Most users discover plugins only when they try to do something and cannot. They want to get leads so they look for form plugins. Their site gets hacked so they look for security plugins, if they want to know how people behave on their website, they use heatmap plugins and so on.
But the smart thing to do is have a ready list of plugins ALL web creators will require at some point or another.
So, that’s why we made this post. In this article, you will get an overview of highly recommended free and crucial plugins that you may require. Go through the list and think about whether you will need to try them yourself in your next project.
We would like to point out that by using the Elementor Website Builder, you reduce the number of plugins you may require, and thus substantially improve the performance of your website.
Best WordPress Security Plugins
Security plugins are plugins that increase your protection against malicious attacks. These could be DDoS attacks, brute force attacks, malware threats, and others. We have a more complete list of the best security plugins available here.
Akismet is a spam filtering service that filters spam from comments, trackbacks, and contact form messages. The filter works by combining information gathered on all participating sites, and using it to identify and block potential spam.
WordFence proves to be an excellent tool for beefing up your security, with relatively simple procedures, for tasks such as changing your login URL and running malware scans, and much more.
Best WordPress Live Chat Plugins
Live chat plugins are plugins that deal with live chats and offer, at the very basic level, the ability to create or provide a chat service for your website. You can find a more comprehensive list of live chat plugins here.
Tidio Live Chat is a live chat service that is designed specifically for the WordPress community. The installation process is easy, there are 4 integrated channels for customer communication and there are also mobile and desktop apps.
Tawk.To Live Chat
Tawk.To Live Chat is a free live chat app that allows you to stay connected anywhere. It is compatible with modern browsers and offers free iOS, Android, Windows, and Mac OSX apps to stay connected.
Best