enough to credit me with $10 and I figured what the heck, I’ll give it another shot.
I took a weekend and really learned how to use it. I’m sure that there’s still a lot that I don’t know about it. But I’ve managed to come up with a system that is working for me.
One of the things that I’ve learned about using Board Booster. You’re going to have to figure out what works for your blog.
I spent several months reading different Board Booster strategies that people share online. None of them worked for me. (maybe I was doing it wrong?) It wasn’t until I started just creating my own strategy and testing things out that I started to notice results from Board Booster.
But the truth is that you’re going to have to figure out what actually works for your pinning strategy. I personally think that’s one of the most challenging things about Pinterest. Is coming up with the perfect pinning strategy. Click here to get 100 free pins.
#3 Social Warfare (pro version)
When I first started this blog, I had no clue which social plugin to use. I started out with the Monarch plugin from Elegant Themes. But after doing my research, I decided to switch to the Social Warfare plugin.
Related posts on the Social Warfare Plugin:
- Is Social Warfare the Right Social Sharing Plugin?
- Why I Use The Social Warfare Plugin
- Customizing the Click to Tweet On Social Warfare
- Setting Up The Free Social Warfare Plugin
I’m so happy that I did, I love this plugin. It’s so easy to use and their support is amazing. I’ve written several tutorials to help you better understand how to make the most of this plugin. Click here to buy the Social Warfare Plugin.
#4 Smarter Queue
As you know, I am focusing more on Pinterest because that’s the social media platform that is bringing me the most traffic. However, I understand the importance of having a presence on other social media platforms.
Since I don’t get a ton of traffic on Twitter or Facebook and I am not really focused, I use Smarter Queue to help me keep an active profile. It is a little bit on the pricey side, but I love all the features that it has.
When I first started looking for a social media automation tool, I started with the free Buffer account. Then I upgraded to the paid Buffer account. The thing that I did not like about Buffer is that there was no evergreen content feature.
With Smarter Queue, I can fill up my queue and not have to worry about it for again for several weeks of months and I can focus on other things in my business. Click here for your Smarter Queue account.
I know that a lot of bloggers love using ConvertKit, but I personally use GetResponse to help me keep in touch with my subscribers. When I first started this blog, I was using Mailchimp. The only reason that I upgraded to GetResponse, is because I managed to get in on a black Friday deal where I could prepay in advance for 2 years at a great discount rate.
This was the perfect time to upgrade my email autoresponder service without having to worry about those pesky monthly subscriptions. Right now at this point and time in my business, I am happy with GetResponse. Of course, once my email list climbs into the thousands, I may consider switching. Click here to get started with GetResponse.
Build An Email List on A Shoe String Budget
If you’re a brand new blogger, I know that you don’t have a lot of money to spend on your blog. While I personally think that it’s impossible to grow a blog for free.
If you’re serious about growing a profitable blog, it is going to take money. However, this doesn’t mean that you have to pay to start your email list.
You can subscribe to MailerLite and start growing your first 1,000 subscribers for free. If I would’ve known this when I first got started, you can bet that I would be using them today.
There’s absolutely no reason to pay for an autoresponder when you’re learning how to grow your list. At the time of this writing, my email list is still not at a 1,000 subscribers. However, I figure why to move to MailerLite, I’ll hit 1,000 soon enough and I won’t want to be bothered to move my email list again.
If you’d rather start your email list for free, then I suggest that you sign up here to get your first 1,000 subscribers for free.
Why You Need to Invest In Your Blog
If you’re blogging with the hopes of building a business and making money from your blog, you need to treat it like a business. You can’t expect to do everything for free.
I totally get that you’re probably not making any money right now. Maybe you are making some money, but it’s not a lot.
The last thing you want to do is spend money on blogging tools that may or may not help you grow. That was my way of thinking too when I first got started online years ago.
Now I look at it like this. I don’t have a lot of time to work on my blog. If I can find a tool or product that will help me save time and actually makes my life easier, then I’ll invest in it if I have the budget.
We’ve all heard that saying “Time is Money.” That’s so true, why spend all day doing something if you can find the right tool to help you out?
If You Don’t Have the Budget
I get it, life is hard. Sometimes you want to invest in tools and resources to help you grow faster, but you just don’t have the extra cash. That’s cool, don’t pay for something if you really can’t afford it.
This doesn’t mean that you can’t succeed online. It just means that you’ll probably have to work a little bit harder than someone who invests in blogging tools to help them grow their blog.
Whatever you do, don’t give up on your dream of earning money from your blog. Once your blog starts to make money, you can then re-invest that money back into your blog.
Make Sure You Use The Tools
If you do end up buying blogging tools to help you grow your blog. Make sure that you’re making the most of them. Don’t just pay for a blogging tool because someone says that it works for them.
I’ve tested several different products since starting this blog. I’ve paid for some after reading some blogging posts that said the tools were awesome and they wouldn’t be able to run their blog without them.
After paying for the tool, I realized that it did nothing for me or my business. Just because a certain tool works for someone, does not necessarily mean that it’s going to work for you.
Test out different products and services until you find what actually works for your blog. If you do sign up for a blogging tool and it doesn’t work for your blog, then cancel it and move on.
Don’t keep paying for it, especially, if you’re not using it. I’ve done that a few times. I set up auto-pay for my monthly subscriptions and then I completely forget that it’s coming out.
As entrepreneurs, we have to keep testing different tools and products that will help us grow our blog. Eventually, you will find your own list of resources that you don’t mind paying for.
Final Take Away
As any successful blogger and they will tell you that blogging is hard. Start treating your blog like a business from day one, because even if it’s not making money right now, it will probably make you money later on down the road.
If you can find the right products that will help you grow your blog then you definitely should consider it. The right resources will help you take more time off from your blog.
You won’t have to worry about sitting in front of your computer 24/7. Yes, you’ll still work a lot on your blog. But you will have tools helping you take care of certain aspects of your business, while you focus on other areas of your blog.
Hand Picked Articles for You
- What to Expect The First Year As A New Blogger My Experience
- Blogging Costs A New Blogger Should Not Skimp On
- Creating a Blog From Scratch and How to Begin
There are so many different types of marketing products and services that can make your life easier. Have you found any that just make your business a whole lot easier?
Recommended Blogging Resources:
- Free 12 Day Blogging Bootcamp
- Article about using Yoast SEO for optimizing your blog posts and how to do it.
- SEMRush Free Trial to Gather Low Competitive Keywords
- Quiz: Which theme is best for your blog?
- If you want to build an email list and send newsletters, I recommend ConvertKit (starts at $29)