WordPress is unlike any other blogging platform and definitely my top choice for web publishing! It offers complete creative freedom with an abundance of themes and plugins to make your blog completely unique. On the subject of plugins, the WordPress plugin directory has literally thousands of them available, with new ones constantly rolling out, some good, some seriously bad.
If you’ve just started out with a new WordPress blog, then today I’m going to share with you what I believe to be, my top 15 must install, must use WordPress plugins! So let’s get started.
CommentLuv is a popular WordPress plugin that is currently used by many bloggers; it enables and encourages visitors to your blog to leave a comment and in doing so also to leave a link back to their latest post!
2. Genesis Simple Hooks
Simple Hooks is an awesome plugin tool for bloggers looking for a more diverse and simpler way to customize their blogs. Simple Hooks enables you to drop any types of HTML codes into 12 primary hook locations and 50 action hooks within your blog. It is an ideal solution for installing AdSense and affiliate script codes, custom header and footer codes plus much more.
3. Top Commentators Widget
This plugin is essential for giving credit to your blog’s top commentators. Using the plugin will display the top commentators in the homepage of your blog, as well as give those top commentators a link back to their own blogs. This is a great tool for encouraging more readers to leave comments on your blog.
4. SEO Smart Links
SEO Smart Links is a fantastic interlinking plugin that has the added value of improving your blog’s SEO. This plugin uses selective keywords to internally link to other posts within your blog; I personally find this plugin very useful as it enables users to discover more from my blog, thus improving my PPV (Page per Visit) or lowering the bounce rate in Google Analytics.
5. DB Optimiser
The DB Optimizer plugin is a tool designed to effectively optimize your blog’s database. It’s a useful plugin for repairing broken database tables, reclaiming unused space and defragging your database, ensuring smooth running of your blog.
6. WP Super Cache
This plugin is highly recommended for speeding up the loading time of your web pages i.e. making your blog run faster. It simply stores cached pages on the server as HTML and php, you can delete the cache or expired pages at anytime you wish though this is automatically dumped every 10 minutes or so.
7. WP Database Backup
Another essential WordPress plugin is WP Database Backup, and yes as you’ve guessed it is a plugin that takes care of your blog’s insurance policy if you like. By backing up your blog’s core database tables, in the unlikely event that you might loose everything, a backup of your database is always available for restoring your blog back to normal.
This is without a doubt one of the most essential WordPress plugins that you need to be using from the word go! To put it short, it takes care of practically 99.9% of spam comments being posted onto your blog. The plugin and service is designed to allow you to screen your spam folder, to double check, just in case any legitimate comments have ended up as spam, before permanently deleting the file. Most legitimate comments however are placed into your pending file for your moderation.
9. Flickr Photo Album
If you love using Flickr to store and share photos with your friends online, why not share them on your blog too. This plugin will allow you to share all your Flickr photos onto your blog with great ease. One of the advantages of using this plugin is that you don’t have to upload images directly into your blogs database, and use up valuable web space.
10. Get Social
Get Social is an easy to install and configure WordPress plugin that allows you to display a scrolling widget of social tools alongside your posts and pages. It enable’s users to share your content on social networking and bookmarking sites with ease, check it out in action to the left of this blog as you scroll down, the social tools scrolls down with you.
11. Google Analytics for WordPress
This is an amazing and essential plugin by Yoast and makes installing your Google Analytics UA code a doddle.
12. Share & Follow
Share & Follow is another one of my all time favorite WordPress plugins, and I highly recommend it to all newbie bloggers looking for a distinctive way to display a follow me link to Facebook, Twitter, RSS, Digg, Stumble and many more other social profiles. As well this Share & Follow has a huge list of sharing tools and capabilities to add to your posts and pages.
13. Social Profiles
Social Profiles is a neat plugin that enables you to display administrator or author profiles on your blog.
14. WordPress SEO
If you’re serious about search engine optimization for your blog, then Yoast WordPress SEO is the plugin for you. Essential SEO tools include dedicated SEO settings on individual posts and pages as well as field values for Google Webmaster tools, Yahoo Site Explorer and Bing Webmaster Tools.
The plugin also facilitates settings for titles, indexation, permalinks, internal links, RSS and the ability to import and export your SEO settings. There is even a tool that allows you to build an XML sitemap for your blog.
15. Fluency Admin
Last but certainly not least is the Fluency Admin plugin which is probably one of the coolest plugins available for WordPress. This plugin will allow you to change and customize the admin areas of your blog including the login page.
Well that’s it for now folks, ff you can think of any other’s that might be beneficial to newbie bloggers then please shout them out in the comments section below, as always enjoy.
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