If you’ve already visited my How to Start a Blog post, you’ll know that there are certain tools you’ll need if you want to start an income-earning blog.

(If you haven’t read that post yet, you’ll want to do that first! That way you have your step-by-step guide to starting a blog – this resources page is meant to go along with that).

If you’re a hobby blogger, you can likely get away with an all-in-one solution, like Squarespace or Wix.

But if you want to grow your blog to the point where it is generating income and supporting you, then you will want a self-hosted WordPress blog, as well as some additional tools:

  • an email marketing platform
  • a way to create pins for Pinterest
  • a pretty, fast, mobile-optimized theme
  • a way to organize all of your blog tasks and create a content calendar

While you can certainly start a blog for very little money (the absolute minimum you need is your domain (usually around $20/year), and hosting ($7.95/month with Bigscoots), investing in a few other tools will help you grow faster, and generally make your life easier.

I wouldn’t recommend investing in them all at once. What I did, is chose one item at a time, whichever I felt was going to make the biggest immediate difference for me.

Sometimes it’s helpful to take courses to help shorten the blogging learning curve. While there is tons of information on the internet for free, it can take a lot of time and trial-and-error to hone your own systems. Taking a course is like a shortcut – you’ll spend less time going back and fixing mistakes, and more time growing your blog.

There are certain tools or software that can make blogging infinitely easier. Such as SEO (Search Engine Optimization) tools, or apps that help you design pins for Pinterest, or a robust email marketing platform.

And then, of course, there are the physical tools you’ll need for your blog. At minimum, you’ll need some kind of a computer, and some kind of a camera to take photos.

I’ll share what I use, and my personal recommendations below!

Blogging Courses

There is a ton of information available on the internet about how to start a blog... which can be both a blessing, and a curse.

There is a lot of contradictory information out there, and when you're trying to cherry-pick bits and pieces of information, sometimes you end up more confused than when you started.

Sometimes it's nice to get all the info, from start to finish, from ONE person. When it's all laid out neatly in step-by-step form.

I didn't invest any money in courses at the beginning of my blogging journey, and frankly, it set me back several years. I was basically a hobby blogger, and had no idea how to create a business with my blog.

My blog didn't start growing until I actually invested in a few basic courses.

Frankly, after taking these courses, I ended up deleting a lot of my content, because I realized it was in no way contributing to the growth of my blog.

None of these courses are very expensive, and if you want to start blogging as a business, you will be much further ahead if you set everything up correctly from the beginning.

Consider it an up-front business expense and an investment in your blog.

Blogging Tools

Starting a blog requires certain tools and bits of software to help you be successful.

I try to keep the tools I use to a minimum, both to save money, and also to be more efficient.

These tools are the ones that I wouldn't be without.

Plug-Ins

When starting a Wordpress Website, there are several plugins that I consider essential. You don't want to have too many plugins, as they will slow down your site. But here are the ones I wouldn't live without.

Blogging Equipment

You very likely already have all the equipment you need to start a blog.

If you have some kind of a computer, and some kind of a camera (even if it's your smart phone), you can start your blog!

But over time, you may be ready to upgrade some of your tools, in order to improve your blog and continue to grow.

I hope that gives you a sense of what tools I find the most helpful for blogging.

I have tried many different tools over the years, and the ones I have listed above are all the ones I consider essential at this point in my blogging journey.

While you can certainly blog without these things (and if you have a very tight budget, I recommend just grabbing a domain name, $7.95 hosting, and a free WordPress theme – like Kadence) and getting started. Don’t let these other costs hold you back. You will still learn a TON in the process of setting up your blog and learning how to write high quality posts, and take good photographs. As your skills improve and you’re ready to invest more, maybe choose one thing that you feel will help you grow faster.