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I’m Jacob Cass, the founder of JUST™ Creative. I’m a multi-disciplinary graphic designer, working with clients all around the world. My specialty is logo & brand identity design. JUST™ Get in touch.

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29 Great WordPress Plugins That I Personally Recommend

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One of the cool benefits of using WordPress as a CMS (Content Management System) is the ability to use plugins which allows you to add on extra features with just a few clicks.

I am going to showcase the particular WordPress plugins I use on this blog and the reasons for doing so.

Akismet

It is one of the best spam filters going around. Akismet checks your comments against the Akismet web service to see if they look like spam or not.

Why? To stop spam from reaching your blog comments.

All in One SEO Pack

Out-of-the-box Search Engine Optimisation for your WordPress blog.

Why? To get better search engine ranking results.

Better Comments Manager

Better Comments manager allows you to view your comments post wise, it also allows you to reply to your comments from within the admin panel without you having to visit the site to respond to comments.

Why? To save time when replying to blog comments.

cforms

cforms offers unparalleled flexibility in deploying contact forms across your blog. Features include: comprehensive SPAM protection, Ajax support, Backup & Restore, Multi-Recipients, Role Manager support, Database tracking and many more.

Why? To easily create forms on your website. You can see this page as an example.

Chunk Urls for WordPress

This plugin shorten urls in comments so that they won’t break your site.

Why? Some commentators leave a full web address in their comments, this plugin shortens it to a smaller and still clickable link.

Commentluv

A plugin to show a link to the last post from the commenters blog in their comment. It will parse a feed from most sites that have a feed location specified in its head html. I have currently disabled this plugin in the past week due to a small glitch it made on my website (it put >> at the header of my site) however it is a great plugin.

Why? To give your commentators some link love and to encourage commenting.

FeedBurner FeedSmith

This plugin detects all ways to access your original WordPress feeds and redirects them to your FeedBurner feed so you can track every possible subscriber.

Why? To accurately record how many subscribers you have on your blog.

Google Ajax Search

Adds a Google AJAX Search box on your site. Options include searching your site through Google Blog Search and/or straight up Google, a second search option is available that is perfect for flickr.

Why? For a more accurate search result. You can find an example of this at the top right of this blog.

Google XML Sitemaps

This plugin will generate a sitemaps.org compatible sitemap of your WordPress blog which is supported by Ask.com, Google, MSN Search and YAHOO and autmatically upload it to Googles servers for you.

Why? Get your pages searched my Google more often.

Homepage Excerpts

This plugin shows excerpts on the home page rather than full posts. You can customise how many you want to display as full posts.

Why? Useful to shorten page load times on the front page.

My FTP

A WordPress FTP like plugin that can be used to manage folders and files via the WordPress admin panel.

Why? To save launching FTP Clients or logging into your control panel to upload files. This is useful if you travel a lot such as myself and are always in your admin panel.

NextGEN Gallery

This is a great plugin that allows you to have a customisable photo gallery with cool effects.

Why? Check out my graphic design portfolio to see it in action.

NoFollow Free

Remove the nofollow tag from your blog’s comments with a lot of options. Supports multilingual and a Top Commenters sidebar Widget.

Why? To encourage more commentating and to let loyal commentators benefit from commentating on your blog. Read more about nofollow here.

Ozh’ Admin Drop Down Menu

Replaces admin menus with a CSS dropdown menu bar. Saves lots of clicks and page loads!

Why? Save heaps of time by shortening your page loads and clicks in your WordPress Admin. A must have.

Random Redirect

Allows you to create a link to your blog which will redirect someone to a random post on your blog in a StumbleUpon-like fashion. You can also specific in the URL random_post_type or random_cat_id.

Why? So people can browse your website in a random manner. Pretty useful for someone new to the website or those looking for something random. You can test it by clicking here.

Robots Meta

This plugin allows you to add all the appropriate robots meta tags to your pages and feeds, disable unused archives and nofollow unnecessary links. You can read about robot meta tags here.

Why? To disable posts or pages that you do not want appearing in Google Search results.

RSS Feed Signature

Add a customised signature or tag-line to your RSS feed(s).

