10 Free Tools Every Blogger Needs
Let’s be honest, creating content can be a difficult job! It’s okay to ask for help. And I encourage it!
For each blog post (or any other website content) I write, I use at least 5 different tools as a way to prepare, edit, publish, and later analyze that content.
From keyword research to a simple grammar check, you need to make sure every aspect of your content is done right. And you can’t do that by yourself. And if you can, then you might be a Super Human!
In this blog post, I will share my top 10 content writing tools that I use for each stage of the content creation process.
NOW it’s time to get to the good stuff. Here are my top tools to use at every stage of creating content. Let’s get started!
This post contains affiliate links. If you purchase a product or service with the links that I provide I may receive a small commission. There is no additional charge to you! Thank you for supporting TheContentBug.com so I can continue to provide you with free content each week! You guys are amazing!
Before you even start writing a blog post, or any website content, you need to start with keyword research. And if you’ve ever read any my blog posts before, then you should know this. Because I talk about it here and here. And I will continue to talk about it in my blog posts to come.
So here are 2 of the resources I use to perform my keyword research.
SEMrush is my favorite keyword tool. Because it is easy to use! Even beginner bloggers or content creators can use this tool with ease. And the best part, IT’S FREE!
The free version of SEMrush gives you just about everything you need to complete keyword research for your blog. You will learn how many people are searching for a given term, related keywords, Cost Per Click for ads, and more. Simply enter the topic of your blog right here to get started!
But if you are a more experienced blogger, then I would recommend you use the paid version of SEMrush. There are 3 choices to choose from: Pro, Guru, and Business. Each of these will provide a more detailed look at the keywords you need to use on your site. As well as the advertising space!
So if you want to take your blog to the next level, then you need to get the Pro version of SEMrush.
This is another great keyword planner, but it is mainly for long tail keywords. Which you need long tail keywords to help your SEO succeed!
KW Finder gives you a difficulty ranking based on SEO stats of pages that rank high in Google SERP (search engine results page). It also shows you the Cost Per Click, Pay Per Click, and the monthly search volume. And all these areas are important to know!
But most importantly, it gives you related keywords that might be important to include on your site. And by me saying ‘might be’, I mean ‘definitely’!
So if you want to do an extra analysis in addition to SEMrush, then I would recommend you take a look at KW Finder for those long tail keywords.
Next, it is important to check up on what the competition is writing about and what is going on in the news. If any of these articles fall in line with the important keywords you just found, then it might be important to write about it too!
But never, and I mean never, copy someone else’s work! Instead, take what they wrote, and see if they missed anything. Are people commenting on the post with questions? Are there areas that are not fully explained? Take this opportunity to get a leg up on the competition by writing something that is different (and better) than theirs!
Also, this is a great way to find stats and resources to reference in your content! Having some external links in your blog posts are great to prove that you have done your research and you have a well-rounded knowledge on that topic. This proves your authority in the industry! And it is key to gaining your reader’s trust.
Here are 2 sites that I like to use to organize the blogs and websites I follow for easy reading (or snooping).
When I first started in the digital marketing industry, I tried to read every article that was released on the topic on 5 different sites. And I did this EVERY DAY! I started the morning by opening a tab for each site. Then every hour I would check back to see if anything new was published.
In the end, it was a waste of my time.
Now, I use Feedly! This website is great! And… you guessed it… FREE to use! (Let me tell you, I love free things.)
With this website, you can follow all your favorite blogs or websites. I follow more websites that I can count. But I organize them into the appropriate topic. So when I want to see what happened in the SEO world today, I just go to that category and all relevant articles appear.
It really is a great way to organize all your favorite sites into 1 spot. I mainly use Feedly for all business/industry related websites. And I use the next resource for blogs I like to follow.
This is a tool that I just got into. And I still haven’t used it to its full potential. But a lot of bloggers are talking about it. And a lot of bloggers use it! So I guess I should too, right?
Bloglovin’ is great to keep up with other bloggers. Search for your favorite bloggers in the search bar on the site and follow them! Their newest blog posts will appear in the home feed for you to sift through each day. This is a great way to see what other bloggers publish without having to go to each site.
Also, if you are new to Bloglovin’, you need to claim your site! This is important if you want to take your blogging career seriously! It is easy to do, and Bloglovin’ gives you instructions. Just search for your blog and a “Is this your blog?” option will appear. Then follow the instructions, and claim that baby as yours!
Now that you picked the keywords and you found other relevant articles, it is time to write your website content! But you can’t do that without some kick ass editing tools to help you along the way.
Here are 2 of my favorite editing tools that help to create a well-rounded piece of work that is ready for launch!
I love Grammarly! And rely on it in my everyday life.
Want to know something? I am terrible at spelling. Terrible! When I was younger, I used to cheat on my spelling tests because I didn’t want to be embarrassed if anyone knew how bad I was.
