Blogging

10 Essential Resources To Improve Your Blog

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.  This means that at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. 

Tailwind Visual Marketing Suite

As I’ve ventured into the realm of blogging more regularly this year, I have realized just how much there is to learn about writing, SEO, WordPress, and so many other things.  After my recent foray into self-hosted options for my blog, I also realized that I need to learn about website creation and design BEFORE making the switch as self-hosted requires so much more time and research.  Though I’m still fairly wet behind the ears compared to many writers, I have discovered a number of helpful resources on my blogging journey and want to share the ones that have been the most useful for me!

Dealspotr 

If you’re looking to work with brands, this is a good platform to get started.  You will be assigned an influencer score based on your social reach and blog stats and can apply to work with brands based on your niche.  Some offer free products only and some pay for blog posts or social media posts in addition to free products.  This is my personal favorite for making connections and building your reputation as a reliable blogger and reviewer.  You can increase your credibility by verifying deals and researching codes that work and do not work on a variety of sites.

Intellifluence

This has been the most profitable resource for me in my blogging journey thus far.  You can qualify for paid post opportunities and also search for opportunities to review free products.  To me, this is a much faster way to generate income than affiliate marketing.  I recently made $100 on just one post!  Though sometimes it can take a few months for a brand or product to show up that aligns with my niche and/or values, it has been worth the wait for the quality products.

Blogger Collaboration and Guest Posting

Find others in your niche who want to host your guest post, write a guest post for your blog or collaborate together on a post.  This is a great way to learn from other writers, expand your influence, and make new friends.  Perlu is a great resource for this.  If you’d like to collaborate on a post with me, feel free to reach out here or comment below!  If you’re in the travel niche, be sure to check out GoTravelBlogs to connect and collaborate with other amazing travel bloggers and check out their travel guides!  You can also submit your blog to be featured on this site, which is a huge opportunity!

Grammarly

Sometimes I write quickly or late at night when I’m not at the top of my punctuation game, so I’m thankful that Grammarly has my back.  This is a great tool to ensure you publish professional content free of typos and grammatical errors.  It’s basically your proofreading knight in shining armor.

Affiliate Marketing 

If you sign up as an affiliate to promote a company, they will pay you a commission percentage on each sale or a per lead payment.  This is a good way to earn money to pay for your blog.  I would not recommend paying to join any affiliate organization but definitely sign up for 1 or more of the free companies such as shareasale.com, CJ Affiliate, Pepperjam, and Rakuten.

Tailwind Visual Marketing Suite

Public forums and Free Sites To Submit Your Posts

  • Get your blog indexed on Blogtopsites and Blogarama!  These have been a huge source of traffic for me.
  • You can also submit your posts for free on Ezine Articles.
  • Another site to look into is Quora.  It’s basically a site where you can ask and answer questions, so providing your content to answer questions is a great way to add value and possibly reach more people with your blog as long as you do it in the right way – ie don’t just drop a link to your blog post as the answer – actually take the time to summarize and explain how it can help the person who is asking the question.
  • Some others I’ve tried more recently so the verdict is still out: Bloglovin and blogpostvoteup.

Images For Your Blog

You’ve probably seen the free sites like Pexels, Pixabay, and Unsplash where you can download images to use, but did you know that you can still be at risk when using those images as they can be stolen from others and not actually free to use?   It’s great if you can get by using only photos you have taken, but if not, you can find a wonderful variety of images at iCLIPART at incredibly reasonable prices.  You will have access to over 8 million copyright-safe clipart images, photos, fonts, sounds, video and web graphics. What a deal!  You can use my referral code AIMEILI7XD9Q to receive 20% off their subscriptions at this link.   I love the variety of images they provide, especially when I’m looking for fitness and wellness content.  There are certain categories of photos that can be very difficult to find on other sites, but I’ve found such a huge selection from my subscription to iCLIPART and have been so pleased with what they have to offer.  *Note: I received a free year subscription to their service but all opinions are my own.

Email Marketing

Do you realize that your content on your social channels could be taken down at any point since it is not owned by you?  The recent crashes of Facebook and Instagram should serve as a cautionary tale to be sure that your audience can stay up to date on your content through other means than just your social networks of choice.  It’s crucial to develop an email list to stay in touch with your readers and continue to deliver relevant content to them.  You can sign up for a FREE trial of my favorite email marketing provider, ConvertKit by clicking here.

Free Blogger Training & Resources

Take advantage of resources like ProBlogger Community and Neil Patel’s videos for advice on SEO and growth.  So much valuable free information and a great forum to ask questions of other more experienced bloggers.   For creating graphics and Pinterest images, Canva is another wonderful (and free depending on the images you choose) resource that will help you design images for each of your posts.

Growth groups

There are plenty of Facebook and Twitter re-tweet groups for this purpose.  My favorite Facebook groups are Blogging NewbsBlogging Babes Collective, Becoming a Blogger, and Bloggers Supporting Bloggers.  I’ve made a lot of great connections there!  For those in North Carolina, I’m also part of several local blogger groups including the NC Blogger Network and the Triad Women Bloggers Network.

Bonus

Though Tailwind is a paid service, you can get a free trial month of their service by using my referral link.  If you’re not familiar with Tailwind, it’s a scheduling tool for Pinterest and Instagram that will help you keep your content flowing and will help you gain traction.  I was able to grow my Pinterest views from 5k per month to 25k per month during my free trial.  Definitely worth checking out!

Have you used any of these resources for your blog?  What did I miss that you have found helpful?  Let me know below.

Thanks for reading!

Emily

Find a sponsor for your web site. Get paid for your great content. shareasale.com.

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