Why? You could use this for any reason. Personally I use it for copyright, ebook advertising and related posts.

Simple Tags

Extended Tagging for your blog. It features Auto Completion, Suggested Tags, Tag Cloud Widgets, Related Posts, Mass edit tags and more.

Why? A very powerful tagging system. The related posts feature is what I find most useful.

Subscribe To Comments

Subscribe to Comments is a plugin that allows commentators on your blog to check a box before commenting and get e-mail notification of further comments.

Why? It is one of the most popular WordPress plugins out there for the simple reason that it helps foster a community around your blog by encouraging commenters to come back and stay engaged in the dialog.

SRG Clean Archives

This plugin is designed to display your archive listings in a clean, uniform, single-query fashion that’s Search Engine friendly on a dedicated page or in your sidebar.You can see it in action on my blog.

Why? Never have to worry about updating your archives.

Twitter Updater

Updates Twitter when you create a new blog or publish one.

Why? Saves me time as I do not have to Twitter about new blog posts, It does it for me. I also have my Twitter updates sent to my facebook account automatically so advertising is all automated. Very useful.

Ultimate Google Analytics

Enable Google Analytics on your blog. Has options to also track external links, mailto links and links to downloads on your own site.

Why? To track your website stats in Google Analytics.

WordPress Automatic Upgrade

WordPress Automatic Upgrade allows a user to automatically upgrade the WordPress installation to the latest one provided by WordPress.org using the 5 steps provided in the wordpress upgrade instructions. It also has a one click automatic function.

Why? Save a lot of time and effort by using the one click upgrade option.

WP-Cache

A very fast caching module that speeds up your site. It’s composed of several modules, this plugin can configure and manage the whole system. You can even tweak the plugin to make your site even faster. Another option is  SuperCache however I am yet to figure out what plugin is better?

Why? To make your site run faster and more responsive.

WP-Polls

Adds an AJAX poll system to your WordPress blog. You can easily include a poll into your WordPress’s blog post/page. WP-Polls is extremely customizable via templates and css and there are tons of options for you to choose to ensure that WP-Polls runs the way you wanted. It supports multiple selection of answers too.

Why? To easily host polls such as the Mac or PC one I held earlier.

WP-Print

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

Why? Let your readers easily print your articles without your sidebars or advertising.

WordPress Database Backup

Backup your data automatically everyday!

Why? You should always have a backup of your WordPress blog. This is a must.

WP Widget Cache

Cache the output of your blog widgets. It will significantly reduce the sql queries to your database and speed up your site. Quite a new plugin which works great.

Why? To make your site run faster and more responsive. Works in conjuction with WP-Cache and SuperCache.

If you are after some more great WordPress Plugins I would check out this powerful list of wordpress plugins and this must have wordpress plugins post.

What are some other plugins that you couldn’t live without? Are there any here that could be replaced with something better?







107 JUST™ Creative Comments

  • Andy Bailey

    thanks for mentioning CommentLuv. It’s been updated to 2.5.3 and is in a stable state and validates ok as xhtml

    thanks!

  • Qbrushes

    The difference between is WP-Cache uses PHP caching while supercache uses html caching, because of this the performance difference is quite significant. you should try it out.

  • Benek

    Awesome list. I’m sure I’ll use heaps of these on my upcoming blog. Thanks!

  • Brian Yerkes

    Nice list of plugins Jacob. One that I am using recently that I think is excellent, is the wp-ecommerce plugin for a shopping cart.The functionality works so well. http://www.instinct.co.nz/e-commerce/

  • Brian Yerkes

    Didn’t you get rid of “Comment Luv” once the upgrade required an image to be displayed? I don’t see it on your comments, but you have it in your list.

  • Julian

    You should give the Platinum SEO plugin a try, it’s basically All-in-one-Seo with some extra features like permanent redirects (301) and some other nice additions.

    It does even use the settings of your all-in-one-seo so you don’t have to start all over adding tags etc.

    http://techblissonline.com/platinum-seo-pack/

  • Eivind

    Great list! I use many of these already—i even think i found some of them in a previous post here about plugins. I’ll definitely look into some of these!

