Skip to content

20+ Best WordPress Plugins for 2024 – We Did the Research for You

Just like apps enhance your phone, some of the best WordPress plugins can transform a basic WordPress site into something special. From powerful SEO tools to simple contact form plugins, it’s impressive how a quick ten-second installation can make such a big difference.

However, not all plugins are equally good. Some have poor coding that can disrupt your theme, while others are old, outdated and full of bugs, making them nearly useless. That’s why I want to highlight the best WordPress plugins to ensure your website runs smoothly.

Best WordPress Plugins

To make it easier, I’ve divided this post into two parts: must-have plugins for all blogs 🌱 and plugins for power users and WordPress developers 💪. The first part covers essential plugins that every blog should have, regardless of its niche or audience size. The second part is for those who want more advanced functionality and customization options, aimed at experienced users and developers.

Also, later on in the post, you can find insights and tips from 30 WordPress professionals and site owners that we interviewed to get their opinions on WordPress plugins and which their favorite ones are – explaining why they like them and how they use them on their own sites.

Must-have WordPress plugins for all sites

🆎 In alphabetical order:

Antispam Bee

Spam is the bane of the internet’s existence. Fortunately, you don’t have to worry about spam on your WordPress website thanks to Antispam Bee. It’s a free plugin that offers arguably the best performance among its class for the platform.

Antispam Bee is a ‘set-and-forget’ plugin, although it comes with a multitude of options. You have a number of ways to ‘trust’ users, block comments based on choice of language or country, validate IP addresses, search a local spam database, and plenty more. That this plugin has no premium tier is astounding, which makes Antispam Bee even more essential for every site you run.

Contact Form 7

Contact Form 7 is a widely-used WordPress plugin that allows you to create and manage multiple contact forms. It enables customization of form fields and supports various types of input, such as text, email, and radio buttons. The plugin also integrates seamlessly with CAPTCHA and Akismet, helping to reduce spam.

Having Contact Form 7 installed is useful because it simplifies the process of setting up contact forms, ensuring visitors can easily reach out to you. This functionality is essential for maintaining open communication channels with your audience. This is also one of the most downloaded plugins of all time.

Caching plugin: LiteSpeed Cache or WP Fastest Cache

Caching plugins are essential for optimizing WordPress website performance. They work by storing static versions of your web pages, reducing server load and speeding up load times for users. These plugins typically offer a range of features, such as page caching, browser caching, and object caching.

Some also include image optimization, database cleaning, and support for content delivery networks (CDNs). Using a caching plugin can significantly enhance your site’s loading speed and overall user experience. This is crucial for retaining visitors and improving search engine rankings, making caching plugins a must-have for any WordPress site.

If you use a LiteSpeed server, it’s best to use LiteSpeed Cache for optimal performance. Otherwise, WP Fastest Cache is a great alternative.

iubenda

Setting up a cookie and privacy solution is a minefield at the best of times. However, iubenda is hands-down one of the best WordPress plugins available that lets you do this pain-free. Within a few clicks, you can have a custom cookie and privacy policy for your site that updates automatically.

The service works by selecting different elements that your site uses. For instance, you can choose WordPress itself, social media sites you may link to, analytics software, and hundreds of others. From there, iubenda will generate a full cookie and privacy policy, and let you host it in the cloud.

Even better, a new pricing model means buying is more straightforward. The Essentials plan is $5.99 per month, per app, although there are higher tiers too.

Optimole

Image optimization is a key way to create a performant site, so a good solution here is a must. Optimole is one of the best all-in-one tools on the market. It combines compression with device-specific optimization, cloud-based hosting, and more.

Optimole resizes your images for the device it’s displaying for without the need for your input. What’s more, you can carry out some basic editing too if an image needs it. You can also take advantage of lazy loading and a CDN so that images won’t stress your server.

Optimole offers a free plan to get you started, and then also comes with premium tiers at around $19 per month, although you can scale up based on your monthly site visits.

Otter Blocks

The WordPress Block Editor is fantastic, but might not include everything you need to build a site layout. Otter Blocks gives you a whole host of templates, Patterns, and extra content Blocks to add in extra functionality.

This plugin would be great for ecommerce sites, as it includes WooCommerce Builder Blocks such as Add to Cart, Product Metadata, Review Comparison, Business Hours, and much more. Not to mention, you have advanced control over Block visibility, styling, animations, and more.

Otter Blocks has a free version on the WordPress Plugin Directory, but the premium edition starts from only $49 per year.

Really Simple SSL

Really Simple SSL is a plugin designed to simplify the process of moving your site to HTTPS. It automatically detects your SSL certificate and settings, and configures your website to run over a secure HTTPS connection. The plugin handles common issues like mixed content and redirects, ensuring that your site is fully secured without requiring manual intervention.

