Many web developers choose to use WordPress (aka WP) because of its user-friendliness and the vast amount of functions and features that you can add to a website with the use of plugins. If you plan to build a website but don’t have the resources to hire professionals versed in coding, then building a WordPress website is a great option for you.
So, what is WordPress?
WordPress is a content management system (CMS) that makes web development much easier for the less-than-tech-savvy individual. It functions as a platform that has a large variety of themes and plugins to choose from to get the right look and functionality of your website, without knowing anything about coding.
What are WordPress plugins?
A plugin is software that you can install on your website that will give added functions and features to your site.
Plugins to a website are basically like the apps to a phone and they can function at the front and/or back end of a WordPress website.
Do you want to filter your posts comments for spam? There’s a plugin for that. Want to add your social media stream to your site? There’s a plugin for that too. Do you want your visitors to shoot zombies on your page? You guessed it – there’s a plugin for that too.
The point is, with over 58,000 plugins available for WordPress to choose from, there’s hardly a feature you might need on your website that you wouldn’t find a plugin for. Plugins are used to add security and ecommerce features for businesses that operate online. Plugins are used to manage and enhance backend functions of all kinds. And sometimes a plugin can merely add some pizzazz to an otherwise boring website.
The library of WordPress plugins can be found on the WordPress.org website. And with such a vast variety to choose from, this article has whittled down that catalogue to 10 must-have plugins that will enhance your site and it’s user experience on both ends. What’s more, now that an increasing amount of websites are switching over to static sites. So, we’ve made some extra effort to include either static WordPress plugins or WordPress plugins supported by FLATsite. In case you don’t know yet, FLATsite is a platform that web developers, PBN managers, SEO experts and freelancers can use to convert their webpages to the lightweight static html pages. It’s designed to make WP sites run much faster and are much more secure than dynamic websites.
10 WordPress Plugins to boost your static site
Here are 10 WordPress website plugins that you can use to add a little oomph to your website – on the frontend for your users or on the backend just for you.
1. Yoast SEO
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is a fundamental element for any successful website. I mean, if google doesn’t show your website on the first page, does it even exist? Your website needs to be quite easy to find on search engines and there are plenty of tools and plugins that web developers can use to optimise their website’s visibility.
Yoast SEO is one of the most popular and best plugins that can be used for SEO, having over 5 million active WordPress installations. And to list all the features that Yoast SEO offers would be to make this an entirely different article. There really are that many!
Some noteworthy features of Yoast include:
- SEO and readability analysis – to ensure that your content is always not only reader-friendly, but also kept SEO optimised at every step of development.
- Automated technical SEO improvements – some jobs get done for you.
- Advanced XML sitemaps
- Title and meta description templating
- Quick Loading Times
- Schema.org integration
And that’s just to name a few! And we haven’t yet gotten anywhere near the premium goodies available.
If search engine optimisation matters to you – which it should, it doesn’t get much better than this plugin!
If you plan to sell products or services on your website, there are plenty of plugins available that help you manage that. Ecwid Ecommerce Shopping Cart is among the best of them and it’s really all you could need in any ecommerce plugin. Its more than 1 million sellers in 175 countries can attest to that.
Ecwid has everything you could want from an ecommerce plugin in a powerful, user-friendly package. It supports 45 languages and over 40 different payment options (including PayPal and Stripe). You also get:
- Automatic shipping – real-time integrated shipping is a key selling point. Ecwid works with FedEx, USPS, UPS, Canada Post and Australia Post (among others). Plus it can calculate shipping costs automatically.
- Automatic Taxes – You can set up automated taxes in a few simple steps. For the U.S., Canada, and EU VAT, there’s automated calculation of tax rates. It also works with TaxJar to do sales tax filing and reporting automatically.
- Ecommerce Mobile apps
- Facebook and Instagram store integration
- Unlimited Storage
- Automatic backups and updates
And this list is by no means exhaustive.
Ecwid is also highly rated as it is PCI DSS Level 1 certified, ensuring that it meets the high standard security required by banks and protecting both you and your customers.
3. FLATsite Serverless Search
You may not have stopped to think about it, but have you noticed that most websites have a little search bar that allows you to search for specific pages or information on that site?
If you have a website that is several pages deep with tons and tons of information to sift through, your visitors might not know exactly the first place to look for specific information they require from your site.
A search plugin, like FLATsite Serverless Search, allows visitors to do just that. FLATsite Serverless Search has the added value of being developed for use on static HTML WordPress websites.
Every website on the internet has to have security as a top priority. And if you haven’t yet made the conversion to a static site (which tend to have far less vulnerabilities and thus much greater security), you’ll probably want to install a security plugin to protect your website from malware, spam and would-be hackers. In that case, Sucuri is one of the best security options out there for you. Sucuri specializes in WordPress security!
The Sucuri WordPlugin standard has incomparable activity monitoring, providing features such as remote malware scanning, security activity auditing, file integrity monitoring, blocklist monitoring, post-hack security actions, effective security hardening and security notifications. The Sucuri premium web application firewall (WAF) means you can expect the best protection against malware, XSS attacks, DDoS attacks, brute force attacks and spam – among others.
