6 Irresistible Blogging Tools to Increase Your Productivity and Traffic

Blogging tools

Your’re a blogger, maybe it’s time to get serious.

A blog is one of the best ways of driving regular, ongoing, free traffic to your website. To be successful you need a good strategy and to support this strategy you need good blogging tools.

In this article we discuss 6 powerful tools that help you become more efficient and effective as a blogger.

1. Identify Keywords you Can Get Traffic for Using SEMRush

SEMRush analyzes your competitor’s traffic and shows you the top keywords that are driving them traffic in search results.

Using the free version you can get a list of the top 10 keywords.  It will show you information such as the keywords driving traffic to your competitor, average number of Google searches for these keywords, the post they are ranking for, and more.

blogging tools

Knowing the keywords that are already driving traffic to a competitors website is very useful as you can then write better content focused on these keywords (or similar keywords) to drive more traffic to your site.

2. Create an Editorial Calendar Using CoSchedule

You have to be organized with your blogging otherwise you waste a lot of time.

Create a plan for content and write content well in advance of when you want to publish it. One of the best ways of getting organized and delivering content on a consistent basis is using an editorial calendar.

With an editorial calendar you can plan out your content for weeks ahead and schedule content in your calendar when it’s ready.

A really good editorial calendar tool for WordPress is CoSchedule.

blogging tools

It is simple to set up and use and you’ll be more efficient by using it.  Some of the functionality includes:

  • Create your calendar – You can plan out your content on a calendar and drag and drop articles to rearrange their planned publish dates
  • Task management – Assign tasks related to the content to your team, such as, adding a feature image to the blog post, or assigning it to your editor for a final review.
  • Content distribution – You can connect up your social profiles and then create and schedule posts and tweets that will promote you article at specified times to Twitter, Facebook, Google+ etc.

3. Create Imagery Using Canva

Every blog post needs at least one good image to capture attention and the simplest way of creating these images is using Canva.

Canva provides a wide range of templates you can use to start off the creation of your image or you can upload your own image.

You can then easily customize these images, changing colors, adding text, adding other images etc.

In the following you see some templates where you can drag and drop your own images and then customize the results.

blogging tools

4. Optimize Existing Content using Google Webmaster Tools

Google provides a free tool called Google Webmaster Tools which every blogger should have set up!

As Google crawls through your site it will report on any issues it finds.  These are issues you need to correct!

It will also show you search phrases that people are using to find your content.  It will show you the search phrase, the number of times your content appeared for this search phrase (impressions), how often this content is clicked and the average position in search results.

blogging tools

This is really useful because you can find content that may be appearing a lot in search results but is not getting enough clicks.

When Google sees that your click through rate is low then it’s likely this will start moving down in search results.

If your content is relevant to the keywords and the keywords are relevant to your business then you can go back to this content and optimize what people see in search results to make it more compelling.

For example, you can update the description so it’s more compelling with a clear call to action to encourage people to click on it.

5.  Take Email Marketing to the Next Level with Ontraport

Building email subscribers is so important.  When people read your great content give them an option to subscribe via email to receive your latest posts.

This will be a continuous driver of traffic to your new posts to an audience that has expressed an interest in your content.

There is a lot of great email marketing tools but typically they do not provide advanced automation.

Ontraport is a marketing automation tool with email at its core so now you can take email marketing to the next level.

An example is sending an email related to a blog post and if your subscribers click on this link you can then send them automated emails with details of other posts that are similar to the ones they have shown an interest in.

Email automation is an important part of blogging so sometimes you need to invest in the tools to help you achieve the level of automation you require.

6.  Find Related Terms using Keywordtool.io

The days of just focusing entirely on one keyword phrase within your articles are gone. Google is getting a lot smarter and is analyzing all your content and wants to find lots of related terms.

Keywordtool.io is a free tool that shows you related terms (taken from Google Suggest) to the keywords you enter.  This gives you lots of ideas for related terms/content you can include in your blog posts.

In the example below, we have displayed just a sample of the related keywords found for the search ‘Post workout supplements’.

blogging tools

Summary

Your blog can be hugely effective for driving relevant traffic to your business, which can ultimately lead to sales.

The tools above will certainly help with this but not replace your strategy.

