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As a blogger, you don’t need to know how to code to design a beautiful website. Instead, you can rely on WordPress plugins, or pre-written pieces of code that “plug in” to your existing site to add features and functions. From social sharing buttons to pop-up forms, there are lots of plugins to add just about anything you need.
But since there are thousands of WordPress plugins out there, it can be tough to know which ones to choose. To help you sort through the options, I’ve collected and reviewed 21 of the best WordPress plugins for blogs. Read on to learn the best WordPress plugins for social media, site speed, analytics, SEO, blog forms, and other features.
- Best WordPress plugins for:
Best WordPress plugins for blogs: Social media
These WordPress plugins connect your blog to social media channels, such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and more. They make it easy for readers to share your awesome blog posts with their network.
RafflePress helps you hold giveaways and contests for your audience. It helps you turn your visitors into brand ambassadors, thereby directing more traffic to your blog and increasing social media engagement.
It integrates with lots of social media platforms and email marketing services, making it easy to host your giveaway or contest on a platform you’re already using.
2. Revive Social
Revive Social makes it easy to share blog posts on social, even if you published them a while ago. With this plugin, you can automatically re-use older posts with new captions and hashtags to see which ones convert best among your audience. This plugin increases the “shelf life” of your blog posts and makes it easy to automate your social shares right from your WordPress dashboard.
3. Social Warfare
If you’re looking for the kind of plugin that lets you dominate social networks by sharing your content, Social Warfare is the right “weapon” for this battle. It features share buttons that are compatible with every size of screen.
And it doesn’t slow down your blog like some social sharing plugins do. The Social Warfare plugin has both a free option and a paid plan with additional share and customization options.
Best WordPress plugins for site speed
These are plugins designed to increase the loading speed of your WordPress blog. A fast site speed is a better experience for your readers, and it can help your blog rank higher on Google. Here are some of the best speed plugins for WordPress:
4. WP Rocket
You can also host Google Analytics code on your blog when you install this plugin. The only downside, however, is that you’ll need to pay a fee to get the most out of this plugin.
Here are the pricing options to choose from:
5. WP Super Cache
WP Super Cache is another of the most popular WordPress plugins for speed. As of January 2021, it has over two million downloads and counting.
Some of its key features include simple caching, compress pages, cache rebuild, CDN support and extra homepage checks. This plugin is free to use and easy to install.
6. WP Fastest Cache
WP Fastest Cache is one of the easiest WordPress plugins to set up. It’s also quite popular; more than one million WordPress users have installed WP Fastest Cache.
WP Fastest Cache comes with clear, step by step instructions to help you increase your blog’s speed just by clicking a few buttons. This plugin is free, but it comes with a premium option that has additional features.
7. W3 Total Cache
Also known as W3TC, this free WordPress speed plugin increases website performance by reducing load times. It comes with the latest CDN integration for enhanced speed of up to 10 times when fully configured. With such great numbers, you can expect improved conversion rates and higher Google rankings for your blog.
Best WordPress plugins to track your blog’s analytics
Analytics plugins collect visitor data from your blog to help you track its performance. This data may include the number of website visitors, views per page, location of your visitors, and more.
Here are some of the best WordPress plugins for tracking your blog’s analytics.
MonsterInsights displays real-time data on your WordPress dashboard and is fully compatible with Google Analytics. It also features eCommerce tracking, which is ideal for bloggers who sell products or services online. Take a look at some of the key features of MonsterInsights:
MonsterInsights can also be integrated with popular WordPress plugins such as Yoast SEO, AMP, Gravity, Google Optimize, Google AdSense, WPForms, and others.
9. WP Statistics
I like the WP Statistics plugin because of its simplicity. While it’s easy to use, it provides comprehensive data, including traffic demographics, search engines used to find your blog, trending posts, categories, tags, and more. With over half a million downloads, this free plugin also has a premium version that comes with more advanced reporting.
10. Crazy Egg
If you want to know exactly where visitors are clicking on your blog, Crazy Egg is one of the best WordPress plugins to install. It uses heat-mapping to reveal how visitors are interacting with your blog.
This information makes it easier to create data-driven content for your blog. For example, if you discover that your About Us page is becoming popular, you can add calls to action to direct readers where you want them to go.
Optimizing your pages will decrease your bounce rate (or the speed at which visitors leave your site), which could help your blog rank even higher on Google.
Best WordPress plugins for SEO
SEO plugins are designed to improve your blog’s search engine 0ptimization (SEO), making it visible in major search engines such as Google. Here are some of the best WordPress tools to use for SEO.
11. Yoast SEO
The Yoast plugin has been around since 2008 and is regarded as one of the most popular and effective WordPress plugins for SEO. As of January 2021, the plugin has over 5 million downloads globally.
The free version of Yoast helps you write killer content by performing an SEO and readability analysis on each post. Yoast also provides a Google preview to show you how your site will appear on both desktop and mobile devices.
