Top 6 Wordpress Plugins, According To Users

By CertifiedHosting 10/03/2013

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Part of the difficulty of getting your WordPress site going is knowing which plugins will be valuable to your site. After all, a lot of the reason the CMS (or blogging platform – depends who you ask) is so popular is because of those plugins, which significantly enhance your possibilities. Constructing a website is now almost unfair, with thousands of ready-built options available at the click of a button (well, maybe technically three minutes to set one up, including a coffee break).

There is another concern with plugins, though. They provide different points of entry for hackers. However, for a hacker to be able to access your “backend,” they must access your account.

Now, it’s not like that never happens. Back in April, thousands of WordPress sites were attacked with a botnet. The botnet was a widespread malware infection using thousands of home PCs connected to servers feeding them passwords to use alongside the username “admin.” Matt Mullenwag, founder of WordPress, recommended the following at the time:

  1. changing the admin username
  2. strengthening the password
  3. signing up for two-factor authentication through the WordPress CP
  4. keeping the installed WordPress version current.

For the most part, then, your site is safe unless you make it an easy target. Use a high-quality hosting service (that would be us) and follow the above advice. Furthermore, keep your plugins updated with latest versions as well. Here are the 6 highest rated ones from WordPress.

Top 6 Favorite WordPress Plugins of Users

The plugins section of the WordPress site allows users to rate which ones are the best. However, when you organize by highest rating, they aren’t in the correct order. Probably the list is weighted for the number of ratings given to particular plugins. Who knows what the idea is behind that, but this ratings list will focus on the first 10 plugins with five-star ratings (rounding up).

Google XML Sitemaps: This plugin, as its name suggests, maps your site so that the major search engines – not just Google – can better read your site and include it in search engine result pages (SERPs). Plus, when you add a new blog post or page, Sitemaps automatically alerts search engines of its existence. Nothing makes a page sadder than going unnoticed.

  • Downloads: 10.8 million
  • Rating: 4.7

WordPress SEO by Yoast: WordPress is known for having strong search engine optimization, but this plugin improves it, through a sort of hand-holding guide as you create content. It gives you a sense of what your page will look like in Google so you can know whether to change the content of your title and meta-description. It also ensures thorough use of a focus keyword.

  • Downloads: 6.2 million
  • Rating: 4.7

Better WP Security: Are you starting to see a trend here? These plugins automate many of the tasks you know you “should be doing” for your site but maybe aren’t. Like the above two handle two crucial search engine tasks, this one covers security. The admin account was listed above. This plugin renames that. Essentially, it hides vulnerabilities in a dozen different ways. It also acts similarly to an antivirus, blocking intruders, as well as backing up your site.

  • Downloads: 1.1 million
  • Rating: 4.8

Add Link to Facebook: This one is kind of nice because it makes your social media upkeep easier. Rather than having to go on to your business page and update your fans once you’ve made a new post, links will pop directly into Facebook. You can change parameters, but the basic scenario is that the title of your post appears in Facebook as the same. You can choose specific wording for the piece to highlight on Facebook as well.

  • Downloads: 1.3 million
  • Rating: 4.7

Advanced Custom Fields: Some consider WordPress to be a glorified blogging platform, not really a content management system. The reason for that is because the way WordPress is built creates less leeway for integrating certain coding languages. This plugin allows you to work with various categories of data, through the creation of fields on your page that can return a large collection of data from an API (application programming interface). If none of this makes sense to you, maybe download and take it for a spin.

  • Downloads: 1.3 million
  • Rating: 4.9

Wysija Newsletters: Well, we’ve covered a lot of bases so far. What about email newsletters? This plugin allows you to step outside of WordPress, similarly to the Facebook one mentioned above, and send newsletters matching your site’s look and feel. You can pull in whatever content you want for the week and easily redesign. You also have access to statistics on how many people open and read. Finally, it’s responsive design, so it will look the same on cell phones as it does on PCs.

  • Downloads: 600,000
  • Rating: 4.9

Conclusion

There are plenty of other plugins to explore. But wait, there’s more…

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