Top 10 FREE WordPress Plugins for Your Blog

What are WordPress plugins?

Top 10 WordPress PluginsPlugins are add-ons or extensions applied to a set of software components, extending the abilities of a larger software application. A plugin will help third party developers to extend the main application, help add new features and also allow separation of a source code from an application because the software licenses are incompatible.

In other words, plugins are those applications that will enhance your website/blog.

Here we will give you a list containing best wordpress plugins, which are mostly suitable for your blog.

Top 10 WordPress Plugins

1. All In One SEO Pack – It is a MUST HAVE plugin on your blog. Anybody who doesn’t know the ABC’s of SEO can instantly download it free of cost, install it on WordPress and see the SEO working its wonders. For $39, you can purchase a pro-version also with unlimited license. Both the free and the paid one are allegedly the #1 Most Downloaded WP Plugin. The All in One SEO Pack creates meta-tags automatically, allowing you to pre-define other meta-tags and meta-titles on the blog page.

2. WordPress SEO – Supposedly the competitor of All in One SEO Pack and much better software, the WordPress SEO plugin has been developed by Joost De Valk of Yoast.com. With this plugin, you need not use HTML sitemaps and/or Google sitemaps. Also, with this plugin you can enter the Meta values for Bing Webmaster Tools, Yahoo! Site Explorer and Google Webmaster Tools.

3. Share This – This plugin is the life and soul for social media promotion. Its flash-based user interface and its compact nature makes it different from other social media plugins. You can choose the social media sites to include and customize it according to your preferred appearance, color scheme and others.

4. Theme Tester – If you have a money making traffic laden blog and you decide to update it with latest themes, what you will usually do is put the site on “maintenance mode” while you change the theme and other settings. This means loss of precious traffic, affiliate clicks (if any) and loss of money. But if you install the Theme Tester plugin, you need not put the blog under maintenance mode. The present design works as usual while the Webmaster tries out new design/s. Your readers will see the previous design while the Administrator customizes HTML, CSS and other components. Once you are done, you activate the new site without worrying about losses.

5. CommentLuv – Blogging and commenting go hand-in-hand. While some comments are downright spam; others are well thought of and in-depth comments. These kinds of comments coming from other bloggers do deserve a link back to their blog. How do you do it? You install the CommentLuv plugin. What this does is it extracts the latest blog post from the RSS feed of the commentator and displays it right below their comment!

6. Akismet – The Akismet plugin is now a standard plugin for all WordPress accounts, whether free or paid. The plugin differentiates between spam and real comments and shows it on your dashboard. However, it is software nonetheless and it can sometimes mark a real comment as spam. Therefore, keep monitoring those spam comments on your blog. If any comment does not seem like spam, mark it as ‘not spam’ and post them.

7. Broken Link Checker – Unless you are using the ‘Digi Link Doctor’ plugin, you do not need this free plugin. The Link Checker does scheduled scans on your blog, checking any broken links and notifying you of the same. Since Google and other search engines believe in improving user experience, leaving broken links on a site can seriously disturb this experience. Run the Link Checker once a week and fix the broken links, if any, ASAP.

8. Amazon Affiliate Link Localizer – If you are an Amazon affiliate, you definitely need this one. This plugin has been designed to help Amazon buyers localize their need. For instance, a buyer from UK will prefer to buy Amazon products from the amazon.co.uk site and not from the US site because it saves shipping costs. By using this plugin, you can specify the country-wise affiliate ids. When a user wishes to purchase, the user will be directed towards that Amazon site that is in their locale. The plugin uses the IP address of the user to make this decision.

9. FD Feedburner – Syndicating the RSS is an often overlooked setup. Bloggers don’t realize the need for RSS and how it can help create a list of RSS subscribers using their favorite RSS software. If you are not using the Google Reader, you can use the FD Feedburner from WordPress.

10. SEO Smart Links – An ideal plugin to develop internal linking on your blog. The SEO Smart Links identifies phrases and keywords in your posts and comments, and links it with other posts and pages on your blog. Internal linking is an important part of global SEO development. If you want, you can create a separate list of keywords and corresponding links so that when those keywords show up on your post, the matching URLs will be automatically posted.

2 Bonus WordPress Plugins

11. WP-DB-Backup – This plugin is necessary to backup your database. You can schedule the plugin to update database tables and email it as ZIP file on a scheduled basis. This is necessary to protect your information from any technical goof-ups.

12. Simple Tags – This plugin is used with WordPress 3.0 and 3.1. Here you can do tags management, edit mass tags, add auto tags, and receive tags suggestion from Alchemy, Zemanta, Yahoo! Term Extraction API, Local DB with AJAX request, Tag the Net and OpenCalais. The plugin is compatible with FCKeditor, TinyMCE, WYMeditor and QuickTags.

What all plugins do you use? Please leave your suggestions and experiences below…

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