Essential WordPress Plugins for 2012

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Essential WordPress Plugins

With a growing list of over 20,000 plugins, Being Mad sometimes it’s a little tricky figuring out just which plugins to use! This is a quick overview of the 12 essential WordPress plugins that every WordPress Blog should have. The good news is (at the time of writing this) they are all completely free. The below essential WordPress plugins relate to enhancing WordPress functionality, security, SEO, and Social Marketing.

Secure-WP

Security should always be your first concern when anything is reachable publicly on the internet – that is why I rank Secure-WP as one of the essential WordPress plugins out there. Don’t get me wrong – WordPress does a great job natively securing your Blog, providing that you keep the version updated.

However, Secure-WP bolsters that security further by removing oodles of information that hackers could use and removing some sensitive material from user accounts while preserving this information in the administrator’s account. Good stuff!

Spam Free WordPress

Spam is a HUGE problem with WordPress blogs, making an anti-spam plugin one of the essential WordPress plugins. I use Spam Free WordPress, which seems to be doing quite well. It has blocked over 8,000 spam comments throughout six months, a number that seems to grow exponentially. Now imagine having to go through 40-50 spam comments per day! One of the key reasons we use plugins is to save time, and Spam Free WordPress certainly accomplishes this!

Essential WordPress Plugins  – W3 Total Cache

After security and spam are taken care of, site speed is the next thing that comes to mind. No one will wait around 30 seconds for your webpage to load, so site speed is critical. I’ll now mention a couple of essential WordPress plugins that help supercharge your website.

The first is W3 Total Cache. This plugin is massively popular, downloaded almost 1.2 million times! It helps speed up your site by improving server performance, caching every aspect of your website, reducing download times, and providing transparent content delivery network (CDN) integration. In short, it makes your WordPress Blog faster!

WP Optimize

WordPress is database-driven. The more efficient the database is, the quicker pages can be accessed, and the faster your site loads to your visitors. However, a WordPress database can become polluted with needless information (such as deleted content, spam comments, old page revisions, etc.). This increases the overall size of the database and increases access times to that database. The result – your pages take longer to open.

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