Looking for awesome plugins for your blog?
Here is a list of the Top 5 Plugins for your blog that I recommend. These are the ones I always install at the VERY minimum in all my blogs to get them off the ground. All of these are free plugins, however, many offer premium versions too. I use the free versions 99% of the time.
1- WordPress SEO by Team Yoast: search in plugins for “WordPress SEO” or “Yoast SEO”
A must have in order to optimize your blog posts for maximum chance of getting picked up. It provides you the basic keyword usage guidance you need to make sure your ducks are all in a row. Obviously, this plugin cannot control your content flow, so that's on you, but it will highlight suggestions based on keywords you select to analyze right inside your post. In addition their blog is well kept and updated with REALLY GREAT SEO tips ;-).
2- Growmap Anti-Spam: search in plugins for “growmap” and it will turn-up
Now your WordPress blog will come with Akismet installed and that plugin IS one of the best ones out there too. But I installed this one per someone else's recommendation and it has worked really well in reducing the number of spam comments I get. Akismet now requires a fee (rightly so). This plugin is free.
3- Jet Pack for WordPress: search in plugins for “jetpack”
This is like A TON of little plugins and widgets all in one. It would take an entire post to cover all its goodies, but suffice it to say, you will love it. One of the widgets it will install will allow you to add linked images to your sidebars without any coding! woohoo! It comes with social media sharing and even a subscription widgets that will email your subscribers every time you post something (this DEFINITELY does not replace email marketing with aWeber, but it is a start). Also will install site stats on your dashboard so you can see the number of visitors coming to your blog.
4- CommentLuv: search in plugins for “commentluv”
This is a neat little plugin that when installed it encourages your visitors to leave a comment by letting them add a direct link to THEIR latest post of post of their choice. Engagement is a big part of increasing your visibility in Google search. This one offers a premium version too, but I have used the free one for years.
5- Digg Digg: search in plugins for “digg digg”
I have searched high and low for a cool social media sharing plugin. You know the buttons that let people “like” or share your blog posts? You'd think that was an easy to find one! Digg Digg is the one Mashable uses and it displays the sharing buttons right along side your blog posts. Looks pretty neat. I have that installed in this blog. Actually I have all these 5 installed in this blog.
There you have it. Those are my go-to Top 5 blog plugins. Did I leave an important one out? There are SO many out there, I know. I just like to keep things simple so the blogs load faster. Do feel free to share your favorite plugin and why you love it. Thanks for stopping by!