5 More Essential WordPress Plugins for SMBs
What makes WordPress such a great platform for business websites is the abundance of plugins offered by the WordPress community. These tools provide a wealth of sophisticated and complex functionality with near drag-and-drop ease, foregoing expensive build-outs with Web professionals.
Akismet is a simple and easy captcha tool. There are no indecipherable hieroglyphics, just straightforward characters that allow readers to post and comment on your articles. As anyone with a blog knows, once the articles are published, the Russian mob will start spamming the hell out of your comment area. This is usually done with simple bots that troll sites and bomb your comments with nonsensical phrases and phishing links. This simple tool eliminates 99 percent of this, reviving the crucial social aspect of your blogging.
Google Author Link
This plugin connects your content with your Google+ account. This easy step will pull in your profile image next to all articles you author in Google search results. This helps you gain prominence as an author, as well as bringing an instant social element to your posts. It also serves to boost search rankings as Google’s social and search functions become more intertwined.
All-in-One SEO Pack
This simple feature offers a wealth of SEO tools, but the most useful are the fields for meta titles and meta descriptions. The plugin adds extra fields in WordPress CMS, so you can tailor meta data along with your article for maximum search optimization. This helps to align your content on the “front” and “back” of a Web page making it easier for a search engine to index the content correctly. Upgrade to the pro package for $40 and unleash the plugin’s full power with a host of new controls.
Google Analytics for WordPress
What good is great content and slick functionality if you can’t track or qualify it? The Google Analytics for WordPress plugin makes it easy for high-end tracking of website data. In addition to immediately getting the suite of basics in Google Analytics, there are also hosts of other metrics that can be set up with a few clicks. Immediately, you can track every clickable button, image, and link as an “event” in your dashboard. This allows you to see what buttons or links within your site get the most attention from users. It will also automatically track categories and authors to help you understand what topics and writers connect the best with your audience. The plugin allows for all of this to be done automatically, as opposed to the traditional, tedious work of amending site code with tracking snippets
If you need forms on your website, and you most likely will, ContactMe is the best native WordPress form plugin you can get. Building custom Web forms is time consuming and costly. Wufoo is an excellent third-party form generator, but if you want to keep it local and within your WordPress dashboard, ContactMe is the way to go. You can create just about any form imaginable with custom fields, drop-downs, checkboxes, radio buttons, a built-in captcha to discourage spam, required fields, and even dependent fields that don’t reveal themselves until a previous selection in the form is made. This system lends your online business a professional appearance by sending auto-response emails with customized messages and allowing you to build “success” pages that display once the user completes a form.
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