WordPress Plugins and How I Use Them

Below is a list of my most frequently used WordPress plugins, along with descriptions of how I use them and links to examples in some cases.

The name of each plugin is linked to its download page (each link opens a new window).

Plugin

Description

Akismet Included with your WordPress installation, Akismet checks your comments against the Akismet web service to see if they look like spam or not and lets you review the spam it catches under your blog’s “Comments” admin screen. Use it on all my blogs. As of today (publishing date November 30th 2009), Akismet has caught 181,601 spams on this blog.


Amaniche LOVE this plugin. Adds Amazon products and reviews to your blog in the blink of an eye. You can see how I use it here.


Breadcrumb Navigation XT Generates locational breadcrumb trails for your WordPress blog. Used on my of my blogs. See it in use here at the top of the page above the post title. You don’t need this if you’re running StudioPress or Thesis as it’s built into those themes.


Broken Link Checker Exactly as the name suggests. LOVE this plugin. Placed on all my blogs — works especially well when I actually use it. :-)


Contact Form 7 Manages multiple, customizable contact forms. I use this one on MyEnergyPal.


Deactivate Visual Editor For use with Exex-PHP to ensure that you don’t break your php code. Using is heavily on AffiliateBloggerPRO


Exec pHp Use it to execute PHP code in posts, pages and text widgets. See also ‘Deactive Visual Editor’ plugin.


Faq Tastic VERY nice plugin. Can generate multiple FAQs. I use it here.


Dynamic Content Gallery Use it in conjunction with all my StudioPress themes — on almost all my sites.


Google Analyticator Enables Google Analytics logging on any WordPress blog without template modification. Stats show up in your Dashboard as in the screenshot below (and then some).



Platinum SEO Pack SEO plugin allows you to specify keywords, description and more. I use it most often to specify a title that is more search engine friendly than the one used on my posts. For example the SEO title for the post, “Have Patience Young Grasshopper” is actually “How to Improve Your Online Buying Experience”.


Popshops Use to build product feeds with affiliate marketing networks like Commission Junction, LinkShare, Google Affiliate Network, ShareASale, LinkConnector, buy.at, Pepperjam and more.


Popularity Contest Popularity Contest keeps a count of your post, category and archive views, comments, trackbacks, etc. and uses them to determine which of your posts are most popular. Valuable for determining your readers’ real interests.


Search and Replace LOVE this plugin! As name implies, allows you to search and replace anything in your ID, post-content, GUID, titel, excerpt, meta-data, comments, comment-author, comment-e-mail, comment-url, tags/categories and categories-description. Excellent for changing links if you haven’t created a single redirect page or you’re not using MaxBlogPress’ Ninja Affiliate.


Search Everything Choose which of your posts, pages, comments etc. you wish to include in search. I use this specifically to exclude pages from my search functions.


Sexy Bookmarks Xxtremely useful plugin for getting your readers to actually submit your articles to numerous social bookmarking sites.


Subscribe to Comments Lets commenters sign up for e-mail notification of subsequent entries. Used on NPT.


Tweetmeme Displays button that allows your blog posts to be retweeted and displays retweet count. Used on almost all my blogs. See above left.


WP-DB-Backup Easy backup for your core WordPress database tables.


What Would Seth Godin Do Drops cookies to display different messages for new visitors and returning visitors according to your specifications. Check it out on the homepage at 101Date.com.


WP Email Allows people to recommend/send your WordPress blog’s post/page to a friend


WP No Category Base Completely removes the mandatory ‘Category Base’ from your category permalinks.


WP-Polls Adds an AJAX poll system to your WordPress blog. You can see it in the sidebars here and here.


WP-Print Displays a printable version of your WordPress blog’s post/page.


YaCaptcha yaCAPTCHA is a CAPTCHA plugin for WordPress that helps you block comment spam from automated bots.


Yet Another Related Posts Plugin Displays a list of posts and/or pages related to the current entry, introducing the reader to other relevant content on your site.

Comments

  1. Bob says

    Hi

    I was wondering if you coould send me the link where you add an affiliate link to youtube videos. I tried it before but couldn’t get it to work. I’ve misplaced the email.

    Thanks

    Bob Tyndall

  2. says

    Hi Rosalind…I’ve lurked at your site for a while, but this is my first comment! Not only are your posts great, but I can’t help but feel a connection since I’m both Canadian and a woman is this male-dominated corner of cyberspace :0)

    Great list of plugins — I’m already using many of these (except I prefer Dynamic Content Gallery [ http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/dynamic-content-gallery-plugin/ ]to Featured Content Gallery since FCG has conflict issues between jQuery and MooTools…), but thanks for the heads up on Popshops – I hadn’t run across that one before!

