WordPress has grown so much in recent years and has moved from a basic blogging system to a CMS (Content Management System). At Rapid Web, we often use WordPress to create websites for our clients, taking advantage of its unique template system to create bespoke designs with easy options for content management for our clients.
WordPress also features a plugin architecture which allows for a lot of customisation to a WordPress website. We’ve been talking about WordPress plugins in the office a lot recently and we’ve come up with a list of the top five WordPress plugins that we all find very useful for optimising our WordPress sites to suit our clients’ needs.
With over 3 million downloads and trusted by countless companies, W3 Total Cache is the only WordPress Performance Optimisation framework that is designed to improve a user experience and improve page speeds. This is done by W3 Total Cache increasing server performance, by reducing download times and providing transparent content delivery network integration. If your site is receiving a lot of traffic, it is definitely worth adding W3 Total Cache as a plugin to make the user experience better.
When developing a new or even updating an existing WordPress site, Rapid Web makes sure that this is one plugin that is installed. With it being one of the top five plugins voted in the office, it is definitely one to try on a WordPress site.
Akismet is a plugin that checks comments posted onto your WordPress site to see if they are Spam. This is great to use to keep comments relevant to posts on your site and is another plugin used by many WordPress sites. Aksimet is hosted on a web server and when a comment is posted, that comment is sent to this web server to validate making sure that it is not a spam comment.
With some of Rapid Web’s WordPress sites being blogs, it is a commonly used plugin and is a great help to maintain the sites. This was also a high favourite in the office.
The WordPress SEO plugin by Yoast is the most complete SEO plugin for WordPress sites that we’ve found. This plugin includes everything from snippet previews and page analysis to XML sitemaps and optimisation. The list of what this plugin can do goes on and on but all of its features can benefit a WordPress site and improve its search engine optimisation. Improving the SEO of our clients’ sites is a priority to Rapid Web and the WordPress SEO plugin makes it much easier to do this on a WordPress site. This is another plugin widely used with WordPress users with a high rating and millions of downloads.
WordFence is a plugin that has recently been introduced to Rapid Web; it is a security plugin that checks a WordPress site for any infections. It goes deep into WordPress code to scan all the core and major files to make sure that none of them have been manipulated in any way and are not infected. Keeping a site protected is very important and with this plugin, it will secure your site and make it up to 50 times faster. With millions of downloads, a high rating and being a favoured plugin in the office, Wordfence is a plugin that we would highly recommend for all WordPress sites.
WooCommerce is a plugin that is used to turn a standard WordPress website into a fully functional e-commerce website. With some great extra plugins that can be used to extend this even further, such as gift card functionality and various payment gateway plugins, WooCommerce can make the most of an e-commerce site and offer customers a much better experience too. WooCommerce is very flexible too, allowing you to use custom themes to give the store a much better feel and to match other branding and/or to be suited to the products on offer. Rapid Web has developed a full ecommerce site for a client using WooCommerce’s functionality, proving how powerful WooCommerce can be.
We would love to hear your thoughts on our top five plugins – do you feel we have missed any plugins out? Or if you have an opinion on any of the plugins mentioned, we’d love to hear them.