It's easy to get lost in the sea of blogging tools made available to you. As a result, you're probably using a handful of tools to help you get the blogging job done.
Despite it all, there's always that one tool that some bloggers would feel lost without.
Don't get me wrong – actual blogging skills trump all tools you can find. The tool will only be as good depending on how accomplished you are as a blogger. In other words, they complement your existing blogging skills and help make your job easier.
Nonetheless, what's important with blogging tools is the convenience they provide.
Instead of toiling hours reviewing your work to ensure that your post is in tip-top shape, you can finish in a matter of seconds! Same goes for researching for topics to write about, promoting them to your target audience, and more.
If you're not sure which blogging tools are good for you, then you need to take heed from some of the best and most influential bloggers and content creators who participated in this survey post.
Here's the question:
Question: What's your must-use tool to help you create better blog content?
The answers below are surprisingly diverse. There are tools you may have heard of, but there are new tools that answer your blogging needs to a tee. It goes to show how vast your choices for blogging tools out there. It is also a testament to the demanding work that bloggers have to perform to publish the best version of the post possible.
Here's a quick overview of the tools chosen by the list of esteemed bloggers above:
With that said, below are blogging tools that the best bloggers can't do without:
1 – Adam Connell
Founder of Blogging Wizard / Twitter – LinkedIn
There really aren't many must-use tools I use for crafting content because there are so many alternatives these days. However, one of my favorites is HemingwayApp.
Sure, there are a bunch of other writing tools that will help with proofreading but this takes a completely different approach. It focuses on improving sentence structure and simplifying how you write.
I have to confess that I don't use it as much as I should. This is because it doesn't quite fit into my writing process as I'd like it to.
But what I love about this tool is how much it challenges the way I write. It forces me to simplify the sentences I write and the differences can be remarkable.
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2 – Chirag Kulkarni
CEO of Taco Agency / Facebook – Twitter – LinkedIn
I like using tools like Ahrefs to see what content people love and also what types of links they are building.
Let's say you are in the legal business. I would google and find the top ten sites that rank for legal-related terms, and put their respective URLs into Ahrefs. Using the tool, you can quickly analyze which pieces are doing well, and from there, write an article that is 10x better then the keyword it currently ranks for.
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3 – Justin Morgan
CEO of Dental Marketing Guy / Facebook – Youtube – LinkedIn
I use Ahrefs to see which blog posts are the most popular in my niche. There are different tools you can use for measuring the social media “buzz” surrounding any given topic. Social media signals are very good indicators that a blog post is a winning topic.
One of the most important aspects of doing SEO for dentists is my process I call “Invisalinks Method.” This is the process of seeing which type of blog posts are gaining the most backlinks in the dental industry.
Most dental websites are unworthy of being cited (or linked to) by authoritative sources. The key to victory in the Invisalinks Method is three steps:
1. Create content which is link worthy.
This means doing research with tools such as Ahrefs to see which kind of blog posts are generating the most backlinks. From there, we can analyze the reasons why that blog post was successful in gaining links.
2. Connect with influencers.
It's difficult to convince anyone to link to your blog post when nobody knows who you are. By offering value to people who have the power to link to your blog post, you lay a strong foundation to implement the Invisalinks Method.
3. Hit the ground running!
The Invisalinks Method isn't easy. But, it is the one predictable way to gain new dental patients from search engines. It may take time for you to find the right message for your blog post. But just like lining up to tee off in golf, the preparatory work is what will set you on the right trajectory!
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4 – Ryan Biddulph
Blogger at Blogging From Paradise / Twitter
My best tool for creating better content may surprise you and it may not if you follow your blog regularly. It is my expanded awareness.
Most bloggers seek something outside of themselves to make it easier to create content, becoming dependent on and attached to tools. I go within. Expanding my awareness through heightening my powers of observation I am able to write 5-6 guest posts every single day. I watch. I observe. I write.
This has helped me create a high volume of helpful, problem-solving content, all because I decided to spot problems, to seize ideas and to create content by pulling back, relaxing, and becoming an observer of people interested in getting blogging tips.
