As of December, 2012, WordPress is the prime choice of blogging for nearly 80+ million websites, making it one of the most robust, feature-rich and powerful CMS platform for bloggers, magazines, news websites, and several businesses. Many popular websites like RedmondPie.com, and Jeffbullas.com are quality online businesses that are based upon WordPress. Big commercial businesses are seriously considering the use of this CMS due to hard working bloggers contributing quality content around the world.
So, with all that said, 2013 is just around the corner and I have great things to share for the New Year. However, in order to make the best of this platform, it is important to use plugins. Plugins are addons for WordPress that enhance its functionality for reader engagement. There are thousands of plugins but there are only a few that are handful. Let me cut down your search for the right plugin.
While there are several paid plugins, there are many free ones that you can easily use. In this post, I shall be unveiling the top 100 wordpress plugins for you, some of them you might be using, whereas others you might have never heard of. Have a look at them:
1. All in one SEO plugin
Perhaps one of the best SEO plugins available in the market. With several customizable features, get more exposure and better natural rankings by using this plugin. It is simple, easy to use and straightforward, highly recommended in case you are a novice blogger. However, if you are a professional blogger and expert in coding, I would recommend SEO by Yoast.
2. WordPress SEO By Yoast
WordPress SEO by Yoast is a powerful plugin that is much more advanced than All in one SEO plugin and is designed for advanced WordPress users. There is no rocket science involved in using it even though you have no prior experience of coding. The plugin is designed to help you write great content, check keyword density, maintain minimum word count and other things for optimum SEO performance of your blog. The page analysis feature is one not provided in any other plugin. Whether you are a novice or an expert in blogging, you learn the best SEO practices for content generation.
3. SEO Auto Links Related Posts
For bloggers, the toughest aspect of their blogs is increasing their readers’ engagement. If you are like me who does not want readers to come and leave resulting in high bounce rate, it is important you install this plugin. Although not very popular on WordPress, it has won my heart! This plugin allows meta keywords in your content auto linked to pages and/or categories of your wordpress blog, which allows for stronger internal linking, an integral part of SEO strategy.
The best feature is that after the end of your blog post, the plugin lists related posts pertaining to your keywords, and the type of content to keep your visitors engaging on your website. Moreover, there is a built-in slider for it that slides latest related posts when you scroll down a page or post. It works wonderful, and is a must have for bloggers. You get to choose the number of posts and their styles to be listed at the end of your post page.
4. Broken Link Checker
An awesome plugin that ensures the healthy internal link building practices of your blog. Strong internal linking of your posts and pages is important for higher rankings. We as bloggers make mistakes that fly over our heads and then we wonder “why we lost rankings?” Enable this plugin and get notified through WP dashboard and your email about any broken link on your website. You get an entire snapshot of your blog’s links.
5. Contact Form 7
Perhaps the best and free contact form so far I have seen on WP. I really love it and have it installed on my website. It is simple drag and drop form with many options. Just specify your email and the posts which are required by your contact form to be filled by the user and leave the rest to it. Get emails as per your customization with customized messages when users contact you via this form.
6. Google XML sitemaps
Have you ever been to a new place without knowing the exact location on map and how are its surroundings? Then how do you think your blog is going to be indexed by major search engines like Bing, Google and Ask? Before creating a new post on your blog, it is important to install this plugin, generate a new XML sitemap and submit it to Google’s Webmasters Tools so that your site gets regularly indexed by Google.
7. Google Analytics for WordPress
The prime objective of relying on a powerful CMS platform such as WordPress is to avoid heavy coding in updating and customizing a website and yet attain all of the powerful features. Want to know who are your visitors? Where are they coming from? How much time do they spend on your website and what is your website’s bounce rate? Install Google Analytics for WordPress and integrate your website with Analytics to enable tracking on your blog. You can either manually enter the code or let the program do it for you.
8. Quick Adsense
Although not the most downloaded plugin for WordPress, I found it to be extremely useful for my blog. For any blogger, the preferred choice of monetizing his/her blog is integrating Google’s Adsense program, which is free to join. However, instead of manually placing HTML code in different parts of your website, install Quick Adsense so that you get the most out of this plugin. You choose to customize the locations of adds on your website on header, at the beginning, middle, and/or end of post, and in sidebar. The best part is that it enforces you to follow Google’s guidelines for Adsense which allows not more than 3 ads per page. Plus, buying the pro version entitles you to complete peace of mind from unnatural clicks on ads.
