Are you looking for the right blogging tools that will make an excellent first impression?
We’re not talking about an impression with the level of blogging empires like Problogger, CopyBlogger, or SmartBlogger. But an impression that is so damn good your new visitors will come back for more.
But top blogs use some blogging tools that may be out of your reach for now. They have thick pockets, and yours are thin. They have a dedicated team that covers everything, and you only have yourself. Lastly, their tools fit their mature business.
That’s what we are going to cover. What are the blogging tools that will bring out the best for beginners like you? Can you get the ones your money can afford but won’t make you look cheap?
What’s in it for You and Your Blog?
This list will show you the blogging tools for:
- Fast, Secure, and Reliable Hosting for Your Blog
- Customizing the Look of Your Blog
- Making Your Blog Run Faster
- Shielding Your Blog from Hackers and Accidents
- List Building and Email Marketing
- Sharing Your Posts on Social Media
- Getting Blog Post Ideas Worthy of Sharing on Social Media
- Writing Impressive Headlines That Will Ensure Clicks
- Giving Your Writing an Upgrade
- Ranking Higher in Search Engine Results
- Grabbing Free, Uncopyrighted Images
- Creating and Editing Eye-catching Images
- Analyzing Your Blog’s Performance
Now, let’s get into the meat of each benefit.
(1) Fast, Secure, and Reliable Hosting for Your Blog
Disclosure: If you grab the hosting tool below, I’ll get a small commission. Yet, there’s no extra cost to you.
SiteGround (affiliate link)
Siteground is the home I picked for my blog. First, it is reliable, fast, and secured web hosting. And It is one of the recommended hosts by WordPress.
The point is having a recommended web hosting by pros and WordPress will make an excellent first impression.
So, if you are thinking of starting a blog, start with SiteGround’s StartUp Plan at $3.95/month.
(2) Customizing the Look of Your Blog
After you set up the host and pick a name for your blog, next is to pick a site design. And I chose Astra because of the positive reviews I have read about it. And it didn’t disappoint.
First, Astra has starter sites that will help you create your blog in minutes. Then, you can also tweak your blog to your liking with its wide range of customization options.
Undecided with this blogging tool? Get a better judgment with a more comprehensive review here.
(3) Making Your Blog Run Faster
The next blogging tool is a plugin that will make your blog faster. Besides, who wants a blog that takes an eternity to load? And to prove how important this is for your readers, Google made a study here.
Is your blog on SiteGround? Look no more for a plugin to optimize your site for speed. First, SG Optimizer makes necessary files like images, pages, and scripts in your blog smaller. Then, it allows you to enable technologies like HTTPS, PHP higher version, GZIP compression, and browser caching for faster website loading. Above all, it integrates naturally to the SiteGround hosting technologies to ensure the best performance of your blog.
(4) Shielding Your Blog from Hackers and Accidents
That is why you need iThemes Security, where you get 30+ ways to secure your WordPress blog. And you don’t need to keep an eye on your blog every time because it will notify you if something is off like a file change warning.
After securing your blog, you need backups. Why should you backup your blog? First, things can go wrong in your blog while you’re updating it. Then, hackers can also wreck it. When any of these happen, you’ll be happy you have a backup.
That’s the reason you need UpdraftPlus. It can simplify your blog backup through automation.
I have a daily backup setup with Updraftplus and it does its job every day. See a sample email notification below:
Pro tip: Start an automated scheduled backup as soon as you start your blog and test it. 93% of companies filed for bankruptcy within a year after losing their data while 50% filed for bankruptcy immediately.
(5) List Building and Email Marketing
Do you want to earn money from your blog? Then the next item is to set up an email marketing tool and build your list. I’ve been reading about list building years ago and ignoring it. That is why I didn’t reach the goals I want from my first blog. So, list building is necessary for bloggers, new and pro.
And SendInBlue is one of the best options for new bloggers for this purpose. The features for the free plan is almost a steal. Along with unlimited contacts, you get 300 emails per day, SMS marketing, a workflow editor for advance email marketing, and much more.
But to make this work with your WordPress blog, you need the official plugin called SendInBlue Subscribe Form and WP SMTP.
If you’re not convinced, check out the side-by-side email deliverability test results of EmailToolTester for SendInBlue and other leading email marketing tools for February 2020. And check their full review here.