[icon twitter] Click here to tweet Ryan’s answer!
5 – Minuca Elena
Expert Roundup Blogger at MinucaElena.com / Facebook – Twitter – Google+ – Pinterest
I use many tools that help me with my work, like plugins and SEO tools, but one of my favorite tools, indispensable to me is Grammarly. English is not my native language so when I started working online I used to do lots of spelling and grammar mistakes.
It looks very bad and unprofessional to have grammar mistakes in your articles. A small thing like that could make your readers leave your blog and stop reading your posts.
Luckily for me, I discovered Grammarly that helps me tremendously with my writing. I used the premium plan, and not only that it shows me all my typos but it also offers me the explanation for grammar mistakes.
Thanks to this tool I managed to improve my English a lot.
Bonus tip: don't waste time by writing your content on word files and then uploading them on Grammarly site. Just install the extension and you can use Grammarly anywhere on your browser (on Gmail, Facebook, or even directly on your site).
[icon twitter] Click here to tweet Minuca’s answer!
6 – David Hartshorne
Freelance Writer at Azahar Media / Twitter – LinkedIn – Pinterest – Facebook
I guess there are two ways to answer this question.
First, I’d say that the best way to create better blog content is to practice writing blog content.
Before you think about using any magic tools, you should refine your own skills. When I started blogging a few years ago, I didn’t have any blogging experience. Now, I know what I’m doing because I’ve continued to write more and more blog content. Practice makes perfect!
Second, to help me create better blog content, I use Grammarly. I was always good at spelling and grammar at school, and I'm good at spotting errors, but I still make a few mistakes when I'm writing. So, part of my writing process involves using Grammarly in the editing and proofreading phase. Clients love receiving error-free content.
[icon twitter] Click here to tweet David’s answer!
7 – Dmitri Kara
SEO Specialist at Fantastic Cleaners / Facebook
Many neglect the importance of being a conscientious blogger, but in my humble experience well written, well-styled and well-optimized blogs CAN convert leads to bookings!
My personal secret weapon is the plugin Ultimate Shortcodes – it is a simple yet efficient plugin that offers a solid library of shortcodes for you to make any blog post visually aesthetic. You can override CSS classes and further customize how your blogs feel and look. The nifty tool allows you to drastically improve the visual experience of your readers.
A practical example would be shortcodes for beautiful and mobile-friendly tabs. You can fit hundreds and even thousands of words in 2, 3, 4, easily-usable tabs or more, which will shorten the physical length of your blogs and thus provide a better user experience.
The tool offers many amazing features like accordions, custom checklists, CTA’s and more. The best thing for me is that I have control and if I want to, I could tamper the CSS classes within the tool itself, to adjust colors, the font-size and pretty much anything I want! Simply an invaluable tool that helps me poor passion in any blog I craft.
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8 – Vishwajeet Kumar
Author/Founder of ImbloggingTips / Facebook – LinkedIn – Twitter – Google+
I am using Grammarly to create my blog content. I have been using it for the past 6 months and really love it. When this software finds a grammar mistake, it provides a detailed flash card with explanations and examples of how to improve the sentence.
One of the unique features I found in Grammarly is its ability to contextually analyze your text for different genres of writing. Before you click Start Review, take a moment to consider who your audience will be. Options include general, business, academic, technical, creative and casual. This is helpful because different types of writing require different kinds of analyses.
Grammarly is a good grammar checker if English isn’t your first language or if you don’t proficient in Writing. You can even change the preferences in Grammarly from American to British English and back again, a feature I use regularly.
Grammarly helps me to create error-free content and also do the proofreading for my content. I highly recommend this tool to newbie bloggers who are just entered the blogging universe.
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9 – Raelyn Tan
Blogger at RaelynTan.com / Facebook – Twitter – Pinterest
I definitely have to use Grammarly when I write my articles. Grammarly is a free grammar checker that eliminates any grammar errors you make and improves your writing. It picks up any errors I make without me having to put in any additional effort.
