8 Plugins Every Site Needs

wp plugin1 8 Plugins Every Site Needs

WordPress plugins are used to extend the functionality of WordPress. These are the 8 plugins I install by default with every installation. I’m not saying these are the only plugins you should have, I have some sites that have 10-15 plugins installed. It all depends on what type of functionality you need to add to your site. These 8 plugins will give you a great start in getting your site up and running.

8 Plugins Every Site Needs:

  1. Akismet
  2. All in One SEO Pack
  3. Contact Form 7
  4. Google Analyticator
  5. Google XML Sitemaps
  6. Subscribe To Comments
  7. W3 Total Cache
  8. WordPress Database Backup

Akismet - This is one of the plugins installed by default with your WordPress installation. It does a great job of checking comments against the Akismet servers to see if they look like spam and filtering them out if needed.

All in One SEO Pack – Want to get your site ranked by search engines? Then this is a must have plugin. This plugin makes it easy for you to add unique meta descriptions, keywords and titles to each page and post you create.

Contact Form 7 – Extremely flexible and easy to use for creator. This plugin will let you create any kind of form and place it in any page or post you want. Every site needs at least a contact page, use this plugin to easily create one.

Google Analyticator – Adds the necessary JavaScript code to enable Google’s Analytics (You need to create an account first and setup your site). This plugin gives you a nice widget on your dashboard that provides critical information about visitors to your site and what they are viewing.

Google XML Sitemaps – Creates an XML sitemap and submits it to search engines. This allows Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc.. to crawl your site more efficiently. It also notifies saerch engines of new content on your site so that it can be re-indexed.

Subscribe To Comments – Allows your visitors to subscribe to the comments of a post. This keeps them updated on the latest discussion and has the potential to bring them back to your site to contribute more often.

W3 Total Cache – The fastest and most complete WordPress performance plugin. Dramatically improve the speed and user experience of your site. Add browser, page, object and database caching as well as minify and content delivery network (CDN) to WordPress. Install this just in case your site gets picked up by a social media site such as Digg or StumbleUpon.

WordPress Database Backup – Create automated backups of your database. These backups can be scheduled at any interval you want and can be saved to the server or emailed to you for safe keeping. I recommend having them emailed to you, if something happens to your site or the server your backups could be gone also if that is where you are backing them up.

These plugins will give you the basic functionality that every site needs. Like I mentioned earlier these aren’t the only plugins you will need, there are certainly more depending on the type of site you have.

If you need help installing any of these plugins check out our FREE WordPress installation.

28 Responses to “8 Plugins Every Site Needs”

  1. Great list, thanks. I put together a quick list of the best WordPress plugins myself, but I was wondering what you think.

  2. Actually there are a few plugins in your list that do not need to be there:

    Google Analyticator – why use this when a client can just log into their analytics account.

    Contact form 7 – great form plugin, but conflicts with a lot of other plugins and does slow a site down

    Subscribe to comments – unless a site has a lot of posts and gets a lot of comments then this is a waste of time. Why not have them sign up for a sites feed instead

    W3 Total Cache – great plugin, but if the end user doesnt know how to configure it or actually use it, this is also a waste of time.

    This is a good list but it is a known fact that the more plugins you have on your site the slower it can be.

    • I completely agree, you should only use the plugins you absolutely need in order to keep your site fast. I have actually stopped using a few of these plugins recently as I have found better solutions or cleaner ways of getting the same functionality (I guess I need to create an updated post of what I currently use).

      What are your “must have” plugins when building a WordPress site?

  3. Hi Brian,

    yes there are def cleaner ways to do things. I would say my list is similar to yours:

    WordPress Database Backup
    Google XML Sitemaps
    Akismet
    WP-Spamfree

    in regards to making your site faster, I learned a new little trick. A lot of people like to the gzip compression feature for Apache, but most hosting companies do not have this enabled and they will not enable it.

    I use Hostgator and they give you the option for turning this one. Its a option called Optimize site. Once you enable this, you can add the compression statement to the .htaccess file and your content will be gziped and served.

    This makes your site much faster without having to use a CDN or the W3 Total Cache.

  4. Thanks for the list of usefull plugins.

    I found a fantastic little plugin recently called Duplicator for seamlessly moving your website from one server to the next, in my case from localhost to remote.

    It packages your website files and database and then unpacks and installs the website with the click of a few buttons. It literally took 10min and the site was up and running with all functionality. No mess, no fuss.

    Please check out my new site here http://www.fuzegraphics.co.za and let me know what you think!

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  10. Great resources for WordPress plugins…although I must add one that I always use “Google XML sitemap for video”

    And if you’re installing those plugins for multiple sites, use the “multi plugin installer” – saves you a ton of time!

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