(6) Sharing Your Posts on Social Media
Next, you need a social sharing plugin to help your readers spread the word about your blog posts on social media. And the resulting social proof will add credibility to your blog.
That is why you need to place those little social media buttons on your post. And Social Pug (now called Grow) is one of the easiest and customizable social sharing plugin around.
(7) Getting Blog Post Ideas Worthy of Sharing on Social Media
Now it is time to write. But what topics will you write? How about post ideas that readers will share in social media? That’s what Buzzsumo can do for you.
And using it is simple. First, you need a domain name or a keyword or topic. Then, Buzzsumo will give you 3 top posts for free. See an example of what I got from 3 top blogs below:
Pro tip: When thinking of post ideas, start with the topics that will generate a buzz. And top blogs in your niche are an excellent source of these topics. All you need is to find out which of their posts did an excellent job.
(8) Writing Impressive Headlines That Will Ensure Clicks
Next to your ideas is the headline. It is your first impression to turn a visitor into a reader. If your headline is dull, the rest of the post is useless. See an interesting fact about it here.
But here’s the good news: The Headline Analyzer will analyze your headline. Then, it will give a score based on quality metrics. A score of 70 or higher means more SEO value, traffic, and social media shares.
Start by typing your headline on the box and click Analyze Now. Then you will get a detailed report with a score. Of course, you can change your headline until you reach a satisfying score.
Well, I got a score of 73 for this post headline (16 Blogging Tools To Bring Out the Best for Newbies).
(9) Giving Your Writing an Upgrade
After deciding for an irresistible headline, the next item is to write your post. Remember that your next milestone to reach after launching your blog is to gain trust. But spelling and grammar mistakes can ruin it. So make persuasive posts, and these will make your readers come back and devour everything they can find.
That is why you need a top-notched tool like Grammarly. The truth is, I use this to proofread every blog post. And I have it as a browser plugin and as an add-in to Microsoft Word. So, it is a working companion whenever I write English text.
And Grammarly helps you correct your grammar, spelling, punctuation, and word choice. And If you need more, the Premium version includes more features like Plagiarism detection and writing style checks.
Pro tip: Enable Grammarly to help improve your writing during proofreading. Disable it when making your drafts. You can finish your post faster this way.
Aside from Grammarly, I also use the Hemingway Editor as well. Because writing weakeners may be creeping all over your post. Passive voice, adverbs, complicated words, and hard-to-read sentences weaken your writing like kryptonite. The result? Your new visitors will only spend 37 seconds or less and then click away.
The Hemingway Editor can mark these weakeners so you can fix them.
It’s free if you use the web version. And how easy can it get? First, paste your blog post in the box provided. Then the web app will highlight the words and sentences that need fixing.
(10) Ranking Higher in Search Engine Results
Another editing effort you’ll be doing is to make sure your post lands on page 1 of the search results in any search engine. Knowing this, Yoast SEO will help you improve your page rankings. And this plugin will help you focus on the right keywords, analyze your title, meta description, inbound and outbound links, and report on your post’s readability.
(11) Grabbing Free, Uncopyrighted Images
Next, you need to add value by using images. And blog posts with images get 94% more views. So, images are part of every post you write.
And Unsplash is your source of free images.
(12) Creating and Editing Eye-catching Images
Next, you need to promote your post in one or more of the big social media platforms. And you need a tool to prepare your images.
And what makes Canva perfect for this? First, Canva has made it much easier even for non-graphic designers to create the right-sized images that you will be proud to share on Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Lastly, most bloggers recommend this tool.
While Photoshop is an excellent tool for more complex image editing, it doesn’t come for free. But Gimp is a free alternative. And the truth is, I made my site logo and banner using this. I also created the featured image in this post with this. And you can install this desktop app on
(13) Analyzing Your Blog’s Performance
Finally, you need to know how your blog is doing. Are people coming to your blog? How many? How long are they staying to read? What devices are they using to read your blog? Which of my posts is not doing well? You need site analytics to answer these questions. And it helps you take appropriate action, like improving your existing posts.
And Google Analytics is one of the leading analytics tools in this area, and it’s free.
But to make this work with your WordPress blog, you need a plugin called Google Analytics for WordPress by MonsterInsights.
Most of these blogging tools are free, so grab one or more of these and start getting the hang of each.
Is the above list complete? No. But it’s enough to get your big ideas off the ground.
Do you have your recommendations? Then head on to the comments section.