With English being my first language, I thought that language errors would not be an issue for me. Well, that was until I downloaded Grammarly and realized that I still make certain language errors without me realizing it! It is also especially useful if you are not a native English speaker. By the way, it is also 100% free!
[icon twitter] Click here to tweet Raelyn’s answer!
10 – Ashley Faulkes
Founder of MadLemmings / Twitter – Google+ – Pinterest
I make a lot of use of Thrive Architect. This allows me to quickly and easily add interesting elements to my posts to help users navigate, read and learn more easily. And at the same time, it makes my content stand out.
Let me give you a few examples:
- If you have a lengthy post with a lot of sections, you can make it easier for people to navigate to a relevant section by using the Table of Contents element provided by Thrive Architect. All with the click or two of your mouse.
- You can add content upgrades (you know those yellow/obvious boxes with downloadables for your awesome content) easily using the Content Box by making a bright colored box with a download link (opt-in) form.
- Making more stylish layouts like columns or even just aligning things better (images, boxes, videos etc) is done in a snap with the column layout element or just adding padding or margins (CSS stuff).
- Reviews. If you do reviews for your products you can create your own box at the top with a summary or your rating, pricing, description etc. Normally you need to buy a plugin.
Or, you can even build complete pages (and websites) all without the skills of a designer. If you want to see how easy this tool is to use and some of the stunning things you can do with it (easily and fast) you can check out some detailed videos I have on my Youtube channel.
[icon twitter] Click here to tweet Ashley’s answer!
11 – Zac Johnson
Founder of Blogging.org / Twitter
Before creating any type of content for my website or blog, I like to analyze the focus keyword and also the competition for content that is already out there.
Often times, I will use a tool like SEMRush to see what type of search volume a particular keyword has, what other keyword variations or phrases people search for, and the type of content my competition is creating for the same keywords. After that, I will go to Google and take a look at all of the different content that is currently ranking on the first page.
The end goal here should be how to not only provide value to your audience but to also have better content in the process.
[icon twitter] Click here to tweet Zac’s answer!
12 – Jason Brooks
Managing Director of UK Linkology / Facebook
I'm a digital marketer with a specialization in SEO (specifically link building) so although readers always come first, my bias is towards tools that can help me to get articles ranked better.
My process begins with identifying pages that we need to beat in the SERPs and then analyzing them to understand how best to structure the content to get the best results. My go-to tool for this is the Keyword Tool and Content Assistant in Cognitive SEO.
I can plug in any keyword and it will return the pages ranking with metrics such as word count and the number of keywords being focused on. The best part of the tool is the content assistant where you can paste in your content and it will analyze the content that is already ranking and suggest the keywords you need to include to compete.
There are similar standalone tools out there like webtexttool so if you don't need all the other stuff in Cognitive you could save a few dollars.
[icon twitter] Click here to tweet Jason’s answer!
13 – Luis Correia
Founder of Income Prodigy / Facebook – Twitter
My favorite go-to and must-use tool to help me create really better blog content — and podcast content, as well — is Ahrefs.
Well, for a number of good and valid reasons.
I’ll just name a few for the sake of brevity.
Ahrefs is an incredibly complete all-in-one SEO (and, at the same time, social) tool that I always make full use of to find tons of new content topic ideas to write about.
There are several ways to find these topics ideas: you can use their Keyword Explorer tool (which is their keyword research feature and it’s the ideal thing for SEOs); their Site Explorer tool to spy on your competitor’s keywords and most successful topics; or their Content Explorer tool to find the most shared content on any topic of your choosing.
All these great Ahrefs’ features help me find (and, consequently, write about) the best content ideas that I know, for sure, that my audience is searching for while making sure the posts I publish will also have a good response on social media.
[icon twitter] Click here to tweet Luis’ answer!
14 – Gail Gardner
Small Business Marketing Strategist at GrowMap / Twitter – Pinterest – LinkedIn – Google+
Deciding on just one tool is a challenge because most content creators use more than one regularly. Testing your titles is really important because if the title doesn’t grab someone’s attention, they will never see your content. Just as important, though, is knowing what people most want to read. For that, we use BuzzSumo.
