10 WordPress Plugins for a Faster, More Search Friendly Blog


If you are blogging to promote yourself or your company, then there are two trends you need to be very concerned about…

The speed of your site and social sharing.

For the last two years, search engines like Google have been putting heavy emphasis on these two issues. Plus, web users are abandoning sites that are slow to load, and they are moving towards reading content with high social shares.

But how do you make your site faster? And how do you encourage more shares?

Fortunately, if you use WordPress, then most of the work is done for you. You just simply have to download one of these plugins, tick off some boxes, and be off to a faster site with more shares.

Download this checklist of 10 WordPress plugins for a faster, more search friendly blog.

Here are the ten plugins that you ought to use:

Plugin #1: WordPress SEO by Yoast

All in One SEO used to be the go-to plugin when it came to easy SEO for WordPress blogs and sites. That’s until Yoast came out with WordPress SEO.

This plugin has many cool features, e.g, a snippet preview and a page analysis to help you optimize a page’s content, including meta data such as titles, keywords and descriptions:

wordpress yoast

Other options include:

  • Robots meta configuration – Keep single posts or pages out of the index…or entire sections with this simple feature.
  • Canonical – This allows you to control the correct canonical on each page, including the homepage, tags, and categories. (This got messy when Yahoo, Google, and Microsoft started supporting a new link element to clean up duplicate URLs on sites.)
  • Breadcrumbs – Control which taxonomy to show for each post and control which title to use for each post, page and taxonomy.
  • Permalink clean up – You can make sure that links pointing toward you are clean (they don’t end in a weird variable like /2 at the end of them) by directing those weird links away from you.
  • XML sitemaps – Using a XSLT stylesheet renders your sitemap readable by humans but also talks to your SEO plugin so that when you noindex a page, it won’t accidentally still end up on your sitemap, which happens when you use a different XML sitemap generator.
  • RSS enhancements – Add a piece of content to the beginning and end of your content, which allows you to link back to your blog and the particular blog post…helpful if your content is getting scraped.
  • Robots.txt and .htaccess editing – This makes editing the robots.txt and .htaccess easy. You can now do it straight from the plugin’s Files menu.

Plugin #2: HTTP Compression

If a browser supports compression, then a blog using the HTTP Compression plugin will compress pages in gzip format…

…rendering a 60-80% reduction in the size of your pages, which turns into a 3 to 4 times increase in page speed, which is essential if you don’t want to lose visitors.

If you’re not using the latest version of WordPress, you may not be able to use the gzip compression. Test your blog using the simple tool at Is My Blog Working?

wordpress compression

If the “Your blog application doesn’t support gzip compression” is showing up, then you probably need to install the latest WordPress version.

By the way, this plugin won’t work if you are using WP Super Cache since it uses compression functionality. Your blog will still work, but WP Super Cache will stop caching new pages.

Plugin #3: WP Super Cache

Another plugin that speeds up your site, especially in the case of a sudden surge of traffic, is the WP Super Cache, which creates static HTML files that are served instead of the heavier PHP scripts in WordPress.

Super Cache helps in two scenarios: when your server is underpowered or when you are experiencing a heavy surge of traffic.

It’s been tested under some extreme examples…and proven to work without a hiccup.

For example, Scott Beale had a page show up on the Digg front page twice, a mention on Slashdot and some major media exposure…with over 200,000 page views in one day:

wordpress traffic

Scott was using Super Cache and didn’t experience a slowdown in server speed.

Plugin #4: Facebook Comments Box

Comments Box is a social plugin that enables users to comment on your site.

facebook comments

There are two key benefits to using Facebook Comment box for your comments:

  • Social relevance – The most relevant comments, comments left by friends, the highest liked comments or active threads are all ordered from top to bottom, basically leveraging the social signals of users.
  • Distribution – Using this plugin allows you to spread a discussion onto Facebook. When users keep the “Post to Facebook” box checked, their comments will show up on their Facebook streams, exposing their comments and your blog post (and the link) to their friends.

That last point allows your friends to now comment on the discussion by liking or replying to your comment, which is done directly in Facebook. However, these discussions are all linked and connected back to your site. This perfect social commenting ecosystem is why Raven Tools made the switch to Facebook Comment Box.

Unfortunately, this plugin renders your comments in an iFrame (yes, that means Facebook owns your comments), which search engines will not crawl.

