WordPress has been a huge player in the internet world branding itself as the most popular Content Management System (CMS) in the past decade. The most important factor of its success is the integration of excess of 40,000 free plugins and other premium options. Our team at Digitally Roasted has extensively tested more than 100 plugins for the last few months.
The following are 31 of the best plugins which add key functionalities to your website, increase the engagement of users, and optimize your website for search engines.
- 1 Disqus (free)
- 2 Back up Buddy( starts from $80)
- 3 Sucuri Security(Free)
- 4 Std by Yoast (Free)
- 5 WP User Manager (Free)
- 6 Google XML Sitemaps(Free)
- 7 JETPACK(Free)
- 8 Google analytics by MonsterInsights (Free)
- 9 Gravity Forms ($39)
- 10 Floating Social Bar (Free)
- 11 Gzip Ninja Speed Compressor (free)
- 12 Wp Clone(Free)
- 13 Wp Smush(Free)
- 14 Theme Check (Free)
- 15 Regenerate Thumbnails (free)
- 16 Table Press( free)
- 17 All in One Schema.org Rich Snippets (free)
- 18 Sumome
- 19 Optimize press ($97-core $197-publisher package $297-pro package)
- 20 Redirection (free)
- 21 Ultimate NoFollow(Free)
- 22 W3 Total Cache( free)
- 23 Login Lockdown(Free)
- 24 Woo Commerce (Free)
- 25 Google Adsense (Free)
- 26 WordPress eMember ($59.95)
- 27 Affiliate link manager( 34.95)
- 28 Download Monitor (Free)
- 29 Hellobar (Free)
- 30 Revolution slider ($19)
- 31 MailChimp (Free)
Engagement is one of the key traits of a successful website. Your users should have a platform where they can discuss and share their ideas and the content of your post. So, a comment system which can engross your users and help them interact with the website and other users is of utmost importance.
Disqus is the most widely used wordpress plugin for generating an interactive, Threaded and SEO friendly comment system. It features full spam filtering mechanism, powerful moderation and admin tools, notification through mails, and threaded comments and replies.
Back up Buddy( starts from $80)
To be honest, internet is NOT RELIABLE. There are unpredictable glitches that may arise which can cause significant damage to your website. An attack on your host’s services or failure of hardware can destroy your years of hard work if there isn’t any backup of your data.
Creating Backups should be a regular endeavour while operating your website. BackupBuddy provides a simple interface through which you can easily backup your website regularly. Additionally if a mishap occurs, it helps you restore and move your wordpress site with just some random clicks.
Free advice: As they say “Better Safe Than Sorry”, always BACKUP your data
Security is of paramount importance when it comes to websites. There are different malwares which are constantly finding new ways to infect them. These malwares either drive traffic away from your web page, make money through ads or poach on your use data.
Sucuri Security will benefit your wordpress site by keeping a log of all the security activities, scan malwares remotely, monitor file integrity and blacklist, post hack security actions and many more. Sucuri team specializes in security of WordPress websites, so I believe you would be secure in their hands.
Std by Yoast (Free)
Yoast has been specializing in SEO of wordpress since 2008. With a team of brilliant SEO experts behind them, yoast provides a simple way to optimize your website accordance to the specifications of all major search engines.
Yoast SEO forces you to choose a specific keyword when writing an article, optimizing the article according to the keyword. This helps in completely optimizing the whole website in the long term and making it fully optimized. Moreover, different operations such as page analysis, XML sitemaps, RSS optimizations can be carried out the the plugin.
WP User Manager (Free)
In the generic world of internet, customization is a very important component in gaining an attachment with the user. “Hello Layla” is every time better than “Hello User”. WP User Manager helps you customize your website for your users creating a bond; thus increasing the return rate.
WP User Manager has different functionalities such as adding custom user registration, login and registration forms, custom email notification, custom widgets and many more. Basically, with WP User Manager, you can make your users feel at home and stay there longer to use your products and services.
Google XML Sitemaps(Free)
Rated as the best wordpress plugin, Google XML sitemaps generates a complete structure of your website making it easier for search engines to crawl through it and retrieve new posts and pages efficiently.
The plugin supports custom URL’s and pings the search engines every time a new content is generated. This optimizes your website and many webpages which are not frequently visited will be thoroughly crawled by the search engines.
One of the most used plugins with a load of functionality, Jetpack is essentially used to optimize images and data. As the Load Time of a website is a critical factor determining the User experience and the SEO ranking, Jetpack is a highly recommended plugin to be used.
The other functionalities of Jetpack that are often used are security against brute force attacks, centralized management and custom CSS.
