It’s no secret when it comes to all things Web Design I absolutely love WordPress!
It’s so customisable and easy to keep your website looking great with WordPress! If you can take a little time to learn the basics it’s also really cost effective in comparison with other web builder sites that are quite honestly severely lacking in features!
A huge part of what makes WordPress so great for building a website is the availability of plugins for virtually every function you can think of! Whilst there are many, many fantastic plugins out there (along with some really rubbish ones!) I’ve managed to narrow down to my 5 favourite ones that I think every WordPress site needs! What’s even better is they’re all free!
5 Essential WordPress Plugins for your Website
Revive Old Post
If you’re not recycling your blog content out to your social media accounts on a regular basis you are making a huge mistake and sacrificing opportunities to get yourself noticed! An easy way to keep your blog content promoted via Twitter is with Revive Old Post by Themeisle.
On a regular schedule (which you can determine in the settings) Revive Old Post will tweet links to your old blog content on your Twitter feed. This is a great way to get new traffic to your old blogs, open you up to a new audience and keep your Twitter feed populated in your absence.
The free version only allows you to share links on 1 social media account but if you want to upgrade and be able to post your content to Facebook and LinkedIn too you can upgrade here for $24.99.
I have to say I only use the free version and I’ve found it fantastic. My twitter account and my blogs have been opened up to a whole new audience which I just couldn’t have done myself without spending a lot of hours scheduling tweets.
Add the free plugin to your website here.
If you’re a blogger and you dream of your content going viral (or maybe just getting seen by more than your mum and your best friend) it’s a no brainer that you need to make it easy for people to share your content.
There are a whole host of social media sharing plugins available. Some are prettier than others and some are less in your face than others too!
I personally favour a nice simple design that’s easy for somebody to just click and share your post and for this reason I use ShareThis.
The plugin comes with a whole host of options that allow you to customise your button style, add a hover bar (these are great on a desktop, not so great on mobile!) and allow you to select which social media platforms you want to allow people to share on! It’s really easy to use and every week I get an email with my stats for the week letting me know who shared my content and on what platform!
To grab the free plugin for your site click here and you can also find some more indepth installation instructions here.
WordPress SEO by Yeost
Whilst WordPress on it’s own is great for SEO you can take it to another level with WordPress SEO by Yeost! Once installed, on every page and post you write, below the content box, you’re met with an options box to help you maximise the SEO of that page.
The plugin will show you what your page snippet will look like in search results and you can then customise this to help make it more appealing to click through.
The plugin prompts you to add or tweak your content to improve the SEO such as adding images, adding focus keywords, meta descriptions and also checks that your post is long enough and easy enough to read!
As well as the basic free version which you can add to your site here, there is a premium version of the plugin that you might want to check out too!
It’s not enough to just put your content out there and never monitor how your website is performing. Adding Google Analytics to your website is the easiest way to see how many visitors you get to your site and how they navigate around it.
There are again a vast range of plugins to help you track your website in Google Analytics but my favourite is Google Analyticator.
It offers an easy way for you to install Google Analytics to your website and also has the nice addition of a snapshot of your site’s performance on your WordPress dashboard. At a glance I can see how many visitors I’ve had on each day in the last 30 or 60 days and I can see what my most visited pages are.
It’s a great way to keep an eye on your stats in between your visits to the main Google Analytics page where you can of course get much more in depth data.
Add the free plugin to your WordPress site here.
If you’re anything like me you love to put your own stamp on your website! Whilst it’s true there are some amazing WordPress themes available I always find there is something I need to tweak so I’m completely happy! Quite often I find myself wanting to change the fonts on my website to match my brand and me!
The easiest way for you to do this without the need for any code is using Google Fonts via the Google Typography plugin! Google Fonts is a collection of hundreds of free open source fonts that have been optimised for the web.
Installing Google Typography makes it super easy to change the font of your titles, headings and body text as easy as if you were using Microsoft Word! There is no need to enter any code and if you don’t like the result it’s simple to change it back!
WordPress and it’s plugins are only great IF you maintain them! To keep your website and plugins performing well and free from bugs you need to keep them updated regularly. This is not only vital for performance but the security of your website too!
If you know you’re sometimes a bit behind with your updates one of our WordPress Maintenance Packages would be perfect for you. You get the peace of mind that your site is back up, running well and up to date without the hassle of having to remember to do it!
Check out our WordPress Maintenance Packages here.