29 WordPress plugins I use and why they’re worth the memory for me

3 Comments »

One of the advantages of setting up WordPress on my own server is the ability to add plugins that make my blogging life easier. Each plugin takes a little bit of extra memory, but I think they’re worth it. Here are 31 of the plugins I use on my blog at http://sachachua.com . (If you’re curious about where I host, I use Linode at $30/month, although there are cheaper hosting options)

Organization

WordPress Editorial Calendar
Awesome way to see what I’ve got scheduled for when, and drag-and-drop interface for rescheduling posts
Redirection
Super-useful for setting up short URLs or dealing with broken links
Share a Draft
Excellent way to give people sneak previews
Show Menu Shortcode
More shortcuts for adding in-page navigation
Short Post URLs
Quick numeric URLs for easy sharing

Commenting

Akismet
spam filtering for comments
Better WordPress Recent Comments
paginated list of comments in my sidebar. I like quickly seeing new comments, so this is handy.

Security

Better WP SecurityBecause a compromised blog sucks.Wordfence SecuritySecurity, of course

Discovery

On This Day
Because I’ve got more than ten years of posts and it’s interesting to look back into the past
WordPress Popular Posts
Because data
Post-Plugin Library
Needed by the Similar Posts plugin
Similar Posts
Suggestions

Categories and tags

Term Management Tools
Rein in your categories and tags
Categorized
Gets rid of “Uncategorized” when I actually pick a category. Handy when I was reorganizing.
Display Posts Shortcode
Lets me easily list posts from a category or tag
WP Views
Flexible system for creating lists of things (paid plugin)

Images

Easy Add Thumbnail
Because I’d rather not set the featured image myself if I already have an image
NextGEN Gallery by Photocrati
Easy to add images to. Great for my sketchnotes.

Stats

FeedBurner FeedSmith
Because stats are helpful
Google Analytics for WordPress
Because stats are helpful

Other conveniences

Highlight Search Terms
Making life easier for searchers
Jetpack by WordPress.com
A behemoth of a plugin, but the subscriptions are easier for people
RSS Footer
Add links to my scraped content
WP-Polls
This makes it easy to ask quick questions, which I should do more of
Subscribers Text Counter
Social proof without dealing with visually-conflicting widgets
WP Missed Schedule
Helps guard against missed schedule posts. Still happens, though
A patched version of Auto Featured Image
I changed this to pick the largest image
Sacha Chua’s fixes
Little tweaks to make my blogging life easier, such as adding Share a Draft and Redirection to my post editing screen

Every so often, I go through my list and remove plugins I don’t use as much in order to reduce memory use and improve security. Still, with thousands of plugins available on http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins, there are always more ways to make blogs better. (Come to think of it, I should probably add a SEO-focused plugin too. WordPress SEO by Yoast seems popular…) Hope this list of favourites helps!

Which WordPress plugins do you use?
  • http://marcelwidmer.com marcelwidmer

    Thanks for sharing your plugin list, Sacha. (And your invaluable collection of know how, here in your blog!)
    Can you tell me, which plugin you’re using for the “On this page” block showing the seven posts on a page!
    Thanks for your great work!
    Kind regards
    Marcel

    • http://sachachua.com sachac

      You’re welcome! “On this page” is actually a little bit of custom code I wrote myself:

      <div class=”on-this-page”>
      On this page:
      <ul>
      <?php while(have_posts()):the_post(); ?>
      <li><a href=”<?php the_permalink(); ?>” title=”<?php the_title(); ?>” class=”entry-summary-title”><?php the_title(); ?></a></li>
      <?php endwhile; rewind_posts(); ?>
      </ul></div>

      • http://marcelwidmer.com marcelwidmer

        I love simple solutions – thanks a lot!