These 10 best blogging tools for beginners will help you skyrocket your growth in 2023.
Which of these tools are you using?
10 Best Blogging Tools For Beginners Introduction
With hundreds, if not thousands, of blogging tools on the market today, how do you determine which blogging tools you actually need to grow your blog?
Things To Keep In Mind When Choosing Blogging Tools
When choosing which blogging tools are right for your blogging business, here are some things to keep in mind:
- Budget: setting and sticking to your budget early on is one of the most important things you can do as a beginner blogger. If certain blogging tools that are considered out of your budget right now, then stick to what’s within budget.
- Long term goals: understanding your long term goals will help inform your decisions on what blogging tools to get started with. For example, if I am 100% committed to blogging, then it’s likely worth investing in legal pages written by a lawyer. However, if I know I’m still on the fence about plugging, I may use a free plugin for my legal page content.
- Impact of switching tools later: some tools, such as Siteground and ConvertKit, make it relatively easy to switch from one platform to another. However, that’s not always the case.
10 Best Blogging Tools For Beginners
At Samantha Digital, we’ve been blogging for years.
And we’ve tested A LOT of blogging tools.
Some of the blogging tools we tested were great – and we still use those today.
Others were not so great – and we closed those accounts fairly quickly.
In today’s blog post, we will cover what we believe are the top 10 best blogging tools for beginners (in no particular order):
- Siteground: for website hosting
- WordPress.org: for blog content management
- Elementor: for building a beautiful website without coding
- Google Analytics: for analyzing website traffic
- Google Search Console: for analyzing page ranking in Google
- ConvertKit: for email marketing
- A Self Guru Legal Bundle: for legal page content
- Tailwind: for scheduling Pinterest pins
- Keywords Everywhere: for basic keyword research
- Google Docs: for drafting and outlining blog content
Related: Best Free WordPress Plugins
Best Blogging Tools #1: Siteground
What is Siteground?
Siteground is a website hosting provider.
A web host provider rents out space on physical servers that they physically manage.
Consumers can rent space on these servers to host their website and blog.
Keep in mind, technically, you could host your own website straight from your laptop or PC.
However, pretty much everyone in the industry recommends investing in website hosting, which starts at about $3 per month.
- Resiliency: ever have a power outage? Any time you lose power at home, your computer that hosts your blog becomes inaccessible and therefore your website becomes inaccessible. Depending where you live, outages may happen rarely. But they still do happen, and as a business owner, you don’t want your website to be down. Web hosts build resiliency into their infrastructure, meaning if one server goes down, then another server will seamlessly serve your content to the internet.
- Security: the security features of most web hosts are far better than your average consumer.
The advantages of Siteground include:
- Insanely fast: Siteground hosting plans offer incredibly fast performance. This is a great benefit for beginner bloggers that may not know the technical aspects of website performance optimization.
- Great customer service: Within a matter of seconds, you can connect with Siteground customer support for friendly and efficient support.
- Easy WordPress installation: All hosting plans include the WordPress setup wizard so all you have to do is click a few buttons and let Siteground take care of the rest.
- Daily backups: Daily backups are a huge bonus that can sometimes go overlooked by beginner bloggers. Having a daily backup will enable you to roll back to yesterday’s version, which can be beneficial if you notice compatibility issues with a theme or plugin version update.
The disadvantages of Siteground include:
- Not the cheapest on the market: Like most things in life, you get what you pay for. There are cheaper hosting options out there, such as Bluehost, but we highly recommend Siteground for it’s super fast performance.
- Not the most user friendly option for beginner bloggers: Siteground offers so many features, so getting used to this tool’s admin panel may take some time.
How to get started with Siteground
To get started with Siteground, follow these steps:
- First, navigate to the Siteground website and sign up for WordPress hosting.
- Next, select your hosting plan (the ‘StartUp’ plan is perfect for beginner bloggers).
- Then, choose your domain name.
- Lastly, complete the sign up process.
Best Blogging Tools #2: WordPress.org
What is WordPress.org?
WordPress.org is an open-source content management system (CMS) to manage your blog’s content, media, design, and functionality without writing a single line of code.
Open-source simply means that the WordPress.org code base is public, and is available for free, for anyone across the entire internet to use.
A content management system is a generic tool to manage content – and in the case of WordPress.org, we are talking about managing your website’s blog posts, media, design, etc.
It is ideal for beginners due to the user-friendly interface as well as advanced users due to the level of customization and control that is available.
Let’s take a look at what the tool looks like:
As you can see, the WordPress administration panel, also known as ‘Wordpress backend’ features a vertical navigation panel for users to quickly and easily navigate between the different content management tools.
