Creating a WordPress blog is pretty easy. You don’t even have to learn about coding or programming in making websites to have a blog. Just choose one from among hundreds of free WordPress themes and you will have a decent-looking blog that works. Provide the best content and you are on your way to having plenty of followers.
But what really makes a blog stand out aside from an impressive theme and great content is the use of a few WordPress Plugins that transforms a blog from drab to fab in no time.
Most, if not all, bloggers would prefer not to have spam on the comment boxes. Apart from the spam being annoying, it also makes the blog look unattended thereby pushing readers away. Akismet is a top anti-spam plugin that analyzes comments and automatically blocks spam. This is convenient if you want to concentrate on writing more posts rather than weeding out spam yourself.
2. Editorial Calendar
Blogging tips always suggest for having a content map and one useful plugin to use is the Editorial Calendar. Simply drag and drop posts into the calendar so you can instantly spot which dates lack activity. This is a very neat way to organize a posting schedule.
3. Yoast SEO
This plugin is an industry standard that can actually help you improve posts and search engine ranking. If you want your blog to be Google SEO friendly, Yoast is the best plugin to try. There is a tutorial on how to use the plugin to reap all of its benefits so even newbies can use it without a problem.
If you are looking for a multi-tasker plugin, then Jetpack is great to add on your WordPress blog. With you can do a couple of useful automated actions like sharing blog post on social media, giving users option to subscribe blog updates, protect blog against hackers, provide daily site backup, monitor when the site is down, add a contact form, and it even has analytics to track number of page views and search queries. You can free up a whole lot of other plugins and stick with a Jetpack.
If security is really a big concern, WordFence is a top security plugin that ensures hackers stay out of your blog. It regularly has updates so even latest hacking and cracking methods will not succeed.
6. Broken Link Checker
A broken link hurts your SEO. With this plugin, the blog is continuously scanned for broken links and you are given an option to repair them with just a click.
7. WP Optimize
Extra data like old post revisions and unapproved comments often accumulate and slow down a blog. With this plugin, these extra data are rid off and everything else on the trash. This will keep the blog running smoothly with the database optimized and kept clean.
You can never go wrong with having a remote off-site security. For just $5/ month, that’s a tiny price to pay that will ensure all of your data remains safe and retrievable. You can also try the free version that you can download below. If for some unknown reasons you mess a blog up, it would only take at least 2 clicks to restore it perfectly.
9. Social Share Buttons
If you don’t have a Social Share Buttons to your posts, this plugin will help you a lot. It makes it easier for users to share the your post simply by clicking on Social Share Buttons. Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter and other social sites’ logos appear on you blog post for social media sharing. Users can share your posts easily and increase your reach in the process.
10. Subscribe To Comments Reloaded
Most users who leave comments would be happy to know that you spend time replying to their comments. An email to notify your reader that you have replied will encourage more comments or activities on your blog.
Pop-ups are nothing but annoying when they appear right after a page has loaded. But they do work like charm too which is why this style never gets old. With OptinMonster, pop-ups can be delayed so that readers are able to settle and have started to get engrossed with the post. This will be effective when trying to engage the reader into subscribing for newsletters and updates.
Don’t want to let readers go? Make them stay by giving them a preview of a related content as they near the end of a post. You may choose to have the next article in a series or have a completely random post.
Reward readers who comment with link backs to their site. This will encourage them to comment more because they may get extra links depending on the number of comments they give.
14. Contact Form by WPForms
Create forms easily with this plugin. It has an intuitive drag-drop interface so you can make more than just a contact form. Have quote request form, payment order form, subscription form, or a donation form, even order forms so all transactions happen within the site.
15. Comment Redirect using Yoast Comment Hacks
Do not waste the chance of introducing yourself to a reader. Instantly redirect them to a page after they comment on a post. Use it to encourage the reader to subscribe for the newsletter or ask them how you can make the experience on the blog better. It’s like interacting with them even when you are not currently online.
16. Easy Affiliate Links
Managing affiliate links can be a pain at times. This plugin could be very helpful by shortening and masking awkward-looking URLs and even add value to your blog.
17. Nested Pages
Don’t be afraid to have a growing blog. Let this plugin take care of maintaining a decent site structure so that google can still crawl on it efficiently.
Do not be overwhelmed with the number of plugins you will encounter while creating a WordPress blog. These handful WordPress plugins I featured here are all that you need to built a powerful blog. Take the time to explore each one and see how it can work best with your blog. These recommendations are tried and tested and even professional bloggers use them on their own blogs to make the job a tad easier by supercharging your blog with these plugins. However, there are few considerations to think about. Make sure to test the plugin first, whether it’s compatible with your version of WordPress and the WordPress theme you used.
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