The Bloggingnova Guide to the Best Blogging Tools For 2020
The Blogging tools that will help you to take your blog to the next level.
Shivam Choudhary ||
Published on: 2nd Feb, 2020
Frankly speaking back in 2013, When I started my first blog I did not invested a single rupee for almost first 2 years, neither in learning new skill nor in any premium tools.
And that might be one of the biggest reason why it took me more than 2 and half year to build my first profitable blog.
The #tools and resources you need to accelerate your #blog growth in 2020..
But with the time I realized blogging is a continuous growing process where a blogger has to learn new skills, keep himself updated by learning new techniques, experimenting new strategies, implementing new ideas and investing in the blog.
But whether you are just starting your first blog or a professional looking to grow your site, the huge number of available tool and resources can be overwhelming for you.
This is why today I have decided to create this page and list all those tools that I have used and using in my blogging journey to take my site to the next level.
One more thing – there’s no hype or fluff here—just the best stuff that I have found to be powerful and essential to achieving blogging success.
Before you get fully benefit from implementing these blogging tools on your blog, You’ll of course need to start your blog first If you haven’t already started your blog, then head over to my step by step guide on starting a blog in 2020 and pick back up here once you’re ready to go.
Browse tools by category:
SEO Tools & Plugin
Social Media Tools
Must have plugins
Are you planning to launch a new blog? Then the first thing you will need to do is register your domain name with a domain registrar. while it can sometimes feel like domain names are just a commodity, It makes sense to shop around because prices for the same domain name will vary from site to site.
But beside price, the two other most important factor to consider while registering a domain name are registrar’s customer service and user interface.
I do agree that you won’t need to interact with your domain registrar much beyond the initial purchase and setup, but when you do (Like updating name server) you want it to be a smooth and simple process. Otherwise you will get unwanted headaches when you’ll need to make any simple edit or changes.
There are many, many options to choose from, so I have narrowed it down to two options for you.
Prices start at $8.88 per year for a .com domain name.
#1 DOMAIN REGISTRAR
Whether you’re a first time or an experienced domain buyer, Namecheap is the most logical place to start your domain name registration process. I recommend Namecheap because of its simplicity and quality of service. They’ve been around from past more than 20 years and they have as solid a reputation as any provider out there.
Prices start at $8.88 per year for a .com domain name.
GoDaddy is also one of the most oldest and popular domain registration company. Currently they manage more than 75 million domain names for over 18 million customers.
They allows you to register wide variety of popular domain name extensions and even dozens of country code top level domains (ccTLDs).
Beside the sparks of inspiration that drives you to launch your blog in the first place, there is nothing more important and foundational than the web hosting provide you choose. A poor choice can results in slow website, frustrated readers, and Google will push your content to the bottom of search results.
So choosing the right web hosting provider is very very important as it will set your site up on the firm foundation it needs to drive the results you’re hoping to achieve.
Recently In my WordPress Hosting guide, I also explained how influences are manipulating people to choose a low quality host with biased reviews.
What to look for when choosing a web hosting for your blog?
Well, there are plenty of factors, but five essential ones to consider are:
- Cost: There are almost hundreds of web hosting company offering their shared or managed hosting service at almost same price. You have to look at which host gives you the best value for your budget
- Traffic and Storage: Most of the shared hosts will tell you that they will give you unlimited bandwidth/traffic. But this is partly true. On the one hand as long as your usage is normal, you won’t experience any problem. But as soon as you get a spike in traffic for whatever reason, your site might still go down. Therefore it’s better to get specific estimates or limits from your host as to what volume of traffic your setup can handle.
- Support (Most Important): This is something which is actually very very important. . Your hosting provider should have a good, solid reputation for their support department. You should be able to speak with a real person 24/7 no matter what.
- Features and Add-ons: As mentioned earlier most host provider offering their service at same price, so you have to decide what makes one hosting provider stand out from the others. What is included in their plan that will help you save money on additional services such as Backup, SSL, CDN and Website migration.