Google analytics by MonsterInsights (Free)
With roughly 11 million downloads, Google Analytics Plugin is the most popular analytics tool out there. It has a dedicated team working on it which makes the plugin up to date with the newest features of Google Analytics.
Featuring asynchronous Google Analytics Tracking Code, demographics and interest reports, outbound links and download tracking, option to anonymize IP’s, it is an easy solution for all the analytics on your website.
Gravity Forms ($39)
Forms being the cornerstone of a website, Gravity forms is a tool which helps you create advanced forms to interact with the user. It has different add-ons that build on the basic functionalities such as creating directories out of the form and customize them.
With different applications being rampant on the internet, integration is very important. Different services such as Paypal, MailChimp,GetResponse, Stripe and many more services being easily extended with gravity forms makes it the best form building tool in the market.
Floating Social Bar (Free)
It is a trending social media plugin which boasts fast loading time and easy integration making the plugin nearly invisible but effective. Developed by the community WPBeginner 2 years ago, it adds a horizontal floating share bar to your pages and blog posts.
Social media being one of the big contributers of traffic, Floating Social bar is a eye catching floating bar which maximizes social media visibility without affecting your site speed.
Gzip Ninja Speed Compressor (free)
It is a compression plugin which will increase the speed of your website and possibly increase your rank on Search Engines due to the increase in load time.
Cons : it can only be used in Apache servers ( Almost all wordpress Websites are on Apache Servers)
Known as better than its paid counterparts, Wp Clone is a tool to copy a website from one domain or hosting service to another. Additionally, it can be used for backup services, creating copies for testing purposes and installation of pre-configured version of wordpress.
Wp clone not requiring FTP access to either source or destination sites and also not restoring the wordpress system files has made it a go to service for small websites even when it has a failure rate of more than 10%.
Coming back to image compression, Wp Smush is the most proficient compressor in the market. They have dedicated servers which store the bulky information of images which reduces the file size whereas keeping the quality intact.
Working with popular image files such as JPEG, GIF and PNG, it automates the scaling process and also provides advanced compression stats.
Theme Check (Free)
Everyone who has a website on wordpress knows that themes are one of the most problem generating entities. Theme Check is a plugin which lets you analyse if your theme is upto the latest theme review standards.
The Theme is run through a simple admin menu and results are all categorically shown which makes it very easy to operate
Regenerate Thumbnails (free)
Thumbnails being concise can present a lot of images or data on a small space. They act as an eye catching entity when placed alongside text. Regenerate Thumbnails does the simple but unique task of regenerating the thumbnails which have been resized or distorted due to unwanted circumstances.
Table Press( free)
TablePress provides you the ability to create and organize beautiful tables in your posts, pages or text widgets. It works with simple Shortcodes and is very easy to use due to the use of spreedsheet like structure while entering and editing data.
All in One Schema.org Rich Snippets (free)
Snippets are the concise summary of your page on different search engines such as Google and Yahoo. These snippets are the first impression that your user gets of your website when they search for a relevant keyword.
Rich Snippets is a very interactive plugin( images, price, rating, author) which gives a beautiful image of your website even before it has been opened. Also applicable with Facebook, it is one of the best plugins which can reshape your brand in the SERP.
A multipurpose plugin, sumome integrates with various other wordpress service providers ( MailChimp, Aweber, Constant Contact, Campaign Monitor, GetResponse, ActiveCampaign, MyEmma, Mad Mimi, Infusionsoft, Feedblitz, HubSpot, MyNewsletterBuilder and many more) which strives to form a connection with user using various practices.
Featuring email subscription as its main service, various other services provided by Sumome include social media sharing buttons, highlighting most popular statements and image sharing.
Optimize press ($97-core $197-publisher package $297-pro package)
The introduction of 2.0 of Optimizepress, which provided a plugin for wordpress is a site creation tool which is targeted towards marketers. It provides variety of pages such as landing pages, sales and marketing pages, free training and course page, webinar registration page, product launch funnels and authority blogs which makes the life of a marketer less burdensome.
Dividing its core functionality into DashBoard , Page Launcher and Launch Site, it has its similarity to CMS and is very easy to use.
Operating a website will always bring some unconventional problems where wordpress beginners will waste hours and hours working the bugs out. 301 redirection and 404 errors are the errors which you will surely face while operating your website in a longer term. But remarkably, Redirection plugin will help you mitigate these problems with a jiffy.
Firstly, with this plugin you don’t have to handle the”.htaccess” file which if mishandled could cause some very big problems in your website. Also, it helps in monitoring 404 errors and keeps a log for all redirected URL’s.
