WordPress itself is small, it is just 36MB approximately. But don’t let the size fool you. WordPress is one of the world’s most scalable application ever built. Literally, anyone with barely any programming knowledge can build their next best thing on top of WordPress.
There are tons and tons of plugins available in the WordPress repository. And notably, the number of plugins and the number of developers grow on a daily basis.
Multiple options and plugins are available for adding new features to your WordPress installation. In this article, we have shared a few of the top WordPress plugins, and the reason why you should install them on your installation.
The first place in our list goes to the most popular SEO plugins out there.
Why should you use a plugin for SEO?
WordPress itself doesn’t get shipped with SEO tools or with the ability to add meta tags or to generate a sitemap. Without meta fragments, it is very hard to rank on google. It is almost an impossible task.
These plugins give you with necessary tools, intuitive UI, and adds whatever it is essential to get your page ranked on Google. They simply make your day simple.
Now you have 2 options to choose from. One is the RankMath, which at the time of writing is a relatively new SEO plugin in the market when compared to YoastSEO. But both YoastSEO and RankMath come for free. On YoastSEO however, there’s a pro version available which you purchase if you need additional features like 301 redirections which are mostly available for free with RankMath.
At Cenmax, we use both the YoastSEO and RankMath in different projects and sites. YoastSEO is the most mature solution out there and we find its readability scores are much accurate whereas RankMath’s readability checker seems less matured to us.
2. W3TC (aka. W3 Total Cache)
Speed is very important in these competitive days. You like it or not, the faster your website is the more money in your pocket.
No one is going to wait for your site to load for more than a few seconds when your competitor’s site loads in a fraction of seconds.
With that being said, it is important for your site to stay faster. Only then, it will make any conversions and you can improve your customer’s UX.
W3 Total Cache is a plugin that simplifies the process of making your website faster. Manually optimizing websites will take forever. It is very hard in a manual way. Trust me, I have been doing this back in the last decade when there wasn’t such a plug and play solution available.
W3 Total Cache simplifies all tasks for you. It provides you with both beginner level options and advanced options which you can make use of to increase the load-time of your website.
Caching your website is a great practice. It allows you to handle much more traffic efficiently without any significant loads on your server.
On average, as web hosts ourselves, we witnessed a significant 40% increase in loading speed when a website is cached properly.
W3 Total Cache doesn’t stop there. It has much more advanced options like configuring CDN, and much more. The more you dig it, the more you’ll understand it as an state-of-art system.
At the same time, W3 Cache isn’t the most user-friendly piece of software. It is often regarded as complex for beginners as it has many features. If you find it so confusing, you can try WP-Optimize or some other caching tools for WordPress which may be easier to understand for beginners.
3. WP-Vivid (Backups)
Backups are essential for peace of mind. No matter whether you’re just starting up or you’re already a giant in your niche, a strong backup plan is essential for a good sleep at night.
Many web hosting providers including us provide a free backup service. Even though we provide you with the necessary backups, an extra copy of backup in your hand is always a sweet thing to have. And we highly recommend having such backups in your hand.
WP-Vivid is a simple to use backup plugin. Using that, you can take backups and when you restore a backup created through WP-Vivid, you lose no data at all.
Your design, content, comments, configurations, and everything will be an exact replica when you restore a backup of your original site. This is a handy feature when you’re moving stuff from your staging environment to your production environment too!
But that’s not all WP-Vivid has to offer. WP-Vivid can connect with Drive, S3 bucket, FTP server, and almost all storage protocols and can store your backups safely apart from your hosting environment at a regular interval.
This means you can configure it to take backup once in a day and store the backup on your personal Google Drive. It will take care of everything from there.
On top of everything, though WP-Vivid has all the features you’ll need, it is not a pricey addon. Its free version has almost all the features you will want, and its pro version is better than that.
Undoubtedly, WP-Vivid is a must-have plugin for all WordPress installations out there and we highly recommend using it on all your WordPress instances.
Security is something you can never compromise when it comes to hosting a WordPress based website, blog, portfolio, store, or etc.,
WordPress is one of the most widely used platforms the internet has ever seen. It is a great platform. Because it is a great platform, it also attracts many attackers. Yes, there are a bunch of attackers always experimenting with how they can attack WordPress based websites.
Why do they target WordPress? As said before, WordPress is widely accepted as the best medium to run a website and it is used by over 35% of the internet. Finding a way to exploit WordPress will help them attack 35% of the internet, effortlessly in just a click of a button, without a sweat. That’s why they are keen to attack WordPress.
That’s why WordPress evolves from time to time. New features are added, old features are removed, and exploits are patched from time to time as soon as the people at WordPress comes to know about it.
WordFence is a trusted plugin used by hundreds and thousands of websites across the globe.
WordFence is a powerful malware scanner, an intrusion protection system, and much more. What Wordfence specializes in is, they provide patches for any known exploits before the original developers.
On top of security patches, Wordfence is also shipped with a malware scanner which will help you to keep your site free from malware and other malicious code demons, and intrusion protection system which protects your site from brute-force and DoS attacks.
Though Wordfence comes with script-level protection, For much better security, you should always choose a host with better security practices in place. While Wordfence can protect your website from on-server vulnerabilities like brute-force protection, better WordPress hosting (or a decent web hosting package from reputed hosting provider) is essential for mitigating network-level attacks like DDoS for instance.
No matter how better your website is, how easier the navigation is, and how fast it is. When it comes to User Experience, what matters is only your design. Because that’s what a user will interact with. That’s your identity.
The better your design is, the more chances your client will get impressed. Remember? The first impression is the best impression.
WordPress natively doesn’t have any designing tool. Which means you’ll have to rely on themes for design primarily.
Themes are great looking, faster, and well-optimized in most cases. So, why not a theme? When you use a theme, your site will use a design that may be used by 100s or even 1000s of WordPress websites. It is not a unique solution. Your user, or client, would have already seen the same design on your competitors’ sites.
You have to be unique to attract your visitor. But being unique requires either in-depth coding knowledge in CSS or you’ll need a decent budget to hire designers.
Elementor on the other hand provides you with the necessary tools to create your own design without either coding knowledge or a fancy budget.
It is more or less like a popular website builder solution like Wix. It is a WYSIWYG website builder and it allows you to create websites easily in a matter of hours and it will take care of all coding parts and gets it all optimized for better speed and performance.
Another important benefit of using Elementor for your website is its community. Elementor today is one of the most used plugins of WordPress. It is currently being used by 100000+ designers across the globe, and when something goes wrong with your site, you can easily get help from their community via Elementor’s Official Facebook Group.
All these plugins are made for saving your time, stress, and work. Now you know all the necessary tools and plugins for WordPress that might save your day. Do let us know if you’re expecting another plugin that you’d love to see on this list, we’re all ears!