WordPress is a great platform for beginners to use to start a web page or blog. It is flexible and have thousands of themes to choose from to create the feel and look desired. However, it is the plugins (special software designed for WordPress) which enhances its functionality, making is even better to use.
The variety of plugins designed for WordPress, for beginners to consider using can be daunting and even confusing. There are a multitude of plugins with similar functions and it can be difficult to distinguish between them, or indeed which are the best to use.
This WordPress for beginners article describes the must have plugins when starting a new blog. There are multitudes of other useful plugins to help customize your blog at a later stage. However, first things first, as they say.
WordPress for Beginners: Must have Plugins:
Akismet – This prevents your blog from comment spam and normally comes installed with your WordPress by default. Before you can activate this, an API Key is required from Akismet. All you need to do is sign up for an account to get the API key.
All-in-One SEO – This helps your blog to rank well in search engines. This allows you to add unique meta description, keywords, and titles to each page of your blog and blog posts.
WordPress Database Backup – This makes backup of your blog’s database as often as required. The process can be automated and you can choose to have this emailed to you or to be stored at a safe place on your web host. You need not lose all your hard work if anything goes wrong as this keeps your work saved.
Google XML Site map – This generates a special XML site map which facilitates the indexing of your by search engines like Google, Yahoo, Ask and Bing. The site map enables the search engine spiders to see and crawl the complete structure of your site much easier. Furthermore, updates and new content created are automatically communicated to the search engines.
Subscribe to Comments – This allows users to subscribe to your comments and also to notify them when more comments are posted. This facilitates discussion and helps keep the activity on your blog current.
Contact Forms – This allows your users to contact you and it is the best free contact form plugin to this date. This is easy to use and to set-up.
Google Analytics – This helps you keep track of visitors to your blog by providing tracking analytics and statistics.
WordPress Related Posts – This automatically generates related posts via WordPress tags and is simple to use and to configure. This plugin is also able to automatically insert related posts for RSS feed. The plugin helps to retain readers by providing other articles on similar topics when they reach the bottom of the article.
Broken Link Checker – This useful plugin checks all outgoing links from your blog (posts, pages, comments, images etc) and lists those that are dead or broken. Broken links are of no use and can harm your search engine ranking.
SEO: WP Super Cache – This relates to page load time; the plugin helps to cache your WordPress website rather than querying the database every single time someone views a page or post. It makes a copy of your web page on the server and by doing so it increases the page load time and reduces the resource consumption. This can save your website from going down when receiving an enormous amount of traffic.