Yeah, that happened.
But now, I have a handy dandy helper to help point out all my spelling mistakes as I make them. And guess what?! Grammarly is free! You can set up a free browser extension so that whenever you type anything online, it already proofreads it! This is a great final check to do right before you share a new blog post on your site.
I use the Hemmingway app every time I write a new blog post!
Remember when I told you that you need to stop using adverbs and start using simple phrases? If not, then you need to read my guide on how to write great website content.
I use the Hemmingway app to catch when I use adverbs, passive tense, and complicated sentences. Just copy and paste your blog post into the Hemmingway App and it will mark the areas that need work. And it gives you recommendations on how to improve those areas.
The Hemmingway app also tells you how long your blog post is in words, characters, and sentences. And gives you a readability score and an estimation on how long it takes to read.
Pssst! I try to get a readability score of Grade 6 or lower each time. Grade 4 is the best score in my book!
Take it from me: headlines are not as easy to create as people would think. I come up with at least 15 different headlines before I decide on the 1 I use.
And maybe I am the crazy one! But there are a lot of different areas you need to think about. And it takes time to get each of these areas just right.
I use the CoScheduler Headline Analyzer to help improve all of my headlines.
Are you using more common or emotional words? Is the headline the right length? Does it leave the reader with a certain feeling or emotion?
These are all things you need to think about! And lucky for you, the CoScheduler Headline Analyzer does all that for you! So all you need to do is go back in and fix the areas that need work.
It also gives you a headline score. So if you are like me and come up with 10+ headlines, you can enter them into the analyzer. And pick the best one based on the headline score.
Pssst! I try to get a headline score above 70. And sometimes I struggle to even get that… So don’t be so hard on yourself to start. You will get better, I promise!
SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGEMENT
Now that your website content is ready for launch, you need to promote it all over social media! Otherwise, how would your audience know that you created something new for them to read?!
I like to use a couple different tools for managing my social media accounts. Each supports different platforms and offers unique features.
Now I want to say, that there are tons of options when it comes to social media management resources. But these are my top 2 that I use on a weekly (and sometimes daily) basis.
If you need a free tool that will help organize and post to your different social media accounts for you, then you need Buffer!
You can connect Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and more! The website even gives you an analysis of the best times to post, and will even post for you! So if you want to publish your blog post on Twitter each week, you can do that all in 1 sitting.
And I use Buffer the most to repurpose my content. That way my posts continue to say in front of my audience! So give it a try if you want to take your social media more seriously.
A lot of bloggers use Tailwind. And a lot of them talk about how they use Tailwind!
If you have a Pinterest account (which you should) and you want it to grow (which you should)… then you need to use Tailwind. It allows you to schedule pins up to 2 weeks in advance. Plus, it tells you the best times to post for enhanced engagement!
You can try Tailwind for a free 30-day trial. But then you need to get the paid version. BUT it’s only $10 a month, which is reasonable for all features that come along with it!
And finally, it is important to track how your website content performs after it is launched. And to do this, you need Google Analytics! Plain and simple.
If you are a blogger and you don’t have Google Analytics, then you are missing a HUGE opportunity to adapt and enhance your website. And the content you publish on your blog! So just start using Google Analytics, okay?
Let Google Analytics be your #1 resource for everything involving your website. Seriously. If you want to take your blog seriously, then you need to improve your blog’s SEO and learn more about your website’s performance with Google Analytics.
This resource tells you how many sessions, users, and page views occur on your site during a certain amount of time. It also gives you the bounce rate, average pages per session, session duration, and much more!
When I analyze my content to see what works and what doesn’t work, I like to use the Behavior section. Once you are looking at the dashboard that gives you all website data from your site, this option can be found in the menu on the left-hand side.
Once you click on Behavior, a lot of options appear. I like to use Site Content -> All Pages. This page will provide an analysis of all of the pages on your website. And tell you how each is performing in different areas!
This section is critical for you to learn and grow within your content creation strategy. So if you don’t already have Google Analytics, get it… TODAY!
It’s okay to ask for help! You can’t do everything yourself.
So start using some of these amazing resources to help create a well-rounded content writing system that will help to improve each piece of content you publish on your website.
Are there any other tools or resources you use on a regular basis to help with your content writing? Let me know in the comments below!
Why, hello there! I’m Cathrin, the creator of The Content Bug. But since we are already virtual best friends, you can call me Cath. After working in the digital marketing industry, I decided it was time to share my love for online content creation, social media, and SEO with the everyday hustlers of the world… like YOU! You can almost always find me at a local coffee shop writing, reading and working on new things for The Content Bug. But when I have some free time, I love hanging out with my dog, going to a yoga class, and being outside. Stay connected with me on Pinterest, Instagram, and Twitter to see what I’m up to!