Wordpress is a wonderful thing, and Wordpress plugins make
it even more so. In case you’re not aware, a Wordpress plugin is
a script that you literally “plug in” to your Wordpress
installation, and it performs a certain functionality.
There are thousands of plugins, some paid, and most free, that
can make your Wordpress blog install do nearly anything. This
is why Wordpress is considered the easiest and most
customizable CMS platform around today.
So which plugins are must-haves? With so many available, it
can be very bewildering to wade through the lot to find just the
right ones for your blog.
So I thought I’d give you a leg up here! Here are ten of the most
useful and in my mind essential Wordpress plugins out there
today, with a short explanation of what each can do for you.
Akismet – Fighting spam on your blog is a never-ending
task, one that Akismet makes a great deal easier. Akismet
checks your comments against the Akismet web service to
see if they look like spam or not and lets you review the
spam it catches under your blog's "Comments" admin
All In One SEO Pack - WordPress SEO plugin to
automatically optimize your WordPress blog for Search
Engines. Automatically optimizes your titles for search
engines, Generates META tags automatically and 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.
Google Analytics For WordPress - Track your
WordPress site easily and with lots of metadata: views per
author & category, automatic tracking of outbound clicks
and pageviews. Simple installation through integration
with Google Analytics API: authenticate, select the site you
want to track and you're done. Also automatic Google
Analytics site speed tracking and outbound link &
Google XML Sitemaps - This plugin will generate a
special XML sitemap which will help search engines like
Google, Bing, Yahoo and Ask.com to better index your
blog. With such a sitemap, it’s much easier for the
crawlers to see the complete structure of your site and
retrieve it more efficiently. The plugin supports all kinds
of WordPress generated pages as well as custom URLs.
Additionally it notifies all major search engines every time
you create a post about the new content.
W3 Super Cache - WP Super Cache is a very fast
caching engine for WordPress that produces static html
files. After a html file is generated your webserver will
serve that file instead of processing the comparatively
heavier and more expensive WordPress PHP scripts.
Supercache really comes into it's own if your server is
underpowered, or you're experiencing heavy traffic. Super
Cached html files will be served more quickly than PHP
generated cached files but in every day use, the difference
WPtouch - WPtouch: A simple, powerful and elegant
mobile theme for your website. WPtouch automatically
transforms your WordPress website into an application-
like theme. WPtouch automatically transforms your
WordPress website into an application-like theme,
complete with ajax loading articles and effects when
viewed from the most popular mobile web browsing
devices like the iPhone, iPod touch, Android mobile
devices, Palm Pre/Pixi and BlackBerry OS6 mobile
Facebook Comments - Automatically add links to posts
or pages that are being published to your Facebook wall,
pages or groups. Simple one time setup and forget. The
way links appear on Facebook can be customized. It is
possible to exclude individual post links from being added
to your wall, pages or groups by ticking a check box just
above the publish button.
Backup Wordpress - BackUpWordPress will back up
your entire site including your database and all your files
once every day. Super simple to use, no setup required.
Good support should you need help.
Yet Another Related Posts Plugin - Yet Another
Related Posts Plugin (YARPP) gives you a list of posts
and/or pages related to the current entry, introducing the
reader to other relevant content on your site. You can
choose certain tags or categories as disallowed, meaning
any page or post with such tags or categories will not be
served up by the plugin.
Wordpress Video Plugin - A filter for WordPress that
allows easy video embedding of supported sites. Support
for 65 different video sites, including YouTube, Vimeo,
Slideshare, Metacafe, Facebook and many others.
There are many more useful plugins, but these are the most
important in my view.