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10 Time-Saving Blogging Tools To Keep You Organized

Time-Saving Blogging Tools To Keep You Organized

Have you ever felt like you don’t have enough time to everything you need to as a blogger?

Imagine if you could get more done in less time, wouldn’t that be awesome?

The great news is that you can get more done in less time using the right tools.

In this post you’ll learn how to streamline your approach to managing your tasks, content planning, editorial calendar, social media campaigns, blog post collaboration and more.

Ready to get started?

Let’s dive in!

Want to save time blogging? Here are 10 tools to help you stay productiveClick To Tweet

Effectively manage your tasks with Todoist

Manage Your Task List With Todoist

I’ve lost count of how many task management tools I’ve tried and most of them seem to have something missing.

Todoist is the closest I’ve come to finding a tool that does exactly what I need.

What I like about this tool is how simple it is to use, just add a project then add your tasks.

You can set due dates for tasks if you want, add sub tasks and notes.

Just tick off tasks when you’re done.

Various mobile apps are available so you can tick off tasks or add new ones on the go.

But, above all else it’s essential that you try a few different to-do list style tools to find one that fits best with how you work (we’re all different). TeuxDeux and Wunderlist are great alternatives – H/T to Vivek Misra and Wendy Kreuger for mentioning these in the comments.

Price: Free with premium plan costing $29/year.

Use EggTimer to stay focused and on-task

Eggtimer

Staying focused is essential if we want to maximize our productivity.

By working on tasks in short bursts we can keep our focus high and ensure we take regular breaks which will also improve our motivation.

The length of time you work for may vary. For example, the Pomodoro technique is based around 25 minutes work, 5 minutes break then a longer break every 4 cycles.

But I personally find that 60-90 minutes works best for me.

So it’s worth experimenting and finding what works best for you.

You could use any sort of timer for this, but the easiest tool I’ve found so far is an online tool, E.ggtimer.com.

Just select how long you want to work for and click go, you’ll then hear an alarm go off when it’s time for a break.

Price: Free.

Make lists and keep track of them with Workflowy

Workflowy

Initially I was a bit sceptical as to how helpful Workflowy could be – on the surface it just looks like a tool for writing bullet pointed lists.

But, it turns out that the simplicity of this tool is incredible.

While I haven’t been using it for long, it’s already proved to make planning for some of my newer projects very helpful. I’m in the process of moving my Blogging Wizard plans from another tool.

It’s great for keeping lists organized, outlining projects and getting a bird’s eye-view of what I’m working on.

It doesn’t sound like much, but it works for me, it might just work for you too.

Price: Free with pro option for $49/year.

Use LastPass to remember passwords for you

LastPass

With so many tools and social networks on the web, it can be difficult to remember all of our passwords.

LastPass.com is a tool which will remember them for you.

All you need to remember is a master password and LastPass will take care of the rest.

When you install the browser extension and enter a password into a new site you’ll be prompted to store the password. This is a huge time saver.

Price: Free with premium plan available for $12/year.

Keep your content ideas organized with Trello

Trello

I’m always coming up with new content ideas and while I’ve tried keeping these organized in spreadsheets, they’ve never really made the process easy.

So now I use Trello to keep everything organized, it’s a free tool that allows you to make lists of lists and easily drag them to a new list.

I have a separate board for each project and whenever I get a new blog post idea, it’ll go on the post ideas list then I’ll move it over to the in-progress list as soon as I start writing.

This means I’ve got my entire editorial process covered from start to finish and anyone who needs visibility can be added as a member to the board, so it works great for collaboration.

I usually don’t need to add much apart from notes in the description for each card, but you can add members to cards, add checklists or record your activity if you need to. It all comes down to how you want to use it.

Price: Free with premium plan available for $5/month or $45/year or invite new members to earn free months.

Manage your editorial calendar with CoSchedule

CoSchedule

We talked about Trello earlier and how I use it in my editorial process.

CoSchedule is the next tool in the chain; it’s a WordPress plugin that I’ve been using for a while now and it’s a big time saver.

As soon as a post has gone from an idea to being scheduled in WordPress, that’s where CoSchedule takes over.

You can use CoSchedule for the entire process and that would simplify things somewhat but I prefer to use Trello and CoSchedule as it allows for more control over my editorial workflow.

CoSchedule is an editorial calendar with task management and social sharing built in.

You can see all of your posts on a smart calendar allowing you to easily drag and drop posts to change their publication dates.

If you use the social sharing feature you can drag and drop scheduled social messages if you need to.

Social share counts are also tracked and Buffer can be integrated for easy scheduling of social updates.

This is a paid tool, but there are alternatives like the Editorial Calendar plugin.

Price: Starts from $15/month.

