WordPress plugins are the number one reason to use WordPress
WordPress plugins are available to add security, beef up your SEO, create online forms, take payments, shcedule appointments, stop spam, and on and on. There are over 30,000 WordPress plugins available at WordPress.org – the challenge is to finding the “best” ones for your site. Adding the right WordPress plugins to your WordPress site is like having a toolbox full of business-building tools.
When searching for the right one, look at popular plugins (ones that have a lot of downloads and have great reviews – it’s because they work best), only get your free plugins from WordPress.org (they test and make sure they’re not malware), and look for ones that have been recently updated (if they haven’t been updated in years they could cause compatibility issues). Here’s my “Top 10 list” to start with:
1. WordPress SEO by Yoast
WordPress SEO is not just an SEO plugin, it provides a complete website optimization package. It adds titles and descriptions to your articles, you can add open graph meta data, do page analysis, publish xml sitemap, and much more. Easy to install & setup. Free version available
BackupBuddy is an easy and beginner friendly backup & migration plugin. It allows you to easily setup an automatic backup schedule for your website. You can store your backups on the cloud and relax, knowing all your content is backed up. premium
3. W3 Total Cache
Your site’s speed plays an important role in search engine rankings. W3 Total Cache will help you optimize your site for speed & performance. It allows you to easily setup page & browser caching, compress pages for quicker downloads. It is easy to install and setup – even for beginners Free version available
4. Gravity Forms
Whether you need to set up a simple contact form or a complex job application, Gravity Forms will help you build and publish an online form quickly and easily. For small business owners, creating a web form use to mean hiring a programmer. Use Gravity Forms to create customer satisfaction surveys, questionnaires, user registration, online payment forms, and more. premium
Akismet checks your comments against the Akismet Web service to see if they look like spam or not and lets you review the spam it catches under your blog’s “Comments” admin screen. Free version available
7. All In One Security & Firewall
A comprehensive, user-friendly, all in one WordPress security and firewall plugin for your site. Free version available
8. WP Smush
WP Smush strips hidden, bulky information from your images, reducing the file size without losing quality. The faster your site loads, the more Google, Bing, Yahoo and other search engines will like it. Free version available
9. Broken Link Checker
This plugin will check your posts, comments and other content for broken links and missing images, and notify you if any are found. Free version available
10. Google Analytics by Yoast
Track your WordPress site easily with the latest google tracking codes and lots of added data for search result pages & error pages. Free version available
Use plugins to get the fuctionality you need
There are some 30,000 plugins to choose from, but don’t go crazy. All add code to function and some can slow page loads, it can be just a split second, but when they all add up it can be noticeable. Also some can conflict with each other and cause problems. So some advice is use ones that have lots of downloads (they are popular for a reason) they are kept up to date and remain supported, be careful it it warns you that it hasn’t been updated in over 2 years. You also should keep all your plugins updated, you’ll get prompted – it’s for security and performance fixes.
Free Plugins at WordPress.org
Plugins extend and expand the functionality of WordPress. 43,379 plugins with 1,198,516,886 total downloads are at your fingertips.
Learn from WP Apprentice short and on point video tutorials which you watch at your own pace, whenever you need them – reliable answers from an expert trainer.
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