Who doesn’t love free blogging tools, am I right? When you’re a beginner blogger, It can be difficult to justify paying for expensive blog tools.
This is especially true when you’re not making money with your blog yet.
While starting a blog is a relatively low-cost business to start, the costs can really start adding up if you’re not careful (see the total costs of starting a blog here).
So with that in mind, I decided to scour this vast interweb in the search for the best blogging tools known to mankind (cue the Superman music).
Keep this page saved, because you’re going to want to come back to this page as your blog continues to grow.
And also because I’m keeping this page updated with the best (and most current) free resources available.
Oh and before you leave, make sure and let me know of any other free blogging tools I might have missed in the comments section.
Alright, let’s boogie!
Free blog writing tools
Become a better writer and write better blog posts with the Grammarly browser add-on. The free version helps with misspellings, basic grammar, and punctuation mistakes.
In the pro version (which I’m using to write this post), you get help with readability, word choice, tone adjustments, formality level, formatting, and more.
To start using WordPress, you need a domain name and hosting. For hosting, I recommend starting with Bluehost. Why? Because you get a free domain name and your WordPress blog is set up from the start.
Many bloggers prefer to write their blog posts in Google Docs before moving them into WordPress.
Grades your writing to see how readable your content is. For blogs, your content should be very readable – you’re not writing in a medical journal!
Shows you a readability score and helps you write clear concise sentences.
I use this to find the right letter casing for my blog post titles.
Free tool that ranks your headline (from 1-100) based on readability, SEO, and sentiment (emotion).
Create a few headlines and see which one gets the best score with this free headline tool. While this tool is free, it does require you to register first.
Free blog themes
Astra is the best blog theme, as reviewed on my best blog themes article. It’s the theme I use and recommend.
Avada, created by the team at Theme Fusion, makes designing your blog a cinch. You can customize the fonts, menu, header and footer styles, and anything else you can think of in the WordPress customizer without a bit of coding on your part.
Neve, from ThemeIsle, is a super lightweight theme that’s sure to speed up your WordPress blog.
Hestia, another top theme from ThemeIsle, has a few different layout options so radically transform the way you present your blog.
It’s one of the themes you can install and be comfortable knowing there’s a team behind it actively developing and improving your theme.
Free design tools for bloggers
Canva is my favorite blogging freebie from this list. They have logo templates, Pinterest pin templates, ebook covers, and more.
You can also use Canva to create cheatsheets, checklists, and printables to give out as incentives to join your email list.
While Canva is free, I do have a paid Canva Pro account to use their premium fonts and stock images.
Using a page builder lets you visually build a blog post or a page. It’s a must if you’re creating sales pages or landing pages to get email subscribers.
From the creators of Evernote, Skitch is a simple tool to resize, crop, or annotate images and screenshots.
My favorite feature? On a Mac, Command + Shift + 5 brings up the screenshot tool. You can crop your screenshot, add arrows, and add text. I use this free app for screenshots in my courses where I’m showing a step-by-step process.
If you want to quickly edit images in a browser instead of a standalone app, the free tool BeFunky works great for a quick crop or resize.
Who needs Photoshop when you have Pixlr? This free tool is like a downscaled version of Photoshop, but it still packs a powerful punch.
It is extremely useful if you want to open a PSD file but can’t because you don’t have Photoshop.
If you have Photoshop, just look at this massive list of free PSD templates here. You can use these to create product mockups.
If you don’t have Photoshop and want a done-for-you mockup solution, I recommend MockupShots (not free).
This is a Chrome (and Firefox) browser extension to identify the HEX color code from any point on a page.
Google Fonts are fast-loading and free. Your blog theme likely lets you use Google Fonts. If it doesn’t, you can add it to your blog with the Easy Google Fonts plugin to add that functionality to any blog theme.
I’m using Poppins as of 2021, but have used Montserrat, Open Sans, and Lato in the past.
From Canva, this free blogging tool lets you pair two fonts to see what they look like together.
Oftentimes, you want a different font for your headings and body text.
This tool from Buffer lets you create images quickly for use on social media.
Just choose an image, overlay text, font and you’re all set.
Chrome extension to take screenshots, including full page screenshots.
