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14 WordPress.org Plugins That Make Sense & Simply Work

wordpressOver the last few months I have had the pleasure of working on the Authority Domains blog, which is hosted by us. We use WordPress.org. I have had a number of messages asking me which plugins to use. With there be literally hundreds to choose from, many that have the same functionality, it can be hard to choose. The following list are the ones we have had luck with. Frankly, it was all trial and error. Some plugins work better with certain templates. So remember, these plugins work great with our template, but may not work as splendid with yours.

NOTE: Be sure to update to the latest version of WordPress before installing any of these plugins!

Place Google AdSense ads in your WordPress Posts. For complete usage and configuration click on AdsenseDeluxe under the “Options” menu. By Acme Technologies.

Akismet checks your comments against the Akismet web service to see if they look like spam or not. You need a WordPress.com API key to use it. You can review the spam it catches under “Comments.” It simply works. See also: WP Stats plugin. By Matt Mullenweg.

All in One SEO Pack
Out-of-the-box SEO for your WordPress blog. Options configuration panel As far as I am concerned, this is a must have!
By Michael Torbert.

FeedBurner FeedSmith
By FeedBurner.

Google Analytics
Adds Google analytics to your blog, with all sorts of advanced tracking toys enabled. By Denis de Bernardy. You will need to have a Google email addy to use this. Yep- it is free.

A solid social bookmarking plugin. We aren;t currently using it, but it might work for your needs. Try it out! By Ankur Kothari.

Popular Posts
Displays a highly configurable list of the most popular posts. It helps you keep the spotlight on the most popular posts from your readers. Requires the latest version of the Post-Plugin Library to be installed. By Rob Marsh, SJ.

The ShareThis WordPress plugin provides a simple way for users to add your post to many social bookmarking sites, or to send a link to your post via email, AIM, Facebook, Twitter and more. To check out the ShareThis plugin for WordPress, visit: http://sharethis.com/wordpress

StumbleUpon It!
Easy plugin that allows your visitors to submit your blog posts to StumbleUpon.com. By Andrew dela Serna.

Subscribe To Comments
Allows readers to receive notifications of new comments that are posted to an entry. This makes your blog sticky!  Based on version 1 from Scriptygoddess By Mark Jaquith.

The TweetMeme button easily allows your blog to be retweeted (RT). The button also provides a current count of how many times your story has been retweeted throughout twitter.

WordPress.com Stats
Tracks views, post/page views, referrers, and clicks. Requires a WordPress.com API key. By Andy Skelton.

WordPress Database Backup
On-demand backup of your WordPress database. You will be happy you add this! By Austin Matzko.

Need a contact form? WP Contact Form is a “drop in” form for your readers to contact you. It can be implemented on a page or a post alike.

“How to” Install Plugins

  1. Download plugin and save to your computer.
  2. Open the zipped folder.
  3. Click “extract all files”
  4. Upload files or folder to “wp-content/plugins” on your “remote server” via FTP on FileZilla.
  5. In WordPress Dashboard, click on “Plugins”
  6. Click on “Activate” to enable each plugin.
  7. Follow any specific instructions on how to use each plugin (this is important).

I tried to give credit to the original creators of these plugins, so to give credit where credit is due- I want to hear your favorite plugins. Have at it in the comments section. I hope this blog helped provide a beacon of direction in a world overrun with a great many useless WordPress plugins.

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