  • Nathan Beck

    Absolutely fantastic array of plugins. There’s about 6 that I’ll be downloading and playing with. There’s probably a few I’d add but most people probably know about them or they’ll only apply to certain bloggers/developers.

    Backend FTP will be especially useful.

    Cheers Jacob!

  • Gareth Coxon - Dot Design

    Great list Jacob and some I’ll certainly be adding to my blog, thanks, Gareth

  • Steve

    Great post Jacob, there are quite a few plugins mentioned here which I was not aware of, I will be installing them very soon, Brians mention of e commerce is interesting, we adopted our wordpess for blogging purposes only, we had no idea it would turn into such a comprehensive CMS.

  • styletime

    Great list just about to check out the comments manager!

    Quick word though the Ozh Drop down Menu sometimes if you have a plugin that creates its own admin menu then the drop down plugin sometimes doesnt work with those and you have to deactivate it to access those ‘special’ menu items’

  • styletime

    oooh just installed the archives plugin also! much nicer than what i had ;)

  • Wotoutevy

    Great blog. I like layout!!!!

  • Irene

    It’s a great list. Very useful information and all gathered together. Thank you!

  • Renee

    I’m in the process of learning more advanced ways of using WordPress. This was a great list of items for me to check out and came right in the nick-of-time! Thanks for sharing! :)

  • Christopher Ross

    Thanks, I’ve never seen the WordPress Automatic Upgrade before, this is a definite keeper!

  • Peter Smith

    Too bad that WordPress kills servers

  • Seth

    Thanks for the great list of plugins. I’m already using a few of them, but there are some things I just haven’t gotten around to tackling. You just saved me a lot of headache searching for new plugins.

  • redwall_hp

    Nice roundup. I use quite a few of these plugins already, and agree that they’re great for design blogs (or any blog for that matter).

    I also suggest the WP125 ad management plugin: http://www.webmaster-source.com/wp125-ad-plugin-wordpress/ What’s a design blog without 125×125 ads?

  • Erik

    Very nice list. There was some plugins on there that I’m now going to have to spend the next hour or so installing on my blog, well so much for working!

    I already used many of these and they are great. I however have been having some trouble with the CommentLuv plugin. It seems to be causing a JQuery error with other JQuery I have running on my site. And for all the reason you said it’s one that I would like to be able to use.

  • BeyondRandom

    Awesome list! I have a few already on my blogs but there are a few that I will definetly have to get.

    Thanks alot.

  • Susan

    I much more prefer WP Super Cache over WP Cache.

  • Amrit Hallan - Content Writer

    Thanks for this great collection of WP-plugins…one of the best I’ve come across recently.

  • Dainis Graveris

    Thanks for recommendations – surely gonna bookmark this!

  • Tiffany

    Awesome list. I am getting ready to start my first WordPress site ever for my side gig as a DJ. This resource list is something I’m definitely bookmarking.

  • elvis08

    Thank you for your great list of plugins. A friend of mine is currently using WordPress, but there are some things to be concern about wordpress (no human traffic) and his sites were penalized by Google.

  • John

    I can’t get enough wordpress plugins….I can’t keep up with all the latest releases and updates. It’s almost overwhelming.

  • Roy Nottage

    Great list Jacob! A big handful of these I’ll be installing for sure.

    Twitter Updater will be very useful.

  • Todd Smith

    Great list of plugins! Thanks so much for the wonderful resource.

  • Jim McIntyre

    This is reason WordPress sites tend to suck.

    The “web designer” tries to install every plugin ever created – which usually results in badly designed 3 column layouts with a bunch of “widgets” running all the way down the both sides.

    Cos’ we all know more is better. Amirite?

  • Rob Barrett

    In fairness, Jim, the vast majority of the plugins in this list are for back-end purposes, to make site management that much easier.

    Sure, I’ve noticed that my new site has got an alarming amount of plugins installed, but very few of them are actually visible to a visitor. I suspect (especially judging from this list) that this is also the case here.

    Having said that, yes, it is easy to get carried away with the coolest new plugin, but I suppose it has to come down to a bit of self-control in the end! Use only what you need, rather than adding something for its own sake.

