No matter what type of business or website you have, it is essential that you keep your website up-to-date and optimised. One way of doing this easily is by making use of the great WordPress Plugins that are always out there, ready for you to pick up.

What is a WordPress Plugin?

Plugins are small apps that integrate with your existing WordPress software and allow you to tailor your website in so many ways. In addition to our top five shown below, you could also opt for plugins such as WooCommerce to build an online store or KnowledgeBase to create a Wiki website. Whatever type of plugin you are looking for, it is pretty certain that WordPress will have it! If you want to do something with your WordPress site and can’t find the option for it, search for a plugin instead. Whether you are looking to boost your website performance, add contact forms or create galleries, there is sure to be an option out there.
How do WP Plugins work?

WordPress was developed in such a way that additional code in the form of plugins could easily be added to boost functionality. As you install each WordPress Plugin, it will be registered to your WordPress database. This way you can choose to activate/deactivate them whenever you choose to.

Provide your site visitors with a great experience by using the best WordPress Plugins to enhance their journey through your site. Depending upon your budget, you can go with free Plugins or premium which come at a cost. Easy to find, simply go to the website at https://en-gb.wordpress.org/plugins/ and install.

Our WP Plugin top 5

Not sure which WordPress Plugins to go for? Here is our top 5 pick-of-the-pops for 2018!

1. JETPACK – this does so much, dealing with SEO, security, backups, traffic generation, content creation and even community engagement. Once installed you will be able to see your site stats easily, share posts via social media and keep your site secure. Even if you are a complete beginner when it comes to WordPress you should have no problem with this plugin and with so many functions included, you save time by just having to make one download. Provides a 3-in-1 service taking care of design, marketing and security:
Design – hundreds of themes to choose from, high degree of customisation, high-speed image and video delivery, lazy image loading for mobiles and integrates with all WP mobile apps.

Marketing – provides full analytics and site stats, automated social media posting/scheduling, elastic-search facility, SEO tools, advertising program included and easy-to-use PayPal buttons.

Security – protection from attack, spam filters, downtime monitoring, bespoke backups, secure login, malware scanning and automated threat resolution. This comes free with upgrade options available.

2. YOAST – an SEO plugin, you might have heard of this one already as it is incredibly popular. Use this to push you to the top as far as Google rankings are concerned. It does much of the hard work for you, telling you if titles are too long or whether you omitted to attach keywords to images. It will even tell you if your Meta description needs attention. All in all, a great plugin when it comes to improving your search engine optimization. It even shows what your search result in Google will look like, as well as providing clear suggestions on how to make it better. This comes free with upgrade options available.

3. WP MAILCHIMP – again, this is widely used and incredibly popular with businesses wanting to manage email marketing campaigns via MailChimp whilst building a list of email addresses. Its email forms are very user-friendly with forms linking directly to your MailChimp account; this means that when someone enters their email address, it goes straight to your list. A must-have if you send out regular newsletters, your email list will hold up to 2000 addresses. Choose from some great customisable options that merge into any theme. It also integrates beautifully with the WordPress comment forms. This comes free with upgrade options available.

4. SMUSH – large images causing problems? Loading too slowly? Then you need Smush which will take care of all image resizing, compressing and optimising as you upload them. Forget having to do this manually and save loads of time. If you have a mass of images that you want to upload in one go, it can deal with fifty at a time! No matter what plugins you use in order to manage and control your WP media library, Smush will take care of it, making your website faster and more efficient. Comes free if you opt for a 30 day trail of Smush Pro.

5. AKISMET – if you are fed up of spam hitting your site then this is the plugin for you. Knock spam on the head as Akismet filters it out for you automatically. It works by checking contact forms as they are submitted, along with comments, against a massive global spam database. It will then show you the spam that it has caught and held. The great thing about this is that each comment that is filtered out can be checked by you with a status history of each. URLs will also be shown and you will clearly be able to see how many approved comments have been added per user. And not to forget the ‘discard’ option which allows you to totally block the worst kind of spam, speeding up your site and preserving valuable disk space.

With more than 48k WordPress Plugins currently available and even more from sites like GitHub, you may find yourself totally spoilt for choice. You can add your choice of plugins yourself or if you prefer, find a web development company to help you. They can upload the plugins that you have opted for or even recommend the ones that they feel are most suitable to improve your website. One big thing to remember is that your website also needs to be absolutely mobile-design friendly so don’t forget about this when looking at the various plugins available from WordPress, such as WPtouch.

Your WordPress design website does not have to stay the same nor should it look like anyone else’s. Whatever your business wants, WordPress have a plugin to provide it. Take your time to check out the vast array of options now available via the WordPress site or chat with your website developer about your WordPress website design and choice of plugins.

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