The Best Resources to Grow Your Web Presence

What resources do you need to effectively leverage a blog to become an authority in your niche?

Website Hosting

Bluehost
I have used Bluehost since I first converted by Blogger blog into a WordPress blog. I now host multiple websites there and I’ve never had problems with them. The customer service is excellent and it is very easy to use.

Website Design

Wordpess
I have experimented with other content management systems (Joomla and Drupal) and nothing compares to WordPress. Thank goodness the days of building websites in Dreamweaver are over. Run your website in WordPress even if you don’t want to blog.

StudioPress WordPress Themes
I’ve been using Genesis Framework themes by StudioPress (by Copyblogger Media) for awhile now. The backend is powerful and the designs are great. You can browse their gallery here.

Keyword Research

Google Keyword Tool
This is a staple for all Keyword research. It is free and provides extremely valuable information for every niche.

Market Samurai
This powerful keyword research tool is growing in popularity. I love it and use it for all the keyword research I do. It is well worth the money and even after your free trial runs up, you get to continue to use a lot of the functionality.

Rank Checker
This Firefox plugin allows you to check and track the ranking of the keyword you are targeting. It is a great tool for checking the data from Market Samurai or as your primary rank tacking tool.

Analyze Niche Keyword Heatmap Key
Although still in development, this simple spreadsheet visually represents the best keywords to target. When used with the Google Keyword Tool and Market Samurai, it is a great way to organize your keyword research data.

Email List Building

MailChimp
Free up to 2,000 subscribers? Yes, thank you very much! Use MailChimp to set up your email list, create an autoresponder series, and contact your fans more effectively than any social network. Build your email list and do it for free for a long time.