Installing Really Simple SSL is useful because it enhances your site’s security, which is crucial for protecting user data and improving search engine rankings. Having a secure site also helps build trust with your visitors, making this plugin an important addition to any WordPress website.

SEOPress

SEOPress is a comprehensive WordPress plugin designed to improve your site’s SEO. It’s comes as opposition to the more popular Yoast SEO, but proves to be more stable and deliver more overall features available for free.

It offers things such as meta tags management, XML and HTML sitemaps, content analysis, and social media integration. SEOPress also helps you optimize your site for better visibility in search engine results, making it easier for potential visitors to find you. It will also handle integrating your site with Google Analytics, which is the main reason we don’t have a separate Google Analytics plugin on this list.

Installing SEOPress is useful because it provides all the necessary tools to manage and enhance your site’s SEO in one place. This can lead to increased traffic and better search engine rankings, which are essential for any successful WordPress website.

UpdraftPlus

UpdraftPlus is the best option among WordPress plugins when it comes to backups and restoration. It allows you to create complete backups of your website, including files and databases, and store them on remote locations like Google Drive, Dropbox, or Amazon S3. The plugin supports scheduled backups, making it easy to automate the process.

Having UpdraftPlus installed is essential for protecting your site against data loss. In case of a server crash, hacking attempt, or accidental deletion, you can quickly restore your site to its previous state. This makes UpdraftPlus a vital tool for ensuring the security and continuity of your WordPress website.

Best WordPress plugins for power users and developers

WordPress development takes many forms, so it’s understandable that you’ll need a whole range of plugins to help with the various tasks you’ll encounter.

As such, we can’t give you an exact list of requirements for a specific plugin. Instead, here are a few guidelines and tips to help you choose the right ones:

  • First, think about the task you need help with, and how a plugin could fulfill that need.
  • While ratings, reviews, and support are important for any plugin choice, it’s imperative for development plugins. You don’t want to introduce vulnerabilities or bugs while you’re trying to build a stable product.
  • You may want to take a look at the documentation for a plugin, too. This is because you can get a feel for the support provision on offer, and understand aspects of what a plugin can achieve.
  • By the same token, take a look to see what developer-specific features and support you can get. A plugin may offer plenty of hooks and filters, or an Application Programming Interface (API), for example.

Overall, I advise you to use a lot of common sense when it comes to choosing the best WordPress plugins. After all, your choice will be unique for your project’s needs.

With that out of the way, here’s a list of WordPress plugins that we (collectively here at WPShout) find the most worthwhile and valuable for a WordPress power user. Again, 🆎 in alphabetical order:

Admin and Site Enhancements (ASE)

Admin Site Enhancements is an interesting WordPress plugin designed to improve the functionality and user experience of the WordPress admin area. It offers various features that will let you get rid of a number of individual plugins that used to handle those things.

I’m talking things such as customizing the admin dashboard, adding shortcuts, disabling REST API, XML-RPC, limiting login attempts, and enhancing the overall interface with additional tools and options. ASE helps streamline administrative tasks, making site management more efficient overall.

Installing this plugin allows you to tailor the WordPress admin area to your specific needs, improving productivity and making it easier to manage your website. This can be particularly helpful for site administrators and developers who spend a lot of time in the backend.

Advanced Custom Fields

We think Advanced Custom Fields (ACF) is one of the most popular and best WordPress plugins for developers. It lets you add custom fields to WordPress edit screens, which means you can create the exact layout, workflow, and experience you wish on the WordPress dashboard.

There are around 30 field types on offer, and one of the best developer APIs around. Thousands of developers love ACF thanks to its extensive documentation, world-class support, and ability to create custom ACF Blocks.

What’s more, the core plugin is free, although a PRO subscription starts from $49 per year.

AutomatorWP

Automating tasks and parts of your workflow can theoretically put you in multiple places at once. It’s a way to multitask without spending brain power. AutomatorWP is kind of like a platform-specific Zapier, in that you can connect plugins together within WordPress and automate complex tasks without code.

To use the plugin, you add triggers to your workflow. These combine into actions that run when you need them to. The triggers fire on all sorts of actions, such as watching a video, purchasing a product, and more. Combining them lets you automate actions such as auto enrollment on courses, emailing a discount code, and others.

While there’s a free version of AutomatorWP, the premium version starts from $149 per year and gives you access to all add-ons.

Custom Post Type UI Extended (CPTUIE)

It seems as though custom post types are par for the course when it comes to WordPress web development. As such, Custom Post Type UI Extended could be an essential plugin in your armory. It provides an interface within WordPress to register custom post types with ease.

