WordPress Plugins: Supercharge your site
Why do we need plugins?
WordPress Plugins are basic requirement to make your site fully functional.
Without plugins, WordPress is just a CMS platform (Content Management Platform).
Just imagine WordPress like a big hall. Now this hall can be used for multiple purposes. For that you need equipments, tools, accessories etc.
Now few of them are necessary like lighting, air flow control etc.
Plugins provide that kind of functionality to our WordPress site. To come straight to the point, plugins are specific codes that you install in your WordPress website for specific task.
Once you have the right set of plugins, your website has all the tools required to compete with other sites in your niche.
With overall increase in online competition with regards to fight for traffic, there are certain plugins that you need, no matter your niche.
Below given is the list based on what has evolved in 2019 as must have list of WordPress plugins to make your site succeed and get more traffic.
Must have plugins
A caching plugin provides speed to WordPress site by reducing the time it takes to load the site. It does that be pre loading certain part of website for the visitor. These files are CSS files, images etc.
It also provides information for browser caching. Which means, when there is repeat visitor on your website, then it will tell the browser that certain information like header image, CSS files have not changed and thus can be loaded from the browser cache.
Currently, there are two choices about caching plugins:
- You use one of standard caching plugin
- Your WordPress hosting provides in house caching plugin (In shared hosting only Siteground, provides such facility). This is provided mostly by premium WordPress Hosting like Kinsta, WPXHosting
Which caching plugin works better: custom or standard?
From our experience of working with both standard caching plugin as well as hosting company provided solutions, both works equally good. Performance wise.
In case of standard plugin like WP Rocket, W3 Total Cache (incidentally this is used by WPX Hosting too), it requires setting up your plugin properly to get maximum speed. A caching plugin which is compatible with your CDN is what works best.
Whereas in case of custom plugins developed by hosting companies like SG Optimiser by Siteground, everything is already configured and you just need to enable it.
Image Optimisation plugin
If you are optimising your images before uploading them to your site, then you may not need this plugin. But still it is included here because most bloggers kinda skip optimising the images to right degree and this plugin takes care of that.
One of very important factor for Google Page insight and other website speed testing websites is size of images of your website.
An unoptimised image/picture on a webpage can be bigger (size wise) than style and JS files of your website theme. This can effect the loading speed of your website a lot.
Considering each post will have feature image or a main image and couple of other images too, the days of text only webpage are long gone.
Thus, good web design practice states that you should plan to have optimised images only.
Tow of the most recommended image optimisation plugins are:
SEO Plugin plays an important part about optimising your posts with regards to on-page SEO.
Most SEO plugins work by providing you a point wise list of things that needs to be done for getting high SEO score for that page. Things which are easy to miss or calculate.
So, once you have composed a blog post, all you need to do is make necessary additions and edits to the post as per the plugin list and boom – you get a perfectly optimised SEO relevant blog post.
Till last year, Yoast SEO plugin was the standard plugin for WordPress sites. But this year RankMath SEO plugin has make a good gain and it quite promising.
If you like Yoast SEO, by all means, this is still a good plugin. Though, give a try to RankMath SEO plugin as we have tested it on more than 15 sites and it works very well, indeed.
One of the biggest shortcoming of WordPress is that it is free and most popular CMS on internet these days. This makes it an easy target of hackers.
The only way to save yourself from it, is using a Security Plugin. We have actually tested few of these plugins on different sites.
We found these two plugins as good option:
Lead Capture/Push Notification Plugin
Even if your site gets organic traffic, you need a lead capture plugin on your website.
The reason is that your ranks can go up and down, but people who have subscribed to your notification and email list are your real asset.
They are the ones you can contact on demand. Thus, you should have a lead capture plugin for your site.
In this segment you will have maximum struggle with regards to which one to chose.
There are so many good options. And all of the top contenders are good enough. Hence, we have started testing all of them on different sites in our network, to come to a good conclusion.
Thus, for this recommendation based on real world data, you can subscribe to our notifications and get to know when we publish the results.