Every WordPress website is a little bit different. However, they should all have specific plugins to help with function, design, security, SEO and other important elements. Here’s a list of 14 essential WordPress plugins you should install and use immediately.
W3 Total Cache
Probably the most important plugin on this list, W3 Total Cache needs to be installed and set up immediately. This plugin will help take the pressure off your server and allow your site to load faster and perform better. You will experience less downtime and you will have a better performing WordPress site just from using this plugin.
When you have a website, you need to know where your visitors are coming from and why they are finding you. the Google Analytics+ plugin allows you to track just about everything and gives you a great look at your visitor’s activities.
Google XML Sitemaps
Another plugin you need immediately is the Google XML Sitemaps plugin. Of course, if you have an XML sitemap as a part of an SEO plugin, you don’t need it. However, if you don’t, you need to use this to make it easier for the biggest search engines to crawl your site.
Contact Form 7
Creating a contact us page and a contact form for it is important. The Contact Form 7 plugin allows you to easily do this and even includes CAPTCHA to cut down on spam.
With the Login Lockdown plugin, you can easily limit the number of login attempts form a specific IP address. This means if they fail enough times, the IP address will be disabled for that IP address. This can help keep brute force password discovery attempts away from your site.
Yet Another Related Post Plugin
YARPP is one of the best free plugins you will find. It’s simple to use and helps you get a better structure to your site. If you’re not using YARPP, you need to install this plugin immediately.
BJ Lazy Load
Another good plugin to help with faster load times is BJ Lazy Load. This plugin will replace images with a placeholder and will load the content as a visitor scrolls down the page and gets closer to it. It will work with all kinds of images and help speed up your site.
A plugin perfectly designed to back up, copy and clone your site, Duplicator allows you to easily move your site from one host to another or just keep a backup on file.
Allowing your visitors to easily share your posts on social media is important. The Floating Social plugin makes this easy by giving you a social bar full of buttons. It’s even responsive to adjust in size and color depending on the device being used.
You may not need the Theme Check plugin very often, but it can help keep your theme up-to-date. It will test your active theme to ensure it supports all the best practices and standards of WordPress.
Broken Link Checker
If you plan to use plenty of links on your site, which you should, the Broken Link Checker plugin is a must. This plugin will tell you when a link is broken and make it easy to edit the link without having to find it on your actual site.
Easy Updates Manager
A plugin with the purpose of making your updates easier, you can use Easy Updates Manager to automatically update WordPress, themes, plugins and more.
P3 – Plugin Performance Profiler
Sometimes your site will be loading slowly because of multiple plugins running at the same time. The P3 Plugin will allow you to find out which plugins are causing the issue.
If you want to get the most out of you WordPress SEO, Yoast SEO is the plugin for you. This plugin does more than any other SEO plugin and will make your WordPress site better.
Any of these plugins you are not already using, should be added to your WordPress site. They all play a role in making your site better and keeping it performing at the highest standard possible.