So many choices!
One thing I love about WordPress is the endless opportunities for customization. There are thousands of themes and plugins you can install. This makes it so even the least tech-able person can have a WordPress blog that looks & performs exactly the way he wants it.
However, part of the difficulty with this many choices is figuring out which plugins you should use. In many instances, there are several plugins that provide the same ultimate functionality. That’s a good reason for lists like the one I’m providing here. We can all learn from each other.
Plugins I use
Akismet – Stop comment spam in its tracks. If you use Akismet, you won’t have a need for comment moderation. It’s now caught over 2,000 pieces of spam for me.
Democracy – If you need a poll, this is your tool. Check out my ad poll in the upper left sidebar.
FeedBurner Feed Replacement – If you’re using FeedBurner to run your blog’s feed, you should check this one out. It forwards your users from the default WordPress feed to your FeedBurner feed. That ensures that you’re tracking all your readers.
Google Sitemaps – Everyone’s concerned about SEO, right? This plugin makes it easy to create and maintain your Google sitemap.
Live Comment Preview – If you’ve ever left a comment here, you noticed a live preview of your comment below the text input box. I hope you like it, and this plugin will let you have one too!
Popularity Contest – This little gadget is the power behind the “Most Popular” post list in my left sidebar. It’s neat, but the posts don’t line up precisely with my statistics. Close enough, but not precisely.
Related Posts – This might be my favorite plugin. The first thing it does is provide the “You might also like…” links below every post. It does this automagically by checking keywords in the post. Also, if you ever see a 404 page here, you’ll see a list of posts that might be close to what you’re looking for.
Subscribe to Comments – Blogs are all about comments. This plugin lets users subscribe to comments with their email address. You can even subscribe without leaving a comment of your own.
Contact Form – Finally, you’ve got to make sure your readers can contact you. I put my email address everywhere, but I also have an online contact form. This is a great plugin for people who strive to maintain anonymity or are just worried about spammers.
What about you?
So that’s my list. At least, those are the plugins I currently use. They come and go from time to time, but this is the core set.
What are your favorite WordPress plugins? Did I leave out some that you feel are crucial to your blog? Are there some that do the above tasks even better? Please post a comment or drop me a line.
[tags]legal andrew, wordpress plugins[/tags]
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