My top 10 WordPress MUST HAVE plugins

So while being a WordPress guru, I have started to create a list of plugins I always use when installing a new wordpress blog. I wanted to create a simple list as well as a link to them, (for my own future reference, as well as for my readers)

  1. Feedburner FeedSmith – Do you want to put ads or monitor your RSS/Atom Feeds. Sign Up for Feedburner and you will have access to this. WordPress is great for creating feeds, but you need to monitor and see how many of those readers actually just read your blog and don’t comment. I know it has blown me away, and sometimes helps me get through the dips knowing there are a bunch of people who subscribe to my blog. Thanks!
  2. Google (XML) Sitemaps Generator for WordPress – Seriously, who DOESN’T want SEO help. Adding this simple plugin creates your “sitemap” for your site and leverages the guidelines of sitemap dot org who now support the major Search Engines, Google, Yahoo!, and Microsoft. Just install, and bam, your SEO will go up as well as “get your blog out their”.
  3. Sociable 2.0 – 2007 was the year of Social Networks, why not leverage them and get your posts published on digg, del.icio.us, Stumble Upon, and many more. You can pick and choose the ones you want to show up, for easy adding for users. Highly recommend it, you just need 1 person to use it to make it worth your time. Very simple to setup/install, so just do it!
  4. TLA Inlinks – As much as I like to be that “volunteer” person, I have to say that blogging CAN and (prolly is) making you some money. I get the problems with Google Adsense and/or other Advertisements, christ I have (might) just be my own Advertisement and sell them through Google Checkout/Paypal, but have not done that (yet!). Making money blogging can be a part full time job. I enjoy blogging and it helps with seeing where I was in the past as well as offering the knowledge I have learned and giving to others. Text Link Ads pays a nice monthly figure, so why not leverage it if your not. Hey, bills don’t pay for themselves, and I know it’s a great way to leverage some passive income for bloggers.
  5. WP-Cache – For those who WANT to be on digg, make sure you can HANDLE the load, or even stumbleupon, you need to KEEP YOUR SITE UP. Caching will do that, so download/install, and be ready for a lot of traffic. It only takes 1 story to send you 10,000+ page views, so be ready.
  6. Back Up Your Data – Think of how much time you put into blogging, do you REALLY want to not have an “external” stored backup of your blog? The thing that should be valuable, other then the domain, is your content. I use this plugin to not only create weekly backups, but I also have them email them to a gmail account or offsite webmail. (A great place for simple/easy external storage of small files). I am not saying I use like 2 or 5gb of gmail, but I try and keep a couple of those compressed ZIP files in my inbox, just in case.
  7. Popularity Content – Notice that list of 10 posts at the top of my blog, labeled, Most Popular Posts. Yea I use this plugin to create that, and actually change some of the backend numbers to “push” other content. Posting up your “best hits” helps by getting those new blog visitors to see some of your “greatest work”. I find that I average about 2 page views per visitor to my blog. This means that they stay for at least 1 more click to another view, (and not always just the homepage). Having that list might perk their interests and want them to check out some other “great work” I have done. I know I could leverage this plugin more with posting up within each category, but maybe I will look at that on the next “redesign” of this blog
  8. Similar Posts – Something I just recently added and find it great! I do not have to do any work, it does some search/keywords matching and finds/list the posts. Pretty simple, but yet great for keeping the reader clicking on more inbound links.
  9. akismet – Got comment spam? Yea, I know back in wordpress 1.5 and previously, this was a big problem. Having open commenting means that you are constantly fighting an up hill battle. Well thanks to Akismet, all you need is a wordpress account and boom, copy the API key to your plugin, and it takes care of this comment spam problem.
  10. Dasher – Want to customize that Dashboard option in WordPress to view various things when you login, yea this will take care of that. Pretty customizable, and just what I need when I log into my blog.
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