7 Best free resources when you learn how to start a blog
When you learn how to start a blog, it can cost you more than you anticipated. A lot of blogs will say it can cost you about $5 to start a blog. To start a blog, there are a lot of components that require subscription payments.
However, free programs that will help you start a blog for little to no money, are great starter tools. These free alternative tools will help you learn how to start an email marketing campaign, how to make Pinterest pins, and how to start social media management. While each of these tools has paid options, most are great beginner blogger programs.
Spending a lot of money for a hobby that might not give you to most return investment, especially if you are just starting out and unsure if you will stick with blogging, would not be the best option to pursue at first. I would learn basics on free or cheaper options before you put a lot of your money into your blog.
These free blog resources are extensions of starting a blog and not related to blog hosting, website creation, or URL domains.
It can be overwhelming when learning everything that goes into starting a blog. Everyone is telling you to post to social media, send out emails to promote products, create killer content in various formats, and more.
The one good thing about starting a blog is the community you gain from working with fellow bloggers. We want to help and watch you succeed just as much as we want to reach success ourselves.
So, in that spirit, I am going to offer you free resources to try when you learn how to start a blog. Blogging shouldn’t be expensive until you can invest the necessary resources towards improving and investing in your online business.
Free stock photos: Pexels
I’m a big advocate for Pexels. They provide free high-resolution stock photos for all of your photographic needs. Not only do they provide free stock photography, but they also allow you to upload your own stock photography to their site.
You’re allowed unlimited downloads on Pexels. If you’re trying to make a Pinterest graphic for a blog post, try out a few options until you find the best stock photograph that will fit your needs.
Not only has a great selection of photos, but they also make it easy to search and find your best stock photo. You can narrow your search by color or branding, or even exclude types of photos.
Paid version: Shutterstock
Related Content: Pexels: Why it's one of my favorite free stock photography websites
Pinterest Pins: Canva or Gimp
Both of these options are free to use. Canva provides you with free, easy-to-use Pinterest pin templates to teach you how to make Pinterest graphics. Gimp is more of a free version of Adobe Photoshop. If you want to make Pinterest pins without using pre-designed templates, try using Gimp.
If you’re brand new to blogging and design, stick with Canva. Canva will give you design templates that will help you increase blog traffic. Canva gives you many design templates for different social media platforms, but it is most widely used for Pinterest and small web graphics.
Gimp is a more advanced form of Canva, as it does not provide any design templates, but still allows you to create graphics. If you have a bit more knowledge about design, try Gimp and create your own Pinterest pins and web graphics for your blog. If you need inspiration, you might download Canva and learn what styles connect to your brand from its graphics for your own blog.
Paid Version: Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop
Related Content: When and how to use Canva design templates for your business
Content Management: Google Drive or Asana
I started using Google Drive when I learned how to start a blog but have moved to working with a free version of Asana.
Google Drive offers many options that will help you start a blog. You can create a content calendar with either Google Sheets or Google Calendar. Both of these options can help you plan and coordinate content management for your blog. Whether you stick with only scheduling your blog posts on these formats or you extend it to social media, e-mail marketing or other tasks to create your blog content, these will help you stay on track to stay consistent and reach your blogging goals.
Asana is purely a content management tool. Asana is able to divide tasks to multiple people, multiple projects and two-formats to view assigned projects. I like Asana more so than Google Drive now because Asana helps you see more regarding your prioritized tasks throughout your week or month. It’s much more user-friendly and organized than its Google counterpart.
Paid Version: Upgrade Asana
Copy-editing: Grammarly or Hemingway app
If you’re not accustomed to writing or editing, you might need to invest in a copy-editing or proofreading tool. Grammarly and the Hemingway app are great free resources for bloggers. Not only can you check your grammar, but these tools will help beginner bloggers to check social media posts, sentence structure, voice, and more.
Grammarly requires you to sign-up for your account but you can connect it to your Facebook or Google account. It can also provide a free plug-in for Firefox users. This way Grammarly can check your writing within the program you’re using rather than uploading it into another program. The free version of Grammarly will help you discover spelling errors, punctuation mistakes, and provide you with an overall score based on your writing.
The Hemingway app is similar to Grammarly, however, it does not require users to sign-up. I would use the Hemingway app for more long-form and formal projects rather than smaller projects, like social media or copywriting assignments. The Hemingway app provides you with a more formalized analysis of your writing.
Paid Version: Upgrade Grammarly
Social Media Management: Hootsuite
You’ve probably heard that you need to be posting regularly to social media to increase blog traffic and gain loyal followers to your blog. It’s recommended to start various social media accounts for your blog, but it’s not necessary to create an account on every social media platform.
Hootesuite is great when you’re learning how to start a blog. For the free version of Hootsuite, bloggers are only able to use 3 media accounts and schedule up to 30 posts. Not only does this focus your efforts to a few social media accounts, but it also makes your social media scheduling into bite-sized pieces. You aren’t worried about creating a months-worth of content in a weekend. Instead, you might have two-weeks worth of content at one time.
Hootsuite is great, because, not only can you post to different platforms, you can also post to them at the same time. You aren’t limited to making a single post for each platform. You can post simultaneously to LinkedIn, Instagram, and Facebook at the same time. Be warned, each platform still works by its own rules, so make sure you understand how each works before hitting ‘schedule.’
Paid Version: Upgrade Hootsuite, ConvertKit
E-mail Marketing: MailChimp or Mailerlite
E-mail Marketing is new to me. I have done very little in this area but had to research it the most before selecting a service that would fit my needs. Not only did I look for a user-friendly version, but a free or low-cost version, to save me money while I learned about e-mail marketing.
MailChimp has been a great free-resource for bloggers over the years, especially if you’ve just started your blog. Not only does it have a free option for new bloggers, but it also offers many tutorials to help you learn about e-mail marketing for unknowledgeable beginners.
Mailerlite is similar to MailChimp. I’ve heard many reviews from bloggers and say it might be better for usability if you are a complete beginner, but it is up to you on which program you go with. Mailerlite is great for beginner bloggers as well because it is free while you grow your following and increase your blog traffic.
Paid Version: ConvertKit
Learning how to start a blog can be expensive when you don’t know where to look. Free resources are available when you research different options, but are great for the beginner blogger.
Once you learn about the different programs to promote your blog, you can invest in various programs that will help you increase your blog traffic even more, but it’s important to learn the program or skill and understand why you should invest in a resource before putting your money into blogging.
To learn more about free resources for bloggers, subscribe to my e-newsletter for more blogging tips, successful lifestyle tips, and my own successful lifestyle goals.