WordPress plugins extend the functionality of already existing features in WordPress and add a plethora of features that make running a website easier. When it comes to plugins, the choices are many.
In fact, it’s no understatement to say that there are a lot of WordPress plugins to choose from. At the time of writing, there are 23,569 plugins listed in the WordPress plugin directory.
The problem is choosing which plugins will suit you and your website best. There are some of plugins that are not even real choices. These plugins have had their development cease because they only work on outdated WordPress versions.
The fact that there are so many outdated plugins is why this list of the five best WordPress plugins for 2013 (so far) has been compiled. This list will help show which plugins can make your life easier:
Akismet actually comes pre-installed with WordPress, but you need to activate it with a key to make it function. Akismet cuts down on the spammy comments and trackbacks that spammers have been using to gain links back to their own websites.
Think of it as a way to filter out your site’s spam. Akismet filter’s out comments that are low quality spam and do not contribute to interaction with your readers.
This plugin is essential to any webmaster that has any amount of traffic. Spammers can and will try to flood your WordPress website with comments and trackbacks.
2. All in One SEO Pack
The default WordPress installation comes with a center to configure your website’s title, its description and a few other things. However, it’s not enough to perform the basics of on-site SEO. (Search Engine Optimization) For that purpose, the All in One SEO pack was created.
It allows you to customize meta keywords, meta descriptions and page titles for anything that you can post content on with your WordPress installation. This includes pages, posts and even your home page.
This plugin is a must-have for anyone who plans to do any type of SEO, and it’s recommended for anyone that doesn’t mind more traffic from basic on-site SEO.
3. WP Super Cache
Imagine if there was a way to make your website load faster and decrease the load that your server has to handle, which in turn will allow you to have more visitors while using the same type of server hardware.
This is exactly what WP Super Cache does.
It generates a static HTML version of your WordPress installation’s dynamic PHP pages. These cached versions are then served up to your visitors in a fashion that is as fast as your web server could load a basic HTML page.
This plugin is necessary and should be installed on every WordPress installation. Most web hosts that have experience with WordPress recommend WP Super Cache.
This plugin allows you to quickly, easily and safely integrate social sharing buttons on your WordPress website without having to mess with any of your template code.
Your visitors can then easily share your content using some of the most popular social networking websites. This allows your WordPress website to grow naturally and bring in people that are both interested in your website’s main topic and more likely to complete an action.
The future of attracting new visitors is heavily reliant on a good social presence, so this plugin is a must-have if you want to take advantage of the potential free traffic social media can provide.
5. Yet Another Related Posts (YARP) Plugin
Once your get visitors to your website, you want them to stay on it. The answer to getting them to stay on there is simple: give them more content that they would probably like to read.
YARP accomplishes this by giving your readers links to related content in a post or a page. This plugin allows for a great degree of customization and can improve how long your readers stick around.
While this plugin is purely optional, it’s recommended that your website have it if you have at least 30 different pages of content. The one thing to note is that the success you see will be heavily dependent on how great your content is.
There are many choices for plugins for WordPress. The above five are some of the ones that will undoubtedly help your website run smoothly.
Byline: Jesse Rodgers is a freelance marketing and web blogger. She enjoys helping numerous businesses better market themselves with her helpful and informative insights into Word Press blogging.