Yoast SEO is available in both a free and premium version. If you’re a new blogger, the free version is totally sufficient, as it gives each post an SEO score and lets you set a meta-description.
12. All In One SEO
Also known as AIOSEO, this plugin is trusted by more than two million users. It’s easy to set up and provides in-depth analysis of a blog’s search engine optimization.
This plugin helps you identify any gaps in your blog’s SEO while recommending possible fixes. It can also be integrated with popular social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and more.
Here are some of its key features:
13. SEO Press
SEO Press comes with a free and premium version. Some of the key features of the free version include content analysis, Google Analytics and an intuitive user interface.
You can also import Yoast SEO, SEO ultimate, WP Meta SEO and SEO Framework when using the free version of SEO Press. The premium version comes with more advanced features, including Google Suggest, Google Local Business, Google page speed data, Woo Commerce, Google Page Speed, and more.
As a blogger, the free version of SEO Press should be sufficient for helping your blog rank higher in search engines.
Best WordPress plugins for forms
Adding forms to your site is a great way to allow your readers to contact you or to provide a freebie to your readers in exchange for their email. Here are some of the best WordPress plugins for bloggers who want to add forms to their site.
14. WP Forms
WP Forms is easy to set up, powerful and free. It comes with an easily customizable drag-and-drop builder to help you create beautiful forms that will grab the attention of visitors to your blog.
It also includes spam protection, email notifications, and confirmation messages once the forms have been submitted. The premium version has additional features, such as multi-page forms, payment forms, order forms, email subscriptions, and more.
15. Formidable Forms
If you are looking for an all-in-one WordPress form builder, Formidable Forms is one of the best plugins to install. This plugin helps you build advanced forms for payment, surveys, profiles, quizzes, and so much more. You can also use it to create smart calculators like car payments, quotations, mortgages, etc.
It’s built with performance in mind, meaning you don’t have to worry about your blog loading slowly after installing this plugin. The only disadvantage of Formidable Forms is you’ll have to pay a fee; it doesn’t have a free version.
16. Ninja Forms
Ninja Forms is available for free on WordPress. It comes with drag and drop features with easy layouts that blend beautifully with your blog. It’s also beginner friendly; you don’t need any tech experience to download, install or use this plugin.
If you wish to access more advanced features such as payment processing or email marketing, you’ll need to pay a fee:
17. Gravity Forms
Gravity Forms is another paid but potentially worthwhile WordPress form builder plugin (plans start at $59). It is powerful, easy to use and highly customizable. This plugin has add-ons for surveys, quizzes and web directories.
I don’t recommend this plugin if you’re blogging on a budget and aren’t ready to pay expensive monthly subscription fees. However, if it has the kind of features you’re looking for, it could be worth the price tag.
Here are its main features:
This list of the best WordPress plugins for blogs is incomplete without mentioning some bonus plugins that could improve your blogging experience by a mile. These include:
18. Pretty Links
If you’re doing affiliate marketing, you know that affiliate links can be long and unsightly. The Pretty Links plugin lets you cloak, shrink, track, organize, and share all your links on your own server and domain.
It also helps you track where every click came from, including the browser, operating system, and host. In addition, you can post these clean links on forums, comment sections or other platforms to redirect traffic to your blog.
Here are some of its core features:
Elementor is one of the most popular WordPress website builders. It comes with drag and drop editors to help you design beautiful pages on your site.
Optimus automatically reduces the size of uploaded media files. It lets you reduce up to 70% of the original file, resulting in faster loading speeds. As discussed earlier, any plugin that speeds up your blog’s loading time is worthwhile.
Optimus comes with both free and premium versions. Let’s take a look at its features:
With over one million downloads and counting, Redirection is a popular redirect manager for WordPress. This free plugin helps you keep track of your 404 errors and manage 301 redirects on your blog.
In layman’s terms, this plugin helps avoid 404 errors by redirecting your website visitors to a new location. For example, if a certain page on your blog has moved, this plugin will redirect visitors to the new location rather than displaying “Error 404: Page Not Found.”
You can set up the conditions for redirection from your WordPress dashboard.
Finding the right WordPress plugins for your blog
Although there are countless WordPress plugins for blogging, the most important ones are those designed for speed, SEO, and analytics. A speed-oriented plugin helps attract more visitors to your blog and reduce bounce rate.
Additionally, an SEO-focused plugin helps your blog rank high on search engines. Lastly, analytics plugins help review the performance of your blog, making it easier for you to plan great content.
I recommend choosing one plugin from each category to make sure your blog is set up for success. Don’t download too many unnecessary plugins, however, as that could slow down your site.
Finally, make sure to check for plugin updates every once in a while so each plugin is functioning at its best.
Have you set up your blog yet? If you haven’t launched yet, head to my step-by-step tutorial on how to start a blog.