The workaround is to grab the comments from the API

facebook api

…and stick them in the body of your page behind the comments box. But that’s a lot of work, so you need to decide if the advantages gained in social sharing are worth the losses in SEO impact.

Plugin #5: WPtouch

More and more people are accessing the Internet via their smart phones. Unfortunately, most websites and blogs are not mobile phone friendly. That means you need to get your site ready for mobile use…or miss out on opportunities to spread your content in a new way.

Fortunately, if you have a WordPress website or blog, adapting it to being mobile is pretty simple due to the WPtouch plugin.

This plugin takes your WordPress blog and turns it into an app-like theme:

wordpress iphone

The plugin works on iPhones, iPod Touches, Android, Blackberry 0S6 and Palm Pre/Pixi and gives users control to switch between the WPtouch theme or your regular view.

And keep in mind this does not change a bit of code.

The WPtouch Pro gives you more options with theme style, color, 10 languages and even advertising options. Also, the 2.6 version gives you iPad theme support.

Plugin #6: WP-DBManager

Your database can get clunky and cluttered by all the WordPress features…and if you are a blogger who’s been at it for years…then your site will slow down in speed, potentially driving away visitors.

This will only get worse as you add more articles.

Use the WP-DBmanager and you can clean up that database and improve site performance. It will allow you to analyze…

wordpress database

…and then repair, optimize, and back up your files.

You can even set this to work automatically.

But it’s important that you understand the basics of databases. If you don’t, then this plugin will be just too complex for you to use, and I wouldn’t recommend using it. The last thing you want to do is mess something up.

Plugin #7: Yet Another Related Post Plugin

Sometimes visitors may land on your site because they followed a link. And the article they scan may not be of much use to them…

But the articles that you recommended, however, may turn out to be something they are interested in, which they then share.

This is why I use a plugin like the Most Popular post as it widens the net of interest for my readers. But it’s also why you should consider using the Yet Another Related Post Plugin.

In essence, when you write a post, this plugin will scan your archives, find articles that are relevant to that particular post and then display them at the end of your posts.

wordpress related posts

With this plugin, you’ll get:

  • Customized recommendations – The algorithm will look at post titles, tags, categories, content and keywords to determine which other posts should show up at the end of your posts.
  • Customize template – You can also control the look of your post.
  • Caches – The plugin will store these recommendations in the cache to improve site speed.
  • RSS feeds – Recommendations will also show up in your RSS feed.
  • Prohibit certain tags and categories – You can also control which page or post doesn’t get recommendations.

While it’s not fully customizable, you can also tweak the recommendation engine to deliver posts that are pretty close to what you prefer. It pretty much lets you customize which posts you want to appear.

Plugin #8: ShareThis

Making your social sharing buttons visible will help you get higher rankings as more people share your content.

With over one million sites using ShareThis (like Mashable and U.S. News), you know you are in good company. Why is it so popular? Because you can install and customize it in just under a minute.

You can also give your visitors the option to share over 50 social networks, including email, and also get real time metrics:

wordpress sharethis

You can even identify the best audience to promote to by using the Social Quality tool and embed the buttons directly into the media, whether an image or video, with the Social Advertising Units.

When using ShareThis, make sure you optimize it for speed.

Plugin #9: Simple Ads Manager

A lot of bloggers embed ads on their sites to help monetize their social media, but too many ads can slow down your site speed.

The trick is to find the one or two top performing ads and place them in the best position on your blog.

But how do you figure this out? Simple: just download the Simple Ads Manager plugin. It’s got a great UX to help you manage the position and weights of your ads:

wordpress ads

And there are dozens of ways you can customize your ads, including:

  • Deliver ads as a block
  • Deliver ads in a single page or post
  • Deliver ads based on types of pages
  • Automatic outputting ads in single post/page if allowed
  • Schedule of ads
  • Deliver ads based on hits or clicks

You’ll also get plenty of statistics based upon impressions and clicks and a process to accurately detect crawlers and bots.

Plugin #10: Google Analytics for WordPress

You can’t really know how well your blog is actually performing if you don’t track and measure. That’s why analytics are so important…and why I recommend you use the Google Analytics for WordPress plugin.

The installation is super simple, and it uses the asynchronous Google Analytics tracking code so that it doesn’t slow down your website. Plus, the plugin has a lot of other functions such as:

  • The code will automatically track your site speed.
  • You can track outbound links and all downloads.
  • Easily connect your Analytics account with your AdSense account.
  • Track metadata like author, post type, logged in users, publication year and tags.