Their tagline explains: “Analyze what content performs best for any topic or competitor”. We use BuzzSumo to find out what is trending now and to find and analyze the most popular content for any particular topic or keyword phrase. This is useful for doing research, finding content to link to for additional information, and for choosing our topics for our own content.
A limited number of searches can be done for free, but serious writers often spring for the Pro version.
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15 – Srish Agrawal
Branding Consultant at InfoGraphic Design/ Twitter
We all know how important content creation is, but the days of simply creating text and offering it to your audience are coming to an end. With more people accessing the internet through their mobile devices and tablets, not only are they searching for quick answers and visual content, they're also consuming video at faster rates than ever before.
This is why we are currently trying to complement all of our written content with visual content such as infographics and also whiteboard or explainer videos whenever possible. Aside from creating our own infographics, we would recommend others use a tool like Canva, as it’s free to use and has a bunch of infographic templates to work with.
This has worked extremely well and allows us to use platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube to not only reach new audiences in different places, it also allows us to redirect that traffic back to our site while giving our audience different ways to consume our content.
[icon twitter] Click here to tweet Srish’s answer!
16 – Tim Bourquin
Co-Founder of After Offers / Twitter
One tool that we are continually using to improve the type of content we create on our blog is our email list and newsletter. However, to mention an actual tool or service that we recommend, we would say email clean up is extremely important and have used tools like Violanorbert to remove undeliverable or bouncing email.
It takes a lot of time and effort to grow a valuable newsletter, so there really is no better way to get original and authentic feedback from an audience and what they are looking for. This can be done simply by asking them or providing them with a short survey that they can fill out. The more you know about your audience, the better you can create content for them.
Also, you're not just providing a service to your site or business, you are also keeping your audience and customers engaged within your brand, which can make them feel even more appreciated and valued in the process.
[icon twitter] Click here to tweet Tim’s answer!
17 – Kristel Staci
Outreach and Relationship Building Expert at MarketingInfographics.org / Twitter
Being in the infographic marketing space, not only are we actively creating infographics we are also promoting ones from other brands as well. The research that we do beforehand is to see what the most shared infographics are in the industry today.
Some useful tools we are using are other infographic directories to see which are getting the most views and shares, but we can also use tools like Sumo, which allows us to see where and how other sites are promoting their infographics.
It is a great way to create content and also focus on your marketing strategy in the process. We also benefit from not only creating and promoting content on our sites, we also promote infographics from other brands as well. Once this is done we can reach out to these other brands, and they can help increase traffic and social shares back to our site as well.
[icon twitter] Click here to tweet Kristel’s answer!
18 – Montgomery Peterson
Owner of Original Coloring Pages/ Amazon
Coming up with original content on the internet these days isn't that easy. One area that we have been seeing a lot of progress with is creating visual content and original artwork. In reference to creating content, this is something we are currently doing on other websites to try and lure visitors back to our site.
We have found this to be extremely effective when trying to target parenting forums and resources for teachers — especially with both always looking for freebies and things they can print out from home.
Pixlr is our tool of choice to import our images and brand them with our logo and any other simple design changes we might need to make. It’s great because it’s free and used from right within your browser. With so many different paid resources out there, it's always a benefit to us when we can provide it for free — so that is the tool that we are referencing to as our answer — ‘paid content and visual art services’, which we can compete with and provide our services for free. The monetization play here is to simply bring more awareness back to our site while building a loyal following in the process.
[icon twitter] Click here to tweet Montgomery’s answer!
19 – Joe Daley
When trying to create original and better content for your site, Google is your best friend. We all have access to SEO tools and Link building platforms that allow you to analyze the competition.
SEO Review Tools has a bunch of tools that have been extremely helpful in not only measuring the results of our own sites but also checking out the competition as well. The bulk DA/PA checker is one of my favorites.
While premium and free tools are always great, Google is also a great source for information and providing you with more ideas on exactly what people are searching for and how they are typing it into Google. If you want to see this in action, simply visit Google and search for anything and then scroll down to the bottom of the page and you will find ‘related searches’. This will give you an endless supply of new content ideas you can write about while also staying extremely targeted in the process.
