This is a guest post by Rob Cornish. If you want to guest post on this blog, check out the guidelines here.
In this post I’d like to share with you 7 WordPress plugins that I simply couldn’t live without!
Over time, I have tested various alternatives to these and personally consider these to be “best of breed”. I highly recommend that you check them out and consider installing them on your own WordPress blog.
Akismet (By Automaticc)
It is a sad fact that so many internet marketers use automated systems to post spam comments on other people’s blogs in the hope of generating backlinks for their own sites. Even if you have just started your own blog then it is highly likely that you will receive several of these unwanted comments per day. Moreover, as your blog grows in content and audience size, deleting these comments will become increasingly time consuming.
Akismet (pronounced “A-Kiz-Met”) is simply the best way around this spam problem and is extremely effective in sorting the good comments from the bad. It is free for personal use and if you do host advertising or promote affiliate offers on your blog then I believe that the pricing is extremely good value for money. Highly recommended!
Not so long ago getting your new blog posts indexed required some “fun-and-games” with pinging services and directory and social media submissions. Today (thankfully), this is no longer necessary but you can still help Google get the indexing of your site’s contents right by installing this free plugin.
A contact page on your blog not only helps you communicate better with your audience but it also adds legitimacy in the eyes of visitors and Google. I’ve been using Contact Form 7 on my personal blog and niche blogs since I started online in April 2010. It is totally free and I highly recommend that you use it together with the Really Simple CAPTCHA plugin which adds a simple captcha image to the form – essential for reducing spam emails.
I only discovered this plugin recently and really wish I found it earlier! It allows visitors who submit comments to check a box and receive email notifications of future comments. This really helps to increase both the number of comments you receive and amount of discussion that occurs on each of your blog posts. It not only makes you look more popular to your audience (always a good thing!) but also boosts your SEO rankings as Google can see that there is a good level of interaction happening at your website.
wpSpoiler (by Felix Triller)
Recently, I published an audio interview on my blog and had a transcription created for it by hiring a freelancer at oDesk. Instead of pasting the entire 10,000 word transcript straight in the post I was able to use this plugin to create a “toggle” button which shows and hides the transcription when you click on it. wpSpolier is an excellent little plugin for keeping posts tidy and nicely formatted!
wordTube (by Alex Rabe & Alakhnor)
Videos are great to publish on your blog as they are very effective in engaging the audience as well as looking good to Google from an SEO standpoint. The thing I love about the wordTube plugin is that it allows lots of customizations for your videos: You can choose the exact size for your player, choose whether the video autoplays or not and change the design of the controls that are available to the viewer. You’ll need to use this video in conjunction with the JW Player Plugin For WordPress (by Longtail Video Inc).
Digg Digg (by Yong Mook Kim)
Social media is the future and it’s really a no brainer to add Facebook, Twitter and other social media icons to your blog posts. There are many WordPress plugins available to do this but Digg Digg provides a nice interface in the WordPress Admin panel to allow you to add the buttons that you want and choose where they are displayed in pages and individual posts.
There are many other plugins that I use all the time and really like – All In One SEO Pack, Audio Player and Webmaster Tools Verification to name but a few – but I have chosen the 7 main ones listed in this post as the ones that I really couldn’t live without!
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