There are thousands of WordPress Plugins available on the web. Here is a list of must have plugins for everyone who has a WordPress Site or Blog.

Contact Form 7

Contact Form 7 is an easy to use AJAX contact form. It has a variety of options, but begineers will have no problem setting up a contact form on whatever page they choose. There are advanced options that include redirecting to a thank you page, and more. This plugin is ideal for inserting a contact form into a page or post. It used to be possible to integrate the Contact Form into the sidebar, using actual PHP code, but ever since they moved to AJAX, I haven’t attempted this.

Similar Posts

If you are using WordPress as a CMS for your website, and you don’t have much, or any, dynamic content, you can skip this plugin. If you have dynamic content in the way of posts, articles, etc, then this plugin makes it pretty easy to integrate ‘similiar posts’ anywhere on your post page. I recommend adding it to the bottom of the post page, that’s where people expect it.

Warning: This plugin requires you to edit your template. It’s not a major edit, but if you switch templates you will need to reintegrate the plugin. You’ll need a bit more understanding of WordPress / HTML to properlly integrate this plugin.

Google Sitemap Generator

Ah, this plugin is great. Updating a sitemap everytime you create a new page or post is a huge hassle and no one wants to do it daily. This plugin stops you having to. Once installed you start by generating your first sitemap. (Warning: You have to already have a sitemap.xml and sitemap.xml.gz file on your server. If you dont, connect via FTP and upload two text files with those names).

The sitemap will contain all your posts and pages (unless you tell it to ignore some). A huge time saver and it will automatically regenerate your Sitemap when you add new posts and pages.

W3 Total Cache

Everyone debates what the better plugin for caching is. WP Super Cache or W3 Total Cache. They have similiar functionality, but W3 is newer and more advanced. W3 does a lot of things well, such as Minfying Javascript, CSS and HTML. It gives you a good deal of control over browser-side caching, and it’s easy to setup and use if you aren’t an expert.

Depending on your Hosting enviroment, you may need to use FTP to change the permissions on some files, or manually edit them, but the plugin gives easy to follow instructions on how to do that and there are tons of tutorials out there if you get stuck.

All in One SEO

The best all around SEO plugin. Install this on every WordPress site you have, it only takes a few seconds and adds a good deal of functionality and immediate SEO benefit to your website.

You can customize page titles, post titles and more. It’s a must have for every website. Seriously.

4 thoughts on “5 Must Have WordPress Plugins

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