Are you trying to build an interactive and informational website on a platform that is easy to update and feature rich? We are huge fans of WordPress and highly recommend you consider building your church or organization’s website on the WordPress platform. If you don’t know what WordPress is or how it works, here’s a great intro video that will give you the 4-1-1 in less than two minutes:
Now, let’s dive into our suggestions for top ten plugins for your website. These suggestions aren’t the only plugins you should use, nor do we suggest you need all of them for your website. But we highly encourage you to take a look at them and see how they would help you connect with your visitors and expand your message.
Top 10 Plugins for your WordPress website:
This free plugin gives you complete control over the SEO properties for your website. It covers the main site descriptions as well as giving you SEO controls for each page and post you create. This plugin is crucial for helping Google index your website and crawl through your content so as to boost your ranking in Google searches.
Sitemaps are highly favored by search engines like Google and Bing as they give a central location for search bots to know how much content your website has and where it is all located. This plugin automatically collects all that data and provides the information to those search engines.
Adding sign-up methods for your MailChimp lists to your WordPress site should be easy. With this plugin, it finally is. MailChimp for WordPress helps you add more subscribers to your MailChimp lists using various methods. You can create good looking opt-in forms or integrate with any other form on your site, like your comment, contact or checkout form.
What good is a website if you don’t know who is coming to it and how they are interacting with your page? If you don’t already, you should be using Google Analytics to know how many visitors your website is getting each month and learn what pages get the most traffic as well as what pages cause them to leave your website the most. This free plugin tells you all of that and more. The best part is it brings you all that information to your WordPress Dashboard so you don’t have to go to Google Analytics and get the most important information. It also integrates with all your pages and posts to tell you how many views they get and how many times people exit your website from those specific pages.
Click to Tweet is the most popular click to tweet plugin for WordPress for good reason.
This plugin allows you to easily create tweetable content for your readers. Using a simple shortcode, your selected text is highlighted and made tweetable.
If you have a lot of links on your website, this free plugin will be a great resource to help you know if those links ever stop working. It constantly keeps track of all hyperlinks you’ve posted and will notify you immediately if they ever break down. It then gives you the option to remove the link, turn it into plain text, or update the link if you need a new URL address.
Giving readers the ability to share your content on social networks is one of the most important features your website should have. If you want to significantly increase your web traffic and make your content viral, then use this free plugin. It creates a column of social sharing buttons on the left-hand side or bottom of the posts. We encourage you to only use this plugin for your posts and it may be a bit overkill if you use it on your pages as well.
Want more options on what social networks viewers can share your content on? This free plugin allows you to choose from a massive variety of channels as well as giving you the ability to add counters and track how many times your content has been shared. Easy to set up. Easy to use. We definitely recommend this plugin!
If your theme does not have a calendar option, this is a great, free plugin that allows you to add a calendar to your website. It easily gives you the ability to turn any page or post into a calendar item, create categories for your calendar that are color-coded, as well as robust features like making calendar entries repeat. All it takes to set up is inserting a shortcode to the page you want the calendar to show and then the plugin does the rest of the work.
Here’s a great list of backup plugin options. Here at CTT, we use UpDraftPlus, but there are many other options available. A good backup solution is an invaluable addition to your site.
What plugins do you currently use? Have you found one you could not live without?