If you have a blog or website – you’ll NEED the plugins on my ‘5 Best WordPress Plugins For Newbie Bloggers’.
When you first start your blog, its very easy to get suckered into 'shiny object syndrome' and feel the desire to download and install every single plugin that WordPress has to offer.
There are currently over 47,000 WordPress plugins, So why the heck have I only chosen 5!?
Well - you don't need the other 47,695! Not just yet anyway, or EVER for that matter.
Besides, its entirely dependant upon the niche that you are in as to whether or not they will al be relevant to you.
These 5 plugins are an absolute must for ANY blog as a general rule-of-thumb. They will allow your blog to be more SEO friendly, encourage your readers to WANT to share your content, and also make your blog more secure and robust.
Lets get into it.....
5 Best WordPress Plugins For Newbie Bloggers:
1 - Jetpack (Free, with the option to upgrade)
Jetpack is number 1 because its a 'must have'.
It's got a few features as the name may suggest, such as the social media scheduling feature, or site stats and analytics. Its even tells you your site performance and if you have any downtime and will let you know if your site has any issues that require your attention.
The security aspects are awesome. Jetpack works hard behind the sciences to keep your site safe from 'Brute Force attacks'.
But by far the best feature in my opinion is the site analytics. I use Jetpack over Google Analytics or any other traffic tracking tool. The depth of data is unreal, and will allow you to see what pages your readers are visiting the most and engaging with, allowing you to quickly learn what content your readers do and don't like, meaning you can cater to their requirements better and grow a happier following.
So in summary, Jetpack takes care of your site security, website performance, traffic growth, image optimization, website appearance and a loads more.
2 - Google XML SiteMaps (Freebie)
As a new blogger, you're going to want to get traffic from search engines as fast as possible, and this can be tough without much content on your site, and almost impossible if the search engines don't even know you're there!
Google XML SiteMaps drastically helps your SEO by indexing your site, allowing the Google, Yahoo and bing bots to better crawl your site, check out the entire structure of your blog and will gather the information required far quicker and easier.
It also notifies all of the major search engines when you publish new content on your site, meaning you have a far greater chance of showing up to the party on Google if you have this plugin installed.
You'll wanna get this one for sure....
3 - Yoast SEO (Free, with the option to upgrade)
Yoast SEO is a game changer! And by far my favourite WordPress plugins available.
As its name suggests, its another SEO plugin and will help your blog and the content on it to rank higher in the search engines. But thats not my favourite feature for this plugin.
Ill start with the SEO features - Yoast allows you to easily edit your SEO featured keywords, page/post titles and meta descriptions saving you boat loads of cash on professional SEO agencies, and better still - it actually tells you how to do this.
Now for my favourite part - It actually tell you how to improve your SEO and readability of your content, so for someone like me who, I'll admit, isn't the greatest writer, this is a priceless resource. It'll tell you your readability score and make suggestions on how to properly set up the text and images for better usability and visibility for search engines.
The above image is a screen shot of Yoast SEO in action on this very post as I write it. You'll notice that there are 3 problems that I need to rectify before hitting Publish, and 3 possible improvements that I can make. But its telling me that the readability of the post so far is great!
Yoast also makes it incredibly simple to link all of your social media platforms with you blog with its 'social' feature.
And all for free, unless you upgrade to the Premium which I have never done!
4 - Social Media WarFare ($29 per year, SO WORTH IT!)
Who do you know in this day and age that doesn't use at least one social media platform? EXACTLY!
Social media is a huge part of our everyday lives now, and you'll want to take full advantage of this by sharing your content over as many different platforms as possible. And what better way to do this than using THE BEST social sharing plugin available.
There are free social sharing plugins available but you'll compromise on their functionality, and they wont look anywhere near as good as Social Warfare.
This plugin kind of speaks for itself. Just get it. It'll be the greatest asset in your plugin arsenal in terms of getting traffic to your blog.
5 - Disqus Comment System (Free)
Your WordPress blog will come with a default comment system, and a lot of bloggers choose to keep this.
Personally I'm not a fan, and I love Disqus.
Disqus is far better on the eye, super easy to install and is really functional on your blog. It's also a great way to get traffic back to your site as your Disqus comments that you leave on other peoples blogs (assuming they have installed Disqus on their site) are linked back to your own blog, so I use this plugin to comment on relevant posts from popular, or high traffic bloggers, to drive their readers back to this blog.
They're all EPIC and you need them, and probably only them for a little while. Its that simple.
If I've missed any crucial plugins out that you think should be in this list or are already using these plugins and have feedback, post them in the comments below.
You'll be pleased to know that this post has a good readability and SEO score thanks to Yoast SEO. Disagree with that claim? Leave me a comment and tell me why my writing and SEO skills are crap!