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The types of plugins you have can make or break your blog. You want to make sure you have this list of essential plugins to make the most out of your blogging experience!
Some of these plugins are free, with some paid features and a few are paid only. In this blog post I’ll be going over;
- The best plugins to have on your blog
- A bit about them
- Where to find their direct download
- Which ones are paid, and which ones have free options
Let’s get started!
These are the non-negotiable essential plugins you need to run your blog.
-Antispam bee (Freemium)
It is essential that you have some sort of spam blocker on your website! I currently have 400 spam comments that this plugin has auto-blocked for me. It’s absolutely a must!
There is a paid version, but I only use the free one!
-Wordpress Editorial Calendar (Free)
WordPress has it’s own built-in editorial calendar to make it super easy to keep track of upcoming blog posts! It’s simple, just schedule out your posts and they appear on the calendar!
-Google Analytics (Free)
Google Analytics is obviously a must for bloggers to have their site connected to, but it’s also great to have the plugin on your blog too! Their website has so much information, it can easily get overwhelming. So the plugin is a great, simple way to check out how your blog is doing!
-Yoast SEO (Freemium)
There is a paid version of this, but I have heard from many bloggers that it isn’t worth it and the free version works just fine. However, I haven’t tried it myself so I can’t say for sure. Personally I think the free works just fine!
-Link Checker (Freemium)
This is a plugin I only activate when I need it as I hear it slows down your site. But really, you only need it active for a few minutes anyway. This plugin will tell you if there are any broken links on your site that need to be fixed. Broken links are bad for SEO so you need to make sure they are fixed ASAP!
This plugin comes with a paid version, but it really isn’t needed!
Smush is a plugin that has really helped speed up my site quite a bit. This plugin will essentially “smush” any images on your site automatically! If you have a lot of images, or larger ones, it can really slow down your site speed. (Which is important for bounce rate and SEO purposes.) This plugin will increase your site speed after it’s set up!
These essential plugins will make it easy to have your content shared!
-Pin it button on image hover and post (Freemium)
This plugin will allow a “pin it” button to show up whenever someone hovers over an image! This makes it super easy for people to share your pins to their profile!
There is a browser extension that allows all images on the internet to be shared via Pinterest, but there is no guarantee everyone has that downloaded! This makes sharing images convenient for everyone!
There is a paid version of it, but I don’t find it worth it to buy.
-Tasty Pins (Paid- $29.00)
This is the first (and only) plugin I bought and I don’t regret it! Tasty Pins allows you to focus not only on Google SEO, but Pinterest SEO as well! Normally, with the “Pin it” button above, if someone were to pin one of your images, they would be stuck with the description you set for Google.
With this plugin, you can set a Google description and a Pinterest caption you want to be shown! This is super helpful because both of these search engines require different keywords/captions to be optimized the best!
Also, hidden pins can be added in the plugin box below the post and will be available to pin whenever someone goes to pin your post so they have more options!
This plugin is totally worth the price in my opinion!
-Sassy Social Share (Freemium)
Sassy Social Share allows for share buttons to appear at the top, bottom, and side of your posts. It is customizable where the buttons show up, how they look and what buttons appear. This plugin is also great because it works with Tasty Pins!
I have tried other plugins with the Tasty Pins plugin and some did not work with it, this one, however, works great!
There is a paid version to this plugin, but I don’t have it.
If you’re looking to make money with your blog, these are the essential plugins you need!
The best way to make money blogging is if you have an email list. These are a collection of your most loyal readers- the ones most likely to buy from affiliate links or products you create. So I, in general, recommend having an email list. And the one I recommend is Convertkit.
And, obviously, if you get Convertkit, you have to get their free plugin! This will allow you to easily create email signup forms all over your blog!
If you haven’t started an email list, check out Convertkit free for 15 days
If you have Convertkit already, take advantage of their free plugin!
-WP Affiliate Disclosure (Free)
If you plan on putting affiliate links onto your site, in each of your blog posts that contain then you need an affiliate disclosure. This can be something hard to remember, and the punishment from the FTC for simply “forgetting” isn’t light.
You must always disclose affiliate links before the link. So, in order to get rid of the fear of forgetting, this plugin takes that worry away! When you download it, whatever statement you write in it will automatically appear at the top of every single post.
It’s honestly a must!
-Pretty Links (Freemium)
This is another good plugin to have if you plan to have affiliate links on your site. Some “Raw” affiliate links will look like: http://makingsenseofaffiliatemarketing.com/?affcode=57702_p5lguax0
That is my actual affiliate link for the blogging class I took called Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing. Some people will be less likely to click on a crazy looking link like that because it might look like spam.
So, with Pretty Links, you can make your links custom and look like: https://www.businesswomenthrive.com/makingsense
Looks “prettier” right?
Also, if one of your affiliate links happen to change (I just had this happen to me with Convertkit) if all of your links are under the Pretty Link plugin, all you have to do is change it once in the app and it changes all over your site!
As opposed to having to go through every single blog post and changing it manually- what a time saver!
There is a paid version, but I only have the free version
What essential plugins do you recommend others to have on their blogs? Let us know in the comments below!