Contrary to popular belief, blogging ain’t easy. There’s a lot that needs to happen in order to (coherently) get an idea out of your head, typed up, and sent out into the world.

If you have a blog yourself, you’ve probably spent countless hours, days, and maybe even weeks on a single blog post. And the longer a post takes, the more things seem to get disorganized, am I right?5 Tools to Simplify Blogging \\ Including Canva, Asana, Buffer, and Bloglovin'But guess what? Blogging doesn’t have to be overly complicated or disorganized! There are some amazing free tools out there that can make everything a little quicker, easier, and less stressful for your already too-busy self. Here are my favorite tools and how you can use them:

Canva: For Creating Image Templates

5 Tools to Simplify Blogging // Canva
If you haven’t heard of Canva, you’re in for a real treat. As you can probably see, I use a similar design for all of my blog graphics and I’ve started doing it for Pinterest too. I can literally put those together in a minute because I use a template from Canva. They have hundreds of amazingly designed layouts you can use for free, and they also have a good selection of free photos you can use.

You start off by choosing your template size, whether it be for a blog graphic, Twitter header, Instagram post, etc. I have a single template set up for my blog graphics, so all I have to do is hit the ‘copy’ button, change the image, and edit the text. Having templates for your blog graphics makes life SO much easier and will save you an enormous amount of time.

Asana: For Creating a System

5 Tools to Simplify Blogging // Asana Creating a system or ‘hub’ for everything that goes into running your blog means you’ll always know what needs to get done first if you’re feeling overwhelmed.  By keeping track of tasks that make up your blogging process and adding them to a tool like Asana, you can make sure you never miss an important step.

Example: For each blog post, you might need to do the following things before you hit publish:

  • Find or take a photo
  • Come up with headline ideas
  • Create an outline
  • Draft the post
  • Add SEO
  • Edit your post
  • Schedule to share post on social media

As you do each task, you can check it off and not worry about forgetting anything. I also use Asana for planning out larger projects, and it’s a great tool if you collaborate on projects with others because you can delegate tasks and leave comments on tasks if you have questions.

Asana can be a little overwhelming at first because there’s so much you can do with it, but this video gives a great walk-through.

Pixlr: For Editing Images

5 Tools to Simplify Blogging // PixlrAs someone who works on my blog whenever I get a free moment, I don’t always have access to Photoshop on the computer I’m using. Pixlr is a free, online photo editor that has many of the same functions as Photoshop, and it’s just been a lifesaver for me. I mainly use it for resizing my blog images or creating text graphics because Pixlr lets you use any font that’s already installed on your computer, rather than only giving you, like, 5 font options. I used Pixlr to resize the screen shot of Pixlr above – inception!

Excel Worksheet: For Tracking Analytics

5 Tools to Simplify Blogging // AnalyticsIf you’re pretty clueless when it comes to your blog analytics like I was, this is going to save your life. The ladies at the BBar blog put together a super helpful excel spreadsheet to track your analytics each month and see what’s going on with your audience. They even include instructions for setting up Google Analytics on your blog to make it that much easier.

At the end of every month, I pull up the spreadsheet and just plug in the info I get from Google Analytics, and it automatically calculates my growth from the previous month. It’s also really useful for tracking your social media followers and referral information. I’d recommend adding a column for tracking your ranking on Alexa.com – you just search for your blog and see what it ranks globally and within your country.

Buffer, Tailwind, Etc.: For Scheduling Social Media

5 Tools to Simplify Blogging // BufferI think social media is a huge part of being a blogger these days as you can easily engage with people and drive them to your site. Social media can be a bit of a guessing game when it comes to knowing when and what to post, but there are some great tools that make it simpler for you.

BufferAn amazing tool for scheduling tweets ahead of time and seeing how engaging your tweets really are.

CoSchedule This is one of my favorite tools for planning out blog posts and easily scheduling social media posts to go along with them.

FollowerwonkFind out when your twitter followers are most active instead of guessing. Go to Analyze > Type in your twitter handle > Select Analyze Their Followers. You can also link this up to Buffer so you can schedule your tweets at optimum times.

TweetilyA WordPress plugin that automatically tweets out links to your older blog posts so you can constantly drive traffic to your site.

Tailwind – Tailwind tracks when your Pinterest users are most active and allows you to schedule pins according to those times.