Keep in mind that you can’t run this plugin with another Google Analytics plugin…otherwise the tracking will break.


If you are using WordPress, then you really have no excuse not to be running a fast and social-friendly site. The plugins I suggested above can improve the performance of your site almost overnight with minimal effort. For more of WordPress top plugins, I recommend that you check out WPMU.org’s list.

What WordPress plugins do you recommend for bloggers to speed up their sites and make their sites social-friendly?

P.S. If you are having issues with any of the plugins above, there are affordable premium WordPress services that offer plugins and support.

Update: A better plugin for caching is W3 Total Cache. You should use that plugin instead of WP Super Cache.

P.S. If you want more help optimizing your blog click here.


  1. Great list Neil.

    It’s really important to have a plugin like WP Super Cache, as because I was to lazy to install it on one of my sites, I got a hostgator suspension after receiving over 230k UV in 1 day from some viral campaign.

    If I had a cache plugin, I couldn’t have that much pressure on server, so things could have been so much better.

    Thanks again for the list 🙂

    • You definitely have to be mindful of your server’s capabilities. Glad you spotted the problem. 🙂

  2. Great list Neil. I’ll have to try some of those out.

    Only thing to be aware of with Super Cache is that it interferes with mobile plugins like WPtouch Pro, which in my case is >25% of our traffic.

    • There are always going to be some overlapping flaws. I suggest you hold off on adding certain mobile plugins if you are aware of those issues 🙂

  3. These are the useful plugins indeed for a blog to become search engine friendly. To get the power of Yoast SEO plugin, we can use the combination of All in One SEO+Robots Meta plugin and I always prefer to use the AIO SEO plugin rather than Yoast.

    Thanks for the compilation of WP plugins !

    • Mahesh, glad you found the article useful. I tried to put together a list of the most helpful plugins for myself and ended up blogging about it.

  4. One of the best posts you have written – very ‘on target’ to the title. I will be implementing at the least, the FB Comments on one of my sites, and also testing a few of the others you mentioned.

  5. Gilbert West :

    I’d include Search Everything in that list as includes tags, categories and other meta data in a user’s search helping giving them better search results

    • Definitely, great suggestions Gilbert. Those are are all valuable things to include..

    • It is great to see a post like this because people can always add even more useful info this way. The list is of great help for anyone that use WordPress and putting all of them together will definitely improve the users experience.

  6. rakesh kumar :

    Thanks a lot neil for this List. At least in this case i am not out dated. I am using almost all of them on my site/blog.

  7. Excellent post. I was looking for something to make my website more mobile friendly. WpTouch should work well it seems. If you don’t mind me asking, what plugin/code do you use to show the Recommended link on the bottom right of the browser that pops up when you’re reaching the end of the article? I’ve been looking for a plugin that does that for ages.

    • That’s a custom plugin I use. You should look around though, there are plenty of similar plugins.

  8. Great Post. I’m excited to test some of these plugins out! Thanks!

  9. I definitely recommend all the ones listed. The exception might be WP-touch.

  10. I to being of the olderskool variety thought All-in-one-SEO was the business, until I tested YOAST 1000x more advanced!

  11. Harsh Agrawal :

    Do we really need HTTP compression if we are using gZIP feature of super cache? And now, instead of wptouch, I would suggest go for responsive design…

    • It all depends on what you are looking for. There are a number of different strategies. Sounds like a good strategy..

  12. David Allred :

    WordPress by Yoast blows away the competition. Agreed! I have been using a few other plugins in your list for years now.

    Another plugin I use that works real well is “Facebook page publish” – It’s a little advanced but automatically publishes to a profile or page with every post.

    Thanks for the list Niel.

  13. I also preffer All in One Seo. Yoast’s SEO plugin has so much options, and it can be confusing, even for us who have mastered basics or more of SEO. I would love if someone who knows SEO, and also uses Yoast’s SEO plugin, to make an tutorial.

    Thank you Neil, great content as always.

    • Dragutin,
      I will talk to people with great knowledge of Yoast to see if they could accommodate that request. I think it is something more people should talk about.

  14. Anshul @Nichesense Niche Marketing :

    Nice one Neil. I blogged about my 10 favourite wordpress plugins just last week although they were more focused on monetization and how to make more money from blogs and websites.

