If you have been thinking of starting a food blog, now might be the right time to start one. There are many tools and resources for food bloggers that they can use to make sure their blog is running smoothly. Here’s the list of tools and resources that I utilize on my food blog to make sure that it is fully functional and growing successfully.
Disclaimer: Please note that some of the links below are affiliate links and I will earn a commission if you purchase through those links. I have been using these products and services and only recommend them because I have genuinely found them helpful and trustworthy.
BlueHost: One of the most popular hosting service that comes highly recommended for newbie bloggers, Bluehost is a hosting provider that can be started at very affordable prices of $2.95 per month. Check out my step by step tutorial if you want to get started with Bluehost.
WordPress: WordPress is the best platform to start a blog. Most of the plugins are compatible with WordPress, and can be installed with just one click.
Genesis Framework: Once your hosting and WordPress is setup you need to design your blog in the most presentable way. You can use Genesis Framework to design your blog. There are many designers featured on Studiopress that you can choose to custom design your website.
Foodie Pro Theme, designed by Shay Bocks is chic and minimalist WordPress theme for food bloggers that is easy to customize.
Daily Dish. Another beautiful, flexible and stylish WordPress theme for food bloggers.
Find beautiful premium WordPress themes at Elegant Themes with stellar design, advanced features and awesome support.
Themeforestis also great platform to find WordPress themes for your food blog.
Image Editing Software
Picmonkey. Easy alternative to Photoshop, Picmonkey is widely used by lot of bloggers. It is extremely easy to use and great features that it offers make is one of my favorite image editing software.
Canva. Similar to Picmonkey, Canva is also a great graphics software that comes with predesigned free and paid templates to choose from.
Tailwind. Schedule your social media updates with Tailwind. It helps automate your otherwise tedious social media tasks. You can automate Pinterest Pins, Twitter Tweets and Facebook status. Free trail available for first 100 pins. It’s $9.99 per month.
Boardbooster. Schedule Pinterest pins with Boardbooster. Helps with increased engagement and more followers. Available tools help with looping and pin maintenance. It’s $5 per month.
Buffer (Twitter, Facebook & Google+). To schedule my Facebook & Google+ updates and Tweets, I love using Buffer. It’s a social media manager that you can use to schedule your updates ahead of time. I find it very convenient as I just set and forget. Research has shown that to get most out of your social media, you should tweet and facebook at certain times of the day. So instead of just sitting around and waiting for the time, you can simply schedule your update and move on to other things. It is very important though that you engage with your followers and answer any questions that they might have. There are other scheduling tools that you can use as well, like Coschedule and Hootsuite.
Optinmonster. Build your email list in a non intrusive way with Optinmonster. It allows you to convert your abandoning visitors into email subscribers by letting you create professionally designed optin forms without you having to write a single line of strenuous code.
Convertkit. Send email using Convertkit. It is very simple to use and excels at auto responders which is perfect if you run weekly courses. Starts at $29 per month.
Mailchimp. Send newsletter using Mailchimp. You can easily manage subscribers, send emails, and track results. It is free for up to 2,000 email subscribers and 12,000 emails per month. It starts at $10 per month for unlimited emails up to 500 subscribers, and it increases $5 per month for every 500 subscribers added.
Yoast SEO. Most important part of your food blog is to be search engine friendly. When your blog shows up in search engines, people can find and reach your blog easily. In order to rank well in search engine, you need to optimize your blog. Yoast SEO plugin is the most popular WordPress plugin that is used to optimize any blog with meta data information.
CommentLuv. Engage your readers into leaving a comment on your blog by using commentluv plugin.
Easy Social Share Buttons. Social Media is as important as creating content for your blog. Sharing your content on social media is something that’s recommended as soon as your new content is up on the blog. I use Easy Social Share Buttons plugin to share the content on my blog posts. This plugin is very easy to install, setup and use.
Google Captcha. Eliminate spam using Google Captcha. You won’t believe the amount of spam you can receive on any of your blog posts. Google Captcha helps keep the bots away by having your readers enter the captcha before they leave a comment on your posts.
Yet Another Related Posts Plugins. User engagement is one of the most important factors in evaluating the success of a blog. When readers visit your blog, they should be able to see what other content is available on your blog, and keep reading. Yet Another Related Posts Plugins is the most popular plugins used for this purpose.
Vaultpress. I have run into the problem of my blog crashing down and me having no back up of my content or database. Since then I have started using back up services to make sure that a copy of backup is always available in case something like this to happen again. I use Vaultpress plugin in order to take back up of my blog and database.
My Food Photography Gear
Nikon D3300 – This one is a great beginner’s DSLR camera that is not only high quality but also provides high resolution images. I love the levels of controls it provides as an entry level camera. It has excellent battery life. It’s small size is easy and perfect for me to handle. As I learn more about photography, I will look into upgrading.
Nikon 50mm 1.8G – Nikon 50mm 1.8G camera lens is great for food photography. This lens is considered prime lens so it doesn’t zoom in or zoom out. Since you don’t have to move a lot when you are clicking food, you are good to use this camera lens. This one is little expensive with my budget, but it’s worth it with the quality of food pictures I am able to click now.
Nikon 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR II – Nikon 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR II is a zoom lens and gives you more control over focusing distance but is not capable of creating great Bokeh (blurry effects) in food photography. I usually use this for outdoor scene capturing while traveling or so. This can be a good choice if you are a travel photographer due to its wide angle capturing capability.
Did I miss any great tools and resources that are perfect for food bloggers? Please write to me or leave a comment in the comment box below!