- Reputation/Satisfaction/Customer Review: This is where you really need to do your homework my friend. As mentioned earlier these days many big websites are manipulating people through their biased WordPress hosting review. So it is important to what your hosting provider’s current and former customer really feel about the service. The best place to get real users experience can be Trust-pilot, Facebook group and Twitter.
Prices start at $11.95 ($3..95/mo – 70% off)
#1 OVERALL WEB HOSTING
In my whole Blogging career I have used almost 8 WordPress hosting for my different websites. But believe me no one was better than the SiteGround considering Price to Quality ratio.
In last few years the company has taken the WordPress hosting market by the storm. In our WordPress hosting review survey they were the no#1 hosting when it comes to customer satisfaction ratio.
They are well known in the industry for offering exceptional 24/7 customer service. They allow you to host multiple blog under one account, which is super convenient. Not to forget they are one of just three hosting provider recommended by WordPress.org itself.
Currently the blog you are reading is also hosted with Siteground from last 1 and half years and I am completely loving their service. You can also read my experience with Siteground hosting here.
Prices start at $20.83/mo with 10 GB storage and 100 GB bandwidth
BEST MANGED WORDPRESS HOSTING
Shared hosts like SiteGround are totally fine if you are just starting out or running a website with medium level of traffic. But if you are getting more than a trickle of visitors then you should worth consider hosting your site with a premium managed WordPress host like WPX hosting.
WPX hosting’s infrastructure is super optimized to host any type of WordPress website with any level of traffic. Their SSD optimized servers and custom high quality CDN gives you incredible page loading speed and performance. Yes i do agree that you have to pay a little more than shared host like Siteground, but it’s not a huge amount and in my opinion it’s worth every penny you spend.
WordPress Themes and Page Builder
As you are using WordPress, you’ll need a Theme. While there are plenty of free option available for WordPress themes, there are good reasons why serious bloggers eschew free themes and opt instead for a premium theme for their blog.
Here are the five most important reasons why it’s smart to invest in a premium WordPress theme and Page Builder:
- Quality and Performance: In most of the cases, a premium WordPress is going to look more nicer, Function better, and definitely have more customization options than a free theme.
- Updates: As you might be knowing, WordPress is constantly being updated and many time these updates are critical for your website security, which means that the plugins and theme you use need to keep up. Premium theme developer also constantly release updates for their theme with new function and better security.
- Support: No matter which theme you choose for your WordPress site, You’re sure to have the question along the way. Having access to experts who can help you anytime is one of the most valuable benefit of using a premium theme.
- Built-in SEO: As most of the SEO expert says “If content is king then SEO is Queen” and I also agree with this statement. Your theme structure and framework plays a major role in terms of SEO. Premium theme developers like GneratePress, Astra or Genesis always provide all the important SEO features that a good theme should have.
- The ROI is tremendous: Everyone talks about “spending” and “investing” on premium WordPress theme sounds like they cost thousand dollars but actually they don’t. You can typically get a good premium WordPress theme in $50-$100. When you consider the smooth and professional experience you’ll give to your site visitors and on top of that the peace of mind of having perpetual updates and support, the investment you made on a premium theme is actually very less.
For $49.95 you get 1 year of support and update for unlimited website with 40% renewal discount.
#1 WORDPRESS THEME
After using Genesis for a very long time, I’ve been using GeneratePress Premium for more than 2 years now. It is built on clean, efficient, rock-solid code that make sure you get the best possible performance with your WordPress Theme.
Even though their theme is well known for super fast and feature rich customization option, still I am big fan of their support service. Believe me I have never ever experienced this type of support from any Theme provider. They are currently providing best support in the WordPress theme industry. You can know more about them in my GeneratePress review.
Prices start at $67 for single website with Life time updates.
#1 TOOL FOR DESIGNING YOUR BLOG
It is a super powerful page builder that lets you create landing pages, blog posts, and customize every aspect of your site with a slick drag-and-drop editor. Frankly speaking anything (Design) is achievable with this page builder, the limit is simply your own design imagination. You can know more about this tool here.