    WordPress SEO is the standout for me here, as I have always used All in one SEO.

    • Great topic to blog about. You should try some new SEO tools to help your blog out. I always love to test new products!

  15. great list. WP-Pagenavi is another nice one which shows page numbers instead of built in previous and next post buttons

  16. I see you opted for standard WP comments on this blog, no FB Comment block. So for you, the SEO value is greater than the social sharing value??

    Thanks for this list, btw. Some great plug-ins in here. I’ll get these added to our 2 WP sites right away.

    With appreciation,
    Rob Toth

    • Good catch, you are right on. I have used the FB block for other blogs, but not for this one. Let me know how the new add-ins work for you 🙂

  17. WordPress is power full that’s why a lot of people are using it.
    All in One SEO is wonder full , it saves a ton of time.
    Thanks Neil for feeding more your suscribers

  18. Sandy Moore :

    Hi Neil,

    I see this happening a lot, bloggers recommending certain tools and plugins and not using them yourself.

    I’m interested to know if you have used Facebook comments plugin and what results you received from it or why it’s not on your blog it it’s so powerful.

    Who’s tested this… are Facebook comments a more powerful commenting option compared to standard comments on your website?

    You should at least use it Neil or do you have a reason not to? Let me know.

    Sandy Moore

    • I’ve used it on some of my other blogs but I don’t use it on Quicksprout. I agree though, I think people who suggest items should have at least tried it themselves.

  19. Tim Anderson :

    Thanks for sharing your personal opinion.

    Just one question. Is it a must now to convert our WordPress site to become mobile version?

    Because I’ve looked a lot of professional website owner has done so. How this will affect users in terms of mobile browsing?

    Thank you for answering my question Neil. 🙂

    • I think it is essential for all webpages to be mobile friendly. The amount of web traffic coming from mobile is increasing phenomenally.

  20. Gregory Ciotti :

    Not sure I like the Facebook comments, it leaves all of your discussion on a 3rd party platform, one which have no control over.

    • Stuart Wooster :

      That is exactly why uninstalled it. What I’d prefer is a plugin that allows the commenter to post to their Facebook that they left a comment of your site.

      The only justification for using Facebook comments is that it allows you to build an audience easier (especially when starting out) and it is a seamless way of doing what I mentioned above.

      • Definitely, great points. It all depends on how you want to interact with your facebook users and if you want to grow an audience that is engaged.

  21. Nice list, and I am using WP-DBManager and YARPP on my blogs.

    Regarding the caches, I think W3 Total Cache is better than WP Super Cache now. And another plugin to increase the page speed is WP Smush.it, which is perfect for you to optimized images.

    I haven’t used any plugin for a mobile version, since I like readers to see the same things whether from their computers or mobile phones.

    Just some of my experiences for references. 🙂

  22. The one which was very new to me was the WP Touch and DB manager. You always fetch a unique, huge yet worthy list of tools that can help bloggers and SEOs. Thanks for sharing it for free!

  23. Charles Montgomery :

    Hey Neil – thanks for the good stuff! I looked at your link to FB’s comments plugin but didn’t see the install instructions so I moved on to trying to find another that might solve the SEO problem… I installed SEO Facebook Comment (http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/seo-facebook-comments/) and it seems to work pretty well. It mines the FB comments and puts them into the WP comment engine so the crawlers can find them. Also when someone posts a comment it automatically posts to their Facebook so in essence shares at the same time… I put it into my new responsive design site (http://charlesmontgomery.me) – unfortunately it isn’t responsive LOL but I don’t think anyone will notice… did you have any caveats with that plugin per se, or not find it perhaps?

    I had been ducking caching plugins because of compatibility issues but got brave because you recommended it. I didn’t know they had HTML compression in a plugin so that was a great find – and I went with share this also – so thanks!

  24. Paul Barstow :

    Thanks a lot for the great suite, I use a lot of these already but Yoast looks really great, WP database looks interesting but I am a relative newbie and it may be a little scary, I use WP optimize which seems to do a similar job and I am very happy with it

    Thanks for the great list off to play with Yoast can you port over SEO all in one settings to it?

    • You can definitely complete most of the SEO essential tasks with Yoast. For the more complicated stuff you have to use other techniques and tools.

