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My Top 5 WordPress Plugins

By November 20, 2018 No Comments

Today i want to share my top 5 must have WordPress plugins.

As a Web Designer/Developer i use a specific number of plugins on all the sites i create for clients. These plugins are based on Building, Speed, SEO and Security and in my opinion are the best for each individual area.

Page Builder/Theme

Plugin Name : Elementor

Plugin URL: https://elementor.com

Cost : Free with paid option

For creating sites my go to plugin is Elementor. For me this is the most intuitive, user friendly page builder available to date and boasts a huge range of add-ons that are free from the WordPress repository and paid add-ons from well respected developers.

The creative freedom Elementor provides is unmatched within the page builder industry. Sure you may have heard or use Divi builder or Beaver builder but when it comes to ease of use, and design ability Elementor is in a class of its own.

The free plugin Boasts a massive array of features, including drag and drop placement, huge range of widgets, mobile and template editing, break point customization and more.

You can also upgrade from the free version to a pro version which includes over 24 additional widgets you can place on your pages for a truly unique website

Site Speed

Plugin Name : WP Rocket

Plugin URL: https://wp-rocket.me

Cost : From $39

For site speed WP Rocket is my number one plugin. It’s easy to setup with only a few options and also plays nice with Elementor. Sure there are a number of other cache plugins available for free however when tested in comparison WP rocket always outperforms.

You can read my full review of WP Rocket here or check out my guide on doing a full website speed audit.

Plugin Name : WP Smush

Plugin URL: https://en-gb.wordpress.org/plugins/wp-smushit/

Cost : Free with paid Pro option

WP Smush is a brilliant plugin that will automatically reduce the file size of images you upload. What i live is the real time reduction. So when you upload an images, its run through the compression and saves your compressed image automatically. You can also manually compress images you may already have in your WP uploads.

For small sites the free versions is perfect tho large sites with loads of images will benefit from the paid version.

SEO

Plugin Name : Yoast SEO

Plugin URL: https://yoast.com/

Cost : Free with paid add-ons

It’s not surprise that Yoast is the leading plugin for out of the box SEO settings for WordPress and why it would feature in my top 5. As free plugins go you cant get much better than this. Allowing full customization of your pages meta data, scheme and sitemap options, as well as tips to boost the performance of on page SEO, Yoast is a well respected SEO plugin.

To get Yoast simple search Yoast SEO within the WordPress repository on your site.

Security

Plugin Name : WPS Hide Login

Plugin URL: https://wordpress.org/plugins/wps-hide-login/

Cost : Free

For security my main plugin of choice is WPS hide login. Simply changing the location of the WP-login.php and WP-admin.php and renaming it to what ever you want will block 99.9% of all brute force attacks. After all if the login page cannot be found then an attack cannot happen.

I like to combine this with a htaccess rewrite that sends people who visit the login page off to another domain. If your site is under attack then bandwidth will still be used when the visitors end up at a 404. By redirecting those visitors off your site the effects are lessened.

This is also a great way to reduce server load. I have had instances where 25% of my web traffic was hitting the WP-login page which when using a MYSQL database driven website can impact server load and possibly site speed. Using this one redirect i remove all that traffic and thus reduced server load.

For more WordPress security tips check out my guide here

That’s it folks. These are my go to plugins for every new project i start.

Let me me know in the comments below any plugins you suggest and ill defiantly check them out.