Collaborate on blog posts with Google Docs

Google Docs

If you’ve ever wanted to collaborate on a blog post with another blogger, Google Docs is a great tool to use.

It’s easy to share documents and it works perfectly as a word processing tool (you can also create spreadsheets, presentations and other types of documents).

Your documents are stored on Google Drive so everything is saved.

Even if you don’t collaborate on any posts, it’s a great alternative to software like Microsoft Word.

Price: Free.

Take notes on the go with Evernote

Evernote

As bloggers, we need to be able to take notes whenever we get a new idea.

This is essential because we won’t always be next to a computer and need to be prepared to plan content as soon as an idea is taking shape in our minds.

For example, I came up with a great idea for a blog post while I was standing in in front of the fridge (eating some yoghurt).

Instead of running upstairs, booting up my computer and waiting for everything to load up, I was able to open up the Evernote app on my phone and begin fleshing out the blog post idea straight away.

Well, after I finished my yoghurt.

Your next great idea could strike at any moment, and it’ll most likely be when you’re doing something completely unrelated to blogging.

The truth is that it doesn’t matter what you use. I like Evernote because it synchronizes notes on my phone with my computer but as long as you have something to take notes, you’re covered.

A trusty notepad and pen will do the job.

Price: Free with premium plan available for $5/month or $45/year.

Streamline your outreach process with Ninja Outreach

Ninja Outreach

Connecting with other bloggers is essential if you want to grow your blog’s audience.

Guest blogging is a great way to get started here and you can manage your guest posts from a simple spreadsheet but it gets messy and time consuming.

A great alternative is to using spreadsheets is an outreach tool like Ninja Outreach.

Whether you’re doing guest blogging, reaching out to bloggers to promote a product or anything else that involves blogger outreach – the process can be managed from start to finish with Ninja Outreach.

You can search for blogs and bloggers with advanced search functionality, create lists of blogs, find contact details and send emails all from within the platform.

Price: Starts at $19/month.

Keep your social media efforts on-track with MavSocial

MavSocial

There are a crazy number of social media management tools available but most of them or paid or have free versions which are so limited that you have to upgrade to a premium plan.

This is where MavSocial comes in.

It’s a full social management platform which makes it easy to schedule, publish and monitor your social media efforts.

Paid plans are available but the free plan allows you to connect 50 social profiles and covers 6 different social networks. That’s amazing considering it’s free.

What I particularly like is that MavSocial enables you to group social updates into campaigns, overlays them onto a calendar style interface and makes it easy to add visuals into your social messages (they give you access to over 50 million royalty free stock images).

Just based on MavSocial being free, it’s worth checking out. If you’re looking for a paid alternative, Sprout Social is a great option.

Price: Free with paid options available.

Over to you

The key to using tools effectively is to only use the ones you feel you need.

Use too many tools and you may over-complicate things for you, but when you find the right combination of tools your productivity will skyrocket and certain tasks will be far easier.

There’s definitely some trial and error involved but there is no end of tools available which can help you.

Which tools do you use to stay organized?

Let us know in the comments!

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About Adam Connell

Adam used to run a team of marketers. Now he shares what he’s learned about growing blogs and businesses here on Blogging Wizard. He’s a fan of Firefly and Chinese takeaways. Click here to join the Blogging Wizard newsletter; you’ll get our best content & 15+ guides to grow your online presence faster.

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  • I loved the eggtimer .. Off to start using it now for my adequate breaks as I have the habit of sitting umpteen hours infront of the laptop.

    • Awesome, Sangeetha. It’s the perfect tool to get out of that habit 🙂

  • Adam – nice article
    and a topic close to my heart and I am actively refining my experience along
    these lines – so a timely publish by you, thanks.

    Todoist is a clear winner for me and you are absolutely right that it is the best (for me at least) task list manager that you can get. I am full on dependent on this software now. In fact things like Workflowy etc. can be built into it by smartly managing your projects and tags – I would recommend it to anyone who is passionate to be productive.

    MAVSocial is another one to try for me. I recently came across Social Pilot as an add-on to my buffer free membership and have started using it but it sounds like MAVSocial is another one to try. I want to find the best social media management tool before jumping on the paid membership.

    All in all, great article and thoroughly useful. This is going to be distributed with my email list subscribers and also on social media as well – thanks.

    • Thanks Ahmad!

      I agree – tools like Todoist and Workflowy can make such an impact.

      At first I was apprehensive about Workflowy, I thought – Did I really need another tool just for creating lists? Now that I’ve been using it for a while I can say that it really works and fits the way I think better than a lot of tools.

      Thanks for mentioning Social Pilot, haven’t come across it before – they offer quite a lot for free in comparison to other tools which is great.

      Let me know how you get on with MavSocial!

      My pleasure, thanks for the great comment and for sending it to your followers/subscribers – I really appreciate it.