Advantages of WordPress.org include:
- Powers of 43% of the internet. You may be wondering why this is even a benefit. This is a benefit because it means that there is a very active community of users. This means it’s easy to find answers to common questions and offers a large marketplace of advanced features. It also means that WordPress isn’t going anywhere.
- Truly your own: WordPress.org boils down to a bunch of code that no one can take away from you. If your website hosting provider were to ever ‘go away’ you could simply take the underlying code of your website and upload it to another hosting provider.
- 100% customizable: With WordPress, if you can dream it, you can do it (or you can hire a developer to do it.) With other blogging platforms, such as Wix and Squarespace, you cannot say the same.
- Theme library: As of winter 2022, there are over 10,300 free WordPress.org themes available on the WordPress.org themes library.
- Plugin library: As of winter 2022, there are currently over 59,900 FREE WordPress.org plugins available on the WordPress.org plugin library.
- User management: In addition to content and media management, WordPress.org offers user management functionality to enable different access for different users across your site. The user types available include administrators, editors, authors, contributors, and subscribers. Learn more about user roles and permissions here.
- Own your data: Unlike many blogging platforms, you own all of your data – your content, media, website, settings, configurations, etc.
Disadvantages of WordPress.org include:
- Bit of a learning curve: While most of the WordPress backend is user-friendly and intuitive, there is still a bit of a learning curve if you’re brand new to blogging and websites.
- Security and maintenance: With WordPress.org, security and maintenance are largely up to you. While this might deter some beginner bloggers, we highly recommend sticking with WordPress.org and investing a bit of your time to learn how to keep your WordPress.org site secure.
How to get started with WordPress.org
You need two things to get started with WordPress.org: (1) a domain name (i.e. samanthadigital.com) and (2) hosting (from a provider such as Siteground).
- First, follow the steps above to get started with Siteground hosting.
- Next, from the Siteground site tools page, install WordPress.
Best Blogging Tools #3: Elementor
What is Elementor?
Elementor is a page builder for your website.
Elementor enables you to build an entirely custom website using a drag-and-drop editor without writing a single line of code.
Keep in mind, you still need a WordPress theme if you use Elementor.
The best WordPress Theme to use with the Elementor plugin is the ‘Hello Elementor‘ theme.
It is lightweight, fast, and completely customizable.
Advantages of Elementor include:
- Pre-built widgets: Elementor offers a library of pre-built widgets that you can easily drag-and-drop onto the screen. Widgets include: heading, text editor, image gallery, call-to-action (CTA), social media icons, buttons, and more.
- Pre-build page templates: Elementor offers a library of pre-built page templates. This means that you don’t have to start from a blank canvas when building your website.
- Global color and typography settings: With global settings, you can set your website colors and typography once and easily configure them across your site with the click of two buttons.
Disadvantages of Elementor include:
- Learning curve: Similarly to WordPress, Elementor is user-friendly and intuitive, but there is still a learning curve. Web designers go to school for years to learn how to build a beautiful, responsive, mobile-friendly website. Unless you’re using a pre-built Elementor Pro Template, it can take quite awhile to perfect your website using Elementor.
How to get started with Elementor
To get started with the free Elementor plugin, navigate to the WordPress plugin library and download the plugin directly.
To get started with the paid Elementor plugin:
- First, navigate to the Elementor website.
- Next, sign up for an Elementor Pro license.
- Then, download the Elementor Pro plugin.
- Next, install and activate the plugin in your WordPress site.
- Lastly, consider using our free Elementor Pro Templates to get started.
Best Blogging Tools #4: Google Analytics
What is Google Analytics?
Google analytics is a tool to monitor and analyze your website traffic.
Google Analytics Advantages
Advantages of Google Analytics include:
- Free & powerful analytics tool: Google Analytics is 100% free to use and is an incredibility powerful tool to monitor and analyze your website traffic.
- Track your site’s conversion rate: The tool will show you how many people actually buy a product or subscribe to your email newsletter or other goals you have. This way, you can know what strategies are working and which aren’t.
- Detect slow pages: The last thing readers want is a slow-loading page. Google Analytics will let you know what sections of your blog have this problem so you can take action.
- Identify the most valuable pages: What pages did users see and interact with before purchasing a product? Google Analytics will provide the user’s navigation that leads to the purchase.
- Gain insight into demographics: What are the average age, gender, and location of your audience? Google Analytics will provide insights into key demographic data that can assist with your content and marketing strategy.
Google Analytics Disadvantages
Disadvantages of Google Analytics include:
- Learning curve: While Google Analytics presents graphs that are easy to understand and digest, there are a ton of powerful features that takes extensive time and research to understand.
