I thought it might be a good idea to put all of my favorite tools in one place! So, below are all the amazing products I use for my business and my various blogs. The links below are affiliate links, which means if you make a purchase, I make a small commission at no extra cost to you. Again, these are all products I use personally and heavily recommend! See my detailed disclosure for more info.
Personally, I use and recommend Dreamhost. I think they're super simple to use, and I've never had any issues. Plus, whenever I do have a problem, their customer service has always been amazing. They've helped me so many times, and it's always quick and resolved the first time. They might be a little more expensive than other hosting companies depending on your package, but I think they're 100% worth the investment.
I use a couple of different companies for WordPress themes. Typically, I work with creative, feminine sites, so these theme companies are best for that. However, there are so many options for customization that really anyone can use them.
The first WordPress theme company I work with is Blossom Themes. Blossom Themes creates super robust themes with tons of options for customization. They're a little trickier to figure out, simply because there are so many options. But I absolutely love how much control you have, and their themes are beautiful.
The other WordPress theme company that I love is 17th Avenue Designs. Their themes have less customization (unless you upgrade), but they're gorgeous. The trick is just to pick a theme you love from the get-go that only needs to be updated with your colors and logo.
When it comes to creating a website or blog, legal pages are absolutely essential. The last thing you want is to get in hot water because your website is missing legal pages. Personally, I recommend Amira's Legal Bundles! Her templates are thorough, written by a real lawyer, and so easy to implement. This way, you know you're covered.
I recently discovered Styled Stock Society, and I absolutely love them. Their photos are gorgeous, their video is great, and they have tons of bonuses. One of my favorite things to use is their templates. They have templates for a variety of things, not just social media, including welcome packets, e-books, and checklists. They also have monthly social media prompts! They're such a great overall resource for bloggers and creative businesses.
When you're blogging, you need great graphics. Canva is my favorite tool for creating most of my graphics. I do have Adobe suite for complicated things, but Canva is so great and easy to use. It's definitely my go-to. They also have a lot of templates you can use. Personally, I recommend upgrading to Canva Pro. Just the access to better stock images/video is worth the price.
Social media scheduling
When it comes to scheduling my social media, I use Planoly and Tailwind.
Planoly is great for Instagram. You can see your grid, put together hashtags, and plan out all your posts. The only tricky part is that you also need a Facebook page in order to auto-post.
Tailwind is best for Pinterest. It's a great way to schedule all of your posts in advance and make sure you're regularly posting content at the right times. You should still manually pin sometimes, but Tailwind can save you a lot of time and effort.
Email service provider
My favorite email service provider is Convertkit. They have advanced functionality, but they're not too complicated to use. They have a good number of designs, and you can really customize your opt-ins and emails. You can even sell products through them!
Essential paid plugins
Pretty Links is amazing because it allows you to shorten and brand your affiliate links. You can also set it up so that it replaces any keywords you specify with specific affiliate links. They can help you seriously upgrade your earning potential.
I love TastyPins because it helps me hide my Pinterest images. But whenever someone goes to save my blog posts, those hidden Pinterest-friendly images pop up. You can also add in a repin code so that when someone saves your post, it counts as a repin instead. This helps you gain traction on Pinterest. TastyPins comes from a company called WP Tasty, which has tons of great and helpful plugins. Their recipe one is essential if you're a food blogger.
For managing clients
For those business owners out there, my favorite tool for managing clients, sending invoices, and collecting information is Dubsado. There's a bit of a learning curve to them, but it's been amazing for my business. I can set up working processes, send automatic emails, and use it as a scheduler. I highly recommend it if you're looking for a CRM.
That's it! Those are my favorite tools for bloggers and creative business owners! Hopefully, this was helpful and gives you a sense of what it takes to run a blog. Many of these tools have free versions too, which is great.
Do you use any of these tools? Let me know below!