Our Favorite WordPress Plugins
One of the great things about WordPress are the thousands of plugins available to add functionality to your site. Unfortunately that’s also one of the downsides – it can be tough to find a great plugin. That’s why we’re compiling a list of our favorite plugins that we often use on sites. This isn’t a comprehensive list by any means, but it’s a great place to start when looking for plugins.
This is an excellent SEO plugin with tons of options and numerous add-ons. It’s easy to setup and works very well.
This is a great plugin for integrating Google Analytics with your WP dashboard. It shows a nice traffic overview when you login. This makes it really easy for your clients to quickly see their stats.
Forms, Signups, Donations
If you want to add any type of contact, signup, or donation form to your site, then Gravity Forms is a must have plugin. It’s a paid plugin but worth every penny and more based on the amount of time and effort it will save you. There’s a point and click interface for building forms, then you can embed the form on your site with a simple shortcode.
For more advanced forms, Gravity Forms has numerous add-ons at the Developer level. One of our favorite add-ons is the PayPal add-on. This allows you to setup forms to accept donations or handle simple purchases or subscription signups.
Need to show tweets on your website? As I mentioned before, Twitter has display requirements that you need to follow to display tweets on your website. This plugin works great for displaying your timeline on your site with the necessary features like retweet, reply, etc.
Adding comments to your site is a great way to engage visitors to your site. Our favorite commenting solution is Disqus. It provides great moderation and spam tools, plus it’s easy to setup and configure. To make it even easier, Disqus provides a WordPress plugin that handles all the integration work automatically.
If you instead choose to rely on the built in WordPress comments, you’re bound to get a lot of spam comments. Akismet is the de-facto standard when it comes to filtering out spam comments on your WordPress site.
In addition to being a great tool for blogging, WordPress is a great fit for other types of sites like eCommerce. Our favorite plugin for eCommerce is WooCommerce. It’s a robust plugin with a lot of options and extensibility. There’s also a large collection of add-ons available to add features like shipping integration, payment gateways, social media integration and more.
If you’re setting up a WooCommerce site, you should really look at using Stripe for payments. We use Stripe for a number of things and love it. It’s easy to setup, has a slick interface, and it removes some of the PCI requirements for setting up an eCommerce site.
Finally if you need an eCommerce site selling digital products, Easy Digital Downloads is an excellent option. Technically you can sell digital files with WooCommerce, but Easy Digital Downloads is tailored to the needs of digital products. We use it to sell our SliceShow Slideshow plugin and it is truly amazing!
Anything I missed?
What are your favorite plugins for WordPress?