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20 – Ana Hoffman
Founder of TrafficGenerateCafe.com / Twitter – LinkedIn – Youtube – Google+
The only way to create better blog content is to know what ‘better' content is. And the only way to know that is to read. A LOT.
Thus, Feedly is my must-use tool for content creation. In it, I have a few dozens of feeds of some of my favorite blogs and I make the effort to go through that feed and read anything that catches my attention regularly.
Doing that gives me a very good idea of what others write about, how well the topics are covered, and where the gaps are.
[icon twitter] Click here to tweet Ana’s answer!
21 – Daniela Uslan
Writer at DanielaUslan.com / Facebook – Twitter – LinkedIn – Pinterest
My must-use tool for blogging is the CoSchedule Headline Analyzer. Every time I write a new blog post, I first use the headline analyzer to generate at least 10 different headline ideas. The analyzer gives you an overall score based on the type of words in the headline, the length, the tone, and the type of headline you write (i.e how to post, vs. list post, etc.).
You can write the best blog post in the world, but if you don't have a compelling headline, people won't click through and read it or share it. By using the Headline Analyzer, I ensure that every blog post I write has a catchy headline that people will eagerly click on.
[icon twitter] Click here to tweet Daniela’s answer!
22 – Mike Allton
Content Marketing Practitioner at The Social Media Hat / Facebook – Twitter – LinkedIn – Pinterest – Google+
My must-use tool for creating great blog content, and for making my entire blogging process easier, is actually Evernote.
With Evernote, I'm able to capture ideas for blog posts as soon as they occur to me, whether that's in the morning before going into work, or in the midst of a great discussion on social media.
I have a notebook for Blog Posts and every time I have a new idea for a post I add a new note. Within that note, I might just include an initial title or idea, or I might include some notes on what I want to cover, links to articles, or even clip a screenshot. If I have time, I might even begin writing up the post, particularly if the idea involved a story I wanted to share.
As a result, whenever I have designated time for writing – usually Saturday afternoons – all I have to do is sift through the ideas I've created and pick the one that I feel like writing about!
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23 – Russell Lobo
Niche Marketer at RussLobo.com / Facebook
As a niche site owner, the biggest chunk of my day is spent in writing, editing and working on blog content. I personally write or edit over 100,000 words every month.
The BEST tool by FAR is Grammarly. You can opt for the free version of the tool. You can write an article and post it on your blog and then paste the link to check for details or you can upload the word document and let Grammarly do its magic. Along with making sure that your English is appropriate, it also gives you suggestions of synonyms for the most frequently used words so that you can change it.
Another great feature of Grammarly is that it has a plagiarism checker. In case you buy articles online from content writers, you can check that the content is original and not plagiarized from someone.
All in all, Grammarly is an excellent tool that should be a MUST USE for your blog. And the best this is that its free version is more than enough for most of the uses you may have via it. Start using it and make sure that you take out that five minutes after writing every post on your blog, to check the grammar and edit your article via Grammarly.
[icon twitter] Click here to tweet Russell’s answer!
24 – Will Blunt
Founder of Sidekick Digital / Twitter – Google+
Creating great blog content is hard work. Especially in the long term.
Most people can keep the content train going for a little while, but when they hit a snag in the road derailment quickly follows. Before you know it you haven't published anything new and interesting for 12 months.
You need to keep fuelling your tank with creative inspiration, overcome writer's block, and create content when you are snowed under with 101 other priorities.
The truth of the matter is, only a select few individuals and organizations are able to overcome these things and maintain consistency with their content creation goals.
I have found that there are 3 things you need to do to ensure you create great blog content consistently:
- Plan ahead by coming up with 6-12 months of content ideas in advance
- Use an editorial calendar to store these ideas, and set dates for publication
- Create accountability for that schedule by following a strict approval process for each piece of content, that involves more than one stakeholder
No tool can single-handedly make you better at creating great blog content on a consistent basis. But one tool that helps achieve the above 3 outcomes is FlypChart.