BoardBooster  BoardBooster takes old pins from your Pinterest boards and re-pins them so your feed is constantly updating without you needing to do anything. This one is a game changer if you’re trying to drive traffic to your blog using Pinterest.

+ Bloglovin’: For Finding Out What Your Audience Likes

As a bonus tool, I thought I’d include Bloglovin’ because it’s definitely my favorite way to follow blogs. It’s also incredibly useful for saving other blog posts you like, seeing how many people follow you, but most importantly – seeing what your followers like.

Unlike other blog-following platforms, you can see who has followed you, which means you can check out their profile and see which types of posts they’ve saved to their favorites. That way you get a better idea of the kind of posts your audience like.

What’s your favorite blogging tool?

Photo: Ashley Ella Designs

Tags : blogging
Catherine Beard
Hi, I'm Catherine! I'm a mindset coach who helps creative overthinkers organize their thoughts, overcome their doubts, and uplevel their minds so they can stress less and take action.

36 Comments

    1. Canva is seriously such an amazing tool! I feel like I’m a professional graphic designer when I’m using it (even though I’m nowhere near close haha)

  1. #1. I’ve never used Canva before! My blog is heavily photography based though, so I usually don’t put text over my pictures, but I’m contemplating making my blog more Pinterest friendly by taking more vertical photos and adding graphics, so I’ll be sure to play around with Canva in the process of that! #2. I personally like having all my things in the same place, which is not limited to blogging, so I think I’m going to continue to use the notebook I use for everything :P but Asana looks like a great resource! #3. This is what I always recommend to my friends who don’t have Photoshop :D Luckily for me, I have access to Photoshop. #4. I get too wrapped up in stats, so I’ve tried to pay less attention to them. However, I remember the few times that I checked my Google analytics, I was so overwhelmed by all the information provided. This worksheet really filters the information down! #5. I love, love, love Bloglovin’, but it never crossed my mind to use it as a tool to see what my followers like! This is ingenious!! (!!!) My favorite tip of the bunch; so glad you included it :D -Audrey | Brunch at Audrey’s

    1. I love that you responded to every tool haha! Yeah, sometimes you might not need Canva for blog graphics depending on your style, but it’s a super fun tool to just play around with. AND I agree that having a notebook is great too haha I kind of switch between both. Glad you like the tip about bloglovin’…it’s something not a lot of people might realize!

    1. Seriously, Canva is like a gift from the gods haha! They could probably charge a lot of money for those tools, but thank goodness it’s FREE!

      I’m a boss?? Haha that made me giggle! Thank you, my dear!

  2. This is amazing!! I am definitely checking out that spreadsheet and those social media tools that analyze followers. This is so cool. Thank you so much for sharing!

  3. Absolutely LOVE your post and tips! ♡ I use Photo Scape for editing my photos, it has realy nice options e.g. to resize your pictures, adding text, correct lightning… For scheduling my tweets I use Tweetdeck. But why the h*ll everybody told me, I can’t schedule Instagram pictures?! THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR ENLIGHTEN ME! :D

  4. I actually haven’t heard of ANY of these!! Ahhhh, thank you so much for sharing! Looks like I have some work to do haha. I agree with Nikki, I need to find a few hours to sit and get inspired…maybe with a glass of wine as well. ;)

  5. ooh I learned a lot from this post and have added a few things to my to-check-out list. Thank you. Do you have any idea of how to get your site to rank on alexa? I know you can pay for it, but I’m on a #stayscrappy plan, so that isn’t an option.

    1. You know, I actually gave up checking alexa because it never seemed to give me consistent information. I think the best things to do are make your content SEO friendly and to just share your content everywhere (especially because Pinterest results now come up on Google)!

  6. Im in love with your blog! Specially this post, its so helpful. I just started my blog and i will definitely take into account these tips. I use vsco to edit my pictures whenever i dont have photoshop but never heard of Canva i will give it a try!

    Thank you and keep the good posts coming!

  7. Any experience with click-to-tweet? I’ve been trying to install the plugin and their directions don’t match the current interface. BTW, I use and LOVE Buffer. I tweet from it almost exclusively.

  8. These are really great tips! I already love Canva, but I had never heard of Pixlr before. I’ve been working rigorously on my editorial calendar and figuring out my social media plan, and apps to use. So, you’ve been me some great tips to try!

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