  25. howtogeneratetraffic.co :

    Yet another brilliant post. I think you’re the best blogger there is. Always lots of really easy actionable points. The only problem I have with the above list is that although Yoast looks brilliant (I have it already on one of my sites) I don’t really know how to use it properly as there’s so many options and I’m not a tech geek. Where could I get help on this? Also if you change from All in One SEO to Yoast you have to import your settings somehow and I don’t know how to do that either. 🙁

    • There are a few items on Yoast that are more valuable than otehrs. I think the ability to change title and meta tags is a very valuable component. You should definitely look into checking out the user guide on Yoast!

  26. The Young Bigmouth :

    I am already using most of the above, WPtouch is new to me and great too! Thanks.

  27. Thank you for emphasizing how the faster downloading of websites and sharing of content on the social media platform are essential to make search engines and customers happy. You’ve also given a wealth of info on the ten WP plugins.

    • Sid, glad you found the blog post helpful. Plugins are amazing if you harness their power correctly.

  28. matt mcinvale :

    Take a look at W3 Total Cache, more features than WP Super Cache.

  29. Nice post very informative! WP super Cache and WPtouch pluging i missed thanks for remind me, let me add too.

    Thanks for writing nice article.

  30. Very helpful content Thanks 🙂

  31. Mitch Mitchell :

    Neil, I ran the HTTP Compression test for my blog and it said it wasn’t compatible with the gzip thing, but I am updated with the latest software package so it has to be something else. It could be the theme, which is older.

  32. outsource web design :

    Awesome blog, each and everything cover in this with screeshots. Many congratulation for your hard work and thanks for providing such a good blog.

  33. I think there’s no difference between WP Super cache and W3 Total cache based on my testing.

    WP Super Cache is actually co authored by Automattic

    • They are very similar, but there are very subtle difference that I think can be noticed with certain types of test. Would love to hear more about your testing technique though!

  34. Hello Neil,

    Really nice list of Plugins to make wordpress blog faster. I have personal experience with almost all of the plugin that you’ve mentioned. And for me they all worked like a magical charm.

    But I think you missed one very important plugin LazyLoad which help us to compress the images to decrease the loading of sites. And I think this plugin is must for every blogger, because we all use images in each of our blog posts.

    And one more thing. I think that w3 total cache has more features and far more better then wp super cache. What’s your opinion.

    • I’ve never heard of that tool, I will definitely have to check it out. I think it is very important to maximize your blog’s speed. Thanks for the advice!

  35. hey Neil,

    Thanks for the tips. Need to figure out how to speed up the loading time on my site for sure.

    Neil , you are a very smart guy. The most learned man I ever read under and I’ve been reading on here for a long time.

    Not real successful but with your help maybe I stand a chance.

    Thanks again Neil. Your alright in my book!!!


    • Thank you Brent,

      I appreciate the support. I hope these tips work out for you. If you ever have any questions feel free to come back and ask.

  36. Wont some plugin slow down the blog too?

  37. shapes for kids :

    I had no idea of the existence of this plugins. I have been using WordPress for a while now. I will surely give them a try! Thank you once again for one more of your amazing posts.

  38. Ming | Affiliate Marketing :

    Great list of plugins. Out of those 10, I use pretty much all of them except I use W3 Total Cache instead of Super Cache, FB comment box and http compression. I did activate the FB comment once and some how it slows down my page load time drastically, not sure what’s happening, so I just disable it.


    • Thanks, that is strange that the FB comment box did that to your site. However I am glad you disabled it, it is better not to have it if it is slowing down your site drastically.

    • Johnny Vasquez :

      If you want to incorporate the ability for commenters to use Facebook as well as Twitter to interact and share their comments you might want to look into:

      http://livefyre.com – New kid on the block that’s very easy to use and is pretty slick looking.

      http://intensedebate.com – Has a cool API to let you add plugins that enable commenters to embed polls, youtube videos, etc.

      http://disqus.com – lets people create profiles that work across multiple blogs. Been around the longest.

      One problem is I believe all of these options use javascript to enable their functionality, which keeps them from being seen by search engines.

      I think the Comments Plus premium plugin is an integrated solution that allows people to login with FB, Twitter, or Google.


  39. Susan Jones :

    Hey Neil! Thanks for this post. It’s super useful. I have spent the last few days adding plugins to my site. I especially like the YARPP – it’s a great way to encourage people to keep browsing.

