As you begin to build a WordPress website, you'll quickly realize that there are many plugins that can help you on your way to online success. Trouble is, there are so many to choose from.
In this article, you’ll learn about exactly what a WordPress plugin is, as well as the best WordPress plugins for beginners in 2022. You can dive into the best plugins every beginner blogger or publisher needs, ranging from plugins for customer comments and email marketing to those that work best with social media.
Every website owner wants a site that is visually enticing as well as user-friendly. Plugins provide users with the tools to both customize and optimize their sites, adding new features and improving functionality all at once.
WordPress offers thousands of plugins. And like many others, you may have no idea where to begin when it comes to plugins every new user needs. After all, there are both free and premium options that range from SEO plugins and Google Analytics plugins, to plugins that reduce spam and those that provide you with e-commerce functionality.
The best place to start is to sign up with WordPress hosting, which will provide you with the very best WordPress experience. There’s a free trial available, so there’s no reason not to give it a try.
In order to use WordPress plugins you will need your own installation of WordPress itself as well. Once that’s done, there is a step-by-step guide on installation, activation and (if needed) removal of your plugins.
So now that it’s clear what a WordPress plugin is and why they’re necessary, let’s get down to the business of which plugins you need to have in 2022 as a beginner blogger or publisher. You’re probably pretty nervous about putting your work out there, but these plugins are here to help you streamline that process so that all you need to focus on is your content.
Here are some suggestions that optimize interaction and engagement through commenting tools and social media links, as well as assistance with the ever-important email marketing side of your business.
Engagement on your site is integral for your growing business. To create a space for interaction as well as user feedback, you’re going to need an optimal, fully functional comment section. This is where you create your community, and believe it or not, is also a huge help for your SEO needs.
If you’re looking for the simplest option, WordPress Native Comments comes pre-installed into WordPress, so no real setup is necessary. It’s sleek, modern and users can leave comments without having to sign in from other accounts.
JetPack is a great alternative and actually replaces the above Native WordPress Comments once installed. All users have to do is log in from a social media account or create an account on your website, and then leave their comment in the comment box.
Email marketing is integral for growing your reach and increasing traffic to your blog site. As a beginner you may not even know where to start when it comes to this sphere of marketing your business. Check out EasyWP’s blog for a comprehensive breakdown of email marketing on WordPress.
A great email plugin to start with is Hubspot, because not only do they assist with your email marketing campaigns, but also include CRM capability features allowing you to better manage your contact database. All this while measuring your business growth with their simple analytics dashboard.
Mailpoet, on the other hand, is great as it functions as both an email-sending and newsletter-building service. The reason why they’re ideal for beginners is that their services are free for smaller websites of up to 1000 subscribers. This version allows you to formulate, manage and send email marketing campaigns all from the comfort of your WordPress dashboard. Once you’ve built up your subscriber list you’ll then have the option to upgrade, which provides you with more in-depth analytical information to work from.
An effective social media strategy translates to traffic generation, which in turn translates to the monetization of your site. This all comes from working S.M.A.R.T when it comes to what to post and when.
The top WordPress social media plugin is undoubtedly Smash Balloon. It allows you to combine and customize your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube feeds into one powerful wall by using the combined power of numerous powerful plugins.
A very close second place would be Revive Social, mainly due to its effective marketing automation functionality. The sharing of your WordPress content to your socials is completely automated, creating an even more user-friendly experience. Their analytics function also allows for constant monitoring of your growth in real time.
The first, and most important, plugins to consider when you’re getting started are security plugins. There really is no way around this and if you want a site where visitors feel secure enough to interact on and input their data, then it’s not something you can really skimp over.
Here are a few suggestions to keep your site secure without changing the structure of your files or affecting your SEO functionality.
If you’re still operating on a budget, Wordfence is a great option to consider. With their easy to set up software and support available 24/7, two-factor authentication and malware scanner, it’s no surprise that they are the leaders in their field. If you’re looking to invest a little more in your site’s security, Backup Buddy is a premium plugin that performs regular backups with the offer of full website migration if the need ever arises.
The aim of the game, once you have a secure, user-friendly website set up, is to increase traffic to your site. This is where understanding SEO (search engine optimization) and its related plugins come into play. WordPress SEO need not be a complicated concept, and reading up on getting started is all you need to jump to choosing a plugin.
Rank Math is a fantastic option If you’re new to SEO. It has built-in suggestions alongside performance-enhancing software that assists in easily optimizing your content, leading to increased traffic and eventual monetization of your content. It’s also got a super simple set up wizard and constant support available if and when you need it. Alternatively, Yoast works as a fantastic starter pack for beginners. It’s easy to set up, and assists in title writing and keywords selection, as well as providing on-page analyses.
Once you have your security setup and your SEO software in place, your visitor influx should and will increase. However all that traffic to your site may lead to increased pressure on the server, which in turn may lead to the all-dreaded lagging. This is an instant turn off for visitors to any site and you don’t want users clicking that back button.
