Top Blogging / Website Design
Whenever I start setting up a new website, my go-to hosting company has always been Bluehost. This website you’re on right now is hosted through Bluehost!
There are many companies out there that offer hosting services, but if you are just starting out, Bluehost is hands-down my favorite. And if you don’t yet have your domain picked out, you can get that right from Bluehost as well!
Installing WordPress on Bluehost is incredibly easy. I highly recommend Bluehost and you can get started for as low as $3.95/month by using the link on the left-side of the screen.
Divi Theme – Elegant Themes
So, I just recently switched to Elegant Themes (Divi Theme in particular), and I couldn’t be happier. I have been completely redesigning this entire website with the Divi Theme Live Builder. To be honest, it has been a lot of fun.
Control almost every aspect of the look and feel of your website with Divi. If you haven’t started your website yet, I’d recommend checking out this theme. Elegant Themes offers a 30-day money back guarantee – “No Questions Asked,” so if it’s not for you, you can easily get your money back.
If you already have your heart set on a theme, but like the idea of the live builder, go check out the Divi Builder Plugin. You get a lot of the same, great features from the Divi Theme, without needing to switch out of your current theme.
Blog Designer Pro
If your blog design is getting old, check out Blog Designer Pro to help change things up. I’ve used Blog Designer Pro for the last year and really love how easy it to change up the look of my blog posts.
You can design your blog’s front page AND you can change the designs of your actual posts. Full honesty here, I recently switched out of using Blog Designer Pro for the individual posts. Not because I don’t like it, but it is simply not working for me right now. I still highly recommend this to anyone interested in new designs!
However, I still use Blog Designer Pro for my blog’s main page. I actually combined two separate layouts to give me the “Featured Post” section and show the rest of the posts.
The customer service at Solwin Infotech (creator of Blog Designer Pro), are really easy to work with and they actually helped with recoding some of my old theme to make Blog Designer Pro work for me!
Getting visitors to your site is only half the battle. What happens once they get there?
Leadpages is a fantastic tool for turning visitor into prospective clients. I have recommended Leadpages to many people, and I have yet to hear anything poor about them.
One of the great things with Leadpages is that you get the analytics behind your landing pages. So you’ll know exactly what’s working and what’s not. Leadpages also comes packed with loads of templates that have been proven to work. So if you don’t feel comfortable building your page from scratch, you can start with one of their custom made templates.
Top Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
SEMrush is by far one of the most popular SEO tools on the market, and for good reason. From allowing you to do keyword research and side-by-side domain comparisons all the way to a full-fledged SEO writing assistant, SEMrush is absoulety PACKED full of features.
Keyword research tools, being able to see keyword difficulty, and backlink research are incredibly helpful when tyring to improve your SEO. SEMrush can do all this for you!
I’ve been back and forth between SEMrush and ahrefs (next on the list) for quite some time. Both are great (and rather expensive if I’m being honest), so it really comes down to your own personal preference.
The cost alone can be a huge comittment, so you can give SEMrush’s free trial a look before diving in!
Ahrefs is another great SEO tool when it comes to research. Between ahrefs and SEMrush, I have spent the most time playing with ahrefs’ keyword backlink tools and this is the tool that I am currently using right now.
Much like SEMrush, ahrefs has so many tools that you get access to (probably more tools than you would ever use). You get the typical keyword research tools, backlink analysis tools, and competitor analysis tools that will help you on your SEO journey.
Their staff is amazing, and they put out great high quality videos often to help you take your SEO to the next level. Even if you are on the SEMrush train instead of ahrefs, ahrefs’ videos are definitely work checking out.
Also similar to SEMrush, the price isn’t the cheapest, but you can try out their $7 trial of ahrefs before you commit to the investment.