If you use WordPress (WP) for your website or blog, then you’re well aware of using plugins. They are a God-send to WP’s CMS because there’s so much more functionality that extends what WP can do. It’s simply not just a blogging platform, it can be but you can take it to the next level and run an entire eCommerce website! Plugins are wonderful for adding features to make your site really do what you want it to. But, did you know too many plugins can also bog down your site’s load time or be incompatible with your theme or other plugins?
Also, I never recommend installing a plugin that hasn’t been updated with the latest version of WP, it just causes problems down the road. In today’s post, I’m sharing my recommendations for necessary plugins and they generally play nice with other plugins too, let’s take a look:
You can find all these plugins in the WordPress Depository from the Dashboard
- Wordfence. The best in security. The developers stay on top of this plugin and I highly recommend it.
- BackupWordpress. You should ALWAYS back up your blog, even on Blogger. This plugin for WordPress will automatically back up your content and database on whatever schedule you set. Then you can download the .zip file.
- Login Security Solution. I like this plugin for keeping unwanted bots and hackers from trying to gain access. Also, you can set a timeout for inactivity in case you use a shared computer.
- Google Analytics for WordPress by MonsterInsights. This plugin came recommended from WP Beginner and I love its stat reports. It gives me all the website traffic information I need to know right from the WP dashboard.
- WP Meta SEO. I switched to this plugin from Yoast SEO and I like it. You can set keywords for every post and page created and it will grade that page to let me know if the keywords I’ve set are weak and need to be tweaked.
- TinyMCE. I have pages on my site that I still need to use the classic block for and this plugin features a real Word processor inside the edit mode. You can change the size of fonts and add other customizations that are needed.
- YouTube (by EmbedPlus Team). This plugin allows you to embed a YT video by just adding the URL. If you operate a YT channel, you’ll find this plugin very useful.
- W3 Total Cache. This plugin helps keep your site from getting bogged down. It improves the speed and user experience of your website.
- Child Themify. Always, always use a child theme once you install WP and pick out the parent theme you’ll use. Most developers update their themes and plugins and every time this happens, you’ll need to install the update. But, if you’ve made tweaks, (ex., changed fonts, colors, etc.) none of these will show up if you’re not using a child theme. This plugin will create a child theme to allow you to make changes to your theme without touching the parent theme. So, when the parent theme gets periodic updates from the developer, WordPress will see your child theme custom changes and install them so you won’t lose all the work you put in to tailor the theme’s look to your taste.
- Antispam Bee. This font is similar to Akismet in that it fights comment spamming. The reason I recommend this is not only does it do the same job as Akismet, but it’s free unlike Akismet.
And there you have it! My recommended list of plugins you should have running on your site. I actually run 8 WP sites and have been for many years without any problems using any of these plugins. If you have a plugin that didn’t make my list, tell me about it by commenting below! I’d love to check it out!
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