There is so much content out there. The internet is completely saturated with it. Think of a topic and chances are there’s a bunch of blogs on it already - especially in industries like Hospitality, Technology and Manufacturing.
Even with this content saturation, blogging should be a central part of your marketing strategy if plan on having any success at ranking highly in Google and driving traffic to your site.
You just have to make sure your content is better than the tsunami of mediocre content currently flooding the internet.
We know it can be difficult if you’re not a natural writer. Thankfully, this is 2019 and there is a seemingly endless list of tools out there to help you take your content to the next level. Most of them are going to charge you and if you use several tools it can chip away at your budget.
But we still want you to be able to produce great content because we know how powerful the inbound methodology can be. That’s why we put together this list of free tools.
(We’re ruling out tools that offer free trials because they’re not going to help you long-term unless you start paying.)
These are the 6 battle-tested free tools we have used / currently use to help craft blogs for ourselves and our clients:
1. Google’s Keyword Tool
3. Coschedule Headline Analyser
5. Yoast SEO
Before you start writing anything, you HAVE to research the keywords you plan to use. There is no point in writing a blog about something people aren’t searching for. You won’t get an increase in traffic. And you’ll get frustrated when you don’t see any results for your hard work.
If you come out swinging wildly, you’re going to miss more than you’ll hit and you’ll quickly burn out. At which point you’ll probably throw in the towel, and moan about how blogging doesn’t work.
Of course it didn’t, your content is lacking relevance and impact.
Google’s keyword tool is perfect for beginners. It’s free, (fairly) easy to use, and contains all the data you would ever need to focus a blog around a keyword.
In order to use this incredibly powerful keyword research tool, you need to get an AdWords account. Yes, it’s free.
If you don't want to sign up for an Adwords account, you have another option - UberSuggest.
This is a really powerful tool created by marketing guru Neil Patel - we're surprised it's free but it's an effective strategy to get his domain a tonne of backlinks (like this one).
With UberSuggest you can reverse engineer your competitors’ SEO (including backlinks), content marketing, and social media marketing strategies - it's ridiculous how much data it gives you! You can then take what's working for them, improve the strategy further and gain a huge competitive advantage.
And it's completely free. We really can't recommend UberSuggest enough.
We all know titles are important. They are what grab the attention of people scrolling past memes and videos of Theresa May dancing. *Shudder*
But you might still be underestimating their importance:
“Five times as many people read the headline as read the body copy. When you have written your headline, you have spent eighty cents out of your dollar.” - David Ogilvy, The Father Of Advertising
The Coschedule Headline Analyser is great for working through different title strategies.
It’s free but it’s now behind a form fill. Don’t let this hurdle trip you. It’s too great of a tool to turn your nose up at dropping your email.
Great writing is key to executing your blog content strategy because, as I said before, the internet is filled with mediocre content.
That’s why Grammarly is my favourite tool on this list. I’d go as far as to say this is a MANDATORY tool for any blog writing.
It helps you ensure proper grammar and spelling in your blogs without interrupting your flow. Word and Google Docs will pick up spelling errors but it won’t pick up when you’ve used a correct word in the wrong place.
Grammarly will also tell you how difficult your writing is to read. People want easy to digest content, not academic essays. If your blogs score poorly, you’ll need to shorten your sentences and remove longer words.
It isn't perfect, but neither are humans or regular spell/grammar check. As long as you are reading things and not just blindly clicking the corrections, I think it's a great tool.
Bonus: You can add it to your browser as an add-on so you don’t have to type everything in a word document to check spelling and grammar. It has stopped me firing off emails riddled with errors more than once. It also works with WordPress.
If your reading about free blogging tools, you’re probably using WordPress. That’s fine. Better than fine if you use this plugin.
I use it. Everyone uses it. You should too. It’ll help you optimise your posts for search engines by showing you what you’re doing well and what you need to tweak. Once you install the plugin, you’ll find it under your post. It’ll look something like this:
Compressor.io is browser-based image compression. This is important for SEO, as uncompressed images slow down your site!
You have to break up your blog text with impactful imagery to stop people from getting bored and clicking away. But, in your blogging tool arsenal, you NEED a tool to compress those fancy images you’re creating.
Our designers do it in their Adobe software, but Compressor.io will do the job.
Drag your image in, it compresses it and gives you a download link.
Bonus Tip: Use PixaBay for free, high-quality images.
Over to you!
There you have it. These are the top 6 free blogging tools you should be using to make your blogging life run a lot smoother.
Remember, competing for the attention of your audience is getting harder and harder. If you are serious about having content perform well, rank highly and bring in leads, take advantage of every tool you can.
Here are a few hand-picked resources to help you continue on your journey to great content: