17+ Fantastic Brain-Saving, Business-Building Tools for Bloggers

Did you start a blog because you wanted to become a technical wizard, server manager, expert at un-hacking your blog?

Or because you thought spending hours learning things like coding, graphics and social media sounded awesome?

No?

Yeah… me neither!

I started my blog because I love writing and wanted a way to share my knowledge and grow my business.

Somehow along the way it can feel like you’re suddenly all of the above and more.

Here are 17+ of my favorite brain-saving, business-building tools for bloggers (leave a comment and share yours?)…

For Emails

MailerLite – You know you’ve got to build a list.  So many tools out there are expensive (looking at you InfusionSoft), complicated (oh the list!), or so limited (MailChimp, come on with the terms about affiliate marketing…).  Enter MailerLite.  It’s free for up to 1,000 subscribers and their interface is intuitively well-designed.  I recently switched from InfusionSoft to MailerLite and have been crazy impressed with their support team’s fast response time, and the fantastic features they offer.  From A/B split testing of subject lines, to auto-resend of campaigns to unopens… they’ve got great statistics and even offer an included landing page builder tool.

For Blogging

WordPress with FlyWheel – After everything from hosting with BlueHost and HostGator on shared servers, to hosting on dedicated servers with AmazonAWS, to running my own servers… I finally found heaven.  FlyWheel specializes in WordPress and they do it beautifully.  I no longer worry about caching, security, updates, SSL (it’s included) – they handle all that.  So I can focus on blogging!  Plus, their support is super helpful and they transferred my blog free. Ahhh… click here to find out more.

Genesis Themes – They’ve been my go to recommendation for years and nothing has changed except the variety of great themes they offer.  Solid framework and nice designs with the options that help you grow your list and monetize your blog.

For Social Media

HootSuite – I’ve got the premium version so I can bulk schedule, but the free version rocks, too.  With HootSuite you can bring your various social media accounts into one dashboard to schedule and manage.  Plus they’ve got a great mobile app.  Saves me hours of time every week.

For Landing Pages and Opt-Ins

LeadPages – Decided to test this out a few months ago after working with it on client projects and I love it.  It’s easy to use and has a wide variety of templates and layouts available.  Their drag and drop system is easier to use than other similar solutions and at $37/month for unlimited pages, it’s a great deal.

Thrive Leads – The opt-in forms you see on this site are powered by Thrive Leads.  It creates popups, widgets, screen overlays, ribbons and more to help you get more opt-ins from your blog.

Hello Bar – Super easy to use, allows you to add a bar that sits at the top of your blog or website and invites people to opt-in or whatever you’d like to promote.  The free version works for most blogger’s needs.

For Stats

Google Analytics – I’ve got this on all my sites so I can track traffic, watch trends and generally understand who’s coming from where.

For Video & Webinars

Google Hangouts / YouTube Live – Yes, they still exist, just hidden under YouTube Live… this is my favorite way to host webcasts and record training presentations.

YouTube – Speaking of YouTube, it’s a great place to host your videos.  As with any video or other file host, keep a backup of your files.  Use the unlisted or private settings depending on your goals for a specific video.

Zoom – I’ve been using the Pro version as a way to host private masterminds and other group calls where everyone is on video.  It’s also handy if you want to record a quick video.

BeLive.tv – I’ve been testing out FB Lives the last few weeks and it’s a fantastic way to connect with your community.  If you’re looking to do a little more with your lives, BeLive.tv allows you to host guests, screenshare (and switch back and forth between you and your screen), add lower-thirds, add your logo for branding, display comments from viewers on the screen and more.

For Memberships & Courses (+ Payments)

LifterLMS – This is a great plugin for WordPress to build out a membership site with.  I use it for the Insider Club.  (Paid upgraded plugins here.)

Stripe – Receive credit card payments online.  Works with many major shopping carts and membership software (including LifterLMS).

PayPal – Send and receive payments online with PayPal.  With the PayPal debit card you can get instant access to your funds.

For Your Workflow

Speechmatics – Who has time to listen to all the great training webinars, videos and podcasts?  If you read quicker than you can listen, or if you just prefer written transcripts, this is an amazing automated solution for inexpensive transcripts.

Fiverr – For all sorts of things from project help to graphics and more… if you haven’t looked at Fiverr recently give it another chance as it’s evolved into a great marketplace and has higher quality sellers than when it was just $5 (you’ll see a variety of order prices and levels now).

Google Docs & Sheets – Useful for collaborating with your team, coach, assistant, etc and for general file editing/storage. Everything’s in the cloud so you can access and work from anywhere. (I use this along with Dropbox for sharing files.)

For Brainstorming

I couldn’t wrap up this brain-saving list of tools without including my own HookLine Dynamic + Get Ideas tool…  check it out here for endless blog ideas (click the “Get Ideas” button) and help crafting click-attracting headlines.

What are your favorite brain-saving tools?  Leave a comment and let’s chat!

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3 Comments

  1. Hello Michelle,

    Very informative post over here :)

    Indeed bloggings without tools is like working single handedly, tools gives us the power of getting outreach and enjoy the
    full of being a blogger. They can be both life saving and time saving but to get the correct tools for our blogging game
    is not that easy, one need to know their need and according to that they need to choose their tools.

    MailerLite looks very promising, as every one needs to build their email list stronger and stronger and getting a tool
    which can help us in making that would be a great add up. I began to work upon my email list not long ago and the numbers
    are too not too high, thus I would give MailerLite a grab on and looks hows it work.

    Hello bar is something which is attracting me in this list, looks cool that it would be a help in letting our customers know
    what are we promoting.

    Thanks for the share.

    Shantanu.
    Shantanu Sinha recently posted… Why use Twitter for marketing your small businessMy Profile

  2. I think this is one of the most significant information for me. And i’m glad reading your article. Thank for sharing!

  3. This is what I’m looking for. Thanks for the tips.

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