Top 5 Marketing WordPress Plugins

by: | April 25, 2012

In my opinion, WordPress is the most versatile, flexible, and powerful blogging platform and CMS available to small businesses. With the right plug-ins, you can improve your WordPress site and turn it into a marketing powerhouse.

Here’s a simple truth: All of your web visitors are inherently lazy. The easier you can make it to perform any action on your website, the more likely they are to act.

I’ve compiled 5 of my favorite marketing plug-ins for WordPress that make it easy for your visitors to share your content and contact you, and they can keep your visitors on your site for longer. Remember when you use these plug-ins to track and measure your progress and success.

 1.   Sociable

Make It Easy to Share Your Content

This plug-in is a no-brainer. Look at most blogs these days, and you’ll see social media sharing options attached to each post. This plug-in is one of the more popular plug-ins for that functionality.

You spent time writing the blog post, and you want as many people to read it as possible, right? Well, the basic premise of this plug-in is to make it dead easy to share your blog content. Now, sure, your users could highlight the URL, copy the link, open up Facebook/Twitter (or social network of choice), type up a witty description, paste the link, hit post, and close the window, but for our lazy visitors, that’s a lot of work. With this plug-in, it becomes a 2-click process to share your content.

2. Contact Form 7

Easier Contact Forms and Much More

This plug-in makes it easier for your visitors to contact you. If your contact page consists of nothing more than a phone number and email address, you can improve your site by adding a contact form. It can mean more potential customers contacting you. The more customers contact you, the more potential sales.

It goes much farther than simple contact forms. You can also build detailed forms for things like schedulers, surveys, and custom product requests. Contact Form 7 makes it easy to create as many forms as you can think of and manage all of them in one place. (Stay tuned for a new article coming up about all the ways you can use online forms for your website!).

BONUS: Download Contact Form 7 themes to make your contact forms look even better than they already do.

3. What Would Seth Godin Do

Custom Messages for Your Visitors 

Have you ever wanted to display a different message to your brand new visitors, than your loyal fans/followers? You might not have even thought about it, but now you can. What Would Seth Godin Do, (the name is based on the well-renowned marketing guru, Seth Godin) lets you do just that.

With this plug-in, you can give your first-time visitors a note at the beginning of your blog posts asking them to subscribe to the RSS feed or email newsletter. For their second visit, you can give them a different message. Prompt your visitors, and you’ll see an uptick in what you’re asking them to do.

4. Related Posts

Keep Visitors on Your Site for Longer

The longer people stay on your website, the more likely they are to subscribe to your RSS feed or email newsletter. If you sell online, they’ll be more likely to purchase from you. If you have a service business, the longer your visitors stay on your site, the more likely they are to trust your business and contact you to schedule an appointment.

This plug-in does exactly what the title says; it adds related posts to the end of each of your blog articles. I repeat: Web visitors are inherently lazy, so you can’t expect them to explore your site to find your hidden gems of content. This plug-in plays right into viewers’ habits and puts content they may also be interested in right in front of their faces.

5. WP-Email

Deliver Your Content Right to Their Inboxes

Consider this plug-in free room service for your lazy visitors. It sends your latest posts to the inbox of anyone who subscribes with their email.

This is one of my favorite plug-ins for marketing. For your visitors, it lands on the commitment scale somewhere between casually browsing your blog and signing up for your newsletter. It says “hey, I just want to read more content so I can make a decision later.”

When I’m online, I use this feature on websites that interest me that either don’t have an email newsletter (a mistake in my book) or whose business I want to keep it in mind for later, when I may need it.

There is a plethora of excellent marketing-based plug-ins out there for WordPress, and I’ve surely missed some great ones, but these are by far the simplest plug-ins with the biggest bang for your buck (they’re free) I’ve found. Every website I build that has a blog gets all of these plug-ins, every time.

Do you use any of these plug-ins? How have they helped your business? Did I miss your favorite WordPress plug-in? Let me know in the comments!Marketing Zeus

Posted in: B2C, Campaign Development, E-Commerce, Engage!, Facebook, Social Networks, Twitter, Usability

About the Writer:

Born in England and raised in the U.S., Charles Forster is the marketing director and partner at Vine & Grain, a company that creates management technologies for bars and restaurants. Prior to that position, he ran a graphic design company, Call Me Chaz, in Philadelphia, PA and Orlando, FL. He focused on branding, websites, print, video and marketing for small business clients up and down the east coast. He's a self-prescribed car nut and foodie. He's also the curator for This Is Visceral, a site devoted to poster art.

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