WordPress Website Security
Launching you blog live on the internet is one thing, But keep it safe from hackers, malware and protect from DDoS attacks… well that’s quite different thing. According to a Google report, Google blacklists around 20,000 websites for malware and around 50,000 for phishing each week.
Furthermore, In 2018 Google has sent over 45 million notifications to website owners through Search Console dashboard, alerting them to possible problems with their websites which could affect their site appearance in search result.
Sucuri, a cloud-based firewall provider said in their recent report that they blocked 170,827,313 attack attempts in the year 2019. It was a 52% more from 2018.
Which is why standalone website security is worth considering if you don’t want to loose your website.
The fire step in considering website security is to host your site with a well reputed hosting provider which gives you good security options to secure your server.
The reason why I am telling this to you is because, In past my site got hacked 2 times in a month because of my cheap quality hosting provider “Hostgator”. So I will recommend you to host your site with a good web hosting provider like SiteGround, WPX or Kinsta which provider security features like backups, updates, firewalls, and malware scans.
Once you have a well secured foundation for your site, Additionally you can use the following to protect your website against security vulnerabilities.
- Real-Time Threat Detection
- Brute-Force Protection
- Single-port DB access
- Malware Scans
- Intrusion Prevention/Detection
- DDoS Protection
- Multiple Daily Backups
Don’t worry you don’t need to manually do all these things in order to keep your site secured. The plugin I am going to recommend below will take care of everything.
Starting from $199/year to protect and secure unlimited sites
iThemes Security Pro
#1 PLUGIN TO SECURE YOUR SITE
iThemes Security has a reputation for being one of the best plugin in the market when it comes to protecting and securing your site.
The Free version of iThemes security gives you basic security features like Brute force attack prevention and Malware scanning while their premium version gives you all the necessary security features like two-factor authentication, increased malware scans, and much more.
Starting at $40 per year
BEST AUTOMATIC BACKUP PLUGIN
Automatic backups are your first defense against any security threats. A good automatic backup plugin like Backup Buddy will help you take automatic back of your WordPress site so that you can restore your site anytime if anything goes wrong.
SEO tools and plugins for WordPress
Once your website is live, secure, and dressed for success, You want as many people to visit your site as possible. But how? Well search engines like Google and Bing are biggest source of traffic for majority of website on the internet.
But getting tons of free traffic from search engine is not that easy, you will need to optimize your website for search engines so that you site’s content can rank higher in search result and significantly you get traffic from search engines.
Luckily several goo SEO plugins and tools available that take care of all your SEO needs. Let’s have a look at our recommended SEO plugins and tools:
Available for Free to use
#1 WORDPRESS SEO PLUGIN
Whether you’re running a personal blog or managing a corporate site, Rank Math is a powerful free plugin that’s been designed to completely supercharge your website’s SEO.
Rank Math combines the power of multiple plugins you might be using for your site (Sitemap, schema, redirection, no follow and many more plugin) and brings everything into one easy-to-manage plugin that takes care of all your SEO and content optimization needs.
Try it for free of cost for next 7 days.
#1 SEO TOOL
Just installing an SEO plugin like Rank Math is not enough to full leverage SEO. In addition you’ll also need to invest in a SEO tool that will help you gain insight on keyword usage and the competitive landscape you are operating in.
SEMrush is a very powerful and popular SEO tool used y Bloggers, Marketers and Businesses. It allows you to do competition analysis, backlink research, keyword research, monitor keyword rankings, and many more SEO task.
Ask top fifty bloggers about their biggest regret, Most of them will tell you “they wish they had started building their email list sooner.” So what the lesson? If you are still not capturing email of your blog readers, you need to start immediately.
Here’s what you’ll need to get started:
- An email marketing service
- An optin form maker
Here’s our best recommendation for both of these service:
Starting from $9/mo for 1 site with unlimited campaigns.
BEST LEAD GENERATION PLUGIN
To capture email list of your readers, first thing you’ll need to do is place multiple optin forms on your website where your readers can enter their email address for you. With OptinMonster you can create high converting optin forms and landing page in just a matter of minutes. It allows you to create all kinds of optin forms (all types of optin forms comes with plenty of premade templates), measure their conversion rates, do A/B testing, and basically have every aspect of your optin management handled in one easy to grasp place.