The plugin enables you to create your custom post types and display the data they collect right inside posts and pages. You can do so from the WordPress Block Editor, and CPTUIE also lets you work with data from any other post type on your site. The plugin does this through a dedicated shortcode builder that’s a breeze to use.

Even better, CPTUIE won’t dent your budget. A single-site license is $29 for six months of support and updates, although there are options to purchase more licenses if you need them.

Debug This

You can find out quite a lot about your WordPress installation without any additional plugin, but Debug This will help you during development or even customer support. In short, you can find out more site information from the WordPress toolbar at the top of the screen.

For instance, you can see the current WP_Query object, rewrite rules, PHP and server information, cache statistics, those files that the site renders in HTML, and plenty more. Even simple facets, such as post authors or attachments, are available for you.

Debug This is another free plugin that could become an essential part of your development workflow.

Marker.io

Here’s a plugin that could improve your collaboration and feedback loops. Marker.io is a way to give and collect visual feedback for your WordPress website. You’ll likely use it when designing or testing to get the opinion of others about the direction you’re taking.

The plugin uses a pop-up for testers to add feedback while they use the site. This removes a big barrier to offering feedback, and we love the approach. You can annotate screenshots too, using arrows, text, emojis, and more. The whole package is slick and integrates with WordPress without a hitch.

Pricing for Marker.io begins from $39 per month, which seems high, but could pay for itself if it speeds up the design and testing phase of your project.

Simple History

Here’s a completely free plugin that performs some vital functionality. Simple History shows the most recent changes to happen within WordPress, right on the dashboard. You can view changes to posts and pages, taxonomies, comments, logins (including failed attempts), and much more.

There is also lots of support for third-party plugins. For instance, the plugin will log changes you make to ACF fields and field groups. If you also use the User Switching plugin, Simple History will log those changes, too. Although there are other plugins available, it’s reassuring to know that this free solution can work with some other WordPress development plugins.

Theme Switcha

You often don’t want the site visitors to see what you’re doing behind the scenes. This is where Theme Switcha shines. It lets you swap out a theme on the back-end of a site, while the current theme stays in place on the front end.

The plugin offers focus, without the bells and whistles of other theme switching plugins. For example, you get to control who can switch themes – all the way up to everyone! – send preview links to others, and set it up with a passcode. When it comes to theme testing without disrupting the User Experience (UX) Theme Switcha is ideal.

What The File

Next, we have arguably the most straightforward plugin on this list. What The File will show you the template parts and files used to display the current page. You can find the information out in the WordPress toolbar.

That’s basically it, but we do have a caveat about the plugin. If you check its Last Updated time, it often goes well over our recommended six months. However, during our testing we didn’t uncover any issues so we are happy to recommend it. Our advice is to test it on your own setup before you do any serious work.

WP Reset

Sometimes you need to rip it up and start again. In these cases, it would help to have a quick and simple way to do so. WP Reset can offer that! In only a few clicks, you can revert the WordPress database back to its original settings.

You will set up snapshots of your site, which WP Reset will refer back to when you need. However, you can also choose to delete and restore specific parts of a snapshot too, so you have lots of flexibility.

WP Reset costs $39 per year for a single site license. This is fantastic value and means the plugin could be a regular in your toolbox.

WP-Staging

Staging is a crucial step during development, as it lets you transition from local to live without impacting your UX. What’s more, you can make more changes and conduct more tests on a live server. WP-Staging is one of the best WordPress plugins for developers we know of to help you if your host doesn’t provide staging functionality.

In fact, you don’t only get staging functionality with this plugin. You can also duplicate sites, clone them, and migrate them all within its settings. The staging itself is a breeze to use, and you can set things up in minutes. It supports all common types of web servers, and the data stays with you rather than heading off to a cloud provider. This is welcome if you choose to host sensitive information.

We like the premium version over the free one, as you get lots of cool backup options. The lowest tier costs around $89 per year.

What experts say about WordPress plugins

We spoke with a group of successful WordPress professionals to get their feedback on the topic as well. We talked with a total of 30 experts.

Keep in mind, though, that we originally reached out for this feedback a while back, so not all the plugins are still valid. However, we still want to show you this collection as we believe it holds a lot of insight when it comes to the types of things that real users like to use plugins for.

These developers, website owners, and business people have specified what they see as the best WordPress plugins, along with why they think so and how they might use them on their own websites.

Here’s the question we asked them:

What are the three best WordPress plugins that every WordPress blogger should have?

Here are the answers we got:

Pat Flynn 2

Pat Flynn

SPI

Limit Login Attempts. Stops people from trying to login to my site and mess with it! I get multiple notifications a day of people trying to do this.

Broken Link Checker. Helps you keep track of broken links so you can fix or get rid of them.

Robots Meta. Allows you to determine whether or not Google indexes a page or not (among other things). This is helpful for hidden pages and other parts of my site that I don’t necessarily want Google to find.

