My Favorite Blogging Tools

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the best blogging and business tools!
 
I created this list to feature the “best of the best” when it comes to launching, growing, and monetizing your blog. If you have questions about any of the tools on this list, please reach out to me at krista@blogbeautifully.com. I’d love to chat!
 
*This list contains affiliate links for products I love. This means I earn a commission if you make a purchase through one of my links. For my full disclaimer, click here.*

 

MY FAVORITE TOOLS & SOFTWARE

1. ConvertKit for email lists

There’s no other email marketing tool out there that does what ConvertKit can.
 
With automation features up the ying-yang, ConvertKit is completely “set-it-and-forget-it”. For example, with Convertkit you can run email courses seamlessly (and on autopilot), “tag” your subscribers according to their interests, and set up tons of automation rules so you barely ever have to log into your account (all the magic happens automatically!)
 
I originally started my email list on MailChimp, but I switched over to CK less than a month in. And it was quite honestly the best decision I’ve ever made for my business! Ready to get started with ConvertKit? Click here!
 

2. LeadPages for landing pages

To create gorgeous landing pages to grow my email list, LeadPages is my tool of choice. With hundreds of pre-made templates to choose from, it’s super easy to create new page or sign-up form in minutes. Perfect for design- and tech-challenged people like me!
 
LeadPages is an investment, but it’s one of the best investments I’ve made for my blog and business. If you struggle with design and coding but are SO ready to grow your email list, LeadPages is the step up you need!
 

3. Teachable for online courses

For hosting my online courses, I LOVE Teachable. Their platform is incredibly simple and straight-forward to use, but still uber professional-looking. I love that I can house all my courses in one place, and on top of that design gorgeous sales pages, offer coupon codes and discounts, set up affiliate programs, and SO much more. All with one program!
 
They have super affordable monthly rates, and they even offer a FREE plan (yep, Free-99 baby!) Click here to get started with Teachable.
 

4. Adobe Illustrator for graphic design

Adobe Illustrator is my design program of choice, and I’m kind of obsessed. In fact, the entire Adobe suite of products is fantastic, and I highly recommend them all!
 
I’ve never been particularly skilled with design, but making the move to Adobe Illustrator (plus taking this Illustrator course from Love + Color) has made all the difference. I’m happy to say that I’m now much more confident with my design skills, and I owe it all to Illustrator.
 

5. Canva for design

Canva is an awesome, budget-friendly design program. They have tons of pre-made templates to choose from (including ones optimized for social media), lots of fun patterns and shapes, and the best part is it’s totally free to use.
 

6. Love & Sweet Tea 2017 Printable Planner

I am flippen OBSESSED with this planner from the lovely Natosha at Love & Sweet Tea. It was created by a blogger, for bloggers, so you know it’s gonna be good! Seriously, I dare you to look through the planner and name something that ISN’T included. It’s got absolutely everything you could need! Plus, if there’s a certain section you don’t think you’d use – don’t print any of those pages. Easy peasy!
 

 
 

My Favorite Blogging Courses

1. Affiliate Marketing for Bloggers

Passive income is where it’s at, ladies! Making money while you sleep? Uh, yes please!
 
Affiliate Marketing for Bloggers is the perfect introductory course for bloggers who are looking to generate passive income through their blogs. When I was only a third of the way through the course, I’d already made my first affiliate sale and earned 40 bucks! Not bad, right?
 

2. Adobe Illustrator Masterclass

Adobe Illustrator is my LIFE, and I would never have started using it if I hadn’t found this INCREDIBLE course from Jessica Safko of Love + Color.
 
I’m the worst at graphic design, but Jess’ tutorials make it super easy to learn the ins and outs of Illustrator and create gorgeous graphics to promote your blog and business. I would HIGHLY recommend this course to anyone looking to step up their graphic design game!
 

3. Email Lists Simplified

The lovely Meera Kothand has put together a PHENOMENAL course for bloggers looking to start, nurture, and profit from their email lists. A certified email marketing specialist, Meera knows exactly what’s up when it comes to email list growth. She’s my go-to person whenever I have a question about my list, and I can’t believe she’s offering this course for the total STEAL of $97.
 

4. Rave: Turning Followers Into Fans

After taking this course from Allison of Wonderlass, I’m #KINDOFOBSESSED with her. She makes learning super fun, and you can’t help but fall in love with her more and more as you work through the lessons.
 
