I’ve always loved ‘best WordPress plugins’ articles. Now it’s my turn! I get to share all my favourite extensions of WordPress; plugins I’ve used in my own company and for client websites over the last few years.
Plugins allow you to expand WordPress’ ability to do almost anything. This is a big reason why my favourite platform is so robust. To learn more, check out WPBeginner.
Kicking things off with my absolute favourite type of plugin, the page builder. The days of block building or backend tampering are long gone. Visual page building on the front end is the best option.
There are a variety of visual page builders on the WordPress repository. I’ve had experience with most of them and…
Elementor has been my go-to page builder for years now. I refuse to build a site without it. I tell as many people as I can and have taught students how to use it.
If you’re an experienced designer or someone completely green, Elementor has got you. The free version has an incredible amount of ability and the pro version is unbeatable.
I cannot say enough good things about the Elementor Community. Elementor users are helpful designers/developers who care about each other. I’ve asked so many questions in the Facebook Group and have always received helpful comments.
Don’t get me started about the Elementor company & content! Ben Pine & the gang do an incredible job updating, improving & adding to Elementor. Not only that, but the ‘how-tos’ & helpful articles are amazing.
When you fall in love with Elementor, you find out about the awesome add-ons other great developers have made FOR ELEMENTOR!
Elementor alone does everything you’ll need BUT there are a few exceptions where addons will come in handy.
The team behind one of my favourite themes Astra handles this Elementor Addon, so I’ve got to give it a shout out.
Along with good general digital hygiene & great web hosting, speed optimisation plugins play an integral role for delivering your website to users.
Activating WP Rocket improves speed and you don’t even need to do anything, it just works!
The layout is user-friendly with very clear explanations of what features do. Anyone getting started with WordPress or speeding up a website won’t be intimidated.
It increases page load time with minimal work. Also, it integrates with Cloudflare & some other good hosting features from CloudWays. This is my top pick for speeding up your website.
ShortPixel is the easiest image optimisation plugin for WordPress. The bulk optimisation feature lets you optimise all your images in one click.
It can integrate with CloudFlare giving an even better experience for users. The statistics show an average saving of bandwidth. I’ve saved 200Gb so far, wow! You can even set WebP versions of images that bring the best of .jpg’s & .png’s.
Optimising your website for search engines like Google is gold. SEO comes in a few different areas, but on-page is what we’re talking about here.
Controlling the text that Google reads first for each page is important. This makes it so easy to do that for all pages from the dashboard. Other areas like connecting Google Search Console is simple and effective.
This isn’t a WordPress plugin but the value Serpstat brings is amazing and well worth the mention. Pair it with the google chrome extension and you’ve got an unbeatable foundation.
WordPress can be a target for hackers, the security is good, but with the right plugins it’ll be perfect! It’s important to have plugins that deal with prevention & detection.
My experience with MalCare has been a “flick and forget” sort of thing. It does its job and we all go home happy. I’ve never had a problem with hacking or errors from unknown sources. So I can’t fault it.
Creating a safe copy of your website is ideal, I leave “backing up” to my hosting provider CloudWays who do a great job. However, this isn’t a good practice in case of system failures or product updates, you don’t want to leave things to chance. Backups are something you should take control of so you know it’s done the right way.
Backing up should not be difficult, UpdraftPlus makes it simple. It’s a one-click process, what’s easier than that?
The free version is easy to set up with backup options to include databases, plugins and themes. Even allowing you to schedule backups and restoring is super simple. With the ability to backup to cloud storage like Google Drive, it’s almost a no brainer.
Here are some extra plugins that are worth your time knowing about……
Connect your site to ManageWP and easily control multiple websites from one dashboard.
You don’t have to remember passwords to all your websites. Updating plugins & themes is a breeze! It even has some performance, security & backup features all for free.
Marketing by Gist
Connect your website to the complete digital marketing powerhouse Gist. This plugin will allow you to take advantage of the features Gist brings. Capture leads via the on-site chat. Use sales funnels via their drip campaigns & other awesome marketing tools.
The easiest way to connect your site to Google Analytics is via MonsterInsights. Even though I prefer Google Tafe Manager now, this plugin makes it simple as.
There you have it, my top plugins for WordPress. I’ll update this list as technology changes, as it always does.