My most recommended tools and resources
These are a few of my favorite things for blogging and home-office.
Free things are GREAT (there’s a lot of those below too!).
But when I do spend money on tools and resources my guidelines are:
1) quality over quantity
2) feel-good and develop without overwhelm and
3) know your budget – upgrade when possible
I hope you get inspired with these products!
Disclaimer: Some of the links below are affiliate links to products and services that I’m using to grow my online business. This means if you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase of one of these products or services, I will be paid a small commission for it, at NO additional cost to you.
Web hosting: Bluehost
I used Bluehost for hosting my site for the first two years. When I first started my blog I didn’t understand much of the technical stuff or about how to build a website and Bluehost was super easy and simple to set up and they’ve helped me with all my questions about ssl certificates and whatever I would need to know.
I have the Prime plan but the Basic plan will do just fine when you start your blog.
Psst! Now that my blog has grown, I’m with BigScoots.
Theme: Samantha theme from Bluchic
The next step I did after choosing the hosting was to choose a theme. For me Bluchic with their super feminime and gorgeous themes was the way to go. I love all of their themes, but I went with Samantha. The runner-ups where Maggie and Isabelle. Bluchic has great tutorials and they’ve answered all of my questions and setting up my page was so fast and easy with their theme.
They also have great free email course to Launch Your Dream Website.
Page builder: Elementor
I wasn’t a tech-savvy when I started blogging, so the first thing I did was to find an easy to use page builder so I could avoid coding. And Elementor was the perfect solution. I could have not done anything without Elementor.
Elementor is a drag-and-drop page builder and so easy and painless to use. I love it! They also have great facebook group where I was able to find all the answers for things I wanted to do and create and there are tons of tutorials in youtube.
This is the way to go if you’re starting your blog and don’t know (or want to learn) how to code and you just want your site to look pretty and be functional. I use the free Elementor, but a lot of people have fell in love with the paid version. Maybe I will too… one day… And Elementor is compatible with the Bluchic theme that I’m using!
HauteStock has so super pretty feminine pictures.
You can have a quarterly subscribtion to use the images or a yearly one. I started with the quarterly plan, because I wanted to see how the pictures are and do I like to use them and then I took the yearly subscribtion.
I love saving the time not going around different stocks to look for images. I know all of the pictures in HauteStock work so well with my brand so I always find a perfect fit for my posts and blog graphics.
I lovelovelove Canva! It’s so easy to use and it’s a joy to make graphics. And the best part is: it’s free! The visual side was one of my weaknesses and I thought I can never do any graphics myself, but after playing around with Canva I’ve been making all of my own graphics. Lately I got the paid plan (Canva for Work) and it’s features (magic resizing and folders) have made creating the graphics so much faster. My recommendation: Try it. Love it. Upgrade when needed.
Grow your blog and social media
Pinterest automation: Tailwind
Tailwind is Pinterest approved tool to automate your pins and connect with other pinners in your niche through Tailwind tribes.
In the first month of using Tailwind my Pinterest monthly viewers went from 2K to 44K. (Now I’m at 1.7 Million Monthly Viewers – and yes, Pinterest monthly viewers is a vanity metric ). And the tribes are amazing! And what a time saver!
E-mail list: Mailerlite
When I started with my blog a lot of different bloggers recommened all these high-costing email providers for collecting your email list. I wasn’t yet willing to pay for those even though they must be very good with what they do.
Mailerlite is free up till 1000 subscribers so it’s a great way to start building your email list.
Grammar checker: Grammarly
I’m from Finland. And I speak Finnish. English is my second language. AND I need this. To have someone (or should I say something) to check my spelling for free – I’ll take it! In a heartbeat!
I started with the free plan but now I’ve upgraded to the paid one. The free plan is excellent, but if you want some fancy features (like ideas about synonyms and adding commas in the right places) then later you can upgrade to the paid plan like me… just like I did.
Well, no program is perfect, and no tool can make you a writer, but Grammarly is the closest to perfect you can get.