If you blog for business or pleasure, being able to update your WordPress site while on the road can be a godsend. So much potential working time is lost while commuting to work, traveling to new destinations or simply while being out of the house, with or without an internet connection.
So with that in mind, this post should give you some tips on how to get started with mobile blogging and be able to post to and manage your WordPress site while on the go.
Hardware for the Mobile Blogger
While modern netbooks and ultrabooks are ideal for those who are travelling and still want the ability to keep their WordPress blogs up to date, some users demand even more portability. For those users, mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets, along with the right apps and accessories can still enable lightweight travellers to update their sites while on the road.
A Bluetooth keyboard allows a compatible smartphone or tablet to be turned into a portable posting machine thanks to the improved method of entering text. While taking one of these accessories in your day bag is going to mean giving up some space, they do weight a lot less than a laptop.
They are also very low cost in comparison making them an ideal choice for journeys where you cannot guarantee the safe transit of your laptop. Some popular options include:
Connect your Phone to a Monitor
While this might not be much use on the road, when you get to your destination, connecting your phone or tablet to a TV or monitor can allow you to setup a home workstation. If you add your Bluetooth keyboard into the mix then you really have no excuses not to get some posts published. Some possible choices include:
- Micro HDMI to HDMI
- Amazon Basics HDMI to Micro HDMI
- iPad 3 & iPhone 4 to HDMI adaptor
- iPhone 5 Lightning Digital AV Adaptor
Make sure you check your phone or tablet is capable of outputting to a monitor before purchasing one of these cables.
Write Posts While Offline
If you’re taking your laptop with you while on your travels, you can install a blog publishing application before you setoff. These applications, such as Windows Live Writer, allow you to compose your posts while offline for publishing at a later date, when an internet connection is available.
Many bloggers use them to compose their posts, even when they have an internet connection, thanks to their rich feature set and ease of use. Live Writer isn’t the only desktop blog publishing client out there but it is a good option.
If you don’t have your laptop with you then the apps below for mobile devices can allow you to achieve the same goal.
Logging into Your WordPress Site Away from Home
When it comes to logging into your WordPress site’s dashboard while out and about, using one of the official WordPress apps for your mobile device is a good idea.
In most cases, this makes the whole process of editing posts and changing the settings of your blog much more user-friendly than logging straight into your site’s dashboard through your mobile device’s browser. Here are links to the apps to help you get started:
View the other official mobile apps for WordPress. These apps also allow you to post while offline and create drafts for your ideas and inspirations for future posts while on the road.
Post to Your Blog by Email
While WordPress does allow for email posting out of the box, the process of setting up this feature can be much simplified, as well enabling enhanced functionality by using the Jetpack plugin and its ability to post to your blog from any email client.
There are a few steps involved in the setup process such as linking your website with your WordPress.com account and enabling email posting for each user that wants the ability to do so. However, the setup is much less elaborate than the standard WordPress settings for posting by email.
Once this feature has been enabled in Jetpack, you will be given an email to which you can send your blog posts. You can also include formatting in your emails which will be used in your posts. Single image attachments will be inserted into the posts and multiple image attachments will be turned into galleries.
Other features include the ability to use shortcodes to do the following:
- Set the post category and tags
- Set the post status: publish, draft, pending, etc.
- Creating a slideshow from the attached images
Plus a range of other things you can do with shortcodes.
This is a really great tool that those on the move will appreciate whether they are sending in quick post outlines from their mobiles or directly from an email client, saving them the need to load up and login to their WordPress site.
Record Voice Notes
If inspiration strikes when you are out on the road, then being able to make a note of post ideas or not, can mean the difference between writing a post with the potential to go viral and sitting at a blank screen for hours trying to come up with another good idea.
While typing a quick note in your favourite note taking app is one solution, it isn’t always possible. On those actions recording a quick voice note can be an ideal way to ensure any brainwaves aren’t missed and lost in the ether.
A few good apps that can facilities this include:
Other Useful WordPress Apps for Android and iOS
If you want to keep tabs on your WordPress sites, or increase your blogging productivity while away from home these mobile apps should come in handy:
- Google Analytics: gAnalytics for Android currently has a better user rating than the official Google app so is well worth checking out. Apple users can now get their hands on a KISSMetrics Google Analytics app for their devices.
- Image Editing: if you want to upload photos and images to your blog posts while mobile blogging then the premium Photoshop for Android and iOS might be just what you need. For those looking for a free solution, Photo Editor seems to rule the roost on Google’s platform while Apple users can enjoy apps like Crop for Free and Photo Editor.
- Mobile Word Processor: some low cost and free options for both mobile platforms include iA Writer and Kingsoft Office.
Hopefully now you are ready to overcome some of the obstacles that might’ve been stopping from blogging and working on your WordPress sites while away from home.
If you’ve got any tips for working on the road, when with or without an internet connection, please share them by leaving a comment below.