If you’re ready to build up a community of loyal, raving fans, this is the course for you! With lessons on social media, email list building, branding, creating the “WOW factor”, and so much more, this course is a must for anyone ready to get serious about growing a raving community.
 

5. Four-Figure Facebook Formula

When I first started my online business, Facebook was the source of 99% of my clients. Facebook groups are where it’s at, people! If you’re ready to fill up your entire client list in the next week, you NEED this course from Miranda Nahmias.
 
The Four-Figure Facebook Formula will teach you everything you need to know to utilize Facebook groups to grow your business, make money, and fill up your client roster in no time!

 
 

Services for Bloggers

1. Shaylee Smith: Web Design & Development

Whether you’re looking for an entire website design or just a few tweaks here and there, Shaylee’s your girl! She’s my go-to whenever there’s something I want to achieve with my website that involves custom coding (not my strong suit!) She even offers website maintenance packages to keep your site running in tip-top shape. Click here to learn more and chat with Shaylee.

2. Allie Williams: VA Extraordinaire

Allie Williams is a do-it-all virtual assistant who provides not just the typical tasks of a virtual assistant, but also graphic design, social media management, and copywriting. This girl is the BOMB. She has hourly and retainer packages available, so if interested, click here to learn more and get in touch with her!

3. Miranda Nahmias: Virtual Assistance for Online Businesses

Miranda Nahmias is the leader of The VA Collective, a full-service team who can take of almost everything you could ever possibly want to delegate! Reach out to her now — Miranda is super passionate about helping online female service providers manage their businesses in the most stress-free way possible.

4. Raewyn + The Shield Sisters: Owning Your Soul

As female entrepreneurs, how often do we prioritize our own self-care? Most likely less often than we should! That’s why Shield Sisters Initiative is now offering soul sessions to guide you in owning your soul. Click here to learn more!

 
 

RUNNING YOUR WEBSITE

1. WordPress

My website runs on the WordPress platform, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. If you’d like to set up a self-hosted WordPress website, here are the two things I recommend…

2. InMotion hosting

InMotion is my current web hosting company, and they are seriously the BEST. InMotion came recommended to me by a web developer I trust, and their service, speed, and customer service trumps my old hosting company (Bluehost) by a mile. Click here to check out their packages (I’m on the PRO Plan!)

3. Tweak Me V2 Theme from Nose Graze

I honestly don’t think a better WordPress theme for beginners exists. You can do ANYTHING with the Tweak Me V2 theme, without having to get into custom coding (perfect for people who are code noobs like me!)
 

4. Coded Creative Themes

The lovely Krista Rae and Kory Mae have created some GORGEOUS themes for WordPress users! My personal fave is Olivia. You’ll also find beautiful pre-made logos over on Coded Creative (I mean, is there anything these two ladies can’t do!?)
 

STOCK PHOTOS

1. Haute Chocolate Styled Stock Library

99% of the photos you see on my blog and social media accounts are from Haute Chocolate’s Styled Stock Library. When you sign up for a membership, you get access to thousands of gorgeous, feminine photos that are perfect for girlboss bloggers and female-entrepreneurs alike. With different pricing and packages to choose from, there’s sure to be a fit for you!

 
 

Social Media Management

1. BoardBooster

If you’ve been around for a while, I’m sure you’ve heard of my love for BoardBooster. It’s AMAZE-BALLS. Drive massive traffic to your website with Pinterest, and put it all on autopilot with BoardBooster? Yus please! Click here to start your free trial today.
 

2. Hootsuite

For Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook scheduling, Hootsuite is my go-to tool. It’s totally free, plus you can schedule an unlimited amount of posts on up to three different social media accounts. Can you say SCORE?!

 
 

THE TECHY STUFF

1. MacBook Pro 13-inch

I fricken LOVE my MacBook Pro. I’ve had it since university (over three years ago), and it’s still going strong! If you’re looking to invest in a beautiful, long-lasting laptop, the 13-inch MacBook Pro is my recommendation.
 

2. Apple Magic Mouse

Because I’m on my laptop literally all day, it’s SO much easier to use a mouse rather than just the trackpad. I’m obsessed with my Apple Magic Mouse. Super sleek, cute, and practical!
 


 
 
If you have any other favorite tools I should add to the list, let me know!
Click here to email me with all the details.

 
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