WordPress has become the website platform of choice for many small businesses. It is a open source content management system that is free but priceless. One of the biggest advantages of WordPress is that it can be customized with a multitude of plugins from third party developers that can enhance your website. From photo galleries, to shopping carts, to password protected areas, to SEO packages; the list of available goes on and on. Some are useful, others not so much and few are indispensible. I put together a list of the plugins that make will enhance your WordPress experience – a few of the suggestions from Megan Totka of Small Business Trends who had some great ideas.
Online Backup for WordPress
The thought of losing the content on my website keeps me up at night but a good back plugin that backup the database is a source of comfort. This free, easy to use plug-in allows you to schedule automated daily or weekly backups, perform manual backups and more.
If you are going to allow comments on your blog posts you will need to install Akismet to avoid spam. This plugin will delete unwanted comments before they get posted, sparing visitors from having to reading through oodles of bogus comments.
All in One SEO Pack
The first true all-in-one SEO solution for WordPress, including on-page content analysis, XML sitemaps and much more..
Visual Form Builder
While I usually use Custom Contact Forms by Talor Lovett I was just introduced to Visual Form Builder and it is very cool. Using a simple drag and drop concept you can create all sorts of forms with ease. It’s easy to do this with the Visual Form Builder plugin which lets you create all kinds of forms for your site with no coding required.
Google Analytics for WordPress
Sure, WordPress gives you a way to insert a tracking code from Google Analytics directly into your theme, so why add yet another plugin to your site?
Because with the Google Analytics for WordPress plugin, you get extra features: Automatic tracking for site speed, outbound links, downloads, custom variable support, link tagging, debug mode, login and registration form tracking and more.
W3 Total Cache
W3 Total Cache is the highest rated and most complete WordPress performance plugin. Dramatically improve the speed and user experience of your site as well as your ranking on Google which now considers speed as a factor. The plugin adds browser, page, object and database caching to WordPress.
The default search feature for WordPress is not the best as results are ranked according to publication date, rather than relevance to the search term. Relevanssi is a WordPress plugin that fixes the search. You get best results first, with highlights showing the exact part of the document that matched the query.
After the Deadline
Get a personal proofreader for your content that catches more errors than the native WordPress spell check. This plugin comes with basic spelling and grammar, and includes contextual spell checking, advanced style checking and intelligent grammar checking to virtually wipe out mistakes in your posts.
WP Social Share
Social Networks are very popular these days and great source to get readers for your blog.
WP Social Share plugin helps you and your users to share blog posts directly from your blog to social network sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn etc.