4.3.13

Day #229: Tools for Bloggers

I have only been blogging since last July, or around 225-ish days. So, I do not consider myself an expert or an established blogger by any means. I started my blog as a "getaway" so to speak, from the stress of my everyday life. I have grown to truly love blogging and look forward to it each day. Anyways, I figured I would share some of the "must-have" apps and tools to utilize when blogging.

Social Media I-Phone Apps:

Facebook "Pages": This app lets you update statuses, share photos, read messages and receive updates from your blog's Facebook page. It also updates you on new likes. It's a pretty handy tool if you ask me. I only just discovered it this month. I'm a little slow sometimes.

Twitter App: I love tweeting. It's become one of my favorite past-times. The i-phone app is easy to use.

Just Unfollow App: Shows you who has unfollowed you on Twitter and Instagram. The ultimate stalker tool.

Instagram App: Allows you to upload to Instagram and any other social media you use...like twitter, tumblr, flickr, facebook, etc. 

Vine App: I'm fairly new to Vine, I haven't tested it out much but so far I like watching the videos. From what I gather it's like Instagram but with video instead of pictures.

Other apps I utilize: Pinterest, StumbleUpon, FourSquare, Yelp and YouTube. FourSquare and Yelp are more for traveling and providing reviews on the places you visit. YouTube...is well, YouTube. Who doesn't know what YouTube is these days? Anyways, I have MANY other iPad apps, but I'll save that for another post.

Personally, I don't like the Blogger app (sorry Blogger...love you! Just not the app...) I tried it, but I found that I'm not going to jot a post down with my phone and publish it. It just won't happen. I couldn't edit it the way I wanted to. I was NOT a fan. It's really not any better on the iPad either. It's just not for me I guess. 

Other Blogger Tools:

Love Giveaways? Most bloggers use Rafflecopter. It's an easy to use tool that lets you plan a giveaway in advance and builds the widget. Once the widget is built, you can still moderate it and it gives you the code to embed in your blog post. It randomly chooses a winner at your command at the end of the giveaway, which you can display on the widget if you want to. It's probably the easiest way I have found to do a giveaway thus far. It's free, but you can pay a monthly fee for extra features. I stick with the free version.



Passion Fruit Ads is an easy way to sell and keep track of ad space. You define your ad spots and then copy the code into the area where you'd like the ads to run. For instance, I have them on my side bar and at the end of each blog post. Once you have the ad spots defined, you can copy the code into the page and the definitions show up. You manage the ads and definitions from the website, and it automatically will change where you embedded the code. I hope that's not confusing?
When I first started blogging, I tried out Adobe Photoshop. I only had 30 days to use it and I definitely did NOT master it. If I had the money, I would purchase it, but I am broke, sooooo I stick with using PicMonkey. It's a website that allows you to create collages and edit photos quickly and easily. You can use it for free with limitations, but for $4.99/month you get full access. Personally, I use PicMonkey so often that right now I pay the $4.99 a month and find I get my money's worth.


Ever wonder where other bloggers get those widgets displaying the code to take a button?? Me too. I found a handy little website that builds this for you as well. "Grab My Button" Code Generator will let you build a code to embed into your blog so people can take one of your cute blog buttons!

Google Analytics is good to use to help keep track of your blog's traffic. It doesn't match up with the traffic you will see on Blogger. It breaks down your traffic by telling you how many unique visits you receive, return visits, etc. Another good site that does this is StatCounter. Although, Stat Counter does track YOUR visits to your own page. So, you'll see how many times you visit your blog. And realize that you stalk your own blog. And you will feel like a creeper seeing the amount of times you have looked at your blog today. 

Yeah, thats all me up there. Visiting myself, on my blog.

What are your favorite blogging tools?

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13 comments:

  1. Haha about statcounter! I never realized how much I look at my own blog til I started using it! I've used picmonkey a couple times, but I must confess that I use photoshop much much more. We use it at work, so I've been able to figure things out some for when I'm at home. That or I just ask my techie husband to help :-)

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  2. Such great tips!! I use them all too! :)

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  3. Hi! Followed you over from Peacoats and Plaid GFC blog hop. I am a newer blogger so thank you for the tips. I feel like the only blogger that does not use twitter yet. I should jump on that eventually. I have heard of pic monkey but have not used it yet. I will definitely give it a try. The ad space things confuses me but only because I am still new to blogging and don't understand how to make money from my blog. I have wondered about the "grab my button" gadgets, although not sure who would grab my button, lol. I agree about the blogger app....it sucks! Following you via GFC.

    Jackie
    www.thenonmarthamomma.com

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  4. I don't love the blogger app either! Plus if I have something scheduled and need to make a quick change, it's tough to do via the app. The code only comes up in HTML, so I can't see what the actual post is looking like. Annoying :)

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  5. I have yet to figure out how to actually install Google analytics. I've have successfully installed StatCounter, though, and I am most definitely my own biggest stalker. :P

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  6. Thanks for the tips, I need to get a few of these apps!

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  7. I started my blog on blogger and quickly migrated to wordpress. The mobile apps were key (didn't have internet for about a year) and really easy to use/post from.

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  8. This is a great list! Gonna check some stuff out now :)

    Happy Monday!

    Sheree
    The Hartungs Blog
    thehartungs.blogspot.ca

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  9. great tips and love working with passion fruit

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  10. I love the "grab my button" which makes it a little easier to create a button. I am also enjoying twitter more these days.

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  11. Thank you Chelsea!
    We haven't yet delved into ad space at cupofting.com but are seriously considering it. Glad to have a Passion Fruit Ads suggestion to look into.
    ♥alycia

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