5. FLATsite Serverless Forms
Web forms is another staple of many websites, particularly for businesses that need to collect information from their users or whose users need to contact them.
Web forms are just what they sound like: forms that visitors to a site fill out. They can be used for multiple purposes such as contact forms, surveys, subscriptions, payment forms, polls etc. Having a forms plugin is almost a given for any website, so don’t hesitate to spruce yours up with FLATsite Serverless Forms . FLATsite Serverless Forms is one such web form plugin that’s developed to work optimally on static websites.
6. Disqus Comment System
Comments are a great way to add engagement and interactivity on a website amongst it’s users. WordPress already has a built-in comment feature; however it’s very limited. That’s where plugins like Disqus Comment System comes in.
If you’ve ever been anywhere on the internet you’ve probably seen this one many many times before, but that’s because it’s so good. Disqus allows for more lively comment interactions on your pages and posts.
Visitors to your website can connect and comment as their social media ID’s (Facebook, Twitter, Google) or as guests; they can follow and get notifications when new comments are added to a thread; they can change text format (font), sort discussion (such as oldest to newest), and even upload photos and videos and embed media.
It’s truly a dynamic element to add to your websites, but is also supported by FLATsite, should you choose to use that platform to convert to a static website for a faster, more secure website..
7. Uncanny Automator
Routine tasks on the backend of your website can often be boring and tedious. And really some tasks shouldn’t require constant or immediate attention for them to get done, right? In the age of automation, some things should just do themselves. A WordPress plugin like Uncanny Automator let’s you automate some actions and tasks so that the job gets done when it needs to get done, without having you stop to do it.
Uncanny Automator is a plugin that makes it super easy to automate your website without knowing any code. It’s a powerful tool that makes it easy to link your plugins, websites and even external apps together so they can function independently in their own little ecosystems, communicating with each other through billions of possible recipe combinations.
The Uncanny Automator works by detecting one action and then triggering another. There’s over a hundred triggers and actions you can create using this “if this happens, then make that happen” type of recipe. You can let your WordPress plugins and even different WordPress sites communicate with each other (which typically doesn’t occur) without using expensive custom web development.
Spruce up your website management with this powerful automation tool, you’ll love it!
Not all visitors to your website are going to be native speakers of English. They may be looking for what you’re offering but would prefer that it be offered in a language more comfortable for them. Why not enhance your users’ experience by making your site bilingual… or even multilingual! Let them know you work to accommodate them and give them the best user experience. The Polylang WordPress plugin is a great option to use for creating a multilingual site. Just ask their 600000+ users.
Polylang lets you do translations of pages, posts, media, tags and categories. You can even translate widgets, navigation menus, custom taxonomies and URLs.
The Polylang plugin is quite efficient and user-friendly. It doesn’t hamper performance because it doesn’t use short codes or extra tables. Polylang works on taxonomies built-in core features of WordPress. What’s more, it has minimal impact on performance since it doesn’t use a lot of memory. Polylang can also work with the major SEO plugins. This works to provide multilingual search engine optimisation and it’s also compatible with most cache plugins.
We all like getting updated on the things that matter, and we all like those updates to be instant. One useful WordPress plugin that engages your customer and supplies added value for the users of your website is PushEngage, which sends push notifications to your users.
With the PushEngage Web Push Notification plugin, you can have targeted push notifications sent out to your website’s visitors. PushEngage supports all of the major browsers (Google Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Opera, Microsoft Edge,Samsung Internet and UC Browser), both the mobile and desktop versions, so whatever browser application your visitors use will be covered.
If your visitors subscribe to receive push notifications from your website, they can receive automatic updates about new posts, regardless of whether they are actively on your site at the time or not. PushEngage also allows you to categorise your subscribers into segments based on interest, so you can tailor push notifications to whatever is relevant for them.
Other features of this plugin include analytics, scheduled notifications, triggered campaigns, drip campaigns and auto-push. Pump up your site with this neat little bonus feature that improves engagement with your visitors.
10. Shared Counts
Social media is everything in this day and age. People love social media and they love the things they can do with it. Moreover, people assign value to things based on how well they do on social media. You can improve the image of your website while encouraging engagement and new traffic. Just employ a WordPress plugin such as Shared Counts.
Shared Counts adds a share button that lets visitors to your website share posts and pages from your site to their social media where their family, friends and followers can all see it. This increases engagement and generates traffic from visitors who otherwise might not have seen the post on your website.
Shared Counts share buttons are available for all the major social media platforms: Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Yummly and LinkedIn. Not only that, but you can also let visitors share by email or print whatever page you’ve added the button to. The plugin also supports tracking and displaying the share count on the social media platforms.
This is a great plugin for engagement, visibility and enhancing SEO of your website.
To wrap up
Whether you’ve got a static WordPress site or a dynamic one, plugins are important to enhance the entire WordPress experience. Going static does not mean you have to say adios to all essential WP plugins. Using serverless plugins like Yoast SEO, FLATsite serverless forms and search will give you optimal exprience on unhackable WordPress platform.