    I just installed the Share This plugin, but can’t seem to get it to have a vertical hovering share bar like you have (and Mashable). Do I need to get it customised to do this? Otherwise it looks great and the analytics will be really helpful too.

    • Awesome, glad these plugins have been helpful to you.

      You may have to get it customized, I myself have most of my site customized.

    • Johnny Vasquez :

      You might want to consider the new Digg Digg plugin. It was purchased by Buffer recently and includes a lot of options for incorporating social sharing buttons, including the floating bar and in your post. You can enable lazy loading to help speed things up. And it’s one of the few sharing buttons to use the Pinterest Pin It button.

  40. Ritesh Sarvaiya :

    Just perfect 🙂 Buddy, some time i wonder how much time you spend writing such Long posts ? Do you write all of this your self ? or you have some one else write for you ? I look forward to learn time management from you Neil, kindly let me know if you can teach me sir 🙂

    • Thank you Ritesh,

      I do write these post myself. They tend to take anywhere from 4 to 6 hours, depending on the length and detail.

  41. Joomla developers :

    All the plugins are effective for the blogger. Can you help me to get more information about the .htaccess and its uses

  42. Web Design Resource :

    This 10 plug-ins will help to increase traffic on the blog with genuine visitors because it makes your blog search engine friendly which is the great advantage that comes from the use of this plug-ins.

  43. Mohideen @ make money blog :

    WordPress is the best cms which can be accessed easily and Google loves too

  44. Bobby @ Sightness Photography :

    Ha Neil,

    I’ve got through all the points. For me the new plugin was http compression but as I use WP Super Cache , and you also said, so i won’t install it.

    And the Related Posts plugin is an absolute design disaster though it is page load speed friendly. Outbrain related posts is and alternative that can show thumbnails on related posts.

    Many people don’t use W3 Total Cache, still it’s the best caching plugin because it conflicts with other plugins.

    And One, Can you suggest and Popular Posts plugin that shows popular posts in sidebar with thumbnails. Couldn’t find one.


  45. Bruce Hunter :

    Great Post. Nrelate is a great alternative to the “Yet Another Related Post Plugin”.

  46. WordPress SEO by Yoast, is my favorite plugin. Since I started using it I have seen my site traffic go up significantly and my blog is optimized so much more easier. It really does it all for you and with a simple click, Google has already picked up my post. Can’t go wrong with that and the other plugins are some I have heard of or use, but didn’t really know the ins and outs of it. Thanks Neil.

  47. I have to agree with Sonia, WordPress SEO by Yoast has helped my site as well.

  48. Dr.Kavita Shaikh :

    Awesome tips here Neil. I have most of these plugins installed. but i need to get WP DB- Manager an WP-Touch

  49. Haven’t tried some of these plugins and hoping to use it real soon.. thanks Neil for sharing them.

  50. Robert Cipriano :

    Wow Neil! your inputs are very valuable. They’re all very applicable. I’ll be implementing these plugins to my blog tonight!

    God bless you for sharing this!

  51. Great list of plug in Nail !

    Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge. I will update some plugins as your recommend.

    I have a question about Yoast Robots meta configuration, can you help me how to setting this function. I don’t want some my post index but don’t know how to do.

  52. Hi Neil – great post and a very valuable list.

    I think you’ve made optimising your sites for SEO and speed of loading (all part and parcel of the same thing) so much easier.

    My favorites are: WordPress SEO by Yoast, HTTP Compression and ShareThis.

  53. Day trading course Joel Wissing :

    You mention to use the w3 cache, is it compatible with the HTTP compression?


  54. Yarrp is one of the slowest loading plugins for WordPress and not even accurate.

    I mean i really like related post links and think they are very useful for more page views by wouldn’t they be more effective at the top of the post or in the sidebar?

    I think the best way to setup related posts is by tags so you can list far more relevant content rather than random posts based on keywords or categories, many of which may not compliment the post they are displaying in.

    • Johnny Vasquez :

      Brad, you make a good point.

      I use YARPP on my site and have found it does a great job of recommending related posts on my site. But I’m not sure it’s done much to increase pageviews.

      I think a better option is using a popular posts side bar. Even better might be a flyout plugin like the one Neil uses here. It only makes one suggestion which eliminates the mental block caused by too many choices.

      You can apply for the private beta of the http://SimpleReach.com plugin. It uses social sharing buttons in the flyout.