Start using it for free of cost
#1 FOR EMAIL MARKETING
Convertkit is an amazing email marketing platform built with care specially for online creators like bloggers, podcasters, and YouTubers.
It allows you to send targeted autoresponders to your subscribers based on their interaction with your email automation rules. Recently they have introduced their free plan where you can use their service for free of cost till 1000 subscribers.
Keyword research tools
Keyword research is an crucial element for modern days SEO. Whether you are Whether you’re developing content strategy for a brand new blog or an well established blog; good quality keywords are one of the most efficient ways to attract consistent traffic to your blog or site.
Choosing the right keyword isn’t always straightforward as you need a lot of data to know whether your selected keyword will for you or not.
If you are completely new to the process of keyword research, i ‘ll recommend you to check our keyword research guide first.
Try it for free of cost for the next 7 days.
#1 keyword research tool
I know, I have already mentioned this tool in our SEO tool section but as mentioned earlier it provides everything you need to grow your organic search traffic, From performing in-depth keyword research to backlink analysis, it takes care of all.
The best thing about this tool is it is only few of the tool that shows you keywords that your competition already ranks for with every important data like Monthly searches, Competition, Keyword difficulty, etc. If you are looking for an all-in -one SEO tool then SEMrush is worth using.
Start using it for free of cost
If you are not interested in investing in an all-in-one SEO tool, then you might consider using Kw finder which is a very popular keyword research tool. KW Finder has quickly became go to keyword research tool for many bloggers and SEO professionals. Why? Because this tool has lot of similar feature which other keyword research tool have, But unlike most other tool, KWFinder is VERY intuitive.
Social Media Tools
Social media is the second best traffic source for any popular blog. So, you should also try your best to share your content on social media in best way as well as make easy for your readers to share your content on social media too.
Free version comes with basic option but you can upgrade to its’s premium version to get all the options.
BEST SOCIAL SHARING PLUGIN
Social snap is a freemium WordPress plugin that lets you add professional-looking social share icons to your blog content with more customization options and faster loading than anyone else on the market. It comes with multiple formats sharing button (floating bar, sticky widget, above or below blog posts and even pop-ups) that makes it easy for your existing readers to share your posts on social media and eventually bring traffic to your site.
Free plan offers 3 social accounts, 10 scheduled posts, and 1 user.
BEST SOCIAL MEDIA SCHEDULING TOOL
After making it easy for people to share your content on social media, you can also start promoting your content on social media to bring more people to your blog/site. Buffer allows you to schedule when your newly written article goes online to social media platforms. Apart from all it’s unique feature it also provides great insights to help any blogger and marketer make the most of their social media marketing efforts.
Content Marketing Tools
Ever feel like you are running out of ideas for your content marketing? Well. You’re not alone. Content marketing is all about using content to attract and retain your target website visitor. Here are some tools that will help you create high quality content that actually drive visitors to your blog.
Basic plan starts from $49 per month when you pay annually.
#1 influencer marketing tool
Ninja Outreach is a content research tool that let’s you find how popular a keyword, blog topic, specific article is on social media. On top of that it also let’s you find influencers who are industry leaders in your niche, check out the content they’ve been sharing, which is very handy when you’re doing email outreach. With Ninja Outreach you can also monitor your blog’s mentions across the whole web as they happen in real-time. This makes them one of the best blogging tools for marketers and bloggers.
You can use this tool for free of cost
#1 tool for headline
It’s no secret that headline plays a major role in any content success. But how do you know if you are content’s headline is actually good. Well, here you can make use of CoSchedule Headline Analyzer tool. As soon as you’ll enter your headline in this free tool, it will give you a score for your headline based on a bunch of different factors (like length and sentiment). It will also give you tons of recommendation that you can use to make your headline even better.
You can use Canva for free of cost, their pro plans starts from $9/mo
BEST TOOL FOR VISUAL CONTENTS
Everyone understand the importance of visual contents in 2020, but creating good quality visual contents is not everyone cup of tea.
