If you’ve been on my email list a while, you’ll have noticed I love sharing free tools (I literally wrote the book on free). Recently I’ve been making a few important improvements to my blog, using tools that are 100% free and easy to access.
The following tools can be used to make small but vital tweaks to your blog, that will help drive traffic, improve usability, and build your email list. Take a look.
Updated: February 2019 (a couple of the original free tools on this page were no longer available – I’ve replaced them with even better ones).
I’ve started using this totally free online tool on every headline I write for my blog, (I actually use it on the articles I write for my content creation clients too, and the pitches I send out to freelance markets). I’m using it to test out titles for my books as well.
Simply pop your headline in the box, and click ‘Analyze Now’. You’ll get a grade for your headline (you’ll want to aim for a B+ at least, if not an A). You can keep tweaking it to improve. The analyzer will let you know how many power words you’ve used and how many emotional words, as well as whether your headline is the right length.
This free WordPress plug-in optimizes every post I write, letting me know if I need to tweak my title, url or description, or add more keywords to my post. If you’re still not sure how to use Search Engine Optimization, this book does a great job of explaining it, but if you use Yoast, you’ll only need a basic understanding. Yoast will do the hard work for you.
This free online course is the best I’ve found for teaching Instagram marketing to bloggers and other solopreneurs, explaining how to set up your account, attract potential readers, subscribers and customers, and grow you business using the power of the free social app. My traffic from Instagram has increased dramatically since taking this course.
It covers exactly how to promote yourself, your blog, and your paid offerings without annoying your followers, and how to position yourself as an authority figure in your niche without bragging or sounding arrogant. Get the details here.
Recurpost is my new personal favorite for social media scheduling and management. You can manage several social media profiles (including the big ones such as Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn) all from one dashboard, with lots of cool features, even with the free version.
It’s very similar to the (expensive) paid platform, Meet Edgar. I only know this because I have clients who have paid me to schedule some of their social media through Meet Edgar, and given me access to their account to do so. Recurpost does a slightly more limited, but still adequate job for free.
There are paid upgrades with Recurpost, but I’m still using the free version and it does everything I need it to do. Sign up at Recurpost.com.
Mailchimp and Mailmunch are actually two separate tools, but I’ve grouped them together because they’re best used as a system to grow your email list. Mailchimp is a reliable email provider that’s free for your first 2000 subscribers, so it’s great for when you’re just starting out with email marketing. You can sign up for free here, and then you’ll be able to put a form in your sidebar, within your blog posts, or anywhere else on your site, with simple html code.
Mailmunch is a plug-in which allows you to add extra forms, such as a pop-up, scroll box or top bar, to your site. It integrates with Mailchimp, sending all the emails you collect in these forms straight to your Mailchimp list. The forms allow for a fair bit of customization too, even if you’re only using the free version. Both Mailchimp and Mailmunch have paid versions that you can upgrade to in the future, but they are completely free to get started with.
I’ve just updated my free tools ebook and right now you can grab it from Amazon stores worldwide for just 99 cents. Click below to see more details and reviews from happy customers. And don’t forget you can read Kindle books on almost any device. Find out how here.
Want to see the exact online business tools (free and paid) that I use to run my online business? You can find them here.