Plugins are tools to extend the functionality of WordPress. The core of WordPress is designed to be lean, to maximize flexibility and minimize code. Plugins offer custom functions and features so that each user can tailor their site to their specific needs.
Most plugins install easily from your WordPress Dashboard. For example you can install any of the plugins we list below simply by entering the plugin title into the search bar on your plugin page. There are many plugins with similiar names so it’s important to make sure you are installing the plugin you really want (plugins can also be removed as quickly as they were installed).
There are many thousands of WordPress plugins out there but here we list some worth a mention.
Recommended ‘Core’ Plugins
‘All in One SEO Pack’
Out-of-the-box SEO for your WordPress blog. Options configuration panel
‘WordPress SEO by Yoast‘
The most complete all in one SEO solution for your WordPress blog, this plugin has a huge list of features, including: Post title and meta description meta box to change these on a per post basis. Taxonomy (tag, category & custom taxonomy) title and meta description support.
‘Automatic WordPress Backup’
Automatically upload backups of important parts of your blog to Amazon S3
‘Google XML Sitemaps’
This plugin will generate a special XML sitemap which will help search engines like Google, Yahoo, Bing and Ask.com to better index your blog.
Control widgets with WP’s conditional tags is_home etc
This plugin requests the PageRank of your wordpress urls and stores the pageranks in the database.
‘PHP Code Widget’
The normal Text widget allows you to insert arbitrary Text and/or HTML code. This allows that too, but also parses any inserted PHP code and executes it. This makes it easier to migrate to a widget-based theme.
‘WP Maintenance Mode’
The plugin adds a splash page to your blog that lets visitors know your blog is down for maintenance. Logged in users get full access to the blog including the front-end, depends of the settings.
Other ‘Useful’ Plugins
‘GD Press Tools’
GD Press Tools is a collection of various administration, seo, maintenance, backup and security related tools. This tools can be integrated into the various WordPress admin panels, can perform maintenance operations, change some aspects of WordPress, see detailed server settings and information. Plugin can also track posts and pages views for various popularity lists.
Manage all your 301 redirects and monitor 404 errors
‘CMS Tree Page View’
Adds a CMS-like tree overview of all your pages and custom posts to WordPress – much like the view often found in a page-focused CMS. Within this tree you can edit pages, view pages, add pages, search pages, and drag and drop pages to rearrange the order. CMS Tree Page View is a good alternative to plugins such as pageMash, WordPress Page Tree
and My Page Order.
‘Random / Rotating Ads V2’
The Datafeedr Random Ads V2 plugin allows you to simply and easily show random, rotating ads anywhere on your site by adding a template tag to your theme’s template files or using widgets. You can show ANY type of ad: Google Adsense, affiliate ads, banners, images, flash, text, etc..
‘Easy Google Analytics for WordPress’
GoogleAnalytics placed inside post. Useful for when your theme doesn’t support Google Analytics directly.
‘Pretty Link (Lite Version)’
Shrink, track and share any URL on the Internet from your WordPress website!
‘ShrinkTheWeb Website Thumbnails’
Add ShrinkTheWeb Link Previews to your blog.
‘WordPress Portfolio Plugin’
A plugin that allows you to show off your portfolio through a single page on your wordpress blog with automatically generated thumbnails. The plugin requires you to have a free account with Shrink The Web to generate the thumbnails.
‘Official StatCounter Plugin’
Adds the StatCounter tracking code to your blog.
Adds a breadcrumb navigation showing the visitor’s path to their current location.
(Note some Themes don’t show breadcrumb lines or use a different plugin – see below)
Outputs a fully customizable breadcrumb path.
‘SI CAPTCHA Anti-Spam’
Adds CAPTCHA anti-spam methods to WordPress on the comment form, registration form, login, or all. This prevents spam from automated bots.
‘Get The Image’
This is a highly intuitive script that can grab an image by custom field input, post attachment, or extracting it from the post’s content.
‘SwfObj Plugin: for embedding Flash objects’
This plugin enables inserting flash content into WordPress posts and pages with shortcode. The resulting embedded Flash implements the SWFObject library for XHTML compliance and cross-browser compatibility.
Allows the insertion of code to display an external webpage within an iframe.
Developed by the same people who brought you WP-Invoice, comes WP-Property. As always, integration is seamless, the system is expandable and customizable, functionality is rich, and we are here to support it. Plugin Website
Social networking in a box. Build a social network for your company, school, sports team or niche community all based on the power and flexibility of WordPress. Plugin Website
Forum Plugin – the feature rich, completely integrated and fully scalable forum plugin for WordPress. Highly customizable, Simple:Press packs the features of a standalone forum into a plugin – seamlessly turning your WordPress site into a community. Plugin Website