[icon twitter] Click here to tweet Will’s answer!
25 – Ron Sela
Growth Marketing Advisor at Ron Sela Consulting/ Twitter
Content creation is not always a walk in the park. While most business marketing strategies are being automated every single day, creating content is still a very manual job. Even so, there are several tools out there to make content creation easier and yet only one of them stands out – Evernote. The app can help create better blog content in the following ways:
Organize your ideas
When collecting ideas, you can drop everything into Evernote, from snippets, notes, web pages, or photos. The tagging system can keep these ideas with a simple tag in different ways, for instance, by idea stage or topic.
The web clipper
Evernote has a robust capability for clipping content from the web. You can search engine pages, add tags and notes, and access them easily. Also, this feature saves automatically any text that you select online, whether it’s a bookmark or a screenshot. This makes it very convenient when you want to read an article later on, or you need to pull information for reference.
Notetaking is simple
Taking notes with this app is simple- you can either start with a template that has a predefined look and feel or create an entirely new note. It lets you read your notes and save the content in a distraction-free setting. Besides, it supports PDF and other file formats. Thus, you can save almost any file including PowerPoint presentations, images, excel spreadsheets, and reports among others.
Evernote is available as a mobile app (Android and iOS) and desktop app (Windows and Mac), so you can put down your ideas whenever inspiration strikes. Also, these apps synchronize automatically so long as you have an internet connection. This is crucial while creating better blog content as it will continuously save and sync your work.
Evernote is one of the best tools to create better blog content. From research notes and to-do lists to writing entire pieces of articles, the app has proven useful at each step or writing and editing process.
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26 – Deepak Sharma
Manager at Taurus Knight / Twitter
One of the most important things when it comes to your blog is that it should have excellent content. But more importantly, the blog post should look good. The best way to make a blog post look good is to add a lot of images. For this, my go-to resource tool is Canva.
Canva I a site which allows you to easily create blog post images and edit it. And the best thing is that Canva is free. You can use it for creating blog post images and also if you want, special images exclusively for social media like Facebook and Pinterest. Each social platform has a different specification for the size of the best image and Canva helps you edit your blog post image accordingly
[icon twitter]Click here to tweet Deepak’s answer!
At the very core of blogging is the ability to communicate your ideas and thoughts in a clear and concise manner. Therefore, it's no surprise that Grammarly is chosen by many as their blogging tool of choice. This tool is especially helpful for non-native English writers to ensure that their blog content is comprehensible enough to their audience.
For some bloggers, they prefer a more analytical approach that guarantees their content to be better than their competitors'. If you are looking for such a tool, then Ahrefs is something that you should seriously consider. Aside from helping you spy on your competitor's content, this tool also aims to improve your site's SEO performance so you can rank higher for your target keywords.
If you want to approach your blogging in a more organized manner then you need to use Evernote. If inspiration kicks in or something you see outside of work can be used as blog content, it doesn't matter if you're away from your computer. All you need to do is capture them using Evernote on your phone or tablet, which seamlessly syncs with your desktop app. From there, you can expand your idea into a killer post.
Of course, blogging can be more than just words. Sometimes, the best way to communicate your message is through images and photos. They can also complement your writing so you can fully flesh out your thoughts to your readers. For that, you may need a tool like Canva. It helps you create different visual content for your blog so you can present your point of view in a compelling manner.
The blogging tools above got more than one vote from the rest. However, it doesn't mean that the tools suggested by others pale in comparison. In fact, they are just as good and, in some cases, better. It simply depends on your objective and what you wish to achieve from blogging. From there, CoSchedule Headline Analyzer, Flypchart, or Feedly are legitimate choices as tools for your blogging needs.
From the survey above, one thing is clear – you will need blogging tools to succeed.
They are not essential in the strictest sense, but there are necessary nonetheless so you can do more with your blog. Deciding which one to use should be made easier by the suggestions made by the best bloggers above. It's now all about following through with those tools for your blog and making it work. Good luck!