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10 Best Must-Have Plugins for WordPress Websites in 2023

WordPress users have access to a vast number of plugins, making it challenging to distinguish between those that are truly beneficial and those that are overhyped. While many plugins cater to specific niches, only a select few can be considered must-have plugins for WordPress websites.

Regardless of the type of website or niche it belongs to, certain plugins are essential for optimal performance.

In this article, we will introduce you to the top ten must-have WordPress plugins and explain the unique benefits of each one. Additionally, we will provide empirical data to support our claim that each plugin is a vital component of a successful website.

Without further delay, let’s dive right into our top ten picks.

Must-Have Plugins for WordPress Websites

Must-Have Plugins for WordPress Websites
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Must-Have Plugins for WordPress Websites

Yoast SEO

Yoast SEO stands out as the most widely used SEO tool in the WordPress ecosystem and for good reason.

It is one of the essential WordPress plugins that can significantly enhance your website’s SEO performance and analyze your content’s readability.

Research shows that roughly 79% of users tend to scan through posts and pages, making content accessibility vital to keeping their attention.

When it comes to driving traffic to your site, there are several methods at your disposal. However, none hold as much potential as search engines, with Google processing an average of nine billion daily searches.

Organic traffic is crucial to a website’s success, and buying your way to the top is usually impossible. Only 1.7% of paid leads from search engine traffic convert.

Therefore, developing a robust keyword strategy is crucial for every website.

Best Features

  • Enhance the optimization of your WordPress posts and pages by incorporating relevant keywords and meta descriptions.
  • Assess your content’s current level of optimization and make necessary improvements with ease.
  • Additionally, enhance the readability of your content by implementing simple tips.

Price

The lite version is free and it has a premium version with additional features.

WPForms

WPForms is a fantastic WordPress plugin that allows you to create visually appealing and functional forms, including contact forms and more.

With its perfect combination of advanced features and user-friendly interface, WPForms is an excellent choice for website owners who want to create professional-looking forms with ease.

This plugin is highly intuitive and mobile-friendly, making it accessible to users with all levels of technical expertise.

You don’t need to know JavaScript or other programming languages to create stunning contact forms that enhance user engagement and drive better conversion rates.

With WPForms, you can easily customize your contact forms, surveys, and other forms to suit your specific needs.

Whether you want to improve user interactions, increase survey responses, or achieve other goals, this plugin offers a range of features to help you achieve your objectives.

Best Features

  • Create an attractive contact form for free.
  • Save your time with pre-built form templates.

Price

It has both free and premium versions. The basic plan starts at $49.50/year for a single site.

UpdraftPlus

Every day, approximately 13,000 websites fall victim to hacking attempts, with WordPress-based sites being particularly vulnerable due to their 43% dominance on the web.

Furthermore, simple errors can cause certain components of a WordPress website to malfunction.

For instance, if most users employ ten or fewer plugins, with half of them receiving monthly updates, compatibility issues are likely to arise frequently.

Having a recent backup can alleviate the stress of encountering a compatibility issue, experiencing a cyber attack, or migrating your site.

This is where our next must-have WordPress plugin, UpdraftPlus, enters the picture. While several WordPress backup plugins exist, UpdraftPlus stands out for its impressive capabilities and user-friendliness.

It integrates with multiple cloud storage options to secure your backups, and you can even schedule automated backups.

Best Features

  • Create automatic or manual backups of your website.
  • Store your backups locally or on the cloud.
  • Restore your website to a previous state.

Price

It has both free and premium versions.

WP Rocket

WP Rocket is a potent caching plugin that accelerates website loading times by creating cached copies of each dynamically-generated page, reducing server workload.

As previously discussed, quick page loading times are crucial, and caching solutions can be even more effective than image optimization. For instance, the W3 Total Cache plugin can reduce loading times by an average of over 43%.

WP Rocket, on the other hand, performs even better, reducing page loading times by an impressive 63% in our caching plugin tests. While it may not be free, the outcomes are well worth the investment, particularly if conversions are at stake.

Best Features

  • Create cached copies of your website’s dynamically generated pages to optimize loading times.
  • Enhance user-end browser caching to further improve the experience.
  • Utilize lazy loading to expedite the loading process.
  • Integrate your caching solution with a Content Delivery Network (CDN) to ensure speedy delivery of content.

Price

It is a premium plugin. The basic plan starts at $59/year for a single site.

MonsterInsights

Understanding your audience is crucial for business growth. By analyzing user behavior on your website, you can adjust your marketing strategy to improve engagement and conversions.

To achieve this, the MonsterInsights plugin is essential. It seamlessly integrates your WordPress website with Google Analytics to provide you with all the relevant data about your visitors.

Its popularity among WordPress users is a testament to how important it is to comprehend how your visitors consume your content.

Setting up MonsterInsights is a breeze. It connects your Google Analytics account with your WordPress website in just a few simple steps.

Once done, you can conveniently check the statistics right from your WordPress dashboard.

Best Features

  • Gain insights into your website visitors to better understand your audience and improve your business growth.
  • It seamlessly integrates your WordPress website with Google Analytics, providing you with all the relevant data about your visitors.
  • You can access stats right from your WordPress dashboard and analyze what content performs best, which pages need improvement, and create an audience profile that includes demographics, education, gender, age, and interests, and learn about visitor behavior such as how they find your site, time spent on it, links clicked, keywords searched, and more.

Price

It has a free lite version. To unlock more advanced features, you need to purchase the premium version which costs $99/year.

