I’m really excited that you are looking to invest time in developing your blog. Whether you intend it to be for a hobby or a business, having a thriving blog is your ultimate goal.
Blogging can be a valued creative outlet, but it can also be a huge headache. I get that, because I have experienced it. There are so many resources available, it can often feel overwhelming knowing where to even start.
On this page, I have collated a few of my favorite resources for you. I either use these now, or I have used them in the past. I guarantee however that all of the resources listed here I am recommending because I value and trust them.
I will continue to add to this page as I come across other blogging resources that I recommend.
My recommendation for a blogging platform will always be WordPress as opposed to Blogger. Even if your goal is to have a blog as a hobby, WordPress will provide you with so many more options for growth. Plus, WordPress will allow you to monetize, and even if this is not your goal now, it may be in a few months time.
When I first started blogging, I opened my WordPress blog with Hostgator. I remained with them for 3 years and loved the 24/7 live chat support that they provide. Their plans are very affordable starting at just $3.95 a month and is perfect for those starting out in blogging. This is a great hosting company to start your blogging journey with.
As my blog grew, I switched my hosting provider to Traffic Planet.
Traffic Planet is a lot more expensive, but for blogs that are starting to gain a lot of traction, it is well worth the investment.
I have been with them now for a few months and I can say that their service has been outstanding.
There are many benefits of Traffic Planet hosting including:
- Performance focused with fast loading times
- Free migration provision from current hosting provider
- Fully Woocommerce compatible
- Fast and effective live chat support
- Easy to use interface.
There are so many WordPress themes to choose from, it can be overwhelming deciding which to pick.
Whatever you choose, ensure that it is beautifully designed, responsive and professional. Elegant Themes is a great starting point.
I use Gourmet Ad’s on my site. They pay more than some other networks and it is easy to set up.
Don’t be put off by their title though because you don’t need to be a food blogger to be approved by them.
Gourmet Ads also still allow you to use Google AdSense if this is a favorite ad network for you.
TOOLS FOR GRAPHIC DESIGN:
Picmonkey is a fantastic tool for creating printable’s and undertaking photo editing.
It is easy for anyone to use and does not require any previous experience.
Picmonkey also have support on hand if you get stuck. A free platform is available, but to take advantage of all the features, it is well worth upgrading to the Royale subscription for $4.99 per month or $33 for the year.
I highly recommend Picmonkey and it’s something I use for every single blog post.
I use a Cannon EOS 1100D to take all the photos on this blog.
I am not a professional photographer and I am still learning to use all the functions on the camera, but it is so easy to use.
Photography needs to stand out from the crowd and having a good camera is going to help you achieve this.
If you love using Pinterest on your blog then you will LOVE Pinning Perfect.
Regardless of whether you have a small or large Pinterest following, there are steps that you can take to improve your Pinterest presence and improve the traffic to your blog as a result.
I had been using Pinterest since the time I started blogging, but I really noticed an increase in traffic once I started to implement the strategies in this course.
Now I have a game plan, and this is what makes the difference!
Lena Gott has written a fantastic ebook where she shares her 17 strategies for how she went from 17K to 350K in just 9 months.
Lena provides easy to follow suggestions that can be implemented straight away, regardless of whether you are a new or experienced blogger.
For just $25, this book will give you a fantastic platform for starting or growing your blog and you won’t regret the investment.
Tailwind is a fantastic Pinterest scheduler and can save your hours in your Pinterest planning.
Tailwind not only schedules your pins leaving you time for you to undertake other blogging tasks, but it also analyzes your your pins, how people are engaging, what boards are performing well and more.
It has the option to pay monthly or yearly.
Aweber is a MUST for bloggers. It is the email marketing system that is used to send out our newsletter.
If your not a subscriber to Smart Party Planning you can sign up using the form in the sidebar!
Aweber has plenty of templates to choose from to help ensure connecting over email is easy.
Building a list is essential for blogging.
Love the list? Please share it around. Good things are worth sharing with others right?
Disclosure: If you use any of these services from my referral link, I will be paid a small commission, so thank you very much!. These commissions help me to grow the blog and provide services to you. This does not however affect the price that you pay.
10% of all profits made from this website also go towards supporting Blue Dragon (A volunteer organisation helping kids in Vietnam escape poverty and child slavery. Thanks for supporting me and allowing me to support others.