Ronalds Vilciņš


Top plugins for Wordpress websites

Wordpress is being crowded day by day with bloggers, Web Developers, startups. According to the analysis of W3Techs, it is evident that as of now, 30% of websites on the internet are hosted by Wordpress.

If your website is one of the 30% then i am sure considering about its performance comes as a package. If you want a future proof sustainable and scalable website on wordpress then you can’t afford to miss out on testing. Remember, Developing and Testing march hand in hand.

Internet is jammed with numerous WP plugins to ease your life. However, I understand how hectic your everyday schedule tends to be. So I decided to write this blog for assisting you with the awareness about top Wordpress plugins that I deem as a necessity for everyone.

BackupUpdraft Plus — World’s highest ranking backup plugin that allows you to backup your data and restore it from cloud with a single click. Backing up is crucial to prevent your business in case of hacking, server crashing or host going south. You can backup on the following clouds for free: Dropbox, Google Drive, Amazon S3, UpdraftVault, Rackspace Cloud, FTP, DreamObjects, Openstack Swift, Email.

If you are a premium user then you can also backup on: OneDrive, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Storage, Backblaze B2, SFTP, SCP, WebDAV.

SEO - Yoast SEO — Plugin that has been providing SEO for everyone from bakery shops to business tycoons since 2008. It takes care of the Wordpress SEO for you. With their feature to set canonical URLs for avoiding duplicate content, you are saved from the hassle of Google Penalties. Helps to write stunning content with relevance to SEO analysis. Facilitates Bulk editing for keeping your website in top notch condition. They offer more in their premium plan.

Anti-Spamming - Akismet Anti-Spam — Forget the worry about publishing malicious content from your website! This plugin performs a check on every comment and filter out the ones having resemblance from spam. It has a discard feature that will disbar the worst spam resulting in speeding up the website and reducing the disk space. An API key is needed to avail these features. This key is free for personal bloggers but not for commercial purpose.

Page load Acceleration - LightSpeed Cache for WordPress — LSCWP plugin is an all-round optimizer meant for delivering faster page loading. It has a varied collection of features including an exclusive server-level cache. It is compatible with many popular plugins including Yoast SEO. General features are made available to everyone with any web server. LiteSpeed Exclusive Features are only for people having one of the below: OpenLiteSpeed, LiteSpeed-powered hosting, LiteSpeed products.

Screenshots for Cross Browser Testing - Lambdatest ScreenshotsCross browser testing made easy! You can generate screenshots across 2000+ mobile and desktop browsers and their versions to understand the appearance of your website on multiple manufacturers. All you need to do is register for free and you get to test on the following browsers: Google chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Opera, IE, Safari.

You get to select a total of 25 browsers for a single test! Once you choose the desired browsers and their versions, all you need to do is click on Capture. Tada!! You get all the screenshots you need in a single page. You can avail 10 such sessions every month for free. If you are willing to use more for commercial purpose then you can opt for the flexible plans offered in which you can generate unlimited screenshots. !

Database Clean up - WP-Optimize - Automatically cleans up your wordpress database to aid your website’s efficiency. It does so by removing irrelevant data i.e spam, trash, stale data etc. It is compatible with Updraft Plus and triggers an optimize data backup automatically. Mobile friendly and intuitive. Also, comes into several languages. Take control of your MySQL tables without worrying about manual queries and unleash potential by making more space on your website. Keep it clean with WP-Optimize!

Social Media plugins - Social Media Share button and Social Sharing Icons — Use this plugin to increase your website reach absent cost. This allows you to share across 200+ social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Google+, Instagram, Youtube. They also offer a premium plan where you get more social media platforms. You also get a wider variety of design styles, themes, friendly support if you get stuck and a lot more. If you find it intriguing then check their premium plan here.

Stage or Sandbox environment setup - WP Staging — DB & File Duplicator & Migrations — This plugin allows you to clone your production, migrating data in cloned environment in seconds. Cloning is crucial in order to make changes to your existing application. Before a change is brought in production, it ideally should be thoroughly tested in a stage environment. Stage is only accessible to administrators making it a safe and reliable plugin. It has an admin bar that will reflect whether you are working on stage or not.

Beta Testing - Wordpress Beta Tester - Intuitive plugin for Beta testing. Has a built-in upgrader button that will deploy candidate into the latest beta. P.S — Do create your backup before you begin.

A/B Testing — It is the type of testing where you create two variants of a web page and compare which one will fit best for your website on the basis of user interaction on both the variants. Tools for A/B testing:

Nelio AB Testing — A very robust and versatile plugin that allows you to track, coordinate and define your A/B experiments. It is compatible with WooCommerce. They provide a free trial once that is over. You will have to subscribe to one of their plans for availing their service further.

Simple Page Tester — Free and easy to comprehend plugin. If you are not looking for something as heavy as Nelio and you are focused only on simple comparison between two variants then Simple Page Tester would be the right call. Its premium feature will give you detailed analytics regarding statistics along with full conversion tracking.

Accessibility testing — To know about accessibility testing follow this blog on Unboxing the concept of Cross Browser Accessibility. Tools for accessibility testing:

Access Monitor - This plugin makes use of web accessibility service to run automated accessibility tests for your website. You can even schedule these runs on weekly or monthly basis. Helps to point out where the issue is by reporting it. Redundant issues get merged into the first appearance.

WP Accessibility — This plugin can be used for applying fixes to common existing accessibility issues. This will help to add basic accessibility issues with least required setup or expert opinion. You can add labels to standard fields on website’s forms. Helps in rectifying title attributes from archive menus, page lists etc. and can do a lot more.

Social comments - Super Socializer - A free, light-weight, mobile responsive and AMP compatible plugin. It allows integrations on multiple Social Media platforms for login, sharing and commenting. This plugin is compatible with BuddyPress, WooCommerce and BBPress. You can also customize icons and their team provides a 24x7 customer support.

Security - The more crowded a platform, the more it gets targeted by hackers.

Vulnerability Alerts — This open-source plugin facilitates a daily basis scan on the system and list security vulnerabilities according to WPScan Vulnerability Database. If a vulnerability is identified then you get alerted on email.

Stop User Enumeration — This is another top rated open source plugin that prevents your website from User Enumeration attack where hackers try to discover your login credentials by brute-forcing password attacks.

Well, these in my opinion are mandatory plugins for Wordpress that every user should be aware of! It is a long list but is evidently binding if you are planning on a scaling your website on wordpress.