As bloggers, we spend about 90% of our time on our phones. Whether you’re perfecting your editing technique on Instagram, scrolling through Twitter or drafting up your next blog post, your phone is never far away.
With hundreds of apps out there to make our lives easier, here are a few of our favourite ones that we think are essential for bloggers.
You’ll have no doubt seem some beautifully designed Instagram Stories over the last few months, and chances are it’s all down to this app. Unfold lets you create image, text and video collages to showcase your snaps on Instagram Stories. Choose a layout, add frames, select your font and tap to add your photos or images. This app gives a lovely, minimal look and helps you bring your stories to life.
IFTTT (which stands for If This, Then That) allows you to create “recipes” to automate actions and link between different platforms. For example, you can set it up to automatically Tweet your Instagram photos as native photos on Twitter every time you post. Or you can automatically upload an update on your blog’s Facebook page every time you publish a new blog post. IFTTT is a huge timesaver and makes life much easier – stops you having to copy and paste everything several times!
Dipping your toe into the world of sponsored influencer work? Takumi is a great place to start. You have to apply to join (a minimum of 1,000 Instagram followers is required), and then you’ll be matched up to paid Instagram opportunities as they come up. The brief, timescales and payment is made clear in the app, so you always know what you’re signing up for. Depending on your interests, you might find yourself advertising everything from burgers to bubble bath – and you can always turn opportunities down if they aren’t the right fit for you.
Obviously this only applies if your blog is hosted on WordPress, but the app is great for posting on the go, making edits to posts you’ve already published or keeping drafts of post ideas to write up later. Most of the main blogging platforms also have mobile apps, so you should be able to find one for your blog even if you’re not on WordPress.
If you like to be organised when it comes to your Instagram feed, Planoly is a must-have app. It allows you to plan your grid in advance, dragging and dropping until you get your photos in the perfect position. As well as designing the look of your feed, Planoly is also really useful for writing up captions in advance, storing lists of hashtags for different topics and scheduling in Instagram posts for a later date.
Speaking of scheduling, Buffer is an amazing scheduling tool for bloggers. Just link up your social accounts and you can schedule in posts to promote your latest blog posts, share photos or curate content from elsewhere online. This saves a lot of time, and ensures traffic is always coming in to your blog, even when you’re too busy (or too forgetful!) to pop up a Tweet in real-time.
There’s nothing worse than having a great idea for a blog post on the bus home, then completely forgetting it by the time you’ve walked in the door. Evernote is perfect for keeping your notes organised. Create different notebooks (blog, work, home etc) and individual notes for different topics. Keep track of interesting articles you’ve read, create to-do lists, note down ideas or draft up blog posts in the Evernote app.
There are lots of amazing photo editing apps available, but the one we love most is Snapseed. It has a really easy to use interface and is great for fine-tuning an image before you add your favourite filter (we use VSCO or A Color Story for that). You can brighten specific areas of an image, up the saturation, add curves and much more. Lightroom is another great photo editing app for your phone.
If you want to create graphics for your blog posts or social media posts when you’re on the go, Canva is a great mobile app. Choose the size of your canvas (with options for Instagram posts, Pinterest posts, Facebook cover photos etc), select a pre-made template and then edit to add your own photos, fonts, colours etc. Canva can also be used on desktop, so you can easily access from both your phone or your computer.