Apart from being the most popular and widely supported content management system on the planet, one of the biggest draws of WordPress is its almost limitless customizability.
In this post, we run through 30 WordPress plugins that we have either used or continue to use and can personally vouch for. These plugins will help you with speeding up your website, making it more secure, adding functionality, and just making it more beautiful.
Fight spam like a boss.
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.
It’s completely automated and facilitates easier moderation. URLs are shown in the comment body to reveal hidden or misleading links and moderators can see the number of approved comments for each user. A discard outright blocks the worst spam, saving you disk space and speeding up your site.
Oh, and it’s free for personal use.
2. BJ Lazy Load
Save bandwidth and make your site load faster.
This plugin replaces all your post images, post thumbnails, gravatar images and content iframes with a placeholder and loads the content as it gets close to enter the browser window when the visitor scrolls the page. Also works with text widgets.
Make your logins literally impenetrable.
Clef provides easy-to-use strong two-factor authentication using smartphones. It replaces insecure passwords and cumbersome one-time codes with the beautiful Clef Wave. To log in with Clef, simply open the mobile app and sync with the Clef Wave.
Clef stores your encrypted private key on your phone rather than in a central database. Thus even in the unlikely event of a catastrophic security breach on Clef’s servers, your login credentials remain secure on your phone.
4. Contact Form 7
Easily create highly functional forms for your website.
Contact Form 7 can manage multiple contact forms, plus you can customize the form and the mail contents flexibly with simple markup. The form supports Ajax-powered submitting, CAPTCHA, Akismet spam filtering and so on.
5. Disable Comments
Disable comments sitewide in one simple step.
This plugin allows administrators to globally disable comments on any post type (posts, pages, attachments, etc.) so that these settings cannot be overridden for individual posts. It also removes all comment-related fields from edit and quick-edit screens. On multisite installations, it can be used to disable comments on the entire network.
Additionally, comment-related items can be removed from the Dashboard, Widgets, the Admin Menu and the Admin Bar.
6. Disqus Comments System
Revamp your comment system to something much more powerful.
The Disqus comment system replaces your default WordPress comment system with Disqus comments — a service and tool for web comments and discussions. Disqus makes commenting easier and more interactive, while connecting websites and commenters across a thriving discussion community.
A few of its features include threaded comments and replies, notifications and reply by email, subscribe and RSS options, aggregated comments and social mentions, powerful moderation and admin tools, full spam filtering, blacklists and whitelists, support for Disqus community widgets, and more.
7. Easy Social Share Buttons
Give your boring share buttons a stunning makeover.
Easy Social Share Buttons is all-in-one social sharing plugin for WordPress that allows you share, monitor and increase your social popularity. With Easy Social Share Buttons, you will take your social sharing and following to the next level.
The plugin allows you to share on more than 35 of major social networks in addition to the Love this button, Comments button, Send to mail and Print. Easy Social Share Buttons also includes 12 native social like, follow and subscribe buttons which will increase your social following and social proof. The plugin not only gives you the freedom to control every aspect of display but also simplifies the initial setting with easy to use quick setup wizard.
8. Edit Flow
A full-feature editorial management suite for your WordPress setup.
- Calendar – A convenient month-by-month look at your content.
- Custom Statuses – Define the key stages to your workflow.
- Editorial Comments – Threaded commenting in the admin for private discussion between writers and editors.
- Editorial Metadata – Keep track of the important details.
- Notifications – Receive timely updates on the content you’re following.
- Story Budget – View your upcoming content budget.
- User Groups – Keep your users organized by department or function.
Oh, and it’s totally free.
9. Google Analytics by Yoast
Bring the power of Google Analytics to your WordPress dashboard.
Installation is simple through integration with Google Analytics API: authenticate, select the site you want to track and you’re done. This plugin uses the universal or the asynchronous Google Analytics tracking code, the fastest and most reliable tracking code Google Analytics offers and gives you incredibly nice visitor metric dashboards right in your WordPress install. There are is an option to enable demographics and interest reports, and track outbound links and downloads, besides many other features.
10. Google XML sitemaps
Auto generate XML sitemaps for better search indexing.
