In this digital age, it seems that almost everyone has a blog or website where they can showcase their skills, talk about issues that matter to them, or just go on about their everyday life. Some children as young as 8 years old even have their own blogs, so you know it can be made simple and easy to use.

While there are a lot of blogging platforms to choose from, the main players in the blogging world are WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, and Blogger. To cater to your blogging needs, a lot of web hosting solutions are available to make hosting your blog very affordable. These platforms are intuitive and easy to use and in this article, we’re going to share with you some free add-ons/extensions and plugins that you can use to make the most out of your blogging experience.




Google Keyword Tool: Choosing Keywords for Blog Posts



If you want to choose topics that will keep your readers engaged, you can use a keywords tool to figure out what your readers are searching for and what they’re interested in.  The Google Keyword Tool is ideal for this. It’s free to use, and comes with a lot of great features that are normally only found in premium software.

The general process for using this tool is that you choose what topic you want to write about before you write your post. For instance, you want to write about travelling. You need to search for travel-related keywords in the Google Adwords Keyword Tool. Next, you go down the list until you find a few keyword phrases that would naturally fit in the blog post you’re considering writing, and you throw them in where they fit. This method allows you to boost your rank in search engines, which means more web traffic in the long run.


Google Webmaster Tools: Keeping Track of Your Blog’s Performance



If you’re already running a blog, it can be interesting to know how your blog is performing in the search engines for certain important keywords. The Google Webmaster Tools is a free plugin that lets you track these results. It’s easy to install and tells you everything you need to know about your blog’s performance in search engines like Google and Bing.


Feedburner: Subscription Form



If someone stumbles upon your blog and happens to like it, that doesn’t necessarily mean that they’ll bookmark it or even come back to it. How many times have you found a website or blog you liked, but forgot to bookmark it, and was never able to find it again? A lot of people do this as well, and one way to combat it is to offer them a chance to subscribe to your blog.

You can use a free service like Feedburner when someone subscribes to your blog so they can receive an email once every day, listing any posts you added for the day. If you haven’t added any posts on that day, your subscribers won’t receive an email. It’s a simple and easy reminder for readers, and will also help you build a reader base more quickly.


Google Analytics: Keeping Track of Web Traffic and Visitors



When you have a blog, you’re going to want to know where your site visitors are coming from and a little bit about them. That’s why you need a tracking plugin to add to your blog, and probably one of the best tracking plugins out there is by Google. It’s called Google Analytics, and the entire setup process doesn’t take more than a couple of minutes!

Google Analytics allows you to track where your visitors are coming from, what time they’re coming to your blog, how long they’re staying on your blog, and what they’re reading. With these data, you can determine what you could write about to keep them coming back. This tool will also tell you about repeat visitors and what web browsers they use, which you can use for future reference.


Keep Your Readers Engaged

When a person comes across your blog, they’ll probably start reading one of your posts. If they don’t immediately see something that interests them after they’ve finished reading that post, they’ll probably hit the Back button and leave your blog. Instead of making them look for something else to read on your blog, there’s one way to make things easier: using a Related Posts plugin.

The way Related Posts plugins work is that a website script will look over each of your posts and find the main keywords and topics in each of them. Then, below each post, it will give a list of 3 to 5 other posts that have similar topics. This way, related posts are listed right in the reader’s line of sight when they’ve finished reading a particular post.

A free Related Posts plugin will keep readers on your blog longer by giving them more posts to read that they’re likely to be interested in.