Starting a blog? Or maybe thinking of something what would let you to blog better, faster or just easier? It’s always a good time for searching. If you are looking for free and easy-to-use tools for bloggers, here are few tips.
Of course you can run your blog on one of free blog platform and use their CMS (Content Management System) like Google Blogger – they are free and uncomplicated. Unfortunately it also means that they don’t offer many options and if you are not a html user, you won’t get a chance to adapt the layout or put some plugins on. There is a better choice for free tools lovers: WordPress , an open-source CMS. It’s intuitive, easy to use and flexible. And – last but not least – you can use may free layouts which are easily adaptive. If you don’t like any of them, you can buy one for less than $50 to build you blog or website.
Images and Infographics
I know, blogging is about mosty words – unless you are an Instagram star, then it’s enough if you only look good. Just be carefull not to overdo it like Essena O’Neill! I know you like writing and reading more than looking at nice pictures, but sometimes your blog just needs to have something visual. If you are not a graphic designer, you’ll love simplicity or Canva – online free tool for bloggers and social media freaks to make posters, pics for facebook or Instagram, infographics and more. If you need more than pictures made by your phone camera and you are not about buying photos, use one of many images databases with Creative Common license. My favorite is Pixabay – a huge free image bank.
Writing to get the traffic – isn’t that what you aim? Sure it is, but to catch the readers’ interest it’s good to know what they would like to read. You can use a net monitoring for it and find out what the bees buzz about the topic you aim – Brand24 is a good tool to check it out. The main purpose is to track mentions about brands, business and industries across the web, but you can also observe the buzz in social media and watch the topics you are interested in.
Although I think the most useful free tool for blogger is his(her) own imagination, even the most creative mind needs a content support to generate leads. There some free tool which let you to create catchy leads like:
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Does it work? Sure it does – you are reading the post witch such a lead nowJ The point is to use emotional trigger words, which make people to click and read it. You can figure it out by yourself or use Tweakyourbiz
The obvious place for publishing the post is your own blog, but if you want to share it with more than your followers, think of spreading it wider. LinkedIn Pulse is a good idea for publishing business posts, so if you run you blog just because you head is exploding of knowledge you want to share or you want to show yourself as an expert, go there. If you are ready for entering a massive blogging community, there’s Huffington Post, a multimedia platform created in 2005 and transformed from small platform with updated comments to the latest news to multilingual media and blog hub, where you can find journalist, politics and celebrities blogging. You can have your place there, too.
Analytics and monitoring
So you generated a catchy title, wrote a post worth reading and published successfully? Congrats! Now it’s time to see how is it working. Most of web managers use Google Analytics as it’s easy to plug in and gives you quite complex data. You can use it for your blog, too, to see what topics generate the traffic, how much time visitors spend on your blog (do they actually read or just click and scroll?) and many more. If you want to manage your post sharing in Social Media, use Buffer, so you can also use their analytics and watch the numbers after sharing. If your interest in the topics of the post is still alive after publishing – I hope it is – you may be also want to see if it’s visible in the web and how does it develop: is it shared? What does people talk about the subject? Maybe it’ worth to discuss it more? Again, put the topics into Brand24 search and watch daily reports to see what’s up.