Elementor

Elementor is a must-have WordPress plugin with over 5,000,000 active installs. This visual page builder allows you to design custom pages that stand out from your current theme.

No advanced web development skills are necessary to create stunning effects like animations, background overlays, and hover effects. Simply use the drag-and-drop interface to achieve your desired look.

Elementor is compatible with both the Gutenberg editor and other plugins on this list, making it a versatile tool for website customization.

Whether you need a beautiful landing page for your business or want to add custom design elements to your website without hiring a developer, Elementor is an excellent choice.

Best Features

  • Choose from a vast selection of 300+ professionally designed templates available in the Elementor library.
  • Utilize the easy drag-and-drop feature to create a compelling value proposition for your website.
  • Build unique designs to personalize your site.

Price

It has both free and premium versions. The premium version has more advanced features. The Basic plan starts at $59/year for a single site.

OptinMonster

OptinMonster is the ultimate plugin to help you generate leads, making it my favorite. While there are many plugins available for lead generation, OptinMonster surpasses them all.

Using this plugin is crucial in increasing both your traffic and revenue, especially if you have a business website, eCommerce store, or blog. By not utilizing this powerful tool, you are missing out on a huge opportunity.

In today’s marketing landscape, lead generation is an essential part of any successful strategy. OptinMonster simplifies this process, providing pre-designed, high-converting forms that you can easily customize with a drag and drop editor.

Best Features

  • MonsterLinks™ – It allows you to turn any image or link into an opt-in form, boosting your conversion rates by up to 785%.
  • Exit-Intent Forms – When a visitor is about to leave your site, an exit-intent form appears to capture their email address, helping you to gain more subscribers.
  • Easy-to-Use Editor – With OptinMonster’s drag-and-drop editor, creating high-converting forms is a breeze. You can also choose from a range of ready-to-use templates.
  • Geo-Targeting – If you’re looking to target a local audience, OptinMonster’s geo-targeting feature allows you to display customized offers and messages based on the visitor’s location.

Price

It has a free lite version. To unlock more advanced features, you must purchase the premium version which costs $192/year.

Social Snap

Social Snap is a popular social media plugin for WordPress that offers a wide range of features to help you integrate social media into your website and improve your social media presence.

The plugin allows you to easily add social sharing buttons, social follow buttons, and other social media features to your website.

With Social Snap, you can customize the look and feel of your social sharing buttons, choose from a wide range of social media platforms, and track your social media performance.

Best Features

  • Ability to add social sharing buttons to your website.
  • Add social follow buttons to encourage users to follow your social media profiles.
  • Click-to-Tweet allows you to create clickable tweetable quotes in your content that users can easily share on Twitter.

Pricing

It is a premium plugin. The basic plan starts at $39/year for a single site.

WP Review

WP Review is a popular review plugin for WordPress that allows you to add stylish and customizable reviews to your website.

The plugin offers a range of features to help you create eye-catching and informative reviews, including star ratings, percentage ratings, custom icons, and unlimited color options.

It has the ability to add multiple types of reviews to your website. Whether you want to create product reviews, restaurant reviews, or movie reviews, the plugin makes it easy to add a variety of review types to your website.

Best Features

  • Customizable review templates
  • Ability to add multiple types of reviews
  • User Comment Rating and Review
  • Compatible with Any WordPress Theme

Pricing

It has both free and premium versions. The premium version has more features and it costs $77/year. It supports unlimited websites.

iThemes Security

iThemes Security is a popular security plugin for WordPress that helps protect your website from various security threats.

The plugin offers a range of features to help improve the security of your website and reduce the risk of security breaches. Some of its key features include two-factor authentication, malware scanning, brute force protection, IP banning, and file change detection.

Two-factor authentication is a security feature that adds an extra layer of protection to your website by requiring users to enter a second form of authentication, such as a code sent via email or SMS.

This can help to prevent unauthorized access to your website and protect your data.

Best Features

  • Stops automated attacks
  • Monitors for suspicious activity
  • Blocks bad bots and reduces spam
  • Automatically takes actions on your behalf to secure your site

Pricing

It has both free and premium versions. The premium version has more advanced features and the basic plan starts at $99/year for a single site.

Smush

Smush is a popular image optimization plugin for WordPress developed by WPMU DEV that allows you to compress and optimize your website’s images to improve your site’s loading speed and performance.

With its easy-to-use interface and advanced optimization features, WP Smush is a great tool for website owners looking to improve their site’s performance and user experience.

Smush has the ability to compress and optimize your images without sacrificing quality. The plugin uses advanced compression algorithms to reduce the file size of your images, while still maintaining their quality and resolution.

This can help to improve your site’s loading speed, reduce bandwidth usage, and improve your search engine rankings.

Key Features

  • Super Smush – Optimize images up to 2x more than regular with our multi-pass lossy compression.
  • Lossless Compression – Strip unused data and compress images without affecting image quality.
  • Lazy Load – Defer offscreen images with the flip of a switch.
  • Bulk Smush – Optimize & compress images in bulk with one click.

Pricing

It has both free and premium versions. The premium version has more features and it costs $7.5/month.

Conclusion

That’s all about the must-have plugins for WordPress websites.

Each of these plugins can help you improve your website in different ways, and choosing the right one depends on your specific needs and goals.

By incorporating these must-have plugins into your WordPress website, you can take your website to the next level and achieve your online objectives with greater ease and efficiency.

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Umapathy Sekar is a Passionate Blogger and Internet Marketer. At WPBoots.com, he writes mostly about WordPress Tips and How to Guides. You can follow him on Twitter and LinkedIn.

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