Your website is arguably one of the most important assets to your business. It serves as a first impression. Plus, if it’s functioning how it’s supposed to, it also makes people want to come back. If your site is built on WordPress, chances are it’s got a bunch of plugins on the back end holding it together. Think of them like the secret force that’s driving your site. Let the force be with you. Most of these are free and do great things for your website. Still, there are others that suck and can crash everything. That’s why we’ve come up with a list of our five favorite plugins (say that 10 times fast).
Yoast is also known as the “#1 WordPress SEO plugin,” and we couldn’t agree more. There’s a premium and a free version of Yoast, so you can pick how much you want it to do for you.
Here’s some of the things that Yoast does for us:
- Gives us a heads up if our content is more than six months out of date
- Alerts us if our page readability is poor or lets us know when we’re doing well
- Sets primary categories for posts
- Allows us to enter a keyword-rich meta description to be displayed in search engines
- Lets us swap out social sharing images to whenever we would like
Trust us. If you don’t have this one, you need it ASAP.
Imagine losing all of the data on your site. All of it. That’s contact requests, pictures, blogs, and even your theme customizations. All it takes is clicking one wrong button, and the entire site will break. This is why having consistent backups of your website is absolutely crucial. We use UpdraftPlus to make sure the sites we work on are always backed up. We store backups of websites on a monthly basis, and we always make a new one before making any major updates. UpDraftPlus makes this possible with just a few button clicks. It’s effortless. Go get it.
Have you ever clicked on a link and then gotten a “page cannot be found?” It sucks. Make sure your site doesn’t do it by installing a plugin like Redirection. This is super irritating to potential clients, and just looks sloppy if you have broken links on your site. Listen. If you ever find yourself needing to change a URL, update a page title, or redirect a page, you need this plugin. All you have to do is tell Redirection what the old URL is and where you’d like the new URL to point. That’s it. Happy redirecting!
This plugin is great if your website has a bunch of forms that serve different purposes. Form submissions are a huge part of reporting ROI on digital efforts, so your site probably has a bunch of them. Flamingo makes it easy to export and organize a month’s worth of form submissions at a time. It syncs up with Contact Form 7 (which, if you’re on WordPress, you’re probably using), and then lets you sort by number of submissions, track if one person filled out multiple forms, and more. Stop manually counting and give yourself the gift of time.
New clients tell us all the time that their sites are getting spam. These spam submissions are annoying, and frankly, a waste of everyone’s time. While it’s nearly impossible to permanently eliminate all forms of spam, it is possible to cut it back. Enter Askimet. It has access to a global database of spam, so it can figure out what’s real and what isn’t. When someone fills out a form or leaves a comment on your site, it quickly checks the info they submitted against that database and decides whether or not it should qualify as spam. Bam! Done.
If you have a website that’s stressing you out, try installing some of these plugins. They automate busy work so you don’t have to do it. If you don’t know what a plugin is, then first, way to make it through the blog, and second, contact us right now!