Zac Johnson

Zac Johnson

ZacJohnson.com

OptinMonster. This is one of the best WordPress plugins, since it’s extremely easy, useful and effective for growing your mailing list. Exit popups are annoying, but they work!

Pretty Link or ThirstyAffiliates. Two great WordPress plugins for managing link redirects through your site. Don’t worry about having to change hundreds of links when old affiliate relations die, with these best WordPress plugins you can do it in one click.

LeadPages. Most people are using LeadPages templates through the main site URL, however, with the Leadpages plugin, you can quickly and easily host these pages through your own site while also using your domain name as the redirect or main url. This will increase conversions and look much more professional.

Andy Bailey

Andy Bailey

ComLuv.com

CommentLuv (of course!). It promotes interaction and bootstraps you into a thriving community of bloggers.

Plainview Activity Monitor. This shows you failed logins to your site which also shows you the passwords used and other stuff that users do, which is really useful if you have a multi-author blog.

User Switching. Really needed if you have a membership site, you can log in as someone and you see the site as if you have used their details to log in. Great for troubleshooting issues from support tickets.

Adam Connell

Adam Connell

Blogging Wizard

Redirection. Every time a permalink is changed, it results in a 404 error. If you don’t manage them, it’ll cause some serious issues, particularly with user experience and SEO. Redirection makes it easy to redirect URL’s.

Captcha on Login. Brute force attacks are a regular occurrence for most sites, especially on login pages. An easy way of stopping them is by adding a captcha to the login screen with this plugin. After using this plugin, bots eventually stopped and it ultimately reduced the load on my server.

CoSchedule by Todaymade. You need to manage your editorial calendar and this tool makes it easier. It’s got task management built in and makes it easy to schedule social messages. It’s not free, but it’s a huge time saver.

Rita Barry

Rita Barry

Blog Genie

Cloudflare. Offers both faster site performance and blocks a wide range of threats from ever reaching your site. This service not only provides security and performance, it keeps hosting costs down by limited unwanted server requests.

Comment Redirect. Provides an easy way to redirect first-time commenters to a thank you page. Use the page however you like, encourage email sign-ups, social media follows or whatever suits your site, but it’s a nice touch that goes a long way to helping you stand out.

WP-Optimize. Acts like a giant broom for your WordPress database and cleans everything with the touch of a button. This is also great for client sites when they are uncomfortable with logging in to PhpMyAdmin.

Jacob Gube

Jacob Gube

Web FX

WP-SpamFree Anti-Spam. This WordPress plugin has drastically cut down the amount of spam comments we get on Design Instruct. We have this plugin and Akismet to protect us from fraudulent spam comments.

Broken Link Checker. Broken links can negatively affect the reading experience because it’s frustrating to click on a link that doesn’t work. This WordPress plugin makes monitoring and fixing broken links on WordPress-powered sites easier.

EWWW Image Optimizer. I write a lot about Web image optimization because I truly believe that non-optimized images are one of the major causes of slow web pages, which in turn is terrible for the reading experience. The problem is, optimizing images manually requires a little bit more time and effort, and many site owners aren’t comfortable using image optimization tools. This plugin helps make image optimization seamless for authors.

Alyona Galea

Alyona Galea

WP Mayor

WP RSS Aggregator. Must have WordPress plugin for those who create aggregated content from different sites. You can create portfolios, news, showcases and many more. This is one of the best WordPress plugins, since it allows you to aggregate photos, videos and text, categorized and filtered in the way you want.

MailPoet Newsletters. Very easy to use plugin. We use it to send out our newsletters and get our readers subscribed to our emails.

Leadin. Cool plugin for those who want to know their visitor’s behavior. It shows where your reader (the one who contacted you only) came from, which pages are visited before and after contacting you through a contact form on your website.

Daniel Scocco

Daniel Scocco

Daily Blog Tips

Clean Archives. Quite an old plugin, but it creates a very clean and intuitive archive for your blog, which also works as a sitemap, as it lists all the posts ever published.

RSS Footer. A very useful WordPress plugin to add stuff to the bottom of your RSS Feed. I use it to add advertising banners, for instance.

WPtouch. Having a mobile friendly website is a must today, so if you don’t have a mobile version yet you can use this plugin to create one on the fly.

Caleb Wojcik

Caleb Wojcik

DIY Video Guy

Editorial Calendar. Was really helpful when I worked at Fizzle.co so we could easily schedule out our content for weeks and months in advance. Even if the post wasn’t done, we could still put a placeholder draft there until it was.

Pretty Link is great for two things. First, being able to have shorter redirect links to specific pages or other websites you’re linking too. Second, it tracks how many times those links are used, which is also really helpful.