This plugin will generate a special XML sitemap which will help search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo and Ask.com to better index your blog. With such a sitemap, it’s much easier for the crawlers to see the complete structure of your site and retrieve it more efficiently. The plugin supports all kinds of WordPress generated pages as well as custom URLs. Additionally it notifies all major search engines every time you create a post about the new content.
Supported since over 9 years and rated as the best WordPress plugin, it will do exactly what it’s supposed to do – providing a complete XML sitemap for search engines. It will not break your site, slow it down or annoy you.
Speed up your website by auto-resizing high-resolution images.
Imsanity automatically resizes huge image uploads down to a size that is more reasonable for display in browser, yet still more than large enough for typical website use. The plugin is configurable with a max width, height, and quality. When a contributor uploads an image that is larger than the configured size, Imsanity will automatically scale it down to the configured size and replace the original image.
Imsanity also provides a bulk-resize feature to selectively resize previously uploaded images to free up disk space. This plugin is ideal for blogs that do not require hi-resolution original images to be stored and/or the contributors don’t want (or understand how) to scale images before uploading.
Supercharge your WordPress installation.
Using WordPress without installing Jetpack would be like buying a sports car and insisting on running it on low-octane fuel.
Some of the features that Jetpack adds to your website include custom CSS, carousels, contact forms, spam-free commenting, additional sidebar widgets, infinite scroll, tiled galleries, post by email, shortcode embeds, spellcheck, enhanced content distribution, shortlinks, related posts, social sharing, subscriptions, site verification tools, visitor stats, and much more.
Just get it.
13. Mango Buttons
Create beautiful buttons to use inside posts without fiddling with code.
Mango Buttons are completely responsive and designed to look great on mobile, tablet, and desktop devices. Choose from a handful of beautiful button presets to get started, and easily customize the color and size of your button to optimize the way you capture visitor attention.
14. Meta Slider
Effortlessly create great looking slideshows.
Meta Slider makes creating slideshows fast and easy. Simply select images from your WordPress Media Library, drag and drop them into place, set slide captions, links and SEO fields all from one page. You can choose from 4 different slideshow types (Flex Slider, Nivo Slider, Responsive Slides & Coin Slider) and use the provided shortcode or template include to easily embed slideshows in your blog.
Grab this feature-rich, fully-functional, free newsletter management system.
It’s extensive feature set includes unlimited subscribers with statistics, unlimited emails with tracking, customizable subscription widget, page or custom form, WordPress User Registration seamless integration, single and double opt-in plus privacy checkbox for EU laws compliance, subscribers preferences to fine-target your campaigns, SMTP-Ready, customizable themes, and more!
16. Optin Forms
Creating beautiful optin forms without using HTML or CSS.
Optin Forms allows you to create stunning optin forms for your blog or website, without the need to know any HTML or CSS. Simply select your email solution, pick a form design from the five available ones and customize its appearance.
Add your form to your posts and pages with a simple mouse-click, or use a shortcode to add it to specific posts and pages. All form designs are fully customizable. You can change texts, fonts and font sizes. Change the colors of any element by selecting a new value from the color picker.
Optin Forms works with AWeber, iContact, MailChimp, GetResponse, MadMimi, and Interspire Email Marketer.
17. P3 (Plugin Performance Profiler)
Find out which plugins are slowing down your site.
This plugin creates a profile of your WordPress site’s plugins’ performance by measuring their impact on your site’s load time. Often times, WordPress sites load slowly because of poorly configured plugins or because there are so many of them. By using the P3 plugin, you can narrow down anything causing slowness on your site.
This plugin uses the canvas element for drawing charts and requires requires Firefox, Chrome, Opera, Safari, or IE9 or later. This plugin will not work in IE8 or lower.
18. Page Builder
Build custom page layouts using a simple drag-and-drop interface.
The intuitive interface that looks just like WordPress itself. It’s easy to learn, so you’ll be building beautiful, responsive content in no time. Page Builder works with standard WordPress widgets, so you’ll always find the widget you need.
19. Revive Old Post
Make the most of your old posts by auto-posting them.
Learn WordPress using real-time, voice-guided training.
Sidekick eliminates the time you spend searching, reading and fast-forwarding through video guides, speeds up the learning process, and allows you to spend more time creating great websites and content.
Grow your email subscribers, get seen, get ahead.
