Are you ready to Rock Your Blog?

Here’s a list of my best-loved tools to do just that – everything tried and tested by yours truly.

I’ve organized the list into categories in the order you will most likely use them.

I’m here to help you build your blog with love, cause love’s what makes the world go round.
Recommendations are based on my own experience with and the results I got from using them. I’m not an affiliate for every product here, but please note that some are affiliate links. This income keeps this blog going and doesn’t add any extra cost to you. In fact, as an affiliate I can negotiate and offer you better deals. We both get to build our blogs with love that way.

So take a look and explore. There are many exciting goodies and people that are passionate about helping you.

Am I missing something awesome? Send me an email to let me know about it: monique@tiaratribe.com

The 3 essentials: Hosting, Design, Emails

Bluehost Web Hosting

I started with Bluehost and I’m with them a decade later. They offer very affordable packages with handy tools, like the ability to install WordPress with the click of a button. Their live-chat support is also excellent.

Divi Theme from Elegant Themes

You will need a theme (layout) for your blog. Divi is a drag-and-drop theme builder by Elegant Themes. You can use a premade template or build your own from scratch.

Tiara Tribe is fully built on Divi. I hired a designer to create a blog layout for me, then I watched the free Divi tutorials to learn how to use it. Now I build pages and make design changes whenever I want, without any more expenses. I suggest you learn how to use Divi as it opens a whole new world for you!

ConvertKit Email Service Provider

The last essential is an email service provider. Many people make the mistake and wait to build their email list. I suggest you don’t πŸ™‚ It will form the basis of your business and your connection with your audience.

There are free email services out there, but I chose ConvertKit from the beginning. There’s so much you can do with it (and I’ve watched many bloggers struggle to move email databases from one provider to another) that I did it right from the start. It’s been well worth it!

Graphics

PicMonkey Design

I use PicMonkey to design all my graphics for my blog posts and social media. I also use it to optimize images to make my blog faster (good for SEO). If you don’t get any other design software, I suggest using this little Monkey.

Canva Design Tool

Canva is another handy design tool to use. I don’t find it as user-friendly as PicMonkey, but I do use the free version for creating things like printables and worksheets as it lets me work on multiple pages at a time (PicMonkey only lets you have one at a time). Canva also has a great picture library with free and very cheap stock pictures.

I did try out the paid version. I loved the brand brand kit (save your own colors, fonts, etc.) and other features as they save time, but I prefer PicMonkey’s layout and find it much easier to use in general.

Creative Market

Creative Market is an online marketplace where you can get gorgeous things for your blog, such as templates, fonts, graphics, photos, etc.

They give away 6 free goods every Monday, so even if you don’t need anything at this stage you could start downloading the free goods for future use.

Stock Photos for Bloggers

You will need pictures to edit with these design tools so you can create graphics for your social media platforms, blog posts, digital products, etc.

I put together a list of over 60 websites where you can find stock photos for your blog. These are arranged according to stock photos styled for blogs, free pictures and very affordable pictures, to more costly stock photo sites.

I’m guessing there are a few sites that you’ve never heard of. The link to the post is below. Enjoy it!

Social Media

Tailwind Pin Scheduler

I never had a plan for social media and my stats were all over the place. Now I consistently schedule pins on Pinterest and the number of monthly viewers is growing nicely, along with traffic to this blog.

I use Tailwind to schedule all my pins several days in advance. It saves a ton of time than manually pinning.

They’ve added Instagram scheduling to their list of offerings (big yay!), which I’m looking forward to trying out. It doesn’t cost anything extra: one Tailwind account = Pinterest + Instagram.

You get $15 off a Tailwind subscription if you sign up using the link below. There is a free trial version, but the number of pins is limited and you will probably need more to see good growth in your account.

I see Tailwind offers Instagram scheduling now too, but I haven’t had a chance to try it out yet.

Great People To Help You

Lumi Editing

Christa from Lumi Editing is one of my best finds. She’s amazing at what she does: composite photo creations, photo editing, manipulation or retouching. She created my Facebook cover picture and has many examples of her work on her Facebook page.

Her tagline is: You provide the photos and we make the magic happen… (which she totally does). 

And, as a bonus for being a Tiara Triber, she’s offering YOU 25% off her services. Just let her know you found her on here πŸ™‚

Fiverr

Fiverr is where you will find freelancers from across the globe offering their services at affordable rates. Everything used to be a Fiverr, but now most services are a bit more than that.

 

I’ve used Fiverr freelancers to creates music for videos, create marketing videos, illustrate books, design logos and packaging, and many other things. It can be hit and miss here, so I suggest you hire freelancers who have a lot of good reviews or try Fiverr Pro, which means that the freelancers have been vetted by Fiverr.

 

UpWork Freelancers

I use UpWork for more professional services, such as writing, graphic design or editorial work. UpWork freelancers are more expensive than Fiverr freelancers, but they tend to be more professional and give great quality work.

 

Look at your budget and decide which freelancers you can afford to hire and how much time you have to go back and forth with feedback. If you have the budget and limited time, I suggest using Fiverr Pro and UpWork. 

Best Courses I’ve Done

Elite Blog Academy

This is the course that literally changed my blogging life. It took me through, step-by-step, what I needed to do to start and build a blog I love, and make a living doing it.

This will not be the only course you ever do – you will need to dive deeper into different areas of your blog. But this will take you through the steps to follow and give you a good basis to work from. The Facebook group is also an invaluable resource for support, information and connecting with other bloggers.

Ruth opens the course once a year, so you will need to sign up for the wait list (and perhaps start saving for when it opens).

List Love Course

I’m a huge fan of Jennifer Maker and her courses. She’s one of the most successful bloggers out there and is happy to share her knowledge.

The button below will take you to the free Quick Start-Up guide of her List Love course (the master course opens certain times of year), where you can start learning about how to build your email list with a resource library, just like I’ve done with Tiara Tribe and she does with her design files.

Love these blog tools? Then save this page on your favorite Pinterest board for later πŸ™‚

You're welcome to link to TiaraTribe.com or use one picture with a short description that links back toΒ  a post. Publishing more content from Tiara Tribe is prohibited and remains the copyright of Tiara Tribe. Feel free to pin images on Pinterest!

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