June 27, 2018

Best blogging tools in 2018: writing and language tools

As a serious blogger, you need to take care of technology, design and of course content. In content, you need to have high quality text, visual, audio and audio-visual matter. You also need a way to integrate the blog with your other social media accounts. One other major requirement is search engine optimization or SEO.

Managing the blog professionally needs so many skills, and one cannot be a master of all. Some tasks look too overbearing if one is very weak in those areas. Luckily, there are some FREE and dependable tools available on the web, which make life easy for the professional blogger and he/ she does not have to run to experts for each and every work e.g. quick editing of a photo, checking grammar, SEO and so on.

In this first part of this series on free, tested, tools, we have listed those on improving the quality of writing in English:


FREE ENGLISH LANGUAGE TOOLS


Grammar and language checkers


Grammarly is a fantastic tool to check grammar. Its free version is good enough for general grammar check as you type. It easily integrates into most apps on your device and keeps suggesting changes and better expressions where it finds an issue. However, that can sometimes slow the computer or can look annoying. If you want it just to work online for blogging purposes, use its Firefox extension.

Hemingwayapp gives you suggestions for improvement, tells the level of language sophistication in terms of educational grade (e.g. sixth grade, tenth grade), and also has the facility for markup! So, you can quickly format blog posts with headline level, bullets etc.

Online dictionaries and thesaurus (list of synonyms)


There are numerous dictionaries available online but some of them have too complicated feel and some do not do justice with words. We've picked up the best- simple, exhaustive:

Dictionary.com is very simple and has dictionary and thesaurus options side by side.

Collins dictionary is more exhaustive, with thesaurus and other options, and we like its informal way of presenting meanings. 

Wordweb is a superb offline thesaurus, and it integrates well with Word and other programs. 

Headline analyzers


Crisp and relevant headlines and those with power words attract readers and results in higher traffic and its stay on the blog.

CoSchedule Headline Analyzer analyzes headlines on many parameters and gives a score. One can play with many headlines and apply the best one on the blog post. The following three free online tools have their own ways to find a headline's worth. You may pick one and stick with that.

AMI's headline tool gives score based on the category to which the headline belongs and its emotional appeal.  

Sharethrough has a headline tool that rates headlines on engagement and impression.

All-in-one offline blogging tool


Open Live Writer is a useful offline blogging tool. In its own words, Open Live Writer is like Word for your blog. Open Live Writer is a powerful, lightweight blog editor that allows you to create blog posts, add photos and videos then publish to your website. You can also compose blogs posts offline and then publish on your return. Open Live Writer works with many popular blog service providers such as WordPress, Blogger, TypePad, Moveable Type, DasBlog and many more.


TopBlogs periodically recommends new free and reliable software tools. We keep testing our recommendations so that they remain current. The present series of posts seeks to update our recommendations as of June 2018. 

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