Solid Backups is a life saver. If anything happens to your WordPress site where it gets hacked or a simple line of code in a plugin screws everything up, SB will make sure you have a recent backup ready to restore to.

Bamidele Onibalusi

Bamidele Onibalusi

Writers in Charge

WP Sharely. This is one of the premium, and best WordPress plugins for offering an incentive to readers of a particular post on your blog in exchange for them sharing that post.

Hybrid Connect. This WordPress plugin also comes from the developer of WP Sharely, and it is basically a plugin for creating opt-in forms; it has a lot of options including allowing users to create in-post forms, sidebar forms, pop-ups and slide in forms. Hybrid Connect also allows you to collect opt-ins via email or Facebook login, and it has a lot of customization as well as tracking to let you know where subscribers are coming from.

Gravity Forms. This is another premium WordPress plugin for creating slick contact forms; it has a built in anti-spam option, tracking for your forms, integration with several top service providers like AWeber for email list building, and a lot of other customization options.

Neil Patel

Neil Patel

Quick Sprout

Popularity Contest. It helps showcase your most popular posts. (This plugin is no longer supported and is not recommended by its authors.)

Subscribe to Comments. It notifies people by email for new comments that are left on your blog.

Click to Tweet. It helps you get more social shares.

Noemi Twigg

Noemi Twigg

Revive Old Post. This plugin allows me to share old posts automatically. You can exclude categories (say, News) to ensure that posts re-shared are still relevant even if they’re old. This helps keep our Twitter feed fresh without having to spend too much time manually checking what is being posted.

NextScripts: Social Networks Auto-Poster. Autoposts each new entry to social networks. It gets the post out on social media as each entry is published and helps ease the load on a network/blog manager/editor/social media coordinator, especially when working with many blogs and authors. I don’t recommend using it as a standalone solution, though. Re-sharing posts manually at different times makes it optimal.

Pippity. Makes it easy for newsletter subscription; settings can be customized to make it user friendly (i.e. not in your face popups all the time); easy integration with newsletter services like aWeber.

Kyla Glover

Kyla Glover

WPExplorer

Force Regenerate Thumbnails. Great when redesigning our website to recrop all of our images and clean out the old ones.

Fanciest Author Box. We love Fanciest Authorbox for adding author bios – which is a definite must have for any multi-author blog.

Pretty Link. We use Pretty Link Lite for affiliate links because, well, affiliate links are ugly 🙂

Dave Clements

Dave Clements

Do It With WordPress

Three of my favourite plugins that don’t get as much love as they should are Posts 2 Posts, User Switching and Duplicate Post. I definitely wouldn’t say that every blogger should have them (there’s only 1 or 2 plugins that I would put in that category), but if someone has a need for them, they’re really the best WordPress plugins for those applications.

Chris Coyier

Chris Coyier

CSS-Tricks

MinQueue. Allows you to minify and concatenate the scripts and styles that plugins load for you. The advantage to this is that you can just let plugins do whatever they want and know that you’ll still be doing the right thing performance wise on the front end. And not managing that stuff manually means that when the WordPress plugin updates, and new scripts/styles are needed, it still just automatically happens.

Public Post Preview. It’s so nice to be able to just send a draft for someone to look at without having to publish it.

Anti-spam. This has been the plugin that has been the most effective for me for stopping spam (in addition to Akismet).

Jeff Starr

Jeff Starr

Perishable Press

Theme Check. As a WordPress theme developer, I use the Theme Check plugin to double-check that my themes are up to spec with the latest theme review standards. The plugin is simple to use and provides clear results and actionable steps for improving theme quality, security, and performance. Highly recommended for anyone working with WordPress themes.

Query Monitor. Query Monitor is great because it is very comprehensive. It can do a lot of stuff that other debugging plugins can’t, like auto Ajax debugging and the ability to filter results by specific plugin or theme. I use this plugin mostly for debugging database and query variables, but it also comes in handy for testing HTTP requests, WP hooks, PHP errors, and much more. It’s one of the best WordPress plugins that doesn’t receive the attention it deserves, IMO.

Admin Post Navigation. Over the years, I’ve published hundreds of articles and tutorials at Perishable Press and DigWP.com. On the front-end, navigating all of these posts is a breeze, as I have full control over the theme template and can use choice template tags as desired. But not so much in the WP Admin Area, where it is sometimes necessary to navigate from one post to the next to make updates, edits, and so on. To make this post-to-post navigation possible in the Admin Area, I use a plugin called Admin Post Navigation, which does one thing and one thing well: it adds “Previous” and “Next” links to the Edit Post screen to make serial post editing much easier.

Fred Meyer

Fred Meyer

Former owner of WPShout

All-In-One WP Migration. Dead-simple site migration. An absolute lifesaver.