That’s where Performance Lab comes in. It assists in managing the functionality of your site by speeding it up and even diagnosing potential issues that may be causing your site to slow down.
Your site is safe and secure, it’s loading in record time and your SEO plugins are sending traffic through like it’s nobody’s business. What you need now are plugins that are interactive and invite some good old-fashioned fun. And if you’re looking for alternatives that are slightly more specific and tailored to your needs there are useful WordPress plugins that you’ve probably never even heard of.
As your WordPress website grows, you may see the need to extend functionality, and eventually scale up into a full-fledged money maker. Now we’ll take a step up from the top WordPress plugins for beginners to look at the best WordPress plugins to grow your e-commerce business.
Beyond the task of simply building your website, the next step is monetization. With this comes choosing the best plugins that assist with e-commerce and related functions. Important things to consider are the needs of your site, your product, and your business as a whole. It’s vital to choose the right plugin per task.
There are plugins for those selling digital products and those selling physical merchandise, some for beginners on a budget and others for users simply looking to increase their membership base.
The points to consider before beginning are:
The main focus of this article will be based on plugins that are linked to WooCommerce, due to its popularity amongst users and its multitude of linked plugins. It assists with sales of a wide range of products worldwide.
When is the right time for growth? This can be assessed through sales and traffic analysis of your WordPress website.
The first thing to assess is how many visitors you are getting to your site. This is where site traffic analysis comes in. A great place to begin here would be Google Analytics. This provides you with actionable insights and tracks relevant metrics, including your conversion rates and sales figures of specific products. This assists you in planning the ideal growth strategy moving forward. It’s ideal for both beginners and advanced WordPress users as it provides both basic and advanced insights. In order to get the most out of Google Analytics, users will need to install the MonsterInsights plugin, which will show you your most relevant traffic reports right on your WordPress dashboard. There is a free version of the plugin, but the pro version gives you the advanced features you need to really get full use out of the product.
If you’re looking for a completely free alternative, then the Hubspot WordPress plugin is the way to go. Not only does it assist in growing your email list and managing your contacts, but it comes with built in analytics to assist with traffic source conversion identification. The reason this plugin is great for beginners looking to upgrade is that no coding skills are required and they have online training available to assist in improving website traffic.
In order to make better decisions regarding your product sales, a sales analysis plugin is imperative. Sales Analysis for WooCommerce gives you the business-related data you need to make the necessary changes required to increase sales. This plugin provides data for both your marketing department and store management team, allowing you to create more effective sales and marketing strategies simultaneously. It also allows you to evaluate your business performance, track customer purchases and consider individual product performances and only requires a single subscription fee.
If you’re working on a budget, then the next best option is the Product Sales Report for WooCommerce. This handy little tool allows you to calculate the number of sales made on your eCommerce store and then shares these reports with the relevant parties of your choice. It’s easy to use and it’s customizable in terms of when your reports are shared, and which products are included. It’s visible on your WordPress dashboard and has a Premium version when you’re ready to upgrade. All in all it’s a great sales analysis option to consider.
Once both traffic and sales analytics plugins have been installed, many users begin to look to expand their businesses further by recruiting a little extra man (or woman) power. This is where WordPress recruitment and hiring plugins come in very handy, with a few that even allow you to earn revenue from other sites simultaneously by charging other companies to post their positions onto your job board.
The first step is to add a job board to your WordPress recruitment website. This is beneficial for numerous reasons, including attracting candidates and bringing more traffic to your site.
The top plugin to start with as a beginner here would be WP Job Manager. It’s super easy to use and helps you to create live job portals in mere minutes. Additionally, through premium add-ons you have the opportunity to make some money too, via paid job postings from other companies.
If you’re looking to get creative and build your job board site, then SeedProd is a great landing page and website builder. It’s a great option for beginners because no coding knowledge is required and you can completely customize your site. This is where menu plugins are pretty useful for complete customization of your site. There are numerous options that are compatible with WooCommerce, which is hugely beneficial when creating or expanding your e-commerce website.
Once your job boards are up and the applications come flooding in, WordPress users often look for plugins to assist in streamlining the hiring process. The interview process can be grueling and time-consuming. This is where scheduling plugins come into play. Bookly is a great option, allowing you to set up your availability for interview slots so candidates can select accordingly, saving your company time and effort in trying to coordinate with potential employees.
Once employers have chosen the ideal candidate, then the onboarding process begins. Easy integration into the company is important for both the new employee and the employer. OnBoarding Plugin gives you the opportunity to create a training portal for your new employees on WordPress and can even assist long-term as a development tool for your employees, by allowing the company to continuously implement new training programs throughout the employee’s time at the company. This is mutually beneficial for both employers and employees.
The importance of WordPress plugins cannot be overlooked due to their utility and practicality. The above is not comprehensive, due to the thousands of WordPress plugins in existence, but the resources online are endless. Get started with EasyWP and have fun choosing all the key, and creative, plugins to make your website stand out!