A comprehensive list of blogging resources for the blogging newbies out there thinking of starting a blog.
If you are considering starting a blog, and are new at the whole blogging thing, then you need to read this! It’s a great starting place for those new to the blogging world! It will give you a place to start when it comes to thinking about things like keyword research, setting up a website, images and graphics and so much more. I wish I knew to do a search for blogging resources when I first started!
I have put together a list of my favourite blogging resources that I have come across on my journey. If I can save you half of the frustrations that I have had on my blogging journey then I will be super happy!
THIS POST MAY CONTAIN AFFILIATE LINKS. PLEASE READ MY DISCLOSURE FOR MORE INFO.
Why do we need a Resource Guide
Like many new bloggers, in the early days, I spent hours researching, learning and reading, and many frustrating hours trying to work things out! I felt like I was wasting time trying to find things and having to work things out and time is not a luxury I had.
There is a tonne of information on the web, and it can get a bit mind-boggling once you start to get into it all! There are so many free guides and e-books out there that you start to get inundated with all the information and can’t keep up.
If I had just known to search for “Blogging Resources Guide” then perhaps I would have come across a couple of lists like this much sooner! You’ll soon see the same names popping up and I suggest you pick a few them and just follow them for now.
Be prepared to invest in your education
If you are serious about blogging for money, invest in your education straight up. Having someone guide you and support you through the ins and outs while you get started is an absolute saviour in my book. Below are some of the courses and books I have invested in and thoroughly recommend. I only recommend resources that I myself have used and know that you will find it beneficial too.
Here are some of the resources that I have used on my journey to starting a blog. Being the budget guru that I am, I have found all of these to be amazing value for what they are and wouldn’t be where I am today without them. As time permits, I will do a complete review on each one for you but it’s calving season on the farm here in NZ so spare time is a pure luxury at the moment.
Building a Framework – The Ultimate Blogging Handbook – Everything you need to know from start to go! Abbey Lawson @ Just a Girl and Her Blog has documented everything you need to know from choosing your niche and domain name, setting up your site, writing your posts, social media and getting traffic and loads more. So well priced, this handbook will give you a great start and grounding. If you are not tech savvy and totally new at this blogging thing then this one is for you and well worth every penny!
Blog by Number – by Suzi @ Start a Mom Blog – An amazing e-book packed full of everything you need to get started with loads of guides and worksheets for you to use. Another well-priced e-book. If you are new to blogging, Suzi has done a fantastic job putting this together and making it a breeze for a non-techie like me.
Income Journey – Suzi @ Start a Mom Blog – Suzi has detailed for us what worked and what didn’t work for her in her first 12 months of blogging. Follow her steps exactly and mimic her success for yourself!
Amazon Affiliate – Suzi @ Start a Mom Blog – Suzi explains everything you need to know about Affiliate Marketing with Amazon. Even if you think you know it already, you are bound to pick up a few new tips in this one! And what I love about Suzi’s courses are they are so affordable!
The Blog Start-Up – Meera Kothand – Meera provides us with a step-by-step guide and plan with proven strategies to launching a profitable blog with a focus on branding and traffic. Another great guide for great value for a newbie non-tech savvy blogge like me!.
Get your first Affiliate sale in 24 hours – House of Brazen – Did you know that this is actually possible! Did you know that you don’t even need to write a post, let alone have a website! Amazing stuff right! For this small investment it is one strategy that I was keen to find out more about. Well worth the small investment!
There are a number of books available on the topic Blogging. I highly recommend these two books to start with:
How to Blog for Profit: Without selling your soul – by Ruth Soukup
ProBlogger: Secrets for Blogging Your Way to a Six-Figure Income (3rd Edition) – by Darren Rowse and Chris Garrett
Website set up
Bluehost – I set my website hosting up through Bluehost and received a free domain name for the first year! At only $3.95 per month it certainly is the cheapest work-from-home investment that I have ever tried (and believe me I have tried a few!)
You can be up and running with a host, domain name and WordPress theme in around 15 minutes for as little as $3.95 per month when you sign up here. That’s pretty amazing.
Siteground – Probably one of the most popular hosting platforms for bloggers around the globe. Many of the bloggers I interact with on the various Facebook Groups I am a member of highly rate Siteground as their preferred hosting provider. Siteground is very highly regarded for their excellent customer service and competitive host pricing. Well worth the consideration.
WordPress.org vs WordPress.com
When you set up your WordPress site, you will want to do this on WordPress.org and not WordPress.com. WordPress.org is a self-hosted site whereas WordPress.com is not self-hosted and has limitations – like you can’t monetize it!
WordPress.org is a free self-hosted platform with hundreds of free themes to choose from. You can add various plugins to help optimize your site and track statistics all within your WordPress dashboard.
I am currently using the Kale theme but if I were to start again I would do a little more homework on themes. Abby Lawson explains everything so clearly in her Building a Framework course. Starting off on the right foot is so important if you really mean to make a go with your blog. It is well worth the small investment to understand the ins and outs and have some direction, especially if you are tech savvy challenged….like me:) (beats wasting hours and hours researching the info, implementing and then finding out there was a better way!)
Keyword research tools
If you want your post or blog to rank well in Google you need to use “keywords” that have low Search Engine Optimization (SEO) competition. The following keyword research tools are ones that I have used.
Semrush – Allows you to sign up for free and do keyword research giving you other suggestions. With an upgrade option available for more in-depth keyword research.
KW Finder – Is an easy to use tool to find good long tail keywords for your new post. It allows you to sign up for free and you get 2 FREE searches per day…forever! Check out my full review on KW Finder and find out why I like this one the best. An affordable upgrade option is available when you are ready to take it to the next level.