Enable Media Replace. If deleting an image and re-uploading a new one with the same name never made sense to you, you need this plugin.

Regenerate Thumbnails. Changing featured image sizes on your site simply wouldn’t make sense without it.

Benny Lewis

Benny Lewis

Fluent in 3 months

BJ Lazy Load. Site speed is so crucial in not losing people in those crucial first seconds. In my case though, I may share several high quality images in my post, and it would be a pity if the time it took to download these put people off the site. This plugin changes things to only download images that are in the browser’s view. So as you scroll down, they are pulled from the site. Instant site-loading-speed boost!

Simple:Press. To build a community around your blog, simple-press is the easiest way by far to set up a forum that piggy-backs off WordPress’ system. I’ve scaled this to tens of thousands of users and it performs very well because of its non-bulky code.

VaultPress. If I had to recommend one of the best WordPress plugins, this would be it. It’s a paid service, but it has saved my skin several times. No matter what, every single hour my entire site is backed up to VaultPress’ servers, and there is a simple one button click backup implementation. When I’ve done irreversible things to my site on my own server and it’s down, and my site admin is asleep, this plugin lets me essentially press “undo” and go back to the most recent working snapshot. You can do it to just the theme, just the database or certain other small parts, in case your changes were fine in other parts, or you don’t want to lose conversations or blog posts unrelated to a crash.

Ben Townsend

Ben Townsend

WPin

For me personally I love the Ultimate Coming Soon Page plugin, it’s a breeze to install and I use it all the time. On my own website and for client websites as well. It basically turns your WordPress site into a coming soon page complete with sign up form and editable text via the background. It’s a great way for those to build their website on their web hosting of choice if they are not familiar with WAMP or LAMP.

Another awesome plugin some may have heard of is EWWW Image Optimizer it does exactly what it says on the tin. It bulk optimizes images for your blog, reducing bandwidth, and of course, load time. A really nifty plugin and one that I use all the time.

Finally one of the best WordPress plugins for redirection (I find) is the Simple 301 Redirects plugin. It’s a great way for non-techies to create 301 redirects. So if you’re in your Google Webmaster settings page and discovering errors or URLS that can not be found, then simply copy and paste and redirect them to a similar page or a new one.

Peter Nilsson

Peter Nilsson

WP Daily Themes

Rublon Account Security: Two-Factor Auth+. A great two-factor authentication security layer plugin to protect and secure accounts in WordPress.

Growmap Anti Spambot Plugin. The perfect plugin to defeat automated spambots and spam messages with a simple checkbox.

Reduce Bounce Rate. Get the real Bounce rate and page views in Google Analytics. Easy and simple to use.

Matt Cromwell

Matt Cromwell

Impress.org

ImageInject is the best way to include copyright friendly images into your posts.

Enhanced Media Library is the best for categorizing media to make it easy to reuse images or PDFs, or whatever.

Contextual Related Posts is the best performing Related Posts plugin there is (besides Jetpack’s).

This one is paid, but for analyzing your post performance, Analytify is the easiest and most convenient way to see how visitors are finding your individual posts.

Ammar Ali

Ammar Ali

All Blogging Tips

CommentLuv Premium. A powerful plugin that helps to increase blog engagement. It controls spam comments on WordPress blog. It acts as a reward system. People love getting backlinks to their blog and that’s what CommentLuv does. It shows their most recent updates while leaving comments. You can reward users if they have a certain number of comments on your blog. It really helps to build community, it attracts users to leave more comments, and this provides relationships with new and repeat visitors. This plugin sends reply notifications to users whenever a comment has been replied to. A must-have plugin if you really want to increase engagement on your blog.

SEOPressor. We already know how important SEO is. There are many SEO plugins, but I think SEOPressor is the best. It shows keyword density of your keyword in the WordPress editor. It shows an over-optimization warning in case you have added extra tags, keywords, h1, h2, h3 tags. It also supports rich snippets. The best feature is LSI keyword. LSI keywords help you to find relevant keywords from your main keywords, using LSI keyword will make it easy for you to rank in Google.

MBP Ninja Affiliate. If you’re into affiliate marketing then this is one of the best WordPress plugins. I’ve been using it for years and I’m very happy with it. This plugin automatically converts your keywords on your posts into affiliate links. It is a powerful plugin which helps you to manage, track, cloak and shorten an unlimited number of affiliate links from one settings page. This plugin helped me a lot in saving my time and managing all affiliate links from one dashboard. Ninja plugin is a must-have plugin for serious affiliate marketers.