  • Jacob Cass

    Andy,
    You are welcome.

    QBrushes,
    Thanks for the clarification, I will try it out.

    Brian,
    Thanks fore the link to the ecommerce plugin. I got rid of Comment Luv because it put ‘>>>’ at the top of my blog for some reason. I explained this under the plugin incase you missed it.

    Julian,
    Thanks for the heads up about Platinum SEO.

    Steve,
    Yeah I know, WordPress is amazing.

    Roger,
    I haven’t come across that problem yet but thanks for the heads up.

    Redwall,
    Thanks for the info on the ad management plugin.

    Erik,
    Yeah I have had some trouble with CommentLuv at the moment which is why I haven’t got it installed at this time.

    Elvis,
    That sounds strange, I have never heard about that.

    Jim and Rob,
    Yes, you should only use what you need rather than adding something for its own sake.

  • Jessie

    Awesome list. I am getting ready to start my first WordPress site ever for my side gig as a DJ. This resource list is something I’m definitely bookmarking.

  • Jesse Vlasveld

    Some plugins there I didn’t know about, or had less efficient solutions, thanks Jacob.

  • Kevin W.

    good article, very useful.

  • Simon

    Thanks for the list, just what I needed right now.

    Cheers
    Simon

  • Masey

    Thanks for that awesome list Jacob. I just found your Blog today and I LOVE IT!

    I feel like I need to sit down and read it virtual “cover to cover”!

    Keen to give my Blog a bit of a design overhaul this Xmas, and integrate a portfolio of sorts, so I may pick your brain a little!

    Cheers mate!

  • Jacob Cass

    No worries Masey, hope you stick around. Thank you and all the best!

  • Dainis Graveris

    This list really rocks! :) I am surprised how many good stuff You got here, appreciated list – goes in my bookmarks! :)

  • John Hoff - eVentureBiz

    I love lists like these.

    I think it’s important for people to also keep in mind, however, that some plugins can create security holes in your blog and leave it open to intruders.

  • Jacob Cass

    John,
    That is also true, thank you for the input John. Personally, I put a blank index file in my wordpress plugin folder to stop them being able to see the index. I am sure there are other ways to protect your blog too.

  • Andrew

    Thanks for mentioning wp widget cache, Jacob.

    Regards,
    Andrew

  • Mitch

    Great list. I have a lot of these, and some don’t quite intrigue me, but the Homepage plugin in one that I think I’m going to check in to. I’ve been wondering lately if my main page should be as long as it is. I may stick with that, but we’ll see; at least I’ll have an option.

  • Stu Barwick

    Excellent Post..

    Your articles are some of the best out there, thanks for all the work you do.

  • House Cleaning

    Nice and usefull post, thanks, this is one for my bookmarks!

  • markez linda

    Web design is the first thing your visitors will see. It will determine your credibility and whether or not your visitors will stay or leave. That is what most of us take into consideration so heavily. However, many of us forgot about the loading time of the page which takes about 7-9 seconds. Longer loading time will make visitors leave your site even without reading your content :D

  • Watch Gossip Girl

    Awesome post!

    Thanks for sharing.

  • Max the Micro Niche Finder

    Hiya, i have seen your site when searching a few weeks ago and i really love the design! I just bought a new 3 character domain (cost me a packet) for a niche review blog, and i was wondering if your design is a free or paid one? I’m new to WordPress and about to set it up, and i would really like to get something with a similar look to yours. Any ideas where i could download or buy something similar? Thanks for your help! :)

  • Annelie Näs

    Just started a blog on with my own hosting, so this is very helpful, thank you!

  • Timm

    Warum eigentlich nicht?

  • jeff@j&L bamboo products

    thanks mate I found some plugins in here really useful

  • Avery

    nice article,thank you for sharing.

  • Helene

    I never ever post but this time I will,Thanks alot for the great blog.

  • Binoculars

    Hey, thanks for the blog post, but can you tell me what’s this theme you’re using in your blog? Thanks in advance, Pete

  • Binoculars

    Hello! I like the design of your blog (and content too btw) and I would like to know what theme are you using? Is it your own design or free theme? thanks in advance, regards Pete

  • Carol Weathers

    I am always on the look-out for awesome WordPress plugins to recommend to my readers. Thank you for creating this post. It’s exactly what I was looking for.

