In today’s episode, Jenna shares her favorite free and paid tools that she uses for her blogging business!
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In today’s episode, I’m going over my favorite free and paid tools that I use for my blog content, social media, and business!
I’m just going to start right off and say that I’m kind of a penny pincher, especially when it comes to my blogging business. If I’m not seeing a return on my investment, it’s hard for me to continue paying for it month after month or year after year. I’m not saying that’s how you should run your business, I’m just framing this episode so y’all understand my point of view.
With that said, investing in your business is extremely important but I’m very aware of where that money is being spent so I’m able to really make sure I’m utilizing the tools that I’m paying for.
I’m not going to get into the services and platforms that I pay for like website hosting and domain registration, but I do want to call out that those investments are just as important as the tools I’m going to be chatting about.
I also can’t talk about expenses without bringing up the importance of educational resources like courses, digital products, attending conferences, and retreats. Okay, without going too far into that, I’ll step off my soap box and get into the best free and paid tools for bloggers, influencers, and content creators!
Let’s talk photo editing. I use the free lightroom app along with snapseed to edit my photos. It’s what I’ve used for years and I really have a process down. It’s one of my stretch goals to replace that workflow with editing in Adobe Lightroom on my desktop, but I’m not there quite yet.
I do pay for Photoshop, but use it mostly for resizing images and making graphics. I learned how to use it in college, and I really like some of the features it has. Somehow I’m also more comfortable using it than Canva, which would be my free tool alternative for creating graphics and visual content. It’s honestly a really great free option with awesome capabilities. I’ve tried their paid plan before and my favorite feature was the background removal tool, it was pretty dang cool and easy to use. But since I don’t want to pay for both photoshop and canva premium, I decided to just stick with photoshop.
If you’ll be editing videos, there are several free and moderately priced apps for your phone but I prefer being able to edit on my desktop. I’m absolutely obsessed with davinci resolve! There’s a free version and it’s loaded with everything you could ever want out of a video editing software. I also really like that there are several resources online if you need help. So I would highly suggest checking out davinci resolve if you’re editing videos for youtube, tiktok, instagram, facebook, all the places.
If you’re monetizing, it might be a good idea to look into a business bank account. I dragged my feet on this for a good while but finally came across Novo, per a recommendation from one of my blogger friends. You can get a free online business checking account, along with a debit card to keep expenses separate from your personal accounts. It works just like a traditional checking account and includes an invoice feature so tracking is super easy. Other convenient integrations include paypal, square, shopify, quickbooks, and many others. And it’s free!!
I do pay to use quickbooks self-employed but I truly can’t imagine running my blogging business without it. It keeps me on track and is a huge help come tax season. I used to use Wave and it’s a great free option, but I can say I’m very happy with quickbooks.
For years, I managed my email subscriber list through mailchimp but there was always something lacking and making the process a pain. A few years ago, I switched to flodesk and it’s been seamless ever since. The best thing about flodesk in my opinion is that your monthly or yearly price is not tied to your subscriber count or email frequency. Meaning as your list grows, you’ll pay the same flat fee!
Last but not least, keysearch! What would I do without my keyword researching tool? There are so, so many paid tools so find one that works for you. This is the one I started with, so it’s the one I’m sticking with for now. I don’t really know of any comparable free tools for keyword research, but google trends is good for keeping a pulse on what people are searching for in a certain time frame. It won’t give you the same insights you’ll find in these paid tools though!
I really try to keep my expenses low and only use tools that further my business along and keep it thriving. I hope hearing about these free and paid tools was helpful! And honestly, these tools are ones that I use multiple times throughout the week. Be sure to reach out and let me know if I missed one of your favorite tools. I always love learning about new ways to grow or simplify.
If you found value in this week’s episode, please consider leaving some feedback through ratings and reviews. Thanks so much for joining me, Jenna Urben, in this episode of Bloggerbytes.