It seems like something new is being introduced every day. Technology is evolving by the second and what was the rave a week ago, might just not be of any significance today. This is the world we now live in.
But it doesn’t end there. As long as it has to do with the internet, the same conditions always apply. Take a look at social media for instance. Not too long ago, Facebook was what everyone was doing and talking about, but now, not so much. But why you ask? Because newer and more advanced social media platforms have been invented and have taken over. We now have Twitter, Instagram, WhatsApp, Snapchat, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and more that are the order of the day. That is, until the next one comes along.
We all want to have the best shiny new things, I mean who doesn’t? That’s why in this post, I will be discussing the 8 Plugins every WordPress website must-have in 2017. But before that, for the sake of those who are new to WordPress, we will dive a little into a brief introduction of what WordPress is and Plugins are.
WordPress is not just a blogging platform as it was known to be before. It has evolved into something much better and on a bigger scale. It has now become an easily adaptable content management system (CMS) that allows you use WordPress to create not just a simple blog, but fully functional websites and applications too.
Plugins are packages of code that you can add to your WordPress website to add functionality to it such as email signups, contact forms, and much more. You can think of a plugin as an extension to your website, taking your WordPress from a simple blog to a traditional website. These plugins are designed to get your website more traffic, more customers, and more security. Some plugins however, will add a whole new platform to your website. Check out these plugins on WPbeginner.
Choosing the right plugin for your website is not a task to be taken lightly, after all it determines how your website is going to function. According to Techieword; speed, SEO, and security are three of the important factors to consider. The niche of your website determines the plugins you should have, as different plugins have different functions. With over 47,000 free and premium plugins available in the official plugin repository, some of which have the same features, all you have to do is choose the one that suits your needs. There are other factors to keep in mind, such as:
- What you need the plugin for
- The number of times the plugin was downloaded
- Plugin ratings and reviews
- Which version of WordPress does the plugin support?
- WordPress Support Forums for Plugins
- When was the WordPress plugin last updated?
Because a plugin doesn’t meet any of these requirements doesn’t mean it is bad, it just means it’s not a popular plugin or was newly created. However, it is always better to get plugins that are rated and more popular as it means it has more users and is frequently updated.
Now that we’ve got that out of the way, let’s get down to business! The first must-have plugin for any WordPress website is:
1. Wordfence Security
Every website owner is concerned about the security of their website and do everything they can in order to keep their sites safe from hackers. Your website can be attacked or destroyed completely, so you have to always keep it secure.
Wordfence Security is the most popular, most downloaded, free, all round security plugin for any WordPress website. It comes highly recommended and is a powerful security tool. The plugin features login security, firewall protection, malware scan, live traffic monitoring, blocking, and a lot more. With Wordfence security, you can monitor all the traffic coming into and leaving your website in real-time including logins, logouts, robots, humans, 404 errors, and much more. It also keeps you aware of the particular threat that is being prevented at a particular time.
Wordfence security multi-site feature is compatible with WordPress and IPV6. It also supports other plugins and themes like WooCommerce. With their Two Factor Authentication, your website is given the highest security authentication possible. It is also constantly updated in order to be able to defend you against new security threats.
2. UpdraftPlus WordPress Backup Plugin
With this plugin, all your data and information can be backed up and saved. UpdraftPlus is a free plugin that allows you to backup your website and files so that in case anything happens to your servers, or your website crashes, you can easily restore it at the click of a button!
WordPress being an online platform, makes it more vulnerable. This means that all the work, content, and customisation that you do are stored exclusively on a web server. This is dangerous because a server can easily crash and all your work will be gone. To prevent that from happening, download UpdraftPlus plugin today and schedule a backup every week, bi-weekly or whenever you prefer.
3. WPtouch Mobile Plugins
The use of mobile phones, tablets, and IPads has grown exponentially the last 4 years, making it so that some websites are totally bypassed because they are not mobile friendly. It’s possible that the only way you can make that sale, or attract those potential customers, is with a positive mobile experience.
WPtouch is the plugin to use if your WordPress theme isn’t mobile friendly. It is recommended by Google and will instantly create a version of your website that supports all mobile devices. Hence, your SEO rankings don’t drop and instead increase as more traffic is directed to your website.
4. Yoast SEO Plugin
Yoast SEO plugin is one of the most comprehensive and complete SEO plugins you have for WordPress. It is similar to the All in One SEO Pack which is good for beginner websites, but it has a lot more advanced SEO features like snippet review, page analysis, xml sitemaps (you don’t need to download google xml sitemaps), meta and link elements, rss optimization, breadcrumbs. etc
In simple terms, what it does is help you write better content, in less simple terms. This plugin handles all the technical optimization of your website, helping you generate more traffic to your site through search engines. It is multi-site compatible, has import and export functionality, and import function for other SEO plugins.
5. WP Super Cache
This amazing plugin will cache all the content on your site essentially making your site pages load faster. It is great for SEO and user experience. It works even if you have a dynamic dns. The best way to improve website performance is by WordPress caching and the idea behind it is simple. It involves storing the website data temporarily in the cache as static html files so that the next time the user opens that same page, it loads faster wasting no time processing the WordPress PHP scripts.
6. Contact Forms 7
Every website should have a contact us form or page so viewers or potential customers can reach you by email. Contact Form 7 allows you manage multiple contact forms at the same time. You can also customize the form fields to ask for information such as name, email, phone number etc. You can implement this contact form on any page by copying and pasting the shortcode onto the page’s text box. It’s that easy! This plugin supports CAPTCHA, Akismet spam filtering, Ajax-powered submitting, and more. Flamingo, Postman, and Bogo are recommended plugins for Contact Form 7 users.
7. Broken Link Checker
How do you think users would react if they land on a broken page? It’s one of the easiest ways to lose customers, potential customers, and in turn, give your website a bad reputation. With a plugin like Broken Link Checker, you don’t need to do any work at all. It helps you check your comments, posts, and other content for broken links and sends you a notification as soon as any is found. It also keeps you updated on missing images so that they can be fixed as soon as possible.
Broken Link Checker also goes as far as to stop search engines from following those broken links by showing them differently on the website.
Redirection is the best plugin to use when you need help redirecting your customers. It helps you to keep track of 404 errors and manage all the 301 redirections. When a post’s URL changes, it automatically adds a 301 redirection and by yourself, you can also add 301, 302, and 307 redirections for a post. This plugin makes it possible to redirect all the URLs and also have records of all redirected URLs.
Redirection is mainly useful when you are changing the directory of WP installation or migrating pages from an old website.
These plugins provide basic features, optimize speed, improve the site SEO, harden security, and help to market your products and content more effectively.[“Source-hostreview”]