More Resources for Bloggers
One of the most frequently asked questions I get, is what _____ are you using for ____? People ask me about hosting, they ask me about plugins, they ask me about cookware and kitchenware and my camera and so on and so forth. So I thought I would come up with a wonderful, easy resource so you can see what I use.
Disclaimer: Before we go any further, let me tell you that these products you see below are all products I have used, and know to be great products and value. However, I have placed my affiliate links on some of them and if you purchase any of the products below using these links, I will earn a commission. There will NEVER BE a product or service listed that I don’t 100% love and all products I have used myself. I use these products now, or I have in the recent past and that’s why I have shared them with you, not because I hope to gain a commission from them (though, of course, that would be nice.).
GoDaddy is the second domain/website service I have used. The first, we won’t even talk about. I have been with GoDaddy since 2005 and I cannot say enough about their products & services but most of all, their customer service. Unlike other companies, they aren’t always up-selling and in fact, have managed to save me money SEVERAL times by helping me condense products I purchased (thinking I needed them) and I wound up with a HUGE amount of money back to apply to hosting (I didn’t pay hosting for over a year with the money they saved me!). Generous, knowledgeable customer service reps are available 24 hours a day to help you with your questions and get you set up.
Their prices can’t be beat either. Every Internet related web domain/hosting I do, is through them. I’ve also NEVER been asked to upgrade my account at any point, despite traffic surges, increases and bandwith usage. They really are the best of the best.
WordPress is the way to go for a professional look. If you have your hosting through Go Daddy, you will be able to automatically set this up. WordPress is FREE and takes 5 minutes to install. You can then choose an included template or browse the large selection of FREE templates that wordpress provides.
There are dozens of other sites that provide both FREE and inexpensive template options as well, so you are sure to find something that fits your personality or niche. Not to mention that WordPress is the King of Plugins and you can get a plugin that does just about anything in their huge resource of plugins.
I love the StudioPress Genesis Framework. The customization options are unbeatable. I honestly wouldn’t sway someone one way or the other on either platform, I prefer Genesis over Thesis for many reasons. I think it has more options, I think it looks better and I think their prices and support are unbeatable for a premium wordpress theme.
The wordpress templates on Genesis are superior to any other company and since Thesis doesn’t come with “templates” I can say that with great conviction! I am currently using the Modern Blogger Theme for CrazedMom.com and the Innov8tive theme on Daily Dish Recipes (a community theme that does not have a direct link, sorry about that).
There are LOADS of resources available through studiopress for setting up, customizing and learning how to change your theme to fit your own personality: The Genesis Guide for Absolute Beginners (PDF – 1.4 MB), StudioPress 101 and StudioPress.TV.
The Thesis Theme for WordPress was great when I used it. I actually liked the ability to custom code and unfortunately some of the plugins, and other things I wanted to use, didn’t play as nicely with it (though I have since heard those things have been corrected).
For many, the new version of Thesis is great, and you can do all sorts of things you couldn’t do before. They have a super supportive community and if I had more time, I’d probably be using Thesis again, it was great for SEO, and customization. I use it for many of my clients sites, especially when they are looking for something simple they can use easily.