Over the past year I’ve come to love a few WordPress plugins. In no particular order, below is a list of my 10 most used plugins. These are my go to for any new website that I’m building on the Genesis Framework.
Akismet is your best friend when you want to accept comments on your blog. Akismet filters out your comment and track-back spam for you, so you can focus on more important things. It does a really great job and should be part of every WordPress install.
Genesis Simple Sidebars
One of my favorite plugins for creating quick custom sidebars on the Genesis Framework, Simple Sidebars has saved my bacon and a lot of time when a client wants something different for one page’s sidebar.
I can’t say enough great things about this plugin. Gravity forms is hands down the best forms plugin available. It allows you to create super complicated forms of all types (contact, newsletter, post submission, photo submission, etc) as fast as you can drab and drop a few boxes. It’s really that simple.
Jetpack by WordPress.com
I have to admit that when Jetpack first came out I really wasn’t a fan of it. But, as more and more clients requested it, I started to love it’s simplicity. Especially the stats view and the sharing buttons you see at the bottom of this post. Jetpack is a great staple plugin that gives you many options.
Subscribe To Comments
Simplest way to have your readers and commenters subscribe to blog comments so that they can get notifications when someone ads a new comment or replies to their comment. Subscribe To Comments is a must in the WordPress blog plugin tool belt.
Simple Local Avatars
Hands down the easiest way to give each one of your users an easy ‘click to upload‘ process to having their own personal avatar. One installed, each user will be able to upload an avatar within their profile dashboard.
W3 Total Cache
Ever visited a website that loads really fast but then go to yours and watch it load like your internet connection went back to the dial up days? If this sounds familiar, than you’ve got to install W3 Total Cache. This robust plugin will speed up your site and help you rank better with search engines.
If you need more convincing or help setting it up head over to Yoasts blog and he’ll guide you along the way.
WordPress Editorial Calendar
The WordPress Editorial Calendar plugin is a super slick and easy to setup plugin that gives you a calendar view of all your posts and let’s you drag them around from day to day.
A client of mine, who runs a blog with many authors and tight timelines, initially found this plugin and has loved using it every day. Since then, I’ve activated it on almost all the blogs I’ve built.
WordPress Related Posts
A guaranteed plugin to help your readers stay longer on your website, WordPress Related Posts plugin shows users a number of related (same category) posts after every blog post. In running my own test with this post on a client blog, we saw time spent on site go from around 4 minutes to well over 8 minutes after installing the plugin!
Last but definitely not least, WordPress SEO is the most robust and user friendly free all in one WordPress SEO plugin available. If you’re looking for a premium SEO plugin check out Scribe SEO for the Genesis Framework.
The WordPress SEO plugin by Yoast allows you to do all sorts of things like force titles, change your permalinks setup, XML sitemaps, breadcrumbs and even integrate some social elements. Read through Yoast’s The Definitive Guide To Higher Rankings For Your Blog to see the best way to set it up.
Did I miss anything? Is there a plugin that you use for all your sites that you would recommend? Make sure to share your thoughts below.