WordPress has the most number of Plugins available for any content management platform and thats’ what makes it so cool and functionality rich.
Selection of Plugins depend on the nature of website you are working on but still I have tried to shortlist 10 best plugins for wordpress that every website should have.
The list contains plugins related to SEO, Security, Social Media, Performance etc so all of these are very handy and can add value to your website significantly.
1. Yoast SEO Plugin
Search Engines are the major source of traffic to any website so managing the search ranking of your website is very important. SEO is a very big domain in itself and requires some expertise to set up your content in a way that can improve your search rankings. Well its not so difficult with WordPress. The SEO plugin by Yoast is one of the best and most complete SEO plugins available. It has got all the configurations and settings to enable you highlight your content in such a way that helps you improve search rankings.
Yoast SEO plugin has a very simple dashboard using which all the pre-defined settings can be saved. Once the plugin is activated and settings are saved, you can easily set the keyword, meta tags, search result properties etc directly from your wordpress post page.
I used the All in One SEO Pack plugin for quite sometime and then moved to SEO by Yoast for better results.
Note– All in One SEO is also a great SEO plugin. Try it out !
2. Wordfence Security
Security is most important when managing a WordPress website. You need to protect your website from malwares’, spams and other security threats our there. Hackers can inject malware and then destroy all your hard work in no time.
Wordfence Security is one of the best plugin for this purpose and I have been using it for a long time without any issue. It has all the security features integrated into a single dashboard and is very easy to manage and monitor. Features like- Application Firewall, Scan, Blocking, Live Traffic monitoring are available in the free version and are sufficient for small\medium websites. Large scale websites can buy the premium version for more features and control.
3. Disqus Comment System
For small websites, wordpress native comment system works just fine but for websites having frequent comments and also want added functionalities like email verification and security then Disqus is the plugin to go for.
This plugin is simple to setup and the best part is you can migrate to this plugin anytime without losing existing comments on your website. There is a comment import feature which will import all the existing comments to Disqus system database without fuss. So if you need a good plugin for comment system then Disqus is one of the best in the category.
4. W3 Total Cache
Performance is an important aspect of any website and caching is the way to achieve it. There are a number of plugins out there for caching but W3 Total Cache stands out. It reduces page load time by loading page content from cache instead of server.
Good site performance makes good user experience and also contributes in better search rankings.
Broken links lead to 404 errors and can impact your search rankings. Its difficult to edit your .htaccess file everytime you want to set up a redirect. This is were WordPress Plugins make the work so easy. This simple plugin does exactly what it is supposed to.
Setup redirections for all your broken pages or create vanity URLs and point to a page easily. No complexity at all !
Protecting website against attacks and disasters is important but keeping a backup of your website is the first step to ensure you don’t lose the data and the hard work behind it.
BackUpWordpress takes backup of entire website including all the files and database. You can also schedule backup at a specific time so that backup can be taken automatically and you don’t have to worry about it. In case the site is impacted by any security attack or site goes down due to any other reason then the latest backup can be used to restore the files and get the site back up.
7. Social Warfare
After trying a number of social sharing plugins, Social Warfare is the one that made a very good impression. It has got multiple options to show the social sharing buttons and count. It has options to show floating social sharing bar which makes it very efficient and attracts attention of the readers.
Social sharing of the content helps gaining more visitors and subscribers to the website and is key for the growth of any website.
8. MailerLite Signup Forms
Maintaining and growing subscriber list for website helps in drawing more visitors to website and also keeping your existing readers engaged. This way they know what is going on your website and what new content is being added that could interest them.
The Official MailerLite Sign Up Form plugin makes it easy to grow your newsletter subscriber list. Use the plugin to add newsletter sign up form to your WordPress blog or website and automatically integrate it with your MailerLite account.
This plugin has very good options to design your own custom sign up forms and integrate them to website. An important thing to note is that you need to create an account on their official website and get it approved before you can use all its features.
Spam comments in WordPress are very irritating and its almost impossible to delete those manually. Spamming is a very big problem in WordPress and having a plugin which can automatically handle it for you is very much required.
Akismet checks your comments and contact form submissions against their global database of spam to prevent your site from publishing malicious content.
Say NO to spams with Akismet !
10. 404Page-Smar Custom Error Page
Its nice to have a user friendly 404 error page. There can be broken links, deleted pages-posts, old content links etc which can go to 404 and if you don’t have a proper 404 page, the users will end up seeing a straight forward 404 message. So it is important to create a custom 404 page which can direct users to a valid page (like Homepage) or show a proper friendly message which will show to the users that you care.
This is a simple plugin which will allow you to setup a custom page as 404 page with no additional settings.
Its a big WordPress market out there and there are multiple plugins available for each functionality so it depends what suits your requirement and expectations. Choose wisely as a wrong plugin can cause issues on the website and its very difficult dealing with them. Its also important to have a balance between the number of plugins and performance as having too many plugins can degrade site performance.
Happy WordPressing !
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