Author: Ian Cleary is a social media tools and social media technology specialist.  He is a recognized social media speaker and his blog was recently named as one of the top blogs in the annual Social Media Examiner blog awards.  To learn more about social media tools and technology, follow Ian’s blog RazorSocial.

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Comments

  • viv ahmun

    Great article tremendous

    • http://www.razorsocial.com/ Ian Cleary

      Thank you Viv!

  • http://www.probloggingsuccess.com/ Jane

    I recently found out about Keywordtool.io and find it to be really useful, especially for brainstorming! Semrush is great for keyword research and competitor analysis.

    Thanks for the collection of wonderful tools Ian :)

    • http://www.razorsocial.com/ Ian Cleary

      Thank you Jane!

  • http://www.thedalypost.com patrick

    Keywordtool.io perfect tool for finding effective keywords.

    http://www.thedalypost.com

    • http://www.razorsocial.com/ Ian Cleary

      Thank you!

  • http://www.c4compete.com/ Chloe Forbes-Kindlen

    Super blogging toolbox Jeff. All these tools are so essential for increased productivity. I currently use Editflow rather than CoSchedule but see the benefit of CoSchedule ESPECIALLY if you are only managing your own social media accounts.

    • http://www.razorsocial.com/ Ian Cleary

      Thanks Chloe!!

  • treb072410

    Great post Jeff… Thanks for sharing!..

  • Mary Jane Kinkade

    Love this post! Thank you!

    • http://www.razorsocial.com/ Ian Cleary

      Thanks Mary Jane!

  • http://annodyne.com ANNODYNE

    I think researching keywords and what drives traffic to
    competitor websites is important and a lost step. Blogging to begin with can be
    difficult for some organizations to find the time to do so. Depending upon if
    one wants to do it right by researching, and scheduling an editorial calendar
    can make all the difference! All great tips thanks for sharing.

    • http://www.razorsocial.com/ Ian Cleary

      I agree, keyword research is very important and related keyword research is even more important!

  • http://www.razorsocial.com/ Ian Cleary

    You are welcome, thank you so much for your feedback.

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    • http://dogleadermysteries.wordpress.com/ Deborah Taylor-French

      Thanks Ian.
      I have a few dumb questions.

      1.When I download these tools, will they be installed on my Mac computer or can I install them on my WordPress site?
      2. I see this post went live a year ago. I found it through a tweet by Jeff, are these tools still the ones you use?

      The computers, software and the Web changing I know newer tools and options become more useful as time flies by.

      Thanks, Deborah

  • Carla Ray

    I always use Papaly.com myself for help with my organization of posts

  • http://www.thesocialmediahandyman.com Paul Chaney

    Didn’t realize this was Ian’s writing until I got to the end of the post. He’s truly the toolman isn’t he. Great post. Very helpful. Thanks!

  • Guga

    Great post Ian. Have you heard of Blogo? An Brazilian startup that just won silver at the evernote event? http:www.getblogo.com

  • Gates S.

    Thanks so much Ian. You’ve really educated me on some stuffs.
    I like sg.serpstat.com which is very similar to keywordtool. I use it for title suggestion ticking the “Only questions” option. It’s free and simple.

  • Gates S.

    You probably already know about many or most of these tools, but I’d bet that you’ll find this one cool and that will make it worth your time. Have you tried http://sg.serpstat.com/

  • amyyoungmiller

    I realize that I need to be more deliberate and thoughtful in my blogging, as regarding keywords and so forth. I’m a right brained, creative type, who doesn’t like to be bothered by admin chores *sigh*. I’d rather be writing content and taking photos. But you’ve got a good list here, and it’s laid out plain and simple (you didn’t lose me) and I’m going to try to check out these points, one by one, to see if they would work for me. Thanks Jeff. Your blog always cuts through the chaff for me. Well done!

  • http://www.zazzle.com/sweet_sticky_rainbow sweetstickyrainbow

    Very cool. Always love to take a look at new SEO tools.

  • Paula San Jose

    really amazing tips! Canva is a lifesaver! not as intimidating as Photoshop too. Thanks for sharing this! I will repost this- Our Virtual Assistants can really benefit from this post. :)

    Paula San Jose
    20Four7VA
    Social Media Manager