On the WordPress library, there are tens of thousands of free plugins. In addition to the useful plugins, junk utility is not lacking.
And if you use too many plugins for a website, it is very likely that conflicts between plugins or load times of your website will increase (as more code from the plugin is added). The wp-admin page is also affected.
So, for newbies, you should only use about 10 plugins. Learn WordPress slowly, understand it and then finally choose the plugin that you feel “really necessary.”
This article will briefly outline the most basic plugins that you should use for your WordPress website. But before that, you should get a glimpse of The 10 Types of Plugins Every WordPress Site Needs.
- How to Install WordPress Plugins Tutorial
- The basic free WordPress plugins for new website
How to Install WordPress Plugins Tutorial
Before you decide which plugin to use, you must know how to install it.
Just like installing WordPress theme, you can install the WordPress plugin very simply in two ways: Install directly in the plugins library of WordPress or if you have the plugin in the computer (.zip) then upload it.
Method 1: Install the plugin on the WordPress Plugin library
With the plugin available on the WordPress library, just go to Plugins => Add New
Enter the name of the plugin you want to install into the search bar and then enter, then click Install Now to start installing the plugin, for example to find a plugin named Contact Form 7 and proceed as installation as shown below:
You wait a few seconds it will automatically install, after installation is successful it will be similar to the image below, click Activate Plugin to activate the plugin has been installed.
That’s it, you’ve already installed the free plugin on the WordPress plugin library
Method 2: Install the .zip file from your computer
There are many paid and very good plugins, or someone gave to you, then you will download and save in the .zip file. With these plugins you will install it like this:
You still go to Plugins => Add New but now you click on Upload Plugin to proceed to upload the plugin from your computer.
Then select the .zip file in your computer, for example in the below image I am installing the Contact Form 7 plugin, then click Install Now:
Similarly, click Activate Plugin to activate the plugin, so you are done.
Many of you do not know where the .zip file from the computer came from, there are the following ways:
- For the free wordpress.org plugins, you can google search the plugin name, which will lead to the official download page on wordpress.org. For example:
You just need to visit that link and download the .zip file of the Contact Form 7 plugin to your computer and upload it.
- With premium plugins, when you buy or you are shared from others, there will also be a .zip file for you to upload.
It is mandatory that the file be formatted as a zip file. If it’s in another format then you will not be able to upload and install.
You may find installation of the plugin very simple. Here are some basic plugins that you will need to use for your wordpress site:
The basic free WordPress plugins for new website
When you make a website, you have to face spamming problem. Many people use automated tools to spam comments, to subscribe to your site. And Akismet is a free anti-spam plugin nowadays.
And Akismet is a popular free anti-spam plugin today.
Once installed Akismet plugin, it will ask you to register a KEY to activate. This work is quite simple, but note when you register please drag the price to 0$ to be able to use this plugin for free.
This is a plugin that supports hidden functions in the WordPress editor that you must use. You can check out the first post, if you do not have this plugin, you will see something missing, for example, no size, no underline, …
Advanced TinyMCE will solve this problem for you. It even supports a number of advanced functions such as creating tables, adding some options when creating lists, adding font options, font sizes, and more.
This is a plugin developed by WordPress itself and is very versatile. The feature I use most often is view access statistics, pageview, find our where source traffic comes from.
Jetpack is a feature-rich plugin, so if you like which feature, use it, or turn it off. You can see a list of Jetpack’s features at: https://jetpack.com/features/
Once the Jetpack installation is complete, to activate it you need to link to your WordPress.com account. If you do not have an account yet, please sign up.
This is a powerful and completely free SEO plugin developed by Yoast, which now has over 1 million installs. The main function is to help you optimize the title tag, description, create sitemap XML, support Social Media, … But there are many other functions that I will detail in another article.
Just add a short paragraph to the article, the shortcode will turn into many different effects. That’s what the Ultimate Shortcode can do for you.
Shortcodes Ultimate is a shortcode library that contains many different functions. Thanks to that, you can decorate post posts, optimize visual marketing and increase conversion rates.
Shortcode Ultimate has over 50 different shortcodes that you can use. Examples include text highlighting, quotes, call-to-action buttons, notes, locked content, sliders, icon lists, and much more.
If you are too bored with the look of default comment section and want to find something special, wpDiscuz is not a bad choice.
wpDiscuz will provide more features than a basic comment form of wordpress. For example, add interactives like buttons or share buttons, or add custom features to a form requesting information for comments, anonymous comments, scrollable comments, and much more.
Especially wpDiscuz has a very modern & easy-to-view interface.
Contact Form 7
Your website can not be missing contact details. Contact Form 7 is a simple, professional way to create contact forms. The advantage of this contact plugin is its superior customization.
You can quickly create a contact form, then the plugin will give you a shortcode. You can use this shortcode to insert anywhere on the website you want. Usually you should create a separate contact page and place it on the menu of the site.
W3 Total Cache
If you do not have enough money to use premium plugins like WP Rocket to speed up the page load then you can use W3 Total Cache. It’s free but its quality is not inferior to other paid plugins.
W3 Total Cache improves the user experience on your site (thereby improving SEO) by increasing the site’s performance, reducing the load time of the visitor through features such as integrated content delivery network (CDN).
This plugin has many different features to make the website run smoother, including for mobile version or website using SSL security protocol. This plugin is committed when fully configured, you will feel the site completely fast, or can test with Google Page Speed
Social Sharing Plugins
For readers, visitors can conveniently like or share your article, you should use the plugin to attach social buttons. Plugins like this are many, you just test to see which is the most suitable.
I suggest you some plugins like:
- Simple Share Buttons Adder
- Social Sharing, Smart Popup & Share Buttons by GetSocial.io
- AddToAny Share Buttons
- Easy Social Share Buttons
If you are making money with affiliate marketing, Pretty Link is a must-have plugin dedicated for shortening links.
Because affiliate links are very long and unprofessional, you should shorten the link by domain name and the text that matches the product you are promoting.
In addition to shortening, Pretty Link will help you statistics click on each link, add nofollow attribute to increase the Google bot friendly, … And many other features.
If you are a beginner, first use WordPress and the basic plugin for proficiency. What you really need then you use, do not use too many plugins in a site if you do not know what to do it.
There are many other good plugins, and most are paid. However, with the 10 free plugins I mentioned above, you will have a good time to learn and use the plugin for proficiency before using more advanced plugins.
Featured image credit: Modest Money