Resources for new bloggers

I created this recommendations sheet to share with you the websites and products I use and love!  

Disclosure: There are some affiliate links below (because that's how smart biz moms roll), but these are all products I highly recommend. I won’t put anything on this page that I haven’t verified and/or personally used.

BLOGGING

1. Site Ground– If you are serious about turning your blog into a business I highly recommend self hosting your blog. An inexpensive way to get started with this is through SiteGround, they have super affordable plans and their customer service is amazing. Of all of the hosting providers Site Ground is by far the best for reliability and service. 

2. Wordpress - This is a great platform for your blog or website. There are many plugins you can use to optimize your users experience and track statistics. 

3. Divi by Elegant Themes - This is my FAVORITE WordPress theme it is super user-friendly even if you are a new blogger.

Social Media Management/scheduling

1. Buffer - Batching your social media posts is one of the easiest ways to make your business more efficient. Buffer offers a free plan and you can schedule up to 10 posts at a time. I have the paid plan for $10 a month and can schedule up to 100 posts at a time. That is about one month of scheduling I can do all at once! 

2.  Post Planner - If you want some more advanced scheduling options like repeating your posts check out Post Planner. This is what I personally use and I love it. Post Planner’s “love” plan runs about $10 a month.

3.  Boardbooster – Boardbooster is a major time saver! This is my favorite Pinterest tool ever. With amazing features like looping your pins, sourcing your pins for you and more it is a game changer.

Usually you can get a 100 pin trial for free... but if you want 3000 pins + step-by-step videos from me, and a BoardBooster ebook check out my mini-course BoardBooster Breakthrough.

Design

1.     PicMonkey – Is a great way to edit your photos, add text, overlays ect. There is a free version or you can upgrade to their membership for $2.75 a month. This will really help your images pop!

2.     Canva – Another great photo editing alternative. There are free and paid templates or you can create customized templates. I highly recommend giving Canva a try!

3.     Creative Market – I am obsessed with Creative Market 😍. It is a collection of pretty much any creative design elements you can think of (fonts, stock photos, mock ups, blog templates, ect.) Purchasing a few items from Creative Market will really help your blog or business stand out. They also give away free items every week when you sign up for their email list!

Plus, once a month they sell a huge bundle for over 90% off. Click here to sign up for their list so you will be notified of the next bundle. 

4. Free Stock Photos - Using stock photos can really enhance your brand and give you a more profession aesthetic. I did a round-up of my 20 favorite sources for Feminine Stock Photos here.  Some additional free options are Pexels, PicJumbo, Death to Stock Photo and Pixabay

EMAIL

1. ConvertKit - I wish that I had started with ConvertKit for my email in the first place! Their tagging and segmenting features make it so much easier to send targeted emails to your list. I have used ConvertKit for so many of my clients and it is absolutely fabulous. Plans start at $29 a month. This is one of the best investments you can make for your business. 

2. Mailchimp - If you are just starting out and don't have a lot to spend Mailchimp has  a free plan for your first 2,000 subscribers and for $10 you can upgrade to their pro plan for life saving features like e-mail automation. 

3. SumoMe – This is a fabulous tool to have on your website to build traffic. You can use it for easy share buttons, building e-mail lists, creating pop-ups ect.