Starting a self-hosted blog on WordPress can be exciting and overwhelming. There are so many things to choose from your name to your theme to the endless amounts of plugins. So. Many. Plugins. But how do you choose the ones to use? First, decide what you feel like you are lacking, and see if there is a plugin for that. Check the reviews, check the compatibility, check to make sure it’s still supported.
I absolutely love CoSchedule. It’s also the only plugin on this list that is not free. But really, it’s so worth it. For so many reasons. If you are curious about why I love CoSchedule, check out this post about why every blogger needs CoSchedule.
Google Analytics Dashboard
Google Analytics is a great way to be able to track how many visitors you are getting to your website, what pages are most popular, what path they follow when they get on your site, where they are from, platform, browser, and so many other pieces of information. Now, this sounds stalker-ish, but it’s so important to know how your viewers interact with your website to try to make it the best you can.
WP Ultimate Recipe
As someone who loves to cook and enjoys sharing my recipes, the WP Ultimate Recipe plugin is perfect. There is an upgraded version, but I just use the free version which is enough for what I currently do on my blog. It’s a great way to be able to format the recipes on my blog in a way that looks good and is user-friendly.
SEO is how people find your blog organically. This plugin helps you with many different aspects of making sure your blog is optimized for search engines.
In alignment with the previous plugin, redirection helps add redirects to any urls that you can see are throwing 404 errors from the SEO Ultimate plugin.
Better Click to Tweet
Of all the major social media outlets, twitter is my least favorite to deal with. I don’t know why, maybe the fast-pace nature of it, but I have a hard time keeping up with my twitter. Anything that makes it easier is an advantage for me. Better Click to Tweet lets me add in quotes that readers can click to tweet on their own accounts.
Easy Content Templates
If you post blogs with a similar layout often, this is a real time-save. Easy Content Templates lets you set up templates using the title, content, excerpt, or any combination of these. When you go to create a new post, you can choose from your list of templates and apply it to the current post. A word of warning, though, it overwrites whatever you have in that area. I set up a lot of things, such as the disclaimer at the top of this post, as a template in the excerpt. That way I can add it to a post easily without overwriting what I already have.
What are your favorite plugins? What else do you use consistently for your blog?