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  • Why China Sucks

    Akismet is only free for personal blogs. Soon as you show an intention of making money off your blog, they require you to pay a fee. Or so I’m told??

  • Thornhill Spa

    All in one seo is a life saver, I wouldn’t know what to do without it!

  • webmix

    thanks for mentioning CommentLuv. It’s been updated to 2.5.3 and is in a stable state and validates ok as xhtml

    thanks!

  • Rickys

    NY City abounds in tourist attractions, offering lots of wonderful moments to be cherished. In fact, the city has something for everyone – from Manhattan Skyline to Station Island’s natural beauty; from buzzing nightlife to magnificent beaches; from historic heritage sites to memorials like 9/11 memorial and the Statue of Liberty. Not for nothing does it attract millions of tourists throughout the year from all around the globe.

  • Trung Nguyen

    I’m using WordPress SEO plugin instead of All in SEO pack, however, these another plugins are great for a WP blog, thanks for sharing to us.

  • Rosendo Cuyasen

    I’m checking these plugins and you never mention what plugin you have used in your portfolio. I really like the one you’ve used here in your site.

  • Logo Designs

    Very useful wordPress plugins you have listed above. I really enjoyed this beautiful blog post. I must come back to you very soon. Keep posting.

  • Logan Designs

    Google Analytics and Akismet are a must for bloggers

  • miguel pieter

    Thanks for the nice post. There is something quite nice about the “29 Great WordPress Plugins That I Personally Recommend”. I like the idea and can see it working well printed on sportswear. I guess the introduction of this new logo design has gained more attention probably because it has a famous person’s name attached to it. If all graphic design had this advantage then it may be noticed more. Celebrities are followed and noticed a lot by the media and the general public. To know more information please Click Here.

  • Www.Yapeople.Com

    I just now such as the valuable information you source in your reports. Let me book mark the weblog and look once more right here typically. Now i’m reasonably i might be explained to a great deal of brand-new things correct in this article! Best of luck for the!

  • desain rumah

    Better Comments manager allows you to view your comments post wise, it also allows you to reply to your comments from within the admin panel without you having to visit the site to respond to comments.

  • Naman

    I use a few of these…a question – If i use over 15 plugins…will it not make my site slow?

  • Suzi

    This is very educative and loaded with insightful information on blogging which I can relate to my other web activities. Well put together. Thanks for sharing.

  • vps55a color 1bo1o1

    Woah this weblog is excellent i really like studying your posts. Stay up the great work! You know, many people are hunting round for this info, you could help them greatly.

  • Hampton

    Ys WP have some good plugins , but use only limited whic u required, other wise site will go slow…………

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  • Sandra

    These plugins are amazing! I personally uses some of them such as SEO Pack and it really works well.

  • John Crooks

    Awesome Article! I’ve been very impressed with your articles so far.
    I know it has been a few weeks since you originally posted this, but I haven’t had time to comment. I have a question I’ve been trying to find the answer for and I was hoping you might have some insight.
    I’m considering investing in backupbuddy or updraftplus. They are similarly priced, but I can’t see a clear winner. Any insight would be greatly appreciated!
    Also, I’ve heard some criticize anything back-up plugins besides vaultpress because theoretically a hacker could just mess with your plugin once they are in your site.
    I’m still leaning towards backupbuddy or updraftplus for the economic advantages.

  • SEO Kent

    I have read so much on WordPress Plugins but till i am in always confusion, but your post helped me lot about right and essential plugins, Thanks a lot.

  • John Crooks

    From day one of my blog I’ve been using the WP DB-Manager, to auto backup my database. I’ve always used that one because its east to use and gets the job done with no problems.
    On the off chance one day I get a database crash, I’ll be covered. I also weekly take a manual backup of my files. Goof plugins you’ve listed.

  • AArti

    Great list of plugins here, i’ll be using some of these…

  • Hoehnen

    Great article that clearly explains the two major categories of home automation systems in Chennai, that are currently in use. Love your articles and a regular reader of the site.



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