Feedly•• It is a popular
alternative to Google Reader•• It is very similar to Google Reader.•• It has a cleaner interface and more options than Google Reader.•• Moving from Google Reader is a painless process, offering a synchronization option.
Trapit•• You can “trap” various
topics.•• It aggregates articles from around the web onthese trapped topics.•• You can discover new blogs and trends within aniche.•• You can trap very specific topics.
Pulse•• It is very similar
to Trapit only without the opportunity for specific subjects.•• It seems to get the majority of its content from more of the major blogs/publishers, so you won’t have to sort through some of the lower quality blogs like you do in Trapit.•• It is a great source of trends within your industry or niche.
Google Trends•• You can enter
a phrase and Google will show you how it is trending on their search engine and other related keywords that are “rising”.•• Use this in combination with previously mentioned tools (discover trends, then use this tool to see more opportunities) to stay on the pulse within your niche.
Google Alerts•• It will help
you discover some of the trends within your niche.•• Start using it right now.•• Use this tool to get constant alerts on terms and sites of your choosing to see what other bloggers are writing about.
Talkwalker Alerts•• It is another
perfectly good replacement for Google Alerts.•• It is so similar to Alerts, if you visit their website (save for the minor design differences) you would think you were setting up an alert using Google.
Inbound.org•• This is a website/tool
that unfortunately is exclusive to issues of SEO, digital marketing, content marketing, etc.•• Try to find a similar website in your niche that you can get inspiration for content from.•• This is useful because if you visit it enough, you may start to notice which topics your niche finds most valuable.
Reddit•• There is a subreddit
(or topic/subject/niche) for everything you could possibly think of – and then some.•• Find a relevant subreddit, see what people are talking about/upvoting, and get inspired.
Evernote•• You can keep track
of just about any thought, link, or image that you want into an organized system of notes.•• Use it to keep track of content ideas that you come up with, articles that you come across that you love, and just about any other thing that you need to remember.
Wunderlist•• It helps you create
lists.•• Its delightfully minimalistic approach makes creating and organizing lists a breeze.•• It helps to increase your productivity.
Google CalendarUse it to create
editorial calendars (especiallyuseful for the blogs with multiple authors), keepyour future blog posts organized, and keep youon track for publishing.
SelfControl•• Use it when you
really need to get something done and cannot risk the temptations of your favorite distractors.•• You can blacklist any website you want for a set period of time (for up to one day).•• Make sure you really want to blacklist it, because once you hit the start button you will not be able to reach that website in any way on any browser until that timer runs out.
Google Docs•• If your blog
or website has multiple authors oreditors, it is an excellent tool for collaboration.•• You can use it to begin writing a post and haveany other person that the document is “shared”with to contribute on it in real-time.•• It is especially useful for real-time collaborationwith remote employees.
After the Deadline•• Install the
browser extension and activate it whenever you want instant contextual spell checking, advanced style checking, and intelligent grammar checking on the blog post you are writing.•• It acts as an additional defense against grammar and spelling mistakes.
Plagium• If you manage content
for a site, this is a great (and free!) tool that allows you to quickly check if a block of text was already published elsewhere on the web.• With a recent spike in guest blogging, it is highly recommended to use this if your blog frequently accepts guest blog posts in order to avoid accepting plagiarized blog posts.
GIMP•• It is the best
open source image editor available.•• It is easy to use open source.•• It offers a considerable amount of support and documentation for a free product.
pixlr•• It is a free
image editing solution.•• It offers three different solutions: Pixlr-o-matic, Pixlr Express, and Pixlr Editor.•• It is a great solution for bloggers who want to quickly edit images without starting up RAM heavy image editors.
thinglink•• You can “create rich
images with music, video,sound, text and more.”•• You can tag images with touch points that givemore life and context to the image.•• It is a great, fun and unique way to furtherengage your readers.
Aspect Ratio Calculator•• It is
a very simple tool that is dedicated to onlyone thing.•• You can use it to quickly find correctdimensions of an image that you want to scaleusing HTML markup.
Page Ruler•• It is a
simple tool.•• It is available only to those with Chrome.•• You can quickly get the width or height in pixelsof whatever is on screen.•• It is a good way to see what dimensions wouldlook best when you are previewing your blogpost which can save some time by not having toguess and test.
Color Picker•• It is a
Chrome extension.•• You can quickly see the hex code for any color that is on screen.•• It allows for quick CSS markup or it can save you the time of taking a screenshot, opening that in an image editor and then discovering the color from there.
Google Keyword Tool•• It is
a must-have tool for any blogger.•• You can enter search phrases (or parts of a potential blog post title) and see how much search traffic it gets during a month.•• It offers other keyword suggestions.•• It is very useful to see what terms are worth optimizing on your site and the competitiveness for each one.
Übersuggest•• Are you having trouble
thinking of a blog posttitle even after using Google’s Keyword Tool?•• Do you have a good title but it isn’t as relevantas you would like it to be?•• Enter key search phrases or any other ideas thatyou may have using this tool and get hundredsof similar search phrases.
soovle•• It is similar to
Übersuggest.•• It returns you the most popular search terms that are most closely related to whatever you enter. It is not exclusive to Google. It also provides results from Amazon, Yahoo, Bing, YouTube, Answers.com, and Wikipedia.
Yoast•• It is easily one
of the best SEO plugins for WordPress users.•• It makes it easy for a typical blogger to optimize their post for SEO and see how their blog post will appear on the search engine results page.•• After you choose a focus keyword, it shows you where it may be useful to include that phrase (mostly in the meta data) and reminds you of basic SEO best practices.
Majestic SEO•• Use it to
see how many backlinks your postsare getting, where they are coming from, anda plethora of other information that is useful toanyone engaged in search engine optimization.•• It is free with registration for the basic featuresbut requires a membership for anyone whowants more information.
Open Site Explorer•• It is
similar to Majestic SEO, but offers fewerfeatures to the blogger on a budget.•• It offers the site’s domain authority and thepage’s page authority – something that MajesticSEO does not do.
sproutsocialIt is a social media
monitoring tool:•• get a quick overview of all of your accounts on the dashboard•• check out your smart inbox•• see how your tweets or updates to your timeline are doing•• schedule your messages•• get full reports
MailChimp•• If you are considering
email marketing, look no further.•• It is one of the best and most frequently used by amateur bloggers and SMBs alike.•• It offers you e-newsletter templates to choose from. You can customize every little thing and make it exactly how you please.•• The reporting features that are offered are very thorough and they make A/B testing your emails easy and fun.
Lucky Orange• It provides unique
analytics about your site that you may not see in Google Analytics – all at a fairly reasonable price.• Two of the most notable features are the mouse heat maps and the visitor recordings.
Wibiya•• It places a bar
at the bottom of the browser window encouraging visitors to make a certain action.•• There are several options available as of now, including social buttons, discount offers, and recommended readings.•• This would be a great way to increase site engagement and place your social buttons in an easy to find location.
Polldaddy•• It provides surveys to
get customer and reader feedback.•• You can create unique surveys which you can then turn into blog posts that your audience will be interested in.
Odosketch•• It provides a canvas
and a set of cool brushes and lets you go to town.•• You can share these sketches and see the process that the artist went through in creating it.
Quickmeme•• Using memes in your
blog posts can be a great way to show that you are in tune with popular internet culture.•• You have to know how each meme is used, and you have to have some good copy in mind.