  • Fela Olagunju

    Evernote is a must have app

  • Hi Sir,
    How are you? a complete list of awesome tools. I prefer eggtimer and would love to try out the mavsocial tool. Managing 50 social profiles for free is something that excites me 🙂
    Thank you sir.
    Have a good day ahead 🙂

    • Hi Swadhin,

      Good thanks, how are you?

      Glad you liked the post and found some tools to try. I really like how MavSocial support 50 profiles for free!

      You too 🙂

  • Great List Adam. I use two different tools as of now for specific task: 1. I use hootsuite for social media, but will definitely gonna check MavSocial.

    I use both Todoist and Wunderlist. I find Wunderlist more appealing as it offer everything you need for free. More importantly the notes for each task.

    • Thanks Vivek.

      Haven’t tried Wunderlist yet, but I’m hearing great things. Good point about notes for each task, they’re always helpful.

  • Sue Anne Dunlevie

    I also use almost all of these tools, Adam. Workflowy is a favorite and I couldn’t survive without Evernote.

    Thanks for the great post!
    Sue

    • My pleasure, Sue.

      Evernote has been a long time favorite, took me a while to get into Workflowy but I can see it becoming an incredibly valuable tool with everything I do.

      Thanks!
      Adam

      • Sue Anne Dunlevie

        You’ll love Wordflowy for projects, Adam. That’s what I use it for.

        Sue

        • I think you’re right, Sue.

          So far I’ve migrated most of my plans for Blogging Wizard into Workflowy – it was so straight forward.

          Will be doing the same for my other projects soon 🙂

  • I forgot about eggtimer. Just bookmarked it for future use. Thanks. I love the TeuxDeux interface. I have tried Wunderlist and others, but TeuxDeux is my favorite. I imagine you have tried this one already.

    • Sure thing, Wendy. Thanks for mentioning TeuxDeux, I have tried it in the past, Todoist seemed to fit best with how I work but it’s a great alternative – I’ve edited my post and added it as an alternative.

      Thanks!

  • [ Smiles ] Adam, the only thing that I have ever used on your list is, Evernote.

    I must admit that Todoist looks pretty impressive!

    • Evernote is great! Thanks for stopping by, Renard 🙂

  • Good stuff, Adam. I am using several of these tools, might have to try more of them.

  • Thanks for this list Adam,

    I use most of the tools already, but Workflowy is new to me! Definitely have a closer look at that one!

    Cheers,

    Yordi

    • My pleasure, Yodi!

      Awesome that you’re already using a lot of these.

      Workflowy is so handy, still in the process of moving some of my other projects into it but it’s already helping me save some time.

  • FrancesCaballo

    Thanks for writing this post because it reminded me that I’d signed up for Trello and then never used it. But I just created some boards and added my upcoming tasks. Now there’s less clutter hangng around my desk. I’m adding my picture because for some reason it never pops up. I used to use LastPass but no longer do and I’ve downloaded Evernote but never got in the habit of using it. But I’m definitely going to use Trello.

    • My pleasure, Frances!

      Let me know how you get on with Trello 🙂

      Strange – I can see your picture like everyone else’s when I moderate comments!

      Thanks for checking out my post!

  • FrancesCaballo

    I had no idea my picture would look so big here. Sorry! (Embarrassed!!)

  • I use most of these tools Adam and I believe Evernote, Last Pass and Trello save me the most time.

    Just wanted to add Sprout Social as an All-In-One social media management tool. I really love it. It’s a bit pricier than the alternatives, but it has a ton of cool features and the interface is great.

    Thanks 🙂

  • Wow Adam – this is a great roundup. You had me at ‘lists of lists’.

    Out of all of them, I had only heard of Trello and reading your post, I think I have to try it.

    I was using ‘Simple Sticky Notes’ – mainly because I loved the idea of having what looks like a real sticky stuck to my screen. This quickly became unworkable because I had so many I couldn’t cope with them all.

    Thanks for this…it’s just what I needed 🙂

    • Thanks Mary, so glad you’ve found this helpful.

      I was pretty fond of the sticky notes in the past, but I ran into the same issue as you – after a while organizing them becomes such a challenge!

      I’m sure you’ll love Trello. It’s got so many uses.

      My pleasure, thanks for the comment 🙂

  • Teresa Bowen

    Last Pass and Trello are two apps that I use daily and can’t remember how I coped before I had them. Sometimes I think I’m the only person who doesn’t like Evernote, I have tried to get along with it and just failed miserably. I use Hootsuite at the moment but like the sound of MavSocial. I will have to look into that one. Thanks for the list

    • My pleasure, Teresa. Out of all of the tools in the list, LastPass is the one I use more than anything. The sheer number of passwords we’d have to remember without it is scary.