SumoMe provides free tools you need to grow your WordPress site. This plugin will make it easy for your readers to join your email list, share your articles and optimize with analytics. The free tools include List Builder, Share, Welcome Mat, Heat Map, Scroll Box, Smart Box, Highlighter, and Image Sharer.
There are also paid upgrades packs available in case you need additional functionality and customization options.
22. TinyMCE Advanced
Upgrade your default WordPress WYSIWYG editor.
This plugin will let you add, remove and arrange the buttons that are shown on the Visual Editor toolbar. It includes 15 plugins for TinyMCE that are automatically enabled or disabled depending on what buttons are chosen.
Some of the features included are more options when inserting lists, search and replace function in the editor, ability to set font family and font size, and many others.
Feature rich set-it-and-forget-it backup service.
24. White Label CMS
Re-brand any WordPress website to make it your own.
It gives you the ability to customize logos and dashboard panels and also choose which menus are visible. There are 3 CMS profiles available as presets: Website, Blog or Custom, so you can modify the menu system to suit the CMS purpose. These only apply to the user role of Editor and below. Admins will see all menus.
It also allows you to add custom logos to the header and footer as well as the all important login page, giving you a better-branded experience of the website.
25. Widgets Bundle
A bundle of beautiful widgets to add to your website.
The SiteOrigin widget bundle gives you a collection of widgets that you can use and customize. All the widgets are built on our powerful framework, giving you advanced forms, unlimited colors, and 1500+ icons.
The plugins include a Google Maps Widget, a Button Widget, an Image Widget that’ll let you add images everywhere, a Call To Action Widget that’ll get your users performing the actions you want, a Slider Widget that slides images and HTML5 videos, a Price Table Widget that’ll help you sell more, a Post Carousel Widget that displays your posts as a carousel, a Features Widget that lets you display a set of site or service features, a Video Widget to get your videos out there, a Headline Widget to get you noticed, and a Social Links Widget to show you’re active.
26. Wordfence Security
Free enterprise-class protection against hacks and malware.
Wordfence starts by checking if your site is already infected. A deep scan of your source code comparing it to the Official WordPress repository for core, themes and plugins is conducted. Then Wordfence secures your site and makes it up to 50 times faster.
Wordfence Security is 100% free and open source. There’s also a Premium API key on offer that gives you Premium Support, Country Blocking, Scheduled Scans, Password Auditing and we even check if your website IP address is being used to Spamvertize.
27. WordPress Popular Posts
Show off your most popular posts using this widget.
WordPress Popular Posts is a highly customizable widget that displays the most popular posts on your blog. It’s main features include:
- Multi-widget capable. That is, you can have several widgets of WordPress Popular Posts on your blog — each with its own settings.
- Time range. List those posts of your blog that have been the most popular ones within a specific time range (eg. last 24 hours, last 7 days, last 30 days, etc.)
- Custom post-type support.
- Display a thumbnail of your posts.
- Use your own layout.
28. WP Google Fonts
Give your typography a makeover by adding fonts from the Google Font Directory.
Google’s free font directory is one of the most exciting developments in web typography in a very long time. The amazing rise of this new font resource has made this plugin the most popular font plugin on WordPress and it shows no signs of stopping.
The WP Google Font plugin makes it even easier to use Google’s free service to add high quality fonts to your WordPress powered site. Not only does this plugin add the necessary Google code, but it also gives you the ability to assign the Google fonts to specific CSS elements of your website from within the WordPress admin. Or if you would rather, you can target the Google fonts from your own theme’s stylesheet.
29. WP Super Cache
A fast caching engine that produces static HTML files and reduces page load times.
99% of your visitors will be served static HTML files. Those users who don’t see the static files will still benefit because they will see different cached files that aren’t quite as efficient but still better than uncached.
30. Yoast SEO
Write better content and increase your search traffic.
WordPress out of the box is already technically quite a good platform for SEO, but that doesn’t mean you can’t improve it further!
This plugin is written from the ground up by Joost de Valk and his team at Yoast to improve your site’s SEO on all needed aspects. While this Yoast SEO plugin goes the extra mile to take care of all the technical optimization, more on that below, it first and foremost helps you write better content.
Yoast SEO forces you to choose a focus keyword when you’re writing your articles, and then makes sure you use that focus keyword everywhere.
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