A plugin is a custom feature that adds to the functionality of a website. They are essentially additional software applications that enhance your website’s ability above and beyond what the basic WordPress content management system (CMS) offers.
They can affect aspects of your site on the front end (what the viewer sees) or the backend (what you see). An example of a front-end plugin would be an area for social media icons. And an example of a back-end plugin could be software packages that help speed the load time of your site by filtering out unneeded items such as oversized images. And the best part of all? You need little to no HTML coding experience! Just click download and activate and there you have it.
Since WordPress is designed to be a lean content management system, there is a need for Plugins in order to get added features. These plugins must be installed to your site and can range across almost anything one could think of. We’ve compiled a list of our top seven plugins we use here at WebsitesMadeEasy.tv.
You should be looking to try some, if not all, of these plugins as they will really benefit your business, grow your audience, and drive more traffic to your website. Follow along with me step-by-step as I take you through each plugin, counting down to number 1, explaining how they work and the benefits of each. And did I mention that every plugin we discuss here is completely free?
This nifty little plugin basically improves traffic from search engines which is exactly what we want. SEO friendly images automatically updates all your images on your website with proper alt and total attributes for SEO purposes. The alt attribute is an important part of search engine optimization. It describes your images to search engines in a clear way. When users search for a certain image, proper image description is a key determinant factor for enabling it to qualify as a match. The image title also plays an important role, as this text will automatically appear in the tooltip when the mouse is over the image. It is a simple plugin but extremely effective. It helps your images to show up in search results and drives even more traffic to your website.
WordPress Socializer is a super cool plugin that inserts social bookmarking and sharing buttons, as well as floating widgets customizable share bar and short codes. You can insert these buttons in the bottom of your posts or in your sidebars so people visiting your website can easily like or share your content to friends and social media platforms. There are lots of social bookmarking buttons available, which could be used in many ways, rearranged how you like and used as needed. We have found it to be a very powerful plugin to use.
This plugin enables you to add a contact form to a website. And it is super easy to use. Once installed, all we do is head over to contact and you can edit the existing contact form to how you would like or to create one from scratch. You just click on “Add New” at the top. Then just edit this text and add in anymore you want for free. Easy! You can also use Contact Form 7 to add a lead a magnet to your website. Having a lead magnet is incredibly important for the success of your business and website. It’s the difference between a few subscribers a day to hundreds. This topic is too large for this article, but you can find out a lot more on setting up lead magnets over on our website.
This plugin is the most complete WordPress SEO plugin that exists today. It incorporates everything from a Google snippet preview and page analysis functionality that helps you optimize your page content, image titles, meta descriptions, as well as loads of optimization options in between. WordPress SEO also lets you set templates for titles and meta descriptions so that you can come up with templates effortlessly. Their snippet preview lets you see what all of this would be like in a Google search. It’s well worth having a look at Yoast Google SEO.
You do not want to miss this plugin. It has literally doubled our email opt-in subscribers since we started using it. It’s called SumoMe list builder and for good reason. List Builders convert one-time visitors into lifelong readers and email subscribers because we all work hard to get people to visit our sites. This beautiful list builder light-box makes sure that your visitors subscribe to your email list and come back for more. It detects the exact moment when visitors are about to leave and immediately a light box pops up asking for the visitor’s email address. This is often for something they just can’t refuse because it’s something so valuable. It’s also completely customizable and free. This is huge and can be a game-changer for your business if done correctly. I haven’t got time in this video to go through setting this plugin up, but I’ve got a step-by-step tutorial that covers how to quickly get this working on your site over at WebsitesMadeEasy.tv. So go and check that out!
At first, this plugin might look a bit confusing, but don’t worry, it really isn’t. This plugin generates XML sitemaps which means it helps search engines, like Google, index your website much better. This helps the information on your sites to be retrieved more efficiently. The results are amazing! By doing this simple trick, you’ll find more traffic and higher rankings in search results. Who doesn’t want that? This plugin does exactly that. So I definitely suggest going to have a look at Google XML Sitemaps.
Okay, here we are at number one. Our number one plugin is our most powerful and favorite plugin. It’s definitely one you should be using, as it will be the game-changer for your business like nothing else. Yoast Google Analytics tracks your visitors and understands almost everything under the sun. It tracks what your visitors are doing on your site, who they are, where they are from, if they’re on a laptop or a mobile device, and even which web browser they are using to visit your website. Having Yoast Google Analytics allows you to know your audience at a very personal level. Because no two people think exactly alike, having analytics helps you analyze visitor traffic and paint a complete picture.
You can literally see which people are visiting which parts of your site. This detailed knowledge helps you make a visual assessment of how your visitors interact with your pages. You can learn what they’re looking for and what they like. Then, you can tailor your marketing activities accordingly. Knowing all this makes it easier to serve your current customers as well as win new ones. Using the Yoast Google Analytics plugin may seem overwhelming at first due to the sheer depth of information. We have our own awesome video on our website that details this further, so be sure to go and check that out at WebsitesMadeEasy.tv. You won’t regret it.
I really hope you have enjoyed reading about these top 7 plugins. Learning about these amazing new plugins is just the first step toward a successful website. Start using them today, and you’ll really start to see the results. We’ve also attached a video describing these 7 plugins as found below so be sure to check it out. If you found this helpful, then give it a quick like and share! And as always, you can check out all our tips, tricks, and video tutorials over at WebsitesMadeEasy.tv.
Ben Bolognini | Websites Made Easy.tv
Content Creator | Digital Strategy Coordinator