      I don’t think you’re the only one who doesn’t like Evernote – I use it a lot but sometimes it’s nice to go back to good old pen & paper.

      Thanks for your comment!

  • Hi Adam, there are some good suggestions of tools there, but I think your summary line is absolutely spot on: “The key to using tools effectively is to only use the ones you feel you need.” Oh boy, it can be so easy to get swamped with tools, but they must be there to help you or else they are a waste of time.
    I’m using some of the tools you mentioned above, but I haven’t given MavSocial a look-in yet so I’ll check that out. Was trialling Commun.it for a few weeks but there over zealous email marketing put me off!
    Thanks
    – David

    • Thanks David!

      Definitely, it seems like we’re seeing a few new tools every day. They can be difficult to filter though.

      I know what you mean about Commun.it. What put me off is the via @username thing in Twitter. It gives a rather automated feel.

      Best,
      Adam

  • Glad to know Eggtimer exists – I badly need this. Thanks for sharing these tools to us Adam!

    • My pleasure, Luna – glad you’ve found this list helpful.

      Eggtimer is such a simple tool but it’s so effective 🙂

  • Hey Adam,

    The only tool I use that you mentioned here is Evernote. I have it on my phone and whenever I come up with an idea, I can just type it in there. It has made it really convenient for me to not forget any ideas for my blog and also for taking notes at my job.

    I’m interested in MavSocial. I wanted to start adding images to all the social media accounts I have, but I want to do it in a convenient way. This sounds like the way to go and I like the fact that it has over 50 million stock photos to choose from. It just doesn’t get better than that!

    Thanks for the share Adam! Have a great rest of the week!

    • Hey Sherman,

      I’m with you! Evernote is so handy – I love how it keeps everything synchronized.

      Sometimes a pen and paper is nice so we can unplug but Evernote can keep things very organized.

      Sure thing, that 50 million stock photo collection will be a huge time-saver for you.

      My pleasure, you too!

      Thanks,
      Adam

  • Thanks, Adam! Great list of tools! I didn’t hear many of these tools. Trello and Google Docs are really useful for any SEO specialist, blogger and internet marketer. There are must-have tools like LastPass. I will check out other ones tool. I would like to include SE Ranking as a great rank tracking tool that allows me to track daily changes in search engines and target regions. Thanks for great article!

    • My pleasure, Irina – glad you liked the post and found a bunch of new tools to check out 🙂

  • Elvis Michael

    I just explored Todoist and guess what? MUCH better than Wunderlist (which I currently rely on). Thank you for this, Adam.

    Lastly, Ninja Outreach is the absolute best thing if you are serious about connecting with others in your field.

    Take care,
    Elvis

    • My pleasure, Elvis. Great to hear that you like Todoist.

      Definitely – Ninja Outreach is such a time saver, love how new features are being rolled out frequently.

      Thanks,
      Adam

  • Thanks Adam, I really like productivity tools too and as you highlight it’s important to use the ones that best fit how we work. For task management I have used OmniFocus by OmniGroup for many years now and find it to be extremely comprehensive.

    • No worries, Florent, OmniFocus is a new one to me – thanks for mentioning it!

  • Cynthia V. Anderson

    I’ll be giving Mav Social a whirl! thank you for the lists.

    • You’re most welcome! Thanks for checking out my post!

  • Mav Social is the one that I never heard. Let me give it a try. Nice collection, Adam.

  • One smartphone app not mentioned here is ColorNote. Similar to Evernote, but a bit different.

    I like it because I can jot down ideas while I’m in bed, on the bus, in a car, etc., and return to them at a time when I have my laptop with me.

    ColorNote automatically saves your data and also lets you color-code it!

    Check it out. You’ll like it. I promise!

    • Lorraine, thanks for stopping by!

      First time I’ve heard about ColorNote, but it sounds like a super useful app 🙂

      Thanks!
      Adam

  • Good suggestions Adam.
    Many ideas get flashed the mind while writing a blog, making quick notes of these is a nice thought.
    Use applications that helps you to maintain a to-do list and keep it updated.

  • Great list. I’m going to try a few of these. I really appreciate you breaking down some of the paid software. It can be scary to invest in blogging productivity software when you’re first getting started and aren’t sure if the expense is really worth it.

    • Thanks David. Glad this has been helpful.

      Totally get what you mean about investing at the beginning. A lot of expenses can be avoided early on as there are some good free tools out there, but paid tools usually provide more in the way of features.

  • Good list!

  • Great stuff Jean-Christophe! It’s still on my list of tools to try out, hope to get chance to test it out myself soon 🙂

  • Hi Jean-Christophe! Thanks. It’s a good idea to restrict the number of tools. Too many and they start to impact productivity negatively.

    Sounds like you’ve got a really productive system in place – and hope you find MavSocial useful 🙂

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