One of the great features with WordPress is the multitude of plugins available. WordPress plugins can extend your WordPress to do just about anything that you can think of. As of the writing of this post, there are over 8000 plugins available in the WordPress plugin directory.
I have put together a list of some of the WordPress plugins that I currently am using. All of these plugins are working great with my current version 4.7. I have had no problems with these plugins and I can recommend them for use with the current version of WordPress. (Updated 12/17/16)
Just a note, I’m not promoting these plugins to make money. I don’t have affiliate links to these plugins, this list is unbiased and given as a reference and is based on my experience in using them. I’m just letting you know that these plugins are very helpful to me and they work very well in my current version. If you are using WordPress, these plugins are worth checking out.
As a general rule, before I install a new plugin, I always back-up my WordPress blog. This is just a precautionary step in case something happens during the installation. I actually back-up my site on a regular basis and I highly recommend it. Also, I deactivate all of my currently installed plugins before I install a new plugin. After the installation of the new plugin is completed and activated, I then go back and reactivate all of my plugins.
So, that being said, here is the list of my favorite WordPress plugins. Feel free visit the download page of each plugin and read about the features, installation and reviews to determine if they can be helpful to you.
- Yoast SEO – A fantastic plugin that gives you instant SEO for your WordPress Blog. This plugin allows you to edit and control the Title, Meta description, and Meta Tags for all of your posts. This plugin is easy to install, easy to use and it will help you increase your search engine results. I personally noticed an immediate improvement.
- Akismet – Basically a spam checker plugin. Akismet checks your comments against the Akismet web service and determines if it looks like spam. It allows you to review the spam under your blog’s “Comments” admin screen. You can then approve or delete them.
- Google XML Sitemaps – A great plugin that will generate a special XML sitemap which will help the major search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo, and Ask.com to better index your blog. This type of sitemap makes it much easier for bots to crawl your site more efficiently. A great tool!
- Meta Tag Manager – A simple plugin which allows you to add custom meta tags that will show across all pages on your blog or on the homepage only. It can also be used to add site verification tags for Google and Yahoo. It basically simplifies adding meta tags to your blog.
- W3 Total Cache – Looking to speed up your WordPress Blog? This plugin might be for you. W3 Total Cache reduces page load time, improves site performance, and generally speeds up your site. Trusted by popular blogs like: mashable.com and yoast.com, W3 Total Cache improves the overall user experience of your blog. I personally noticed a dramatic improvement as soon as I began to use it.
- Social Media Feather – Social Media feather is a modern looking, lightweight WordPress social media sharing plugin that doesn’t slow down your website and drag down your GTmetrix score. Very functional and effective.
- 404 to Start – This handy plugin will effectively send any 404 page not found errors directly to your home page, eliminating problems with the search engines. This helps with possible external bad links that you can’t control. You can choose between 301 moved permanently and 302 moved temporarily.
As I mentioned before, there are numerous WordPress plugins available. This is just a snapshot of a few of the plugins that I have found to be the most useful. Bookmark this page and check it frequently as I will be adding more recommended WordPress plugins as I try them out. Happy Blogging!