How to get started with Google Analytics
To get started with Google Analytics, we recommend leveraging the Google Site Kit plugin to simplify the process and gain the ability to track your website analytics straight from your WordPress admin panel.
- First, install the Google Site Kit Plugin from the WordPress plugin library.
- Next, follow the plugin instructions to complete the setup and integration.
For more information about getting starting with Google Analytics, check out: The Beginner’s Definitive Guide To Google Analytics.
Best Blogging Tools #5: Google Search Console
What is Google Search Console?
Google Search Console is a tool to analyze your site’s rankings in Google search results.
Google Search Console Advantages
Advantages of Google Search Console include:
- Easy see where you’re ranking in Google: Want to know if your blog posts are appearing on Google’s first page? Google Search Console makes it super easy to track this information.
- Submit your website for indexing: The only way for your website to appear in Google’s search results is if it has been indexed by Google. Google Search Console makes it super easy to do this.
Google Search Console Disadvantages
Disadvantages of Google Search Console include:
- Claiming your domain can be difficult: Before you can start tracking your website’s data in Search Console, you need to ‘claim’ your site so that Google knows you are the domain owner. Unless you are using the Google Site Kit plugin, this can be a bit of a technical process.
How to get started with Google Search Console
To get started with Google Search Console, we recommend leveraging the Google Site Kit plugin to simplify the process and gain the ability to track your website analytics straight from your WordPress admin panel.
- First, install the Google Site Kit Plugin from the WordPress plugin library.
- Next, follow the plugin instructions to complete the setup and integration.
For more information about getting starting with Google Search Console, check out: How To Use Google Search Console: A Beginners Guide
Best Blogging Tools #6: ConvertKit
What is ConvertKit?
ConvertKit is an email marketing platform.
The importance of email marketing tends to surprise most beginner bloggers.
Email marketing is a key component of blogging and that’s why we use and recommend ConvertKit.
Advantages of ConvertKit include:
- Intuitive interface: The ConvertKit user interface is extremely intuitive and beginner friendly. This means you don’t need to read a lot of documentation to get started.
- Tagging and segmenting: Segmenting your subscribers into categories and groups makes email marketing easy. You don’t need to email a 15-year-old about the latest product for the elderly and vice-versa. ConvertKit allows you to tag and easily segment your followers.
- Deliverability: ConvertKit makes sure that emails with images and lots of HTML don’t look like spam. If the email inbox marks it as spam, the readers will never see it.
- Easy integration with WordPress: Integrating WordPress with ConvertKit is as easy as installing the ConvertKit plugin and populating some form fields.
Disadvantages of ConvertKit include:
- Minimal form template customization: The prebuilt forms within ConvertKit are fairly limited and minimalistic. Minimalistic isn’t necessarily a bad thing, however, it may be difficult to align the form to perfectly match your website’s aesthetic. Also, keep in mind, if you are using Elementor Pro, then you can design your form in Elementor, and connect it to ConvertKit.
- Minimal email template customization: The other drawback of ConvertKit is that there are limited options when it comes to customizing the body of the email itself.
How to get started with ConvertKit
To get started with ConvertKit:
- First, head to the ConvertKit website and create an account.
- Next, install the ConvertKit plugin on your website.
- Then, add the API keys (found within the ConvertKit settings page) on the setting page for the plugin.
- Next, create a lead capture form.
- Lastly, configure the form to be displayed at the bottom of your blog posts.
Best Blogging Tools #7: A Self Guru Legal Template Bundle
Disclaimer: we are not lawyers and this is not legal advice. Please consult a lawyer for any questions.
The legal aspect of blogging is another common aspect of blogging that is overlooked by beginners.
This mistake could end up costing you thousands of dollars, which is why we highly recommend prioritizing the legality of your blog.
There are three ways to obtain copy for your legal pages:
- WordPress plugins
- Legal templates
- Hiring a lawyer
We recommend option #2 (legal templates) for beginner bloggers.
Our favorite legal templates are by Amira from A Self Guru.
What is the A Self Guru Legal Template Bundle?
The A Self Guru legal bundle are legal page templates for your website.
These legal templates are written by an actual lawyer, Amira.
A Self Guru Legal Template Bundle Advantages
The advantages of A Self Guru legal bundle include:
- Cost effective: these templates are a fraction of the cost of hiring a lawyer.
- Templates written by an actual lawyer: Amira of A Self Guru is an actual lawyer.
A Self Guru Legal Template Bundle Disadvantages
The disadvantages of A Self Guru legal bundle include:
- You must customize the templates on your own: While the templates walk you exactly where you need to make updates, it is still your responsibility to make the updates to the templates.
