When I first moved to WordPress.org, I have no idea which plugin to use. It’s exciting seeing there are over thousands of plugins that can be installed. However, not every plugin is needed and I have to carefully review each plugin. Almost every month, I could read several posts about the most rated WordPress plugins, or the top WordPress plugins. To be honest, it’s hard to distinguish the good from the bad. I was quite overwhelmed by the number of choices. I always consider two things when I look for a plugin: (1) it has to be easy to use and understand, and (2) it has to be updated from time to time.
- Yoast SEO
When I first mentioned to my brother that I am going to create a blog, he told me that I should learn about SEO or search engine optimization. I found out that it affects the visibility of a website in a search engine’s results. This plugin helps me write a better content; I always make sure that I get a good SEO and Readability score. Aside from the SEO score, this plugin will also analyse the content of the blog.
- Google XML Sitemaps
This plugin is simple. It provides a complete XML sitemap for search engines. It is important because it helps the search engines understand and better index your blog. Of course, I’m still hoping that my blog can be found on the first page of google!
- Google Analytics Dashboard for WP
Aside from Jetpack site stats, I also refer to Google Analytics to keep track of how many views I get and which post has the most views. I don’t really mind how many views I get per day, months or years. I use this just to get an idea which post engage more readers. While it is easy to access Google Analytics, this plugin displays the basic information (page views and which posts are getting the most visits) inside the WordPress dashboard.
- WP Optimize
I’ve just recently found out about this plugin. It is basically a cleanup and optimization tool. What I like about this is it saves me from using PhpMyAdmin (a real life saver) to optimize and remove the junks from my WordPress database.
- W3 Total Cache
Site speed is something that I consider important. I want people to enjoy being in my blog, and I want them to return here. Good thing this plugin improves the user experience of your blog. It increases server performance, reduces the download times, improves load speed, reduces bandwidth consumption, and many more.
I like this plugin because I could share my drafted content with my friends without adding them as users to the blog to let them preview my drafts. To be honest, when I didn’t know anything about this, I used to copy the content and send it to my friends for them to read.
It’s so easy to use. When you install this plugin, you will find it in Posts > Drafts for Friends. There is an option to choose a draft and you can indicate how long you are going to share it. Click the “Go” button then that’s it! This plugin will generate a unique link, and you can share it to your friends.
- Easy Google Fonts
I’ve always wanted to change my fonts every now and then. But, I don’t want to update the code just to add custom google fonts. Thanks to this plugin, I can take full control of my themes typography with no coding required!
I haven’t really tried exploring this plugin, but this tutorial might be helpful.
Jetpack by WordPress.com
Jetpack offers a lot of features for the WordPress site. When I moved off WordPress.com, I wanted its features to be available and accessible without having to install several plugins. Jetpack has it all. Although I have installed additional plugins, I still use majority of its module.
I have to find out the other useful WordPress plugins. I currently have 18 plugins installed and I use 17 out of 18. The other one is CoSchedule which I have deactivated because I haven’t bought a plan yet. I have read so many articles about CoSchedule, and I fell in love with its features!
What are your favorite plugins?