Updated List Of Must-Have WordPress Plugins
Since we mostly develop search engine optimized websites powered by WordPress, I try to contribute to the WP community by sharing the lessons I’ve learned about the platform. Here’s my updated list of must-have WordPress plugins, along with a couple of notes for each one.
Akismet (should be installed automatically) – This is a plugin that every WP install should come with. If it doesn’t, add it ASAP to prevent comment spam.
All-in-one SEO Pack – This is a great plugin. I’m not sure if it’s the very best – I’ve read some reviews of other plugins – but I think it does everything a WP SEO plugin needs to do, and the developers are always improving this one, so it’s the SEO plugin we use.
(WP) Antivirus – This is a must-have for determining if your WordPress templates have been modified without your knowledge. It scans daily and will alert you if there’s a change.
Backup Buddy – This is a premium plugin I’ve just found that’s worth a look. Backups run automatically, and you can choose to backup the database or the entire install. There’s also an FTP function that will store the backups on a different server. If you just need database backups, WP DB Backup is a good, free alternative.
FD Feedburner – I think Feedburner might not be the *best* solution for offering blog readers an email subscription option, but it’s very good, and the tracking features are nice.
Google XML Sitemaps – This is another plugin that may not be the best option, but I’m comfortable with the way it works and haven’t had any problems.
Google Analyticator – This is a great plugin that’s a significant upgrade over cutting and pasting Google analytics into the footer of your site.
Gravity Forms – This is a premium plugin that I endorse 100% – it’s far and away the best WordPress form plugin available.
Login Lockdown – This will protect your WordPress install from so-called “dictionary attacks.” It’s a prudent security measure.
WordPress Automatic Upgrade – This is a nice alternative to the native WP upgrade system.
WP-Optimize – There are a few plugins that optimize a WordPress database, and some of them might be a better solution. This one works very well, however, and it’s incredibly simple.
W3 Total Cache – I’m slowly transitioning all the sites I manage from WP Super Cache to this faster, better, and more comprehensive plugin. WP Super Cache is great, but this is better, and it even plays well with GoDaddy hosting (and that’s saying something). It might be a little intimidating because of all the options, but it’s worth diving in.