s Best WordPress Plugins - 24 Plugins to improve your WordPress site

The Best WordPress Plugins – 24 Plugins That’ll Make Your WordPress Site Awesome!

The Best WordPress Plugins – 24 Plugins That’ll Make Your WordPress Site Awesome!

WordPress has revolutionized not only the blog but also the content management system, which is why it now runs approximately 20 percent of the world’s websites. While the software is a workhorse right out of the box, with a little TLC and a few extra plugins you can make it a thoroughbred. Below is a list of the 24 best WordPress plugins I use to help improve the user experience, SEO and performance of my client’s websites.

WordPress Plugins for Performance

WP Optimize

WP-Optimise
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This add-on works by cleaning up and repairing database tables that become inefficient over time and it works with just a few mouse clicks. Remember to take a back up first!

WP Maintenance Mode

WP Maintenance Mode
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Every WordPress blog experiences downtime for upgrades and theme changes. This plugin provides a customizable page that explains why the site is down and when it can be expected to return.

WP Smush It

WP Smush It
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If performance and load times are becoming an issue, and as any WordPress site grows I guarentee that it will, then this plugin uses the Smush.it service to reduce image sizes and speed up page loads. Simples!

WP Clean Up

WP Clean Up
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This is another plugin that is not as well-known as some of the others on this list, but it’s very effective. It removes the problem of data left behind when plugins are removed, which in time can bloat a database and slow a site down. Again, another must if you want to keep a tidy house.

W3 Total Cache

WP Total Cache
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WordPress can use a lot of server resources, so it is best practice to use a caching plugin, especially on shared hosting. By serving static copies of frequently requested pages, the site will load faster and visitors will be happier. W3 Total cache can be an asset to any WordPress site, but it’s important to use it right, in the wrong hands W3 total cache can make your site do very strange things. In the right hands however, it’ll make your site sing.

Plugin Performance Profiler

P3 Performance Profiler
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The Plugin Performance Profiler makes it easy to identify plugins on your WordPress installation which are slowing your site down. The plugin identifies performance problems by measuring the impact of individual plugins on your site’s load time. 8 out of 10 times the reason for slow load times in WordPress is because of a poorly developed or poorly configured plugin, with the P4 plugin you can search and destroy these issues.


WordPress Plugins for SEO

Google XML Sitemaps

WP Google XML Sitemaps
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After spam protection, SEO is the next priority. Using this plugin helps search engines crawl and index a site more efficiently. This is SEO 101, and you should be submitting yours or your client’s XML sitemap to Google and other search engines via their web master tools section as standard.

All-In-One SEO Pack

WP All In One SEO Pack
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This is the perfect solution for site owners who do not understand, or do not have the time to worry about SEO optimisation. The plugin will do all the work for you and adds extra fields to your pages and posts for writing custom page titles and descriptions.

WP External Links

WP External Links
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Those who use WordPress for marketing will find this plugin essential to avoid penalties on external do-follow links. Increasingly more valuable given Google’s recent algorithm update.

SEO Friendly Images

SEO Friendly Images
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This SEO plugin does pretty much what it says on the tin. Makes it super simple and partially automates the process of making sure all your images have appropriate titles and alt attributes.


WordPress Plugins for Engagement

Contact Form 7

WP Contact Form 7
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If you’ve got some budget, you might want to check out gravity forms, but for those looking for a free and easy contact form solution, then Contact Form 7 is probably for you. This is a super easy, secure and customizable contact form for WordPress. It’s well supported by it’s developer and is updated regularly. It works with Google Analytics for integrated tracking too!

Feedburner Email Subscription

WP Feedburner Subscription Email
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This plugin provides an easy way for visitors to subscribe to a blog’s RSS feed and receive updates by email. Feedburner from Google is an excellent tool which can help you build up a base of subscribers without the hassle of having to manage a mailing list. Users will subscribe via their email client or RSS feeder and be automatically updated each time you post new content.