Nathan Weller

Nathan B. Weller

Elegant Themes

The three best WordPress plugins I would recommend every WordPress blogger use are all about empowerment done the right way. Here’s what I mean by that:

One of the primary appeals to WordPress in the first place is how much it (and its amazing community of designers/developers) have empowered the world to do great things with WordPress and its available themes and plugins. Because of this, I think some theme and plugin authors go a little “empowerment crazy” with their products because it’s an easy sell–“Look how much you can do with this one tool!”

The right way is not always the plug and play way, and there is such a thing as too much in one package. With that in mind, here are my three picks:

Code Snippets by Shea Bunge. Sometimes less is more. One of my favorite ways of reducing unnecessary bloat is by finding useful code snippets I can substitute for whole plugins. In this way, the Code Snippets plugin has actually cut down significantly on the number of plugins I have installed–and therefore also cut down on the number of plugins I have to configure, update, and maintain.

Shortcodes Ultimate by Vladimir Anokhin. So many themes come with their own sets of shortcodes that are not separated out into another plugin. And some, if they are separated out, are designed to work with just that theme and not at all (or at least not well) with others. To me, aside from being against WordPress standards and best practices, is a disservice. Which is why instead I have really come to love using this massive (free) shortcode bundle by Vladimir Anokhin designed to work well with any theme.

Reviewer WordPress Plugin by evoG. Similarly, many WordPress themes come with review capabilities built in. This looks great as a selling point but many customers do not realize creating a bunch of content using theme specific custom post types, such as a review, locks them into that theme forever. Or it signs them up for a bunch of work later on, if they ever decide to switch themes. This plugin is one that I’ve used on my site and love. It may not be the review plugin for everyone, but the point is that if you’re reviewing things on your blog – use a plugin! That way if you need to change themes down the road you don’t leave a bunch of your best content behind in the process.

As someone who is always writing about themes and plugins, there are of course more that could have made this list. So in closing, I also want to take a second to thank everyone in the WordPress community working hard to design and develop the tools we’ve all come to use and love.

Chris Burgess

Chris Burgess

SitePoint

I’ve included 3 for bloggers and 3 for developers. Blogger/User:

Yet Another Related Posts Plugin (YARPP). A good replacement for nRelate, that shows related content below each post.

Broken Link Checker. Checks content for broken links.

EWWW Image Optimizer. Gives you more image optimization options.

Developer:

P3 (Plugin Performance Profiler). Good for getting a baseline on plugin performance.

Developer. Excellent if you need to take a closer look under the hood.

Stream. Great for sites that lots of people are working on.

Devesh Sharma

Devesh Sharma

WPKube

CoSchedule by Todaymade by TodayMade is a fantastic editorial calendar that integrates with Buffer app and allows you to schedule your blog posts on your site and social media at the same time using a drag-and-drop calendar. It costs $10 / month, so if you don’t run a business blog, then it may not be worth it.

SearchWP by Jonathan Christopher, improves the site search and adds a lot of features to the basic search. Of course there are a good number of search plugins, but this one stands above from the rest. Cost: $29 / single license.

Shrink-O-Matic. This is a fantastic app (not a WordPress plugin), that lets you optimize images on your Windows or Mac. Very handy for optimizing images and does not cost a dime. Alternatively, you can use WP Smush, if you don’t want to use an offline app.

Brian Jackson

Brian Jackson

BrianJackson.io

Here are my three WP plugins that aren’t talked about a lot, but they are on my “must have” list and I use them on all of my sites.

Display Widgets is a great little plugin. Basically, it adds checkboxes to each widget to show or hide on site pages. This allows me to customize what I show on my pages sidebar versus my widget sidebar.

This is a great way to A/B test different CTA boxes and really hone in on your audience. You can show different widgets based on a post category or even a custom taxonomy. This can be awesome for affiliate marketing.

Let’s say you have a WordPress category and a PPC category. Now you can create separate affiliate widgets for each category and now the ads on the sidebar are directly related to the article they are reading. This will dramatically increase their CTR.

Google Tag Manager for WordPress. Many people I talk to still don’t even know what Google Tag Manager is. Basically, it is a free management tool from Google that allows you to manage and deploy your scripts from one location. Such as Google Analytics, AdRoll, Facebook Conversion Pixel, etc.

This free plugin by duracelltomi.com is running on all of my sites. It allows me to stay organized and keep my WordPress sites clean.

ZigWidgetClass. Another great little free WordPress plugin by zigpress.com. This plugin allows me to easily add custom CSS classes to my widgets. What do I use this for? I use it to deploy media queries so that I can hide certain widgets based on their resolution size.

For example, on my site I have an optin box in my sidebar and my footer. On a mobile device there is no reason for it to show twice, so I add my class which pulls my media query and hides one of them.

Raelene Wilson

Raelene Wilson

Words by Birds

Here are my three best WordPress plugins. They’re all WPMU DEV plugins because our developers work really hard and they create so many awesome plugins that don’t usually get much attention.