9. WordPress Backup to Dropbox
I know the COSTLY mistakes of getting my blog wiped out due to server crashes! I started everything all over and remembered the hard day and nights I spent in maintaining a blog. As it says, the plugin simply creates a powerful backup of your entire WP site and uploads it to your specified Dropbox account. You get to decide the frequency of data uploading to Dropbox. For regular bloggers like me who rely on their blogs as great way of income and traffic, this plugin is a MUST have.
10. After the Deadline
Why some of the best ranked websites are well, best ranked? Designing? Hmm..Somewhat. Interface? Yes, that too. Content? YES! A big factor! In order to get quality rankings, your content should not only be updated regularly but also be free from plagiarism, grammatical mistakes and 100% uniquely written by you and solely you. Although your WordPress has a built-feature good old grammatical checking feature, this plugin enhances your content quality. It checks the quality of your content for things such as biased language, double negatives, cliches, jargons, alongside performing really quick proofreading when you publish or update your post.
Your WP website has a built-in comment feature which is great with several options. However in order to beef up your blog’s presence, you need a professional commenting plugin that provides an intuitive and user-friendly interface to your readers in making spam-free comments. The best part is that your comments get indexed by search engines for better rankings. It notifies you of new comments through e-mail notification, RSS and Social media.
12. Pricing Table
Are you an online seller? Running an e-commerce store? Or just selling customized packages? The problem you might be facing right now is of a pricing table neat and clean of errors that clearly mentions features of your products/services. You need Pricing Table plugin in order to enable your readers get the best snapshot of your products/services and their features in seconds. Customize everything easily and use shortcodes to update your post and/or page. The plugin is not free but reasonably priced at below $19.99 for you to purchase.
13. Facebook Like Box
Mention a single authority website not having its own Facebook dedicated page. The Facebook Like Box enables your WP blog to display your FB page box and likes in your sidebar widget. Users can easily like your website without having to leave it. Even if you have zero FB likes, this is a MUST HAVE plugin for you. You can promote your FB page and get targeted traffic to your site too.
14. WordPress Email Newsletter plugin
We all know how difficult it is to get loyal subscribers to our blogs. If you want to build a cool email last and blast fantastic newsletters, all at once from your WPDashboard, then this plugin is right for you.
15. Digg Digg
A floating social sharing bar on either the right or left side of your post, makes it easier than ever to share your published blog content on social media websites. With this plugin, you have the option of adding buttons below or after the post.
16. Hello Bar
A very powerful plugin that has high chances of converting your visitors into loyal followers, is Hello Bar. Another very powerful plugin every blogger should know about is called Hello Bar. In order to grab attention of your visitors, a simple line can be added on the top of your header, which when clicked can reveal either your hot blog post, a new event or promote any event or book you have written.
I saw it on SEO-Hacker.com, a renowned Philippine based SEO company. It did grab my attention and in the long run I also plan to use it. You can also track the number of clicks on your link with a built-in link analytics control option.
Today is the time and age of mobile and if your blog isn’t response or optimized for mobile phone browsing, you can suffer from a big chunk of targeted traffic as non-responsive themes could often lead to lost visitors and higher bounce rates. We are nearing 2013 and thereby need to be out there on millions of Android phones, Apple devices and touch tablets.
Just install and activate this plugin and see how visitors from mobile would find it attractive to browse your website. You get all of the things automatically done without using any manual coding. There are advertisement options built-in so that you can monetize on the mobile traffic.
18. W3 Total Cache
I never knew that plugins such as W3 Total Cache are present in the plugin store of WordPress. While I was stumbling upon an article of the best wordpress plugins to improve speed, this one really caught my eye. The average user, according to a research, has no time to wait for a page to load given several blogs that can be researched. To be exact, I got the information from KISSmetrics showing the impact of loading times upon the visitors and rankings.
With up to 10 times, this plugin would improve your WordPress loading speed. What it does is that it caches all elements of your blog so that the browser doesn’t have to load it every time, giving quick access to your readers. You are totally free to make adjustments to any aspect of this plugin.
From my end that is it. I would be sharing more essential wordpress plugins with you, but these ones are the most important for any new and upcoming blog. Good luck!