It’s like a box of chocolate…Which plugins should I use? When you start your first blog or website that seems to be the question…and then you start ‘investigating’ and ‘wondering’ and the next thing you know…another 4 hours have passed…oh no.
This is my personal list of favorites. Some of the descriptions are blatantly taken from the WP summary (why work harder right?). You may not need all of these depending on the options in your WP theme or the type of site being built. This is my go to list of “BEST WORDPRESS PLUGINS”, I go through this list whenever I create a new site. The ones with the little ** are my must have! Below is the list, my next post will show you how to quickly install all these at once and it’s NOT via ftp.
.html on PAGES
Appends .html to the URL of PAGES when using permalinks
Comment: Heard that based on testing google responds better with a page that has an .html on it.
Deny automated spambots access to your PHP-based Web site.
Comment: This baby keeps spammy comments out. There are many popular ones, all sites should have something similar to this.
**cbnet Ping Optimizer
Saves your wordpress blog from getting tagged as ping spammer.
Comment: Every time you up change or update your site, WP is set to send a ping out. Now, if you constantly tweaking things, this will result in numerous pings being sent. Hence this plugin controls that.
**Contextual Related Posts
Increase reader retention and reduce bounce rates by displaying a set of related posts on your website or in your feed
Comment: Some themes may already have relate posts coded at the footer . Depending on your theme this one may not be necessary.
Simply hide widgets on specified pages. Adds checkboxes to each widget to either show or hide it on every site page.
**Fast Secure Contact Form
A super customizable contact form that lets your visitors send you email. Blocks all automated spammers. No templates to mess with.
Comment: Remember to add a contact form on your site. An indicator to Google and affiliate partners that you are real.
**Google XML Sitemaps
This plugin will generate a special XML sitemap which will help search engines to better index your blog.
**Improved Plugin Installation
Allows for plugin installation simply by submitting the wordpress plugin name or URL.
JW Player for WordPress – Flash & HTML5 Video Player
This video plugin is provided by LongTail Video Inc. It enables you to embed Flash and HTML5 video using the JW Player on your WordPress website.
Comment: This little player is awesome in that when a youtube video is embedded, social media buttons can be set up. So if the video is sent out/liked/share. The url will be sent out from your site – not youtube.
**Permalinks Moved Permanently
When permalink isn’t found, this checks if a post with the requested slug exists somewhere else on your blog.
**Platinum SEO Pack
Complete SEO solution for your WordPress blog.
Comment: Every site needs some type of SEO plugin. The simplier they are the happier I am. Another popular one is All-In-One SEO.
Quick Adsense is an Ads management WordPress plugin. It offers a quicker & flexible way to insert Adsense or any Ads code into a blog post. It can randomly place the Ads anywhere within a post.
Comment: I like it because you can set an adsense not to show up until a latter date and you can add other advertising code into the appropriate areas. Very flexible.
Redirection is a WordPress plugin to manage 301 redirections and keep track of 404 errors without requiring knowledge of Apache .htaccess files.
**SEO Friendly Images
Automatically adds alt and title attributes to all your images. Improves traffic from search engines and makes the image tags W3C.
Comment: Not all my images are SEO correctly at times. I like knowing this is installed.
This plugin shows you real time statistics about your blog. It collects information about visitors, spiders, search keywords, feeds, browsers, OS etc.
Comment: The dashboard can take a couple minutes to upload at times. Overall a great tool to quickly see how many people have been by.
**Twitter Facebook Social Share
WordPress plugin for twitter, facebook, Google +1 (plus one) and other social share. Can add the share box before post contents, after and also floating on left hand side of the post.
Comment: My favorite. When Pinterest came out…the developer was all over it and there was almost an immediate update. Note: Sometimes your theme may have social buttons already coded, this can still be handy if you want a floating bar on the left hand side.
**W3 Total Cache
Improve site performance and user experience via caching: browser, page, object, database, minify and content delivery network support. This plugin can damatically improve the speed and user experience of your site.
**WordPress Database Backup
On-demand backup of your WordPress database. Navigate to Tools → Backup to get started.
Comment: I love this one because you can schedule backup to be sent to ur email. The only thing is the files are not saved. If anyone has a better plugin or one that can backup the sites files please drop me a note or share it in the comments.
**WP No External Links
This plugin will allow you to mask all external links to internal, or to hide them.
Comment: This protects your link juice. A nice feature about this plugin is that you can exempt url from having the NoFollow added. Example: I want to send some link love to www.AGreatSiteXOXO.com. Just add it to the field and the link love will flow.
Comment: Google loves seeing disclaimers etc. It is just another indicator that there is someone real behind the site.
**WP Realtime Sitemap
A sitemap plugin to make it easier for your site to show all your pages, posts, archives, categories and tags in an easy to read format without any need for template modification or html/php knowledge in a page.
A plugin which formats your site with a mobile theme for visitors on Apple iPhone / iPod touch, Google Android, Blackberry Storm and Torch, Palm Pre and other touch-based smartphones.
Comment: Your theme maybe mobile ready so this one may not be needed.
That’s my “Best WordPress Plugin” list. If you have others to suggest or share, please submit a comment with the plugin name and I will make sure it is visible to everyone. Remember to come back for my next post. I will show you how to quickly install all these plugins. Love to hear your thoughts!
Update: Actually made the vide on How to install plugins. <=========Click here