We already know that WordPress is an incredibly powerful Content Management System. With WordPress we have the power to create an awesome blog, photo gallery or portfolio with just a few clicks. However, sometimes vanilla WordPress is just not enough. Admit it, at times you just need to spice things up a bit, well we’re in luck! WordPress.org host a plugin directory featuring over 19,000 ways to spice up your new site and make sure that your users have a great experience. We are going to scrape off a few of our favorite plugins that you would be well served to install on your shiny WordPress powered site today.
From the Makers: “Jetpack is a WordPress plugin that supercharges your self-hosted WordPress site with the awesome cloud power of WordPress.com.”
Jetpack is a collection of incredible plugins all built into one. With Jetpack you can connect your WordPress.org powered site with WordPress.com and use their service to track site statistics and analytics. Moreover Jetpack allows you to leverage email blog subscriptions, social networking enabled comments, an awesome url shortener and tons more. Jetpack should definitely be a plugin that you immediately download.
Visual Form Builder
From the Makers: “Visual Form Builder is a plugin that allows you to build and manage all kinds of forms for your website in a single place. Building a fully functional form takes only a few minutes and you don’t have to write one bit of PHP, CSS, or HTML!”
Forms are hard! But with Visual Form Builder, they don’t have to be. I use Visual form builder Pro almost exclusively. VFB allows users to take their contact forms into their hands. Would you like a few extra fields on your contact form? No problem! Visual Form Builder has you covered. What’s more is Visual Form Builder is completely free and full of features! However, I would recommend upgrading to VFB Pro if for nothing else than to reward its developer on a job well done.
From the Makers: “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 screen.”
Akismet is a lot like the best bug spray you have ever used. Think of the internet like a jungle, this time instead of poisonous plants there are thousands of Persian Prince’s desperately needing to offload millions of dollars to you (all of the time). Now, while flattering, we don’t necessarily need constant spam on our site, since we are hopefully trying to develop a community of readers, not robots. (Spoilers: They are not really Persian Prince’s) Akismet automatically runs each comment through their service and filters out the good posts from the bad.
WP Super Cache
From the Makers: “This plugin generates static html files from your dynamic WordPress blog. After a html file is generated your webserver will serve that file instead of processing the comparatively heavier and more expensive WordPress PHP scripts.”
We have talked a lot about speed on Untame [Link]. Speed is important, and no one knows that more than the makers of WP Super Cache. WP Super Cache uses dynamic caching and static HTML display to make your WordPress site incredibly fast. Setup can be a bit complicated, but we will go into depth in a future blog post. However if you need help between now and then, just [let us know].
All in One SEO Pack
The internet is a big place, huge even! You have taken the first step, put up a website or blog, produced awesome content and still only have a few visitors every month. You need the All in One SEO Pack for WordPress. This plugin will automatically submit your WordPress site and new blog post to popular search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo and AskJeeves(just kidding on the last one. but it will submit to ask.com). Also, All In One Seo will help you identify good keywords and phrases within your posts and pages. All of this comes together to send interested readers to your site. SEO is not rocket science, and with All in One it can be easy.