Comment Luv

WP Comment Luv
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Comment Luv works by adding a link to a commenter’s latest blog post in order to drive traffic to that person’s site. It makes commenting more social and SEO-friendly. Ahh, how nice :-).

nrelate Related Content

WP Nrelate Related Content
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This is a popular tool for displaying related content between a blog post and its comments. It improves a site’s ranking while lowering the bounce rate. It brings more related content from elsewhere on your site to the currently viewed page.

Share This

WP Share This
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Share This provides 120 different social networks with which visitors share your content. Users expect to be able to easily share content they enjoy or find useful, if you don’t have share this, you’re missing out!

nrelate Flyout

WP Nrelate Flyout
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Used on many WordPress sites, The Slide opens in the lower right of the page as a visitor scrolls down to read a post. It provides a link to a related posts and keeps visitors engaged. A great addition when used in conjunction with nrelate.

WP PageNavi

WP Pagenavi
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This plugin puts proper pagination in place of the standard Next and Back links provided by WordPress. It makes a site look more professional and makes navigating easier for visitors.

Mobile Press

WP Mobile Press
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This plugin makes a WordPress site mobile-friendly if you’re is not using a responsive theme. You can style the mobile press theme too – making the switch from web to mobile seamless.

WP Column Shortcodes

WordPress Column Shortcodes
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This super simple, super useful little plugin will help you create interesting and visually appealing posts and pages. WP Column Shortcodes provides you with easy to use shortcodes that add grid based columns into your posts. The columns resize to any content area and work right out of the box without the need for any additional coding.

Facebook Recommendations

WP Facebook Recommendations Bar
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WP Facebook Recommendations Bar allows you to add the Facebook Recommendations box to your website with minimal fuss. Provide your users with personal recommendations that will encourage them to visit additional pages and posts on your WordPress site, and naturally they can in turn share this with their own friends on Facebook. Win Win.


WordPress Plugins for Security

Better WordPress Security

WP Security
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WebsideDefender’s WordPress Security toolbox is completely free and extremely handy. The plugin helps keep your WordPress website safe and secure by informing you of potential threats. Think antivirus for WordPress. It’ll suggest solutions to potential security holes such as password strength, file permissions, database security, version hiding and wp-admin protection. The plugin has many more features too and is a great addition to any WordPress site, especially if security is important.

Limit Login Attempts

WP Limit Login Attempts
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WordPress blogs are often compromised through brute-force attacks where a hacker gets in by using a password-guessing script on the login page. There are things you can do from within your hosting control panel – such as changing the wp-admin directory name or requiring a server side password on hitting the directory. For those less technical people out there, or anyone looking for a quick and easy fix this plugin limits the number of login attempts which can be made and determines how long an IP address is blocked after two many failed attempts.

Akismet

WP Akismet
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Akismet comes pre-installed, and is free for non-commercial use. Blog comment spam is just as much a problem now as it was a decade ago. Once activated, Akismet will scanning comments to pinpoint spam and corraling the bad ones for deletion. It learns as you go, and through time an already impeccable spam prevention system will get even more accurate over time.

Growmap Anti-Spambot

WP Growmap Anti Spambot Plugin
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I’m a believer in choice, and for those of you who don’t want to use Akismet, or simply want an extra layer of spam protection can download and install this lesser-known plugin. Growmap Anti-Spambot works by requiring human users to tick a box before submitting a comment. A simple but effective solution.


But always, always, ALWAYS remember…

WordPress plugins are varied in quality and functionality, so it’s imperative to make sure you back up your entire site before getting too trigger happy with the WordPress plugin directory. WordPress plugins can serve to enhance the user experience and create innovotive functionality that’ll wow your visitors, but for those times where a WordPress plugin isn’t quite giving you the result you need, you can always call upon a WordPress expert to help you get to where you need to be!

One Response to "The Best WordPress Plugins – 24 Plugins That’ll Make Your WordPress Site Awesome!"

  1. sonesh  April 30, 2014 at 2:38 pm

    Really great collection of themes all must be there in every wordpress blog

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