Free marketing tools for bloggers
I recommend starting your email list with ConvertKit. They are who I use as my email marketing provider. They now have a free plan. Use my link to sign up and unlock email-sending for your first 1,000 subscribers for free.
Pinterest and Instagram scheduler. It is free to try (no credit card required to sign up), but does cost if you want to continue using it.
Free keyword research tools
Here are my favorite free keyword research blogging tools for beginners.
This free keyword tool works by extracting keywords using Google’s autocomplete feature. You can generate hundreds of relevant long-tail keywords for any topic quickly.
Before you write a blog post you must first do keyword research. If you don’t, you will end up writing about something nobody is even searching for!
This is why I always start my blog writing process by first using UberSuggest. While I have the pro version, the free version is just as powerful. The only difference is they limit the number of searches you can do per day.
Use Ubersuggest to get the keyword volume (the number of people looking for this phrase) and a search difficulty score (to see how difficult it would be to rank for that phrase).
Short on keyword ideas? Start typing a keyword and Google will auto-complete your results with the most-searched-for phrases.
Pinterest has an autocomplete feature just like Google does. On Pinterest, search for a keyword and see what other keyword phrases appear afterward.
This is great for finding popular keyword phrases actually being searched for on Pinterest.
Want to write about a popular trending topic? You need to be using Google Trends. While it doesn’t give you hard numbers, it does show you how the search term is trending over time. Pinterest has this too.
Short on keyword ideas? You’re going to regret using this site. It will shit out hundreds of thousands of keyword suggestions in a matter of seconds.
While not actually offering keyword suggestions, Search Console is still tremendously helpful.
Part of keyword research is seeing what keyword phrases you’re getting traffic from. Using Search Console you can see what keywords you rank for, where you rank, and your click-through rate.
Free stock image sites
First of all, you can’t use any image you find from Google on your blog. That’s a surefire way to get into legal trouble.
Luckily you there are plenty of free stock photo sites to help you add visual content to your blog posts. Here are my favorites.
Free WordPress plugins
The Optimole WordPress plugin compresses your images while maintaining the best image quality. Image optimization is a big deal, as uncompressed images can lead to long page load times which has a detrimental affect on your SEO ranking.
Fiddle around with the settings to make sure your images still look sharp. You can also choose to create and serve webp images, a new image format created by Google to improve the loading times of your images.
Adds beautiful share icons (like the ones in this post) to your blog posts.
I use this to turn long affiliate URLs into shorter ones.
Connects to Google Analytics to add your code and displays your stats right on the WordPress dashboard.
Deletes comment spam before you ever see it. Without this plugin you will be bombarded with spam and will have to manually delete it.
I use Yoast to change the meta title and description of every blog post. This is what Google users see on the search results.
Automatically backs up your WordPress blog to the cloud. It even has a restore capability built into the plugin.
Makes your blog pages load faster by displaying static HTML copies to your readers instead of loading your PHP-heavy posts.
WordPress saves your blog post changes every time you save your work, which leads to hundreds of revisions stored in your blogs’ database. This plugin controls how many revisions you want to store.
If you’re deleting or renaming your blog URLs, you need to make sure to redirect the old page to the new page with this free plugin.
From the makers of the Astra theme, these blocks will enhance your Gutenger experience.
Free blog tools to run your online business
I couldn’t run my blog without Dropbox. I work on an iMac upstairs and a MacBook downstairs and it’s great to switch between machines seamlessly.
Never have to generate a strong password again nor remember a password again. Makes signing in a breeze with their browser add-on for desktops and app for smartphones.
Browser extension and smartphone app to save and organize links to review later.
I use this to automate some workflows. For example, one Zap could be: when a new blog post is published -> send a tweet, update a spreadsheet, add a card to Trello and share it on Facebook.
Let’s call this one a pretty version of Trello. This is what I use. Use this to jot down ideas for articles. It can also be used as a content planner and to create a content calendar.
Some people work better by creating a mind map for brainstorming, note-taking, and project planning. You can create up to 3 mind maps in the free version.
I hope this list of free blogging tools was helpful! If it was, hit the share buttons below to help me spread the good word.
Until next time,