7 Useful Plugins to install after installing WordPress

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You've installed WordPress. Great.

The advantage of running your website with WordPress is the vast range of plugins available that can enhance your website and add rich features, many of them free to use. Always be careful when adding new plugins, take a full back up of your website (files and database) first, check that the plugin has a good reputation and is up-to-date.

Here are some of my go-to plugins that provide extra power and features to a WordPress website.

Plugin 1. Back Up

It's essential to back up your WordPress content, files and database on a regular basis. Especially if you are adding regular new content. Your hosting will probably be backing up some of your data. It's prudent to set up additional back-up for extra peace of mind, so that should anything happen to your site or content, you can quickly get everything back in place.

Plugin 2. WordPress SEO

Adding SEO refinements and functionality to your site content will certainly go towards better visibility online. Adding an SEO plugin is only a part of your SEO strategy, still a great place to start.

Plugin 3. Security

All websites need security. The internet is constantly bombarded by hackers and bots who want to disrupt online activity. Having additional security on your WordPress website gives you additional peace-of-mind that all is safe and secure.

Plugin 4. Forms

Gathering more information from your website visitors and enquirers is made easier when you use simple forms. Adding a form to your website gives you the opportunity to request information that is critical to an enquiry, such as email details, telephone numbers, specific service required etc

Plugin 5. Caching (Speed)

Page load speed is becoming ever more important for both your visitors and for Google SEO. Site speed is affected by many factors, not all of them on your website or your website content. However adding a caching plugin can improve your page load speed. So well worth adding.

Plugin 6. Image Optimisation

If your website contains lots of images and graphics then ideally you need to optimise their dimensions and file size. Having a large number of images on your website can slow page load speed, so optimising them when they are uploaded can improve load speed.

Plugin 7. Easily Add Scripts

It's increasingly necessary to add 'scripts' to your website, in the header or footer to enable things like Google Analytics, Facebook Pixel Tracking or marketing tracking codes. Typically these are added by your web professional or an area on your Theme is included especially to add this type of code. If you want to take control or your theme doesn't have this area this plugin is ideal for you.

The Takeaway

Adding lots of plugins to your WordPress installation isn't always a wise move. They need to be backed up and kept up-to-date and can cause code conflict issues. However when added prudently for very specific purposes, plugins can enhance your website for you and your visitors.

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Belinda White | WP North East

Belinda White, WordPress Training Consultant. WordPress Training, WordPress SEO Training - Creative Director at Arttia Creative Limited. Creative designer with over 20 years experience in the UK web and design profession.

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