Luckily free tools like Canva has made the process of creating visual content much more accessible now. With Canva you can start creating anything from Instagram posts to your blog post featured image in a matter of seconds.
Pro plan starts from $11.66/ mo
#1 writing assistant
If you are prone to make spelling or grammar mistakes, you should make use of a good proofreading tool like Grammarly. You just need to install the Grammarly extension and it will start checking for spelling, sentence structure, punctuation, style, repetitive words, and more with recommended suggestion to improve your content writing.
Affiliate marketplace for affiliate bloggers
Affiliate marketing has grown to a very large industry and has become a key source of income for thousands of bloggers and online entrepreneurs. With more and more business becoming involved in affiliate marketing , it has created endless opportunities for blog bloggers to make passive income from their blog. However as an affiliate marketer we bloggers have to work with multiple affiliate merchant and managing all the affiliate merchants can be challenging task.
This is where Affiliate networks (also known as Affiliate marketplace) comes in use. These affiliate networks allows you to manage all your affiliate program at one place.
Also one of the major problem every new affiliate marketer often face is to find affiliate program that align with their blog niche. The network allows you to find the affiliate program in various categories and pick multiple programs that suit your requirements.
It usually takes 2-3 working days to get approval.
#1 AFFILIATE marketplace
ShareASale is a very popular affiliate network which has been in the business for more than 20 years. It gives you opportunity to work with more than 4000 affiliate merchants from more than hundred categories. If you’re looking for a reliable affiliate network that offers a wide variety of affiliating marketing options then you should give ShareASale a try.
Other Must-Have WordPress Plugins
Above I have already covered almost all the necessary WordPress tools that’ll help you create reliable, successful, even profitable WordPress website. Now it’s time to tell you about some must have WordPress plugin that will make your WordPress site even more better.
Starting from $49 for one year of updates and supports.
#1 cache plugin for speed
WP Rocket is the industry leading caching plugin for WordPress website. It let’s you instantly improve your website speed and performance with no technical skills required. With unique technology like gzip compression, page cache, lazy loading images, CDN support, DNS pre-fetching, minification, It make your site super-fast within few clicks.
Free plan available (Pro Plan starts from $49/year)
Affiliate link MANAGEMENT plugin
Thirsty affiliate is a very popular link management plugin for WordPress site. It allows you to manage your affiliate link at one place. This tool let’s you make you affiliate link short and professionals that eventually help you get more affiliate sales and commission. Example of normal Affiliate URL – https://thirstyaffiliates.com/?aff=544a4f59f691574154a60b8539ebf914. After converting it with Thirsty affiliate – www.nerdblogging.com/recommends/thirsty-affiliate
Free plan available.
BEST ANALYTICS PLUGIN
Monster Insights is a the best Google Analytics plugin for WordPress website. It allows you to properly connect your website with Google analytics, so you can see exactly how people are interacting with your site. The best part is it shows all the necessary metrics directly right inside your WordPress dashboard.
Free plan – 100 images/mo
BEST IMAGE OPTIMIZER
ShortPixel is one of the best image compression plugin for WordPress website. It allows you to automatically optimize your image while upload as well as also provide bulk optimization feature to optimize your all the old images. This plugin basically compress your image size up to 90% without loosing picture quality which eventually help you load images of your site faster.
So Which Blogging Tools are Right for You?
Wherever you are in your blogging journey, now you know the blogging tools needed to take your blog to the next level.
See in today’s time if you are planning to take your blog at a big level and make full time income then you have to treat it as a business. And this business will some need investment.
The reason why i am telling is this to you is because I have seen most of the bloggers do not want to make any investments for their blog.
But my friend in today’s time competition in every niche is getting higher day by day, so you need to try your best to make your blog best in every possible way whether it is in terms of content, hosting, theme or plugins.
You have to make certain smart investment decision for your blog to take it to the next level. I hope you are understanding what i am trying to tell you.
The #tools and resources you need to accelerate your #blog growth in 2020..
If you have any question regarding a particular tool then do let me know in the comments.