You will need to choose an email marketing provider if you want to gain subscribers for your email list, and believe me, you want this. Even if you have no idea at this stage what you would send them, start collecting subscribers anyway because it will all fall into place later.
Convertkit – Convertkit is the choice for many bloggers. It has fantastic functionality and options, pop-ups and designs. Is easy to use and can be integrated with a number of platforms. It is a little higher priced but this is reflected in the quality of the service.
OptinMonster – Is another great Mail Service provider with a more budget-friendly subscription.
MailChimp – A great starter for the newbie bloggers if you’re not quite ready to invest. MailChimp is free for up to 2000 subscribers. When you are ready you can upgrade to their Pro-Plan for just $10 per month which unlocks features like email automation and more.
Sumo – Another great tool where you can sign up for free. Ideal when you are just starting out. You can use it for easy share buttons, building email lists and creating pop-ups.
GOOGLE G-Suite – Move your blog custom domain to Gmail and keep the professional look! A fantastic service from Google and very affordable. This will allow you to see and send your professional blog domain emails all from within Gmail. It truly is just fantastic. I love it!
TAILWIND – An automated re-pinning service for Pinterest and Instagram combined. If you want to increase your traffic then you will want to invest in Tailwind! It allows you to schedule days and even weeks in advance the repinning of your images to both Pinterest and Instagram saving you soooo much time while you sit back and watch the traffic come in.
I received an increase of 888% on my first day with Tailwind and I didn’t even know what I was doing at that stage so I was stoked! At just $9.95 per month when you sign up for the year, it is extremely affordable, even for the budget conscious blogger like me!
And better still, I have a gift for you! How would you like to try Tailwind FREE for one month?
BOARDBOOSTER – Another automated re-pinning service for Pinterest with plans starting from just $5 per month. If you want lots of traffic to your website you will want to seriously consider investing in this right from the get-go.
Note: You don’t HAVE to pay for a scheduling tool to get the maximum benefits out of Pinterest. It is also possible to receive just as good if not better results with manual pinning that won’t cost you a thing. Carly over at Mommy on Purpose has a great ebook called Pinteresting Strategies that will take you through all the steps of manual pinning for huge traffic in just an hour a day. For more information on her e-book click here.
Clickbank – Clickbank sells digital products worldwide created by entrepreneurs and is the biggest affiliate marketplace. List your new e-book for sale here and let other bloggers sell it on your behalf!
E-book & Course Creation
If you don’t know anything about graphic design – don’t panic. These sites have fantastic tutorials. Allow yourself some time to have a play around with them and before long you will be designing images like a pro.
Canva – A free website where you can edit and design your images with overlays and texts for your website and social media sites. Canva has a fantastic tutorial section that I found super helpful and easy. You can design and save your templates in the free version too. Canva has an upgrade option for more functionality options.
PicMonkey – PicMonkey used to be free but now requires a small subscription fee of around $4.50 per month. PicMonkey is easy to master even if you have no graphic design experience. It has many great features and you can save your templates which will save you a tonne of time!
Creative Market – Create a free account and receive 6 FREE items every week. If you choose to upgrade, you can access a tonne of graphics, stock photography, WordPress themes and more! Creative Market is the next step up for the aspiring blogger.
Did you know that you cannot just use any ‘ole image you find on the net. You can only use Royalty Free images on your website or ones that you purchase, or better still, use your own. All the images that you do use should be optimized for the web, otherwise, they can slow down the time it takes to load your site. And we all know that if a page takes longer than 3 secs to load – we’re outta there baby!
Free Stock Photos – For the budget conscious blogger, there are a number of free image sites such as Pexels, Pixabay or Unsplash. You will always find something on one of these sites that will suffice until you can afford to upgrade. You will want to upgrade at sometime as many of the images on these free sites are used by many other bloggers and can go against you in the fight for SEO.
When you are ready to upgrade – I suggest Shutterstock or Istockphoto. They have monthly subscriptions to suit different budgets but you will be impressed with their range. Their photos and range truly is something amazing and will help add the WOW factor to your website.
There are a number of affiliate networks I recommend you join as soon as possible. Even thou you are just starting out, it doesn’t hurt to put a few links in here and there and start experimenting with them! These are all affiliate networks that I am enjoying and are FREE to sign up to!
FLEXOFFERS – Flexoffers has a fantastic platform with approximately 12000 merchants for you to choose from and work with. Merchants are divided into helpful categories making finding suitable affiliates a breeze. Their platform is so easy to navigate, makes it a relief when everything else is blowing your mind!
SHAREASALE – ShareASale is one of the most popular affiliate network platforms for bloggers and merchants alike. Definitely, a must to join and easy peasy to join up.
SKIMLINKS – Join Skimlinks and get instant access to over 24,000 merchant affiliate programs without the hassle of network sign-ups, approvals or creating affiliate links. Affiliate marketing with a difference!
MEDIA.NET – They say Media.net is THE Google Adsense Alternative. They have contextual adds (word adds) and display ads available for your to use. Sign up is easy and you can easily format the contextual ads to suit the colours and font for your blog.
ULTIMATE BUNDLES – If you haven’t heard of Ultimate Bundles then you are missing out…BIG TIME! If you haven’t already had the pleasure of purchasing one of their bundles for yourself, then you ought to! Ultimate Bundles sell bulk ebooks & ecourses all bundled together for an amazing low price! They run amazing specials with bonuses on a regular basis and only for a very limited time. So you have to be quick!
Stay tuned! More to come
I hope that you have found this Blogging Resource Guide helpful. If only I knew to search for something like this when I started! I will add more as we go along so remember to check back often.
If you have any questions or would like to share something, please feel free to add comments to the Comments Box below. And remember to sign up for our newsletter to receive more helpful blogging tips.