Yes, Its Thanksgiving! I thought it would be cool to list down few things that all bloggers should be thankful for! The list may not necessarily apply to only bloggers, as I’m sure many webmasters who have been in the web for a while has taken benefits of the services that I’m about to mention here. These are the top 7 things that have enabled the bloggers to be what they are:
1. WordPress – Blogging Platform
WordPress is the Open-Source blogging platform that is used to power thousands of blogs that are out on the web. Its a completely free but priceless at the same time. WordPress has enabled people with no-knowledge of any web technology or language such as – html, to put up their blog and make a history on the web. WordPress was developed in early 2003 by Matt Mullenweg and the name “WordPress” was suggested by Matt’s friend – Christine Selleck. WordPress is now a common platform for any blogs on the web, including the popular media blogs like – New York Times, CNN, ZDnet etc.
2. Firefox – Web Browser
Firefox – a open source web browser by Mozilla Corporation is the preferred browser of many bloggers. Mainly because of its stability,speed & its open source support – blogging without Firefox is just unthinkable. There are hundreds of free Firefox Addons available for bloggers that makes blogging a lot easier. Firefox has gained massive popularity worldwide with a 19.97% of usage share as of October 2008, making it the second-most popular browser after Microsoft’s Internet Explorer. The firefox community is so active that you just can’t get enough of this browser. After booting up the PC, all a user needs is a Firefox as a user can get everything inside – there is an addon for everything.
3. Google – Search Engine
Google – A search engine that was only supposed to be a Masters research project of two Stanford students turned out to be the most popular search engine with over 60% of the world’s search market share. Google produces the most fresh & relevant search results that a blogger finds useful while doing research. They also have some useful services like Google News, Google Blog Search & Google Alerts that enables bloggers to get all the latest buzz on their fingertips.
4. Google Adsense – Blog Monetization
Google Adsense is the most popular contextual-advertising platform made by Google that is now being used to monetize thousands of websites that are on the Internet. Google has made really easy for the bloggers to Signup for an Adsense account and Start earning money right away by displaying ‘content-related’ text/image advertisements that are comes from the advertiser inventory of Google Adwords Content Network. Because of it’s plain & simple installation (copying a piece of code) and hassle free use, bloggers are more motivated to blog as it has opened a new source of income for them. Bloggers don’t need to maintain their own advertisers inventory nor they need to go and look for advertisers who are interested to advertise on their blog. Google Adsense is the answer to all.
5. Social Media – Digg, StumbleUpon, Delicious & Twitter
The Social Sites like – Digg, StumbleUpon, Delicious & Twitter has really helped the bloggers to get their content out there right in front of the community. Digg has been a Pioneer in Social News for years. Everyday over 800,000 people visits Digg to get the user voted fresh news on Technology, Politics, Lifestyle and more. StubmleUpon currently has over 6465000 active users who are constantly finding out new stuffs on the internet and helping others to find it. These two sites alone drives substantial amount of traffic for blogs to have a sustainable lifecycle and also helps to grow a quality reader base over time. Bloggers often need to bookmark a lot of pages that they come across and that makes an awesome bookmarking service like delicious.com a blogger’s perfect companion. Twitter, a macro blogging platform is very popular among bloggers as it has made it very easy to bring interactivity in a static blog by communicating with the blog readers & other bloggers on the network.
5. Flickr – Photo Sharing
Flickr.com – A premium photo sharing service by Yahoo! is a Photo Blogger’s best friend! Flickr makes it very easy to upload, Organize and Tag Photos. As of November 2008, Flickr currently hosts more than 3 billion images. Flickr provides many ready-made widgets for blogs, that bloggers can use to show off their photo albums or sets in their blog. The Free account at Flickr allows a user to upload upto 100 MB of photos each month, users with a lot of photos can opt in for a Pro account (US$24.95/year) which allows unlimited photo & video storage.
6. Youtube – Video Sharing
Youtube – A online video sharing website has totally started the trend of Vblogging. Millions of viewers come to Youtube everyday to watch user-generated videos along with videos made by the professional production house & media companies. Whenever any blogger has any video, screen cast to share – Youtube is often the best choice due to its ease of use & embedding capability and having a free & straight forward distribution among viewers.
7. Mint – Web Analytics
It is essential for a blogger to keep track of his visitors, source of traffic and many other important statistical information that can help the blogger to understand the current ‘health’ of the blog. Mint is an excellent tool that basically works as a self-hosted web site analytics program. It can track Visits, referrers, popular pages, search keywords and many more that can really help a blogger to do some quantitative analysis.
Certainly there are a lot more things a blogger should be thankful for and if we were to put them all in one place, its likely that the list will be endless! There are new tools & softwares developed everyday that is helping the bloggers in every step of the way.
So what are some of your favorite tools? What are you thankful for? Share in comments!