Snapshot. It’s like a time machine for your WordPress site that can backup and restore your entire install and even includes Dropbox and S3 integration.

Custom Sidebars. You can control all aspects of every widget area on your site with this handy plugin. It has a beautiful UI, which makes it even more fun to use.

WP Smush / WP Smush Pro. This is one of the first plugins I install on every site I create. It allows you to reduce image file sizes and you can even bulk smush images.

Dan Zarzycki

Dan Zarzycki

Slocum Themes

Through years of serving customers, clients, and support tickets and through the review of plugins on our PressThis show, we have seen requests for HUNDREDS of plugins and solutions. Here are three of my favorites to put on your best WordPress themes list:

Disable Comments. Despite the large number of downloads (1.2 million) and the obvious title, so many of our viewers and customers want to remove their comments and have no idea that this solution exists.

The use of this WordPress plugin is simple. Install the plugin, go to your WordPress Settings > Disable Comments and check the box to disable all comments. The plugin also allows you to choose whether to display comments on a more case-specific level.

Advanced Tagline. This plugin hasn’t been updated in a while (6 years) but we have found that the solution still works for the most part and is fun.

Tapping into the WordPress “tagline” or “slogan”, you can create a number of slogans and display one of them randomly or sequentially every time a user loads the page. The application for thought bloggers, spiritual organizations, and businesses is tremendous.

Conductor. For displaying blog content, there is no greater plugin out there than Conductor. While it is the one option on my list that costs money (starting at $97), Conductor works with almost any existing WordPress theme and allows you to display a grouping of your content the way YOU want.

Want to display 8 blogs from the “Dog” category at a smaller size, and only show the featured image and the title? You can do that.

Want to make your most recent post a large featured post on your front page? Done.

Powerful stuff. I can’t rave about it enough.

Ionut Neagu

Ionut Neagu

WPShout

I like the following three plugins because they can be all set up in a matter of minutes (30 minutes tops in total), and then you get to reap the benefits they bring for months or even years to come. Here are the plugins:

Revive Old Post. Use it to re-share the best pieces of content from your blog.

WP Rocket. It takes 5 minutes to set up and speeds up your site considerably, implementing a lot of proactive best practices.

Optimole. It automatically optimizes every new image that you upload to your site. No additional work needed on your part. It also serves your images via an optimized CDN, making the whole site much quicker.

As you can see, the best WordPress plugins are those that save me time.

General observations

Even though we’re talking about some popular and some less-popular WordPress plugins here, it’s worth pointing out that some trends have emerged when compiling this list. A number of experts shared their picks in similar plugin categories.

For instance, our experts feel that image optimization is extremely important. With plugins such as Smush or Optimole, it’s clear that bloggers and webmasters care about how much bandwidth their sites consume and how important having this under control is for them.

Another trend is using what can be called helper SEO plugins or link manipulation plugins. For instance, plugins like Broken Link Checker or Pretty Link are among the most popular on the best WordPress plugins list. If we looked a little deeper here, we could probably make an argument that the features those plugins offer are the only missing elements in big SEO plugins.

That’s all we have on the topic of the best WordPress plugins for all types of sites and users! Let us know what you think about the topic and what your favorite plugins are.

Don’t forget to join our crash course on speeding up your WordPress site. Learn more below:

 
Yay! 🎉 You made it to the end of the article!
Karol K

0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Or start the conversation in our Facebook group for WordPress professionals. Find answers, share tips, and get help from other WordPress experts. Join now (it’s free)!

0
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x

Most Searched Articles

Best JavaScript Libraries and Frameworks: Try These 14 in 2024

In this post, we look at the best JavaScript libraries and frameworks to try out this year. Why? Well, with JavaScript being available in every web browser, this makes it the most accessible programming language of ...

20 Best Free WordPress Themes for 2024 (Responsive, Mobile-Ready, Beautiful)

If you're looking for only the best free WordPress themes in the market for this year, then you're in the right place. We have more than enough such themes for you right ...

12 Best WordPress Hosting Providers of 2024 Compared and Tested

Looking for the best WordPress hosting that you can actually afford? We did the testing for you. Here are 10+ best hosts on the market ...

Handpicked Articles

How to Make a WordPress Website: Ultimate Guide for All Users – Beginners, Intermediate, Advanced

Many people wonder how to make a WordPress website. They’ve heard about WordPress, its incredible popularity, excellent features and designs, and now they want to join the pack and build a WordPress website of their own. So, where does one get ...

How to Start an Ecommerce Business: Ultimate Guide for 2024

Is this going to be the year you learn how to start an eCommerce business from scratch? You’re certainly in the right place! This guide will give you a roadmap to getting from 0 to a fully functional eCommerce business. ...