      Or you can try Nrelate Flyout which is also free: http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/nrelate-flyout/

  55. Johnny Vasquez :


    I love lists like this. I’m always looking for ways to improve the ease of use of my site for both me on the backend and my vistors.

    I do have one small disagreement though.

    While WP-Touch is a simple solution for making site easier to use on mobile sites, I’m not sure it’s the best choice.

    It usually changes the look of the site drastically, making it unrecognizable for some visitors. If they are used to your desktop layout they may be confused and wonder if they are on the right site.

    I’ve noticed WP-Touch often has trouble rendering images at the right size as well. Many times you’ll only see a corner of the image if it was not imported into the post correctly.

    It also does not address the issue of viewing content on intermediary tablet devices like the iPad.

    I think the future is in responsive web design. There are a bunch of free WP themes and premium ones as well that allow a site to be easily viewed on multiple devices while still maintaining the look and feel of the site.

  56. hey great post, what is the plugin to obtain the three social button (google plus, twitter, facebook) like in this page that follow the reader?

  57. Health & Fitness Blog :

    Absolutely right on with the list of the plugins. I use 8 of these that you mentioned and must admit they are critically important to a faster and more search engine friendly blog, just as you mentioned.

    I particularly got great results from just installing WP Super Cache and this saved one of my blogs from moving into a VPS hosting, as it reduced the loading time considerably and allowed me to remain with shared hosting a while longer, 🙂

  58. Health Wrong :

    I love Facebook Comment Box as it can be quite viral too if everyone has the setting “Post To Wall” checked.

    I think I will start converting my blog to mobile version using WP touch.

  59. Great plugins for SEO, I use Easy WP SEO. Amazing it scores your pages as you type to make sure you are as optimized as you can be!

  60. Brittany Highland :


    Thank you for this list. I have been using All in One SEO for years and believe that it has been a great help. This is the first I’ve heard of WordPress SEO, but if you say it’s better, I am definitely interested in giving it a try.

    Do you have any insight on switching from All in One SEO to WordPress SEO? Will I need to go through each post manually, save the data I originally inserted, then copy it over to WordPress SEO? Will this transition hurt me at the engines?

    Appreciate your time,

  61. Robin Jennings :

    I’m finding WP Touch invaluable on many of my clients websites. Their budget doesn’t extend to creating an iPad ready site but with this plugin it makes it easy to get it 95% there.

  62. Robert Sinclair :

    Thanks neil this is some great information!

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    Hello Neil, I have found this blog while touring in the blog land. I would like to thank you for sharing such great information about WordPress plugins. This is really helpful for the blogger and webmasters as well. I am personally using “All in One SEO Pack” and “Google Analyticator” for my wordpress site – those are absolutely great plugin and easy to use also. Anyways, I have bookmarked your write up and will make sure to come back here again. Keep up the good work Bro.!

  64. Hi Neil – what is the content plugin in your sidebar for the Current Hits – All Time – Neil’s Favorites? Is it customized or is it like that out of the box?

    I notice you and other top bloggers (like Tim Ferriss) use this as the primary mechanism to draw people into your content. Do you have any insights or commentary on this plugin?

  65. Wade@Bloggers Make Money :

    Beautiful! This was exactly what I was looking for! I have just jumped to a self-hosted WordPress blog and I have been researching some plugins to use. I have most of these, but one’s like WP-SuperCache is something I don’t really understand how to use yet.

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    I’ve also just installed the WP Touch plug-in you recommended – the good thing about WordPress (and maybe the bad thing!) is how quick/easy it is to install a plug-in! Anyway – it works well, so thanks for that!

  67. Wade@Bloggers Make Money :

    I love using WordPress for my blog, there is a lot of things to use for it like you mentioned.

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    Great plugins for making my WordPress successful .. .. Normally i hate to use unnecessary plugins .. in My blog I am using only 7 plugins .. I was done everything in my script itself .. the HTTP G zip is may really worth .. I wish to use the same .. I will update you shortly the results ..

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  69. Hello Neil, I have found this blog while looking for the next best thing in blog land. Thanks for your great information about WordPress plugins. This is really helpful as a new blogger. I use “All in One SEO Pack” and from reading here I need to start using some others. Thanks for the info!

  70. Neil,

    Is it possible that cache plugins slow down Google indexing?

