Today I will share with you a list of some free WordPress plugins which I have on my site and which have added a lot of very useful functions to it. And no, I didn’t included Yoast because that’s pretty common. What I have in my list are the plugins that you probably haven’t heard yet or never used.
Akismet – one of the most used plugins to manage spam comments. “It ensures that that spam doesn’t mess with your search engine rankings, and gives you more time to connect with your readers, instead of laboring through page after page of spam”.
Like most other spam management plugins, it is not perfect, and can mark genuine comment as spam. However, it can be easily unmarked as spam. Worth checking those spam comments anyway!
All-in-One SEO Pack Here are some of its features:
- Google Analytics support
- Support for Custom Post Types
- Advanced Canonical URLs
- Fine tune Page Navigational Links
- Built-in API so other plugins/themes can access and extend functionality
- ONLY plugin to provide SEO Integration for WP e-Commerce sites
- Nonce Security
- Support for CMS-style WordPress installations
- Automatically optimizes your titles for search engines
- Generates META tags automatically
- Avoids the typical duplicate content found on WordPress blogs
- For beginners, you don’t even have to look at the options, it works out-of-the-box. Just install.
- For advanced users, you can fine-tune everything
- You can override any title and set any META description and any META keywords you want.
- Backward-Compatibility with many other plugins, like Auto Meta, Ultimate Tag Warrior and others.
AWeber Web Forms – enables to drag and drop web forms into you WP blog that you have created in your Aweber, without having to log into your AWeber account or copy and paste anything. To do this, you need an Aweber account and a completed web form.
CommentLuv – places a link to the latest posts of your visitors who comment on your blog. For example, if you have CommentLuv installed on your WP blog and comment on another person’s blog, the link to your latest post will be placed after your name. This encourages people to visit your blog and leave a comment.
FV Community News Plugin – allows your visitors to post articles from other related sites. This eases your workload as a blog writer by providing free content which you can moderate.
Contact Form by ContactMe.com – allows you to place a contact form on a page of your choice. It has a large range of useful functions, including adding Captcha to your form, customizing it, setting up an autoresponder message for visitors, and more.
Dashboard Luvvers Widget – add a widget to your dashboard with a selection of last blog post links that your visitors have left on your site. This is a companion to CommentLuv.
Do Follow – removes the “no follow” attribute that WP has in comments.
Exclude Pages from Menu – this plugin provides a checkbox which excludes some pages from appearing in your navigation bars.
Global Translator – automatically translates a blog in 48 different languages by wrapping four different online translation engines (Google Translation Engine, Babelfish Translation Engine, FreeTranslations.com, Promt).
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.
Qwardo Insights – this plugin brings a powerful new way to write your blog posts. It increases productivity and at the same time the appeal of your posts.
With Insights you can very quickly (in couple of seconds) do the following:
- Search your blog for posts, edit them or insert links to them into the current post
- Insert Flickr Images
- Insert Youtube videos
- Search and link to Wikipedia
- Search Google
- Search News
- Google Blog Search
- Insert a Google Map
Insights allows you to do all this using dynamic AJAX interface which loads the relevant information to your post in just a few seconds.
WP Mingle – in case you decide to use a forum function on your blog, Mingle Forum plugin is a great way to create a community. It is simple, lightweight, and offers sufficient functions to keep it interesting.
WP Social Sharing – offers social media sharing and other functions. Includes major social networks – Facebook, Twitter, Linked In, Google +, etc.
WP Super Cache– this plugin generates static html files from your dynamic WordPress blog. After a html file is generated, your webserver will serve that file instead of processing the comparatively heavier and more expensive WordPress PHP scripts.
Installing a new plugin is very easy. Go to your dashboard, to the Plugins section, click Add New, enter the name of the plugin into the search box, click search. When the plugin you are looking for appears under the search box, click “Install Now” button, and then when it has been installed, click “Activate”.
Many plugins require configuration which is quite simple in most cases. If you are having problems, look for solutions on the plugin site, Google or YouTube. These instructions are for those of you who are new to WordPress and plugin installation.
I will update you with more information later, as I have done more research on the subject. What are your favourite free WP plugins? Please share in the comments box below.