Thinking about starting a blog, or just working to make yours better? Here are some of the products and services that I use to power MyFrugalHome.
If you’re just starting out, Bluehost would be a good fit for you. It’s very reasonably priced, and they make it easy to get your blog up and running (you can even register your domain for free). I’d recommend using them until your site begins to get a lot of traffic.
Genesis is the framework that we run here on MyFrugalHome. Think of it as the bones of the site. It includes lots of great SEO and security features, and is mobile-responsive. The framework runs $59.95, plus the cost of a child theme (that’s the skin to go over the bones). There are lots of great child themes to choose from, and they’re all very customizable. I bought the Modern Blogger theme. Then, I hired a graphic designer to customize it to my needs.
Note: I’m running an older version of Modern Blogger. The new version has a few more bells and whistles.
Genesis has a lot of good built-in security features, but you can never be too careful. I use iThemes Security to beef up the security of my site. It protects against brute force attacks and all sorts of other hacker tricks.
When you’ve written thousands of articles, you start to worry about what would happen if your computer were to crash. CrashPlan PRO is my solution for that. It automatically backs up my files, so I have the ability to restore anything I need to.
VaultPress is the service that I use to backup my blog. It makes daily and real-time copies of all my content, so if something happens to my database, I have a backup.
Akismet is my first line of defense against spammers. It analyzes all of the comments coming into my blog, and sorts out the spam, so I don’t have to. It’s captured 195,699 spam comments to date.
iContact is the email marketing service that I use to send my newsletters. They have lots of great templates to choose from, or you can create your own (that’s what I did). Their customer service has always been first-rate.
HootSuite is the platform that I use to manage my social media. It allows me to schedule posts in advance, and makes it easy for me to track the success of each post.