- Amira isn’t your lawyer: While these templates were written by a lawyer, Amira is not your lawyer and purchasing these templates doesn’t establish attorney privilege.
We believe the price and other advantages of these templates greatly outweigh the disadvantages.
How to get started A Self Guru Legal Template Bundle
To get started with these templates:
- First, navigate to the A Self Guru website.
- Next, purchase the legal bundle.
- Then, update the templates to be specific to your website.
- Lastly, publish the content on your website.
Best Blogging Tools #8: Tailwind
Depending on your industry, Pinterest is a great tool for beginner bloggers to start getting traffic to their blog.
However, creating and scheduling Pinterest pins can take quite a bit of time.
That’s where Tailwind comes in.
What is Tailwind?
Tailwind is a social media scheduling tool that is most popular among blogs who prioritize Pinterest as part of their blogging strategy.
Advantages of Tailwind include:
- Upload images quickly: Save images you want to upload to Tailwind and choose the boards from there (as many as you want).
- Schedule pins: This feature will help you reach a greater audience. Why? Most people work 9-5, so maybe 11 am isn’t the best time to post new content. If you schedule your Pinterest pins at certain hours, you’ll ensure more users see them.
- Measure and analyze stats: Sometimes the strategy you think is working is actually not. By analyzing your pin stats, you can gain valuable insights into what is performing best and then focus your efforts there.
The main disadvantage of Tailwind is:
- No feature to schedule idea pins: Idea Pins are a relatively new feature that Pinterest rolled out in 2021. Unfortunately Idea Pins cannot be scheduled using the Tailwind app (or any other 3rd party scheduling tool). Like all social platforms, when a new feature is rolled out, the platform will ‘reward’ users that leverage the new feature by showing their content to more people. Therefore, it is important that you use this feature if Pinterest is part of your strategy. Learn more about idea pins here.
How to get started with Tailwind
To get started with Tailwind:
- First, create a Pinterest Business Account.
- Next, sign up for Tailwind.
- Then, connect your Pinterest account to Tailwind.
- Next, create pins for your blog posts in Canva.
- Lastly, start scheduling pins.
Best Blogging Tools #9: Keywords Everywhere
What is Keywords Everywhere?
Keywords Everywhere is a Google Chrome Extension for your browser that enables you to conduct keyword research directly in Google.
Keywords Everywhere Advantages
Advantages of Keywords Everywhere include:
- Beginner friendly: You don’t need to have extension knowledge of keyword research or be an SEO expert to start benefiting from this tool.
- Powerful for the price: For just $10, you can conduct 100,000 searches and learn CPC, search volume, related keywords, and more.
Keywords Everywhere Disadvantages
Disadvantages of Keywords Everywhere include:
- Limited features: Keywords Everywhere is a fantastic tool for beginners, but lacks features that more comprehensive SEO tools like Ubersuggest and Ahrefs offer such as competitor analysis, EO health checks and more.
How to get started with Keywords Everywhere
- First, navigate to the Keywords Everywhere website.
- Next, install the Google Chrome extension.
- Then, purchase credits.
- Next, begin searching.
Pro tip: remember to ‘turn off’ Keywords Everywhere when you aren’t conducting keyword research so you don’t waste your credits!
Best Blogging Tools #10: Google Docs
What is Google Docs?
Google Docs is an online document editor.
We use Google Docs to outline and draft every single blog post that we write for the Samantha Digital blog.
Google Docs Advantages
Advantages of Google Doc include:
- More user friendly than the WP Gutenberg Editor: We find that the built-in WordPress Gutenberg Editor is a bit clunky and hard to use. That’s why we draft all of our blog posts in Google Docs first, and then copy + paste them to the Gutenberg editor.
- Easy collaboration: Google Docs makes it so easy to collaborate with multiple users. This enables you to partner with other bloggers without having to give them access to your site.
Google Docs Disadvantages
Disadvantages of Google Docs include:
- Not quite as user friendly as Microsoft Word: Honestly, this may boil down to personal preference but we feel that Microsoft Word is a tad more user friendly.
How to get started with Google Docs?
To get started with Google Docs:
- First, navigate to the Google Docs website
- Next, sign in to your Google account (or create one)
- Then, click ‘create new’ document
- Next, begin typing!
10 Best Blogging Tools For Beginners Conclusion
If you are serious about blogging and turning it into a business, then you need these 10 best blogging tools for beginners:
- Elementor Pro
- Google Analytics
- Google Search Console
- Convert Kit
- A Self Guru Legal Bundle
- Keywords Everywhere
- Google Docs