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  77. eCommerceFuel.com | Andrew Youderian :

    Neil, you asked ‘What WordPress plugins do you recommend for bloggers to speed up their site and make their site social friendly?’

    Well, my answer isn’t EXACTLY a WordPress plug-in but rather a hosting solution. I recently moved my WordPress blog over to WPEngine – a company that specializes in WordPress hosting – and it’s been noticeably faster. (I promise I don’t work for them!)

    While we’re on the topic of plug-ins, there’s one I’d like to recommend for your blog: Comment Reply Notification. You do a GREAT job of engaging readers by replying to their comments. But I’ve noticed your replies aren’t emailed out to the original commenter.

    While some commenters likely come back to check the post, I’d guess the majority – especially if they aren’t die-hard readers – won’t return to the original post to see if you replied. You might be losing out on a lot of goodwill and engagement as they never know you took the time to reply.

    But a great post! Bookmarked, and will definitely use the social sharing plugins you recommended. Thanks Neil!

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  91. Hi neil, thanks for listing these plugins. I also use YARRP for my site, although a bit design disaster but I think I will keep on use this plugin. I’m going to use WP Super Cache for fast loading site. Thanks for the list, it’s really so nice reading your post and all those comments. Glad to see those weren’t spammy!

  92. Anurag Upadhaya :

    This is one of the best list of plugins for WordPress that I have read. I use almost all of these plugins.
    Some pointers from experience:
    1) Yes mobile interface plugins interfere with analytics for sure. That’s why I am not using any. Hope there was a mobile plugin that would integrate generously with my analytics.
    2) nRelate is another good “related post” plugin.
    3) Thank me a later is one good “feel good” plugin that helps you to connect more with your visitors and commentors.

    There are many more and would love to read your reviews about them.

  93. When I originally left a comment I appear to have clicked on the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and from now on every time a comment is added I receive 4 emails with the same comment. Perhaps there is an easy method you can remove me from that service? Kudos!

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  107. Great list Neil. I just want to comment that if anyone using Woocommerce, Super Cache is not compatible as it will cache the cart and related pages.
    There are rumours saying that “Enabling late-init option” will solve the issue but I had no luck. There may be a possibility that you can exclude certain pages from caching by using certain keywords in the URL (cart, account, ex…) but I dont see this as a viable option and have not tried it yet.
    So I switched to W3TC and it seems Woocommerce is happy with my settings.
    Just my 0.05 cent….

  108. Very useful information. All in one seo and yoast seo plugin which is best?

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  115. Hi Neil Patel, Great list of WordPress Plugins. I am using some of the plugins which are listed above and will surely try out the other plugins. Thanks a lot for Sharing!

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  119. very useful post.thankssssss

  120. Very useful, very well worked, thanks, I install some plugins.

  121. Great Neil. All are awesome plugin. I also came to know about HTTP Compression plugin and will surely use it.

  122. I like Yoast wordpress SEO especially for new blog. But, When I try to use it for my old blog with All in one SEO, I got problem setting up custom SEO titile for older post.

    In All in one seo, You can combine custom title in each post with global custom title setting. But post custom title in Yoast wordpress SEO will always overwrite your global setting.

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    So, if you have many post with custom SEO and combine it with SEO title in global setting then stay with All in one SEO

  123. i wonder if wordpress is better than joomla

  124. bantragopxemay :

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  125. Thanks for the value-packed article.

  126. Thanks for this post. I am going to use these plugins. For making my site speedy I tried w3 total cache. But I am having problem with image processing. I wonder how some site load like ever ready with my slow internet connection, but I am not getting the same effect. I must find the answer.

    • Munna, please let me know what you find out. Also, please let me know if you have any other questions.

  127. Thanks for the info! I’m giving the HTTP Compression a try over Super Cache as I noticed a problem with my images using the latter…

  128. Hey Neal,

    I was curious if you currently use these plugins on your blog. If not, why?

    • Usually for Quick Sprout I use a lot of custom plugins because I have a lot of needs that are a bit unique. A lot of the generic ones above work well, and as you grow you can get custom ones made for your blog.

  129. Thank you so much for detailed explan.

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  161. Thanks Neil for this list of WP plugins. I use most of them. I am using WP Total Cache and i am facing some problems because i don’t know much about them. Right now i am searching for some tutorials on it. Also i am using Google AdSense plugin which is not working well with my theme. Thanks again for this list. Very helpful for beginners.

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