Nofollow links were born around 2005 as spammers nearly destroyed blogs and communities through constant spamming for dofollow links. These nofollow links are automatically ingrained into comment sections and any other user driven content on wordpress websites.
Ultimate NoFollow is a plugin which will significantly increase your control over nofollow links on an individual or a categorical basis. A nofollow checkbox will be provided when inserting links in the posts, comment section and blogrolls which will give you more control over how you want to operate the nofollow and dofollow links.
W3 Total Cache( free)
W3 Total Cache is a powerful plugin which is very effective in increasing the speed of a website via caching. It is known to increase the website performance and reduce the download times of the content.
Many brands such as AT&T, mashable, stevesounders have integrated the plugin in their website and its user base is continuously growing despite having some problems in 2016. Using it has to a very big impact in mobile- friendly websites and is known to have 10X improvement in overall site performance.
In the 21st century where data is synonymous to wealth, there are abundant hackers who want to steal your data or the personal data of your users. There have a lot of cases where popular websites have been shunned due to the loss of the data of their users.
Login Lockdown is a plugin which helps you mitigate the risk of hackers getting inside your database or stealing your user’s information. It records the IP address and timestamp of every failed login attempt. If a lot of login requests have been attempted from the same IP address in a short duration, then the IP address is blocked for a certain amount of time which can be adjusted according to the preference of the admin.
Woo Commerce (Free)
A free e-commerce platform, WooCommerce has become a leader in the market of selling products. Beautifully designed to showcase a variety of products with options such as top products, subscription and discounts, it has become a go to platform for ecommerce.
With access to hundreds of wordpress extentions , woocommerce has several important features including a storefront which prioritizes speed and uptime, an extensive payment system, and variety of product category.
Google Adsense (Free)
Money! Money! Money! Adsense is the one of the most used avenues of making money out of your website. To integrate Adsense on your website, you will need to generate snippets and then manually paste them in your page. Adsense plugin makes it simple by giving you a point and click UI to insert ads in your website.
Other than simple integration, this plugin allows you to enable mobile specific ad-layouts, manage your ads quickly, add locations where you want your ads to be displayed and exclude pages where you do not want ads to be placed.
WordPress eMember ($59.95)
eMember is a membership tool which helps you create a layered architecture for your users such that you can define membership levels ( Free, Basic, Premium) and convert your site into a fully functional membership site.
This tool is essential for those businesses which are vying for users to subscribe to their website in order to gain courses , digital downloads, news articles etc. It is a easy to use plugin which can easily turn your site into a training centre or an institution.
Affiliate marketing is one of the hidden marketing tools which has enormous potential to make money. Everything including accessories , digital tools and high value goods can be sold through affiliate marketing. This type of marketing can be employed in blogs as well as ecommerce platform and gain enormous benefits by doing little work.
Affiliate link manager is the go to tool for all affiliate marketers. It cloaks the affiliate links and automatically converts keywords into affiliate links. Also, it provides services such as tracking your link clicks, customization and security.
Download Monitor (Free)
Download Monitor provides an interface to upload and download content through your website. Along with that, it helps you display interactive links, manage links and track downloads going through your website.
This plugin besides its functionalities has a very easy to navigate User Interface which can be easily operated even by novice users. Also, it is known for its security on which their team has worked extensively.
HelloBar is an innovative product which allows you to place customizable horizontal bars on your webpage which can be customized for various purposes including getting facebook likes, email subscriptions, call to action buttons etc.
www.HelloBar.com has been a popular website in the last few years. This simple bar is eye-catching which enables you to grab customers in a way which is most beneficial to meeting your target.
Revolution slider ($19)
Sliders may be seen as bulky Java Script code by many SEO experts but they do have a good side. Revolutionary slider is a fully customizable slider plugin which allows you to present the best of your website as the first thing when users open your webpage.
With more than 2 million users, this plugin has been constantly improving over the years and aiding their customers deliver ideas through their product. With a dedicated support available 24/7, revolutionary slider features 3D parallax effects, free add-ons, drag and drop slider building etc.
Email marketing may be an orthodox method of marketing in the everchanging field of Digital Marketing but still holds water to any other form of digital marketing. One of the most popular email subscription plugins, MailChimp flaunts a large group of plugins with which it integrates to provide you a large base of email subscribers.
MailChimp is free for the lists upto 2000 email subscribers and 12000 emails a month. The premium version is targeted towards growing businesses with different prices in accordance with the increase in the email subscribers and emails sent.