Resources

I thought it would be helpful to include a Resources page that could be a central hub showing all the tools and resources I use and recommend.

On this page I’ll provide you with details of the various products, web sites etc that I use regularly and think could be beneficial to you.

Please note that some of these links are affiliate links.  This means that if you purchase the product after clicking on my link, I could receive a commission from the company that provides the product.  It doesn’t cost you any extra to purchase this way, and the money that I receive goes towards running this website.

On this page I will only recommend products and services that I have experience with, and that I believe in.

Getting Started

  • WordPress. This is the blogging platform that I use for this site. It’s free and easy to use.
  • DomainCondo.com. All my domain names are purchased through domain condo.com. They are easy to use and good value.
  • HostGator.Com. Many of my blogs are hosted through HostGator.com. I’ve found them to be reliable and they provide a range of good value hosting plans including the option to host multiple blogs under the one plan.
  • BlueHost.com is another option for hosting. They are building a reputation for being a reliable and customer focused hosting company.

Keyword Research

  • Google Keyword Tool. I use this tool a lot when I’m researching keywords. It is helpful when planning AdWords campaigns, but also extremely useful when writing articles that are aimed at specific search terms.
  • SEO PowerSuiteSEO PowerSuite is SEO software that helps with your keyword and site research. There’s a free version and a paid version of this software.  You may find that the free version does all the things you need it to.  It’ll check how you’re ranking for your keywords, give you information on your competitors and provide ideas to better optimise your site.
  • Market Samurai. This is a great tool.  It helps you do your keyword research to find suitable keywords and niches.  It also helps you evaluate your competition in those niches to determine whether it’s worthwhile competing. It has a rank tracker to help you track your ranking and your backlinks.  It also has tools that help you find suitable content and products for your website.  The free demo gives you a great overview of what it can do, and they have excellent training.

Blogging Resources

  • Aweber. I’ve tried a few email marketing services and I still think Aweber is the best.  They provide a great opt-in email service and have a huge range of customisable sign-up forms that you can use.  Their reporting is fantastic, and they’ve got great delivery rates.
  • Headway WordPress Theme. After using WordPress for a while, you may want to use a theme that provides more options in the design.  I use the Headway theme on my blog and love the choices it gives me in the site design and layout.  I’m still learning about CSS and HTML, but Headway is still very user friendly to someone like me.
  • Genesis Theme – Another good premium WordPress theme option. This offers the basic theme framework plus a huge range of child themes that enable you to get a good looking site up and running quickly.
  • MaxBlogPress Ninja Affiliate.This is a great plugin for managing all your affiliate links. It allows you to add your affiliate link, and then tidy it up to look like a ‘normal’ URL, instead of a long link with lots of different numbers and letters. When you’re writing a blog post and want to link to a product, you select it from a drop-down box in the WordPress menu and it changes your selected text to a hyperlink. A big plus is that if an affiliate link changes, rather than having to edit each post manually to update the link, you do it once in the MaxBlogPress dashboard and it updates every link on your blog. What a time-saver.
  • Roboform Password Management – When you’ve got a few different email addresses and blogs and you’re a member of a few online forums, you realise that having to remember a bunch of different passwords can get a bit painful. Rather than using the same password for all sites (not very safe, is it?) the best option I’ve discovered is to use a password manager like RoboForm. It’s cheap, and keeps everything secure. Better still, I can use it across a bunch of different computers (home, laptop, work) and also on my iPhone and iPad. Everything syncs across devices. The password generator helps me generate strong and secure passwords, and the program remembers them for me. You must use something like this.

WordPress Plugins

All my blogs are built on the WordPress platform. One of the main reasons is the huge range of plugins that are available. Here are some of the premium plugins I use and recommend.

  • Easy WP SEO – When I write my articles I always try and  focus on one or two keywords within the article. This plugin helps me see how I’m going as I’m writing the article, and shows me what I’ve forgotten to do.
  • CommentLuv is a great plugin that gives readers an incentive to leave a comment – a link back to one of their recent blog posts, together with relevant anchor text.
  • Optin Skin – For a while I’d been struggling trying to make attractive email sign up boxes on my blog pages. This plugin makes the process so much simpler, allowing me to choose from a range of pre-built templates. Find out more in my Optin Skin Review.

Internet Marketing Courses

  • Bring The Fresh.  Let’s be honest.  There are so many internet marketing courses out there that you could spend a lot of money (and time) and not get anywhere.  I’ve received some benefit from the Bring the Fresh course. It provides a good overview of how to set up WordPress sites, keyword research and SEO. You can read more about it in my Bring The Fresh Review.

Twitter Tools

  • Social Oomph is a great tool to help you manage Twitter followers. There’s a paid and free version – the demo gives you 7 days of the premium version for free.
  • TweetAdder is a program that helps you search for Twitter followers. It offers a demo that allows you to add up to 250 followers.

Backlinking / SEO Tools

  • ArticleBuilder is a product from Jon Leger that automatically produces articles on a range of topics. If you do any kind of backlinking, you’ll know how frustrating it can be finding suitable articles to use. Article Builder solves that problem. Article Builder Review | Article Builder Site