A lot goes into running a blog. These are the tools of the trade I rely on to help things run smoothly!
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The Nuts + Bolts
Sip + Sanity is a self-hosted site created with WordPress, a free, open source content management system. Think of this as the back end, where I create posts, manage media and build the architecture of the site.
17th Avenue WordPress Theme
I use the Mia Theme from 17th Avenue. They produce gorgeous, responsive, customizable WordPress themes on the Genesis Framework, which is included with each theme. Their documentation is incredibly thorough and their support is top-notch. Think of the Mia theme as the ‘pretty face’ of Sip + Sanity.
Cloudways Web Hosting
A web host is the place where all your content, including WordPress and your theme, is stored. I use Cloudways which has easily scaleable plans that can grow as my site grows. I chose them for their affordability and speed.
Hover Domain Registrar + Email
Once I decided on Sip + Sanity (www.sipandsanity.com), I had to purchase that domain name and did so through Hover. They also provide free WHOIS privacy (protects your personal information). I also use Hover for my custom email address.
MailerLite Email Marketing
Because my subscriber list is small, I’m able to use the free version of MailerLite (with any luck that’ll change!). Even the free version is really robust and their drag and drop newsletter builder is very easy to use. It can be integrated with a ton of web services, including all the sign up forms on this site.
Tailwind Pinterest Scheduler
For many bloggers, Pinterest is key in promoting your content and brand. Some pin manually, but I use Tailwind to schedule a fat chunk of pins one time per week. It’s been a huge timesaver. You can also use it to schedule posts to Instagram.
Tasty Pins helps you to optimize the images on your site for Pinterest, SEO and screen readers. It allows me to control ‘pinnable’ images: which images to exclude or promote, as well as what titles and descriptions get attached to those images. Tasty Pins is one of a suite of plug-ins from WP Tasty.
WP Recipe Maker Premium
WP Recipe Maker Premium is a plugin that powers the recipe cards at the bottom of each recipe post. It provides several templates to choose from (thought mine is styled by the WordPress theme). The premium version includes some great features including a nutrition calculator and customizable messaging.
The Legal Bundle
Wave is an online accounting tool. I use it to track expenses, create invoices and accept credit card payments for services. If you operate a simple business without employees, Wave is a great tool to manage finances.