A message from John Lyman, Editor-in-Chief:
International Policy Digest is over a decade old, and in that time, I have gotten a lot of questions about what resources I use to keep the website humming along.
I added this resources page as a tool to help you with any website endeavors you take on. These are all products I have personal experience with and I use them daily to keep the website running and content fresh.
If you need a URL, this is a great first place to start. Bluehost is a domain registration and web hosting company. There are a ton of extra services to explore.
I use WP Engine to host my website. They house all of the website’s data and archives securely. They are a premier WordPress host and help websites scale. I could have chosen Bluehost to house the website’s data but with over 13,000 posts and probably something around 15,000 images, that’s a lot of data and they host it on a dedicated server.
If you need help creating a website or developing any new applications or plugins, Codeable offers freelance developer support specifically focused on WordPress websites. I have used their services many times to create new page formats and specialized sections of IPD. It’s affordable and quick and the freelancers are vetted and reliable.
Semrush is a SaaS platform that I subscribe to that helps me get the most traffic for my content. I use it for keyword searches and for all of my SEO optimization.
Yoast SEO is an SEO plugin that has been invaluable when I publish new content. It helps you optimize content by suggesting fixes for your SEO keywords and titles. They also offer a news plugin which has been useful in getting my website’s content listed on Google News.
I use a variety of free and paid photo sites to find the right imagery to use either “as is” or to create the right graphic. There are some free sources like Pixabay, Wikimedia Commons, and Flickr for quick image searches.
For more in-depth searches I turn to Shutterstock. Shutterstock is a stock photo website with images, videos, music, templates, and more. There are a variety of packages you can subscribe to based on your asset needs, and you can purchase one-offs as needed. Check it out for high-quality assets, and the first month is free.
For graphics editing, I use Adobe Photoshop. It’s design software that helps me create the right graphics for articles and to keep content relevant.
Writer and Editor Tools
Grammarly is an online editing tool that helps correct basic grammatical errors while editing. There is a free subscription and an upgraded subscription option. I recommend it to every writer who submits an article for publication. I utilize Grammarly for every article prior to publication and it’s an invaluable tool for writers of all skill levels.
For email marketing, I have always relied upon Mailchimp. Mailchimp is a marketing automation and email marketing platform. I use Mailchimp to send out the website’s newsletter daily and weekly, and it runs seamlessly to share my website’s content with subscribers.
Social Media Management
Hootsuite is a social media management tool. I can pre-load all of my tweets, Facebook, and LinkedIn posts days ahead, and essentially set it and forget it. Hootsuite sends out our posts at pre-scheduled times. It saves me a ton of time and allows me to “bulk-plan” my social media for the week.
Thanks again for your support, and I hope you find this list helpful in your future endeavors. And of course, drop me a note with additional any key partners you use that I should check out. I will update this page with new references and tools when something else joins my lineup!
Full disclosure: A few of the links on this page are affiliate links. We earn a commission if you decide to purchase them (at no additional cost to you). Know that we have personal experience with all of these companies and services, and have decided to share them with you because they are what we use on a daily basis, not because of any monetary incentive. Please don’t spend your hard-earned money on these products unless you need them.