I do WordPress blog installation and customization for my website design clients, and have developed a list of my favorite plugins. Here they are:
1. Akismet – Absolutely a “must have” WordPress plugin that usually comes pre-installed. As of the writing of this post, Akismet has protected me from over 600 spam attempts – and it grows every day. You need to get an API key, but Akismet will walk you through the process. Just “activate” Akismet from your blog admin “Plugins” and follow the directions.
2. Search Everything: I install this plugin on all blogs I work on, it makes the search function on WordPress better. (You don’t need this if you have WordPress 2.5)
3. All In One SEO Pack: Helpful for search engine optimization. If you have WordPress 2.5, it’s preinstalled, you just need to activate it.
4. Slashdigglicious: Puts those cute little social bookmarking icons at the bottom of each post.
5. FullTextFeed: Some of you may be using the “more” feature, that funny icon in between the tree-image icon and the ABC checkmark spellchecker icon. If you use this feature, like I do, it puts a break in your posts, so that on your blog’s home page, they don’t show the whole post. But the problem is that if you want feeds to show the whole post, you need this plugin to make sure that happens.
6. FeedSmith: If you use FeedBurner, you’ll want this plugin. It makes the RSS feeds go through FeedBurner so you can track your traffic. While it works for that orange RSS “auto discover” at the top of the browser window, I’ve had less luck with it changing it in the sidebar. I’ve been changing the RSS feed URL manually when my clients sign on to FeedBurner.
7. SubscriptionIcons: This WordPress plugin makes those cute little icons in the sidebar that makes it easier for people to subscribe to your blog. If you use FeedBurner though, it will take a bit of custom modification. But it’s neat to be able to turn them on and off via the admin area.
8. Subscribe To Comments: Gets the conversation going by letting people who leave comments subscribe to that post. Any future comments will be sent to them, and they have total control over their subscription.
Other people’s favorites:
Vladimir Prelovac’s Favorite WordPress Plugins (he’s created some himself!).
Aldebaran Web Design, Seattle
Jill Olkoski has a BS in Engineering, a BS in Computer Science and an MA in Clinical Psychology. She delights in using her advanced technical and psychological skills to help small business owners develop cost-effective and successful websites.