5 Simple WordPress Plugins

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All these plugins I have used on either my own websites or on client websites and they are all very simple to implement.  In fact simple is the key word in this blog post.

Spam

I used to use Akismet for my spam, but as a business website I was paying $5 per month for it.  It isn’t a great deal of money, but it wasn’t stopping the spam, it was just redirecting it. I then came across a plugin by the creator of CommentLuv (Andy Bailey) and have been using it ever since, on both mine and client websites.  It’s called Growmap Anti Spambot Plugin and it just creates a little tick box after your comments asking you to confirm you’re not a spammer.

I very rarely have any spam now, there is the odd occasion some gets through but it’s usually in the form of pingbacks rather than comments.

Back-up

I didn’t really think about backing my website up to begin with, I assumed my hosting company would have a back-up. I don’t know why I changed my mind, but I thought it a good idea to have something, just in case the terrible happens and my site vanishes into thin air. As a massive Dropbox fan I was pleased to see they have a plugin which saves your back-up to your Dropbox account. It’s very easy to set-up and now I have daily back-ups of all my websites just in case!  It’s called WordPress Backup to Dropbox and you will need to connect it to your Dropbox account, so make sure you open an account if you don’t already have one.

Images

I have two plugins under images because I found a great one today, which I’ll start with.  I was working on a redesign of a client website today and the new theme I was using had a great front page which used various widgets and images. My client has been posting to her website for around 3 years so there were a lot of images, I think around 1800. The problem was the thumbnails just didn’t line up properly.  After searching for a solution I came across Regenerate Thumbnails, it basically regenerates the thumbnails of all your image attachments.  I clicked regenerate all 1800 or so, and it whizzed through them really quickly.  The front page of the website now looks how it should do, and I’m really pleased I found this plugin, it’s saved me lots of work!

The other plugin I use a lot is the simplest of them all. it’s called Image Widget and you just place it in your sidebar, or other widget area and upload an image to it, or choose something from the media library. It just makes it so simple, you can include a caption, description and link and also change the dimensions if necessary.  I use this a lot, and it’s very simple to use!

Social Media

I have tried out a few plugins to present all my social media networks in a simple way, and finally found one that is simple but effective.  It’s called Simple Social Icons and you can customise it in many different ways, it has all the main social networks to choose from and in my opinion the most important ones, it also has RSS and email options too.

I hope you find my list helpful, I am always looking for new plugins to test on my websites – anything that makes creating websites easier is always a good thing.  If you have any you’d like to recommend, please comment below, and remember to tick that box confirming you’re not a spammer! 

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