There’s nothing better than a great app or computer program that makes work quicker, easier and more fun. From a simple alarm clock to the most specialized email management software, the right app can not only keep you organized but help you enjoy your time at work.
As a freelance blogger, you’re already familiar with the most essential programs and tools of your trade: Microsoft Word, Google Docs, OneDrive, WordPress, and Grammarly. If you’re like most people, however, it’s easy to get stuck in a technological rut and stop trying out new things after a while.
You’ve got a lot on your plate as a blogger, in terms of coming up with creative ideas, meeting deadlines, and organizing your accounts, and chances are you aren’t making use of some of the best tools out there. If you’re a fan of technological assistance, the following apps and tools could help you stay on top of it all.
Asana is a desktop and mobile-based application that lets you create your own projects and task lists. You can add due-dates for each, and even assign tasks to other members of your Asana team who are added via their email addresses. The in-app messaging system cuts back on messy email threads and keeps team projects streamlined without the need to check back and forth between emails and other messaging systems.
Best Feature: You can create multiple projects with separate task lists for each.
2. CoSchedule Headline Analyzer
This tool helps fine-tune your article headlines so that they are more clickable and engaging. All you have to do is visit the webpage, paste or type your working headline into the tool, and press enter. The Headline Analyzer will give your title an overall score out of 100 and offer advice on how to make that score higher.
Best Feature: The preview of your title in an online search and email message.
3. Intuit QuickBooks Online
Use this program to create and send invoices to clients, track your expenses, pay bills and track billable hours. Every independent entrepreneur needs to stay on top of his or her finances, not only to properly track income but to be ready when tax season arrives.
Best Feature: The ability to link your bank and credit accounts to the application.
The best of bloggers doesn’t always capitalize titles and subtitles the right way. TitleCase allows you to paste your titles directly into the page and automatically correct any mistakes you’ve made.
Best Feature: The password generator that helps you create a highly secure password for any account or program.
Make your freelance writing business easier to manage. Create easy-to-fill-in branded proposal and contract templates. Automate your prospective client discovery process. Your onboarding process will feel so professional to your new clients (and won’t require so much back and forth, trying to remember if you did all the things for you).
Best Feature: Send a proposal, get the contract signed, and receive payment without lifting a finger.
Are you the kind of blogger that really enjoys breaking free of the “normal” computer environment in order to get creative? OmmWriter is a simple word processing program that isolates you in the environment of your choosing. Pick from different colour schemes that gently shift with soft music or sound effects.
Best Feature: The library effect that surrounds you with soft typing sounds to enhance your work environment.
This cool website is similar to OmmWriter but solely with sound effects. You can choose from six different sound tracks that mimic cafes and different locations and times of the day. For a subscription fee you have access to extra sound tracks.
Best Feature: Very easy to use; just open the website and the sound effects start automatically.
Countless writers and creative types love using Evernote to keep track of all kinds of inspiring bits of information throughout the day. You can use this application to save photos, web links, handwritten notes, typed notes, text copied from other sources and audio clips. Refer back to these notes anytime, from any device.
Best Feature: Collaborate with others on a project by creating a group notebook.
Do you need to organize your ideas visually while writing content? If a mindmap and a visual note-taking app had a baby, it would look a lot like this writer app. You can make colorful flow charts, mindmaps, or any other idea-connecting pathway with text, images, colors, and more. It’s also an easy-to-use, intuitive tool that makes organizing your ideas or research simple and fast.
Best Feature: Create a mindmap to organize your info while researching your post topic and get your article written faster (even if it’s a long-form blog post).
All great blogs need some stunning photos, and it’s not always feasible to come up with your own for each new post. When you’re in need of a high-quality snapshot that you can publish with no strings attached, check out Pexels. You can find photos for most occasions, whether your search is as broad as “home cooking” or as specific as “cat, computer.” Don’t laugh—I use that last one at least once a week.
Best Feature: Unlike most other high-quality image sources sites, Pexels is totally free to use!
A Little Technological Experimentation Could Do You a World of Good
I’m totally guilty of letting my blogging technology get a bit stale, but every time I find a new, useful app or program it really brightens my world. Since bloggers are online or at least using our computers for 95 percent of our lives, it’s a bit of a crime to ignore all the fun options out there that can help make work more effective and fun.
Try out some of the apps on the list and let us know which are your favourite! Have I missed anything important? Let me know!
Brit McGinnis says
So surprised that Slack isn’t on this list! I find it so helpful when communicating with clients. And that “note to self” feature is helpful for those who need to have back-and-forth notetaking sessions. Not that I’d know anything about that…
Hey Brit I just watched the Slack presentation…looks like a great team app!
Emily Gardner says
Great tips. I started my blog a month ago and I’m struggling with title ideas. I fall in the trap of writing a description rather than something enticing. Do you have any recommendation or frames of reference I should be using? I don’t want to miss lead my readers, but I do want the titles to be more engaging. Any advice? I’ll be sure to checkout CoSchdule
Try this out! It’s fun and it shows you some of the important aspects of putting a title together 🙂
There are some great recommendations on this list. I recently published a similar post, featuring free tools for entrepreneurs. I may have to update it with a couple of these.
I’m going to give EverNote a try after reading this. I’d heard of it before, but wasn’t really aware of what it was. It sounds very useful.
Thanks Kerry, glad to help!
I am just starting out. And it honestly never occurred to me to even check out what apps there are to support writing. Thanks!
I find Coffitivity amusing.
Dale Cudmore says
Great list Mandy.
I’d love it if you would take the time to check out a tool that I recently released – https://ideastream.io
It emails you the top questions that your audience is asking every day, which makes it easy to continuously generate great content ideas with little effort.
Very helpful! As a beginning freelance writer, I have been doing a lot of research. This is among the most helpful articles. Thank you for the great information!
Ann W. says
This article is so helpful to newbie freelance writers! I have found myself referring back to this multiple times. Great content!
Amelia Walker says
Hey, Nice blog. You can also add the Moon Invoice time tracking app it’s also a helpful app for freelancers to track their project trimmings.