One of the greatest aspects of building a website on WordPress is the ability to integrate plugins to perform specific functions. Plugins extend the capabilities of your website and allow it to do things that would otherwise take hours and hours of serious coding. There are a variety of different plugins for WordPress, literally thousands, so there is a good chance there is a plugins for just about every type of site enhancement you can think of.
Below is our list of Awesome Plugins for WordPress. Awesome is a subjective word, since some WordPress users may argue there is a better plugin in a particular category.. which very well may be true. However, since developing custom themes and modifying existing client themes I have come to find these particular plugins never fail, are easy to implement for the most part and have good dev support.
Wordfence is a free enterprise class security plugin that includes a firewall, anti-virus scanning, malicious URL scanning and live traffic including crawlers. Wordfence is the only WordPress security plugin that can verify and repair your core, theme and plugin files, even if you don’t have backups.
Better WP Security
The easiest, most effective way to secure WordPress. Improve the security of any WordPress site in seconds. Includes several useful options, such as locking out users after multiple attempts and easy backups.
This is one of the most widely used plugins to check your comments to see if they look like spam or not and lets you review the spam it catches under your blog’s “Comments” admin screen.
* You will need an Akismet API key. Keys are free for personal blogs, with paid subscriptions available for businesses and commercial sites.
Contact Form 7
A widely used form builder plugin that can manage multiple contact forms, plus you can customize the form and the mail contents flexibly with simple markup. The form supports Ajax-powered submitting, CAPTCHA, Akismet spam filtering and so on. We use Contact Form 7 in most of our WordPress site builds.
Fast Secure Contact Form
Easily create and add forms to WordPress. Fields are easy to add, remove, and re-order. The contact form will let the user send emails to a site’s admin, and also send a meeting request to talk over phone or video.
Google Analytics Dashboard for WP
The king of site analytics! The Google Analytics Dashboard will display analytics data and statistics inside your WordPress Dashboard. Track your WordPress site easily and with lots of metadata: views per author & category, automatic tracking of outbound clicks and page views.
All in One SEO Pack
All in One SEO Pack is a WordPress SEO plugin to automatically optimize your WordPress blog for Search Engines such as Google. You can set custom title and keyword attributed per page or post.
WordPress SEO by Yoast
This WordPress SEO plugin goes beyond basic SEO functions and automatically optimizing and inserting the meta tags and link elements that Google and other search engines like so much.
One of the most popular WordPress plugins of all time, It provides a powerful engine for uploading and managing galleries of images, with the ability to batch upload, import meta data, add/delete/rearrange/sort images, edit thumbnails and group galleries into albums. It also provides two front-end display styles (slideshows and thumbnail galleries), both of which come with a wide array of options for controlling size, style, timing, transitions, controls, lightbox effects, and more.
This plugin makes it possible to implement as many galleries as you want into your website. You can add multiple pictures and description for each gallery, show them all at one page, view each one separately.
It’s a banner that reminds your readers to spread the word. You can select and customize several features, such as text, color, and length in order to ensure your readers and their friends a great social experience.
Social Count Plus
Keeps a really nice tally of all your Twitter followers, Facebook fans, YouTube subscribers, Google Plus page followers, Instagram followers and more.
Share Buttons by AddThis
Help drive traffic to your site by helping visitors share, bookmark and email your content to over 330 services.
W3 Total Cache
A very fast caching engine for WordPress that improves the user experience of your site by increasing server performance, reducing the download times and providing transparent content delivery network (CDN) integration.
Google XML Sitemaps
This plugin will generate a special XML sitemap which will help search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo and Ask.com to better index your blog. With a sitemap, it’s much easier for the crawlers to see the complete structure of your site and retrieve it more efficiently.
WP-DB-Backup allows you to easily to backup your core WordPress database tables. You may also backup other tables in the same database.
If you have a favorite plugin let us know and post in our comments.