  3. says

    Hey Rosalind, thanks for the great list of WordPress plugins. WordPress is probably one of the easiest and most effective platforms to use. These plug ins really give you a huge advantage.

    Thanks again.

  4. Kim says

    thank you, I was going to ask what you used for the “comments” section, I want to put one on my WP blog…now I know ;-)

  5. says

    Thanks for sharing this; I’m off to get a few more for my growing collection. I thought I’d share two new can’t-live-without favorites which are saving my life in the new WP-as-CMS projects.

    Page Management Dropdown. This jewel has completely eliminated the dance from edit list or pagemash to the editor to display and back; it generates links to every page and provides them on an easily accessible dropdown menu. Authored by Jascha Ephraim, found at http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/page-management-dropdown/

    Ozh’ Admin Drop Down Menu. Major real estate saver since everything admin is at the top of the screen again, beautifully colored and easily found. Authored by Ozh, http://planetozh.com/blog/my-projects/wordpress-admin-menu-drop-down-css/ (also available at wordpress.org)

  6. says

    I have just started to use wordpress and find it hard to know what is good for plugins because there are just too many. Thanks for narrowing the list down for us wordpress newbies.

  7. says

    Hi Ros,
    This is a GREAT list! Thanks. There are so many useful plugins and I keep adding them…and my web page loads slower and slower…

    One I’ve found recently that helps with blog slog is “JavaScript to Footer”. It moves the scripts from the header to the footer; significantly decreasing loading time on the blog.

    “WordPress Super Cache” or “HyperCache” also help with the blog loading time.

    Thanks again for a great list. I will implementing some of these!

    ~~Joan

  8. Olufemi says

    This was very useful and excellent information. Ros you are very giving and unselfish. You really want to see people succeed.

    I’m an affiliate of yours–the Super Affiliate Handbook is a MUST read!
    I had whole sections yellow from highlighting!

    Thanks Rosalind

  9. says

    Awesome! I have been waiting to get this from you for a long time!

    Thanks Ros. Your site does help people like me not have to do all the testing to see what we should and should not use!

    Thanks
    Matt

  10. says

    Brilliant list Roz, thanks a lot. Just a heads up on the contact form, It’s not actually showing on that link just says [contact-form 1 "Contact form 1"]

  11. says

    Hi Ros

    Thanks for sharing this info. I had already implemented several plugins on my WordPress site and now I have added a few more to my collection that were suited to my site. There are so many plugins to wade through so this information has really helped.

    Cheers

    Kathryn

  12. Mark Krusch says

    Hi Rosalind,

    Thank you for sharing your plugin list! I use most of these.

    Here’s a plugin I use that you might want to check out – StatPress Reloaded – by Manuel Grabowski

    You can find it at: http://blog.matrixagents.org/wp-plugins/

    It’s similar to Google Analytics but you don’t have to leave your blog to check the stats, plus it gives you stats on the spiders that visit your blog!

    Thanks again for sharing.

    -Mark

  13. says

    This is a very useful list of plugins.

    I love wordpress plugins and there are a few ones you’ve mentioned that I’ve never heard of before including Amaniche and popshops.

    Can’t wait to try them out!

  14. says

    Nice list of plugins. I see the bad behavior plugin is doing it’s job by blocking more than 500 access attempts in the last week. Thanks for sharing this info.

  15. Renee says

    Ros-
    Thanks once again for giving away all your “state secrets”….love, love, love the list of plugins. And thanks to your commentors who added a couple of more. (but don’t tell anyone else about Amaniche…:-)

  16. says

    Thanks for a very helpful post on plugins. While I haven’t ventured into installing a blog on my server yet, these are excellent suggestions. Being a blog newbie, this definitely helps as a guide when I get my nerve up to do a WP install. :-)

    I was wondering, with the new FTC laws, is there a plugin for adding these extras to a blog site? Are they automatic when you upload a WP blog? What’s the best way to stay within the new laws?

    Thanks,

    Nancy

  17. Morna says

    Thank you so much, Rosalind. Your newsletters are always filled with valuable information. Not to put you in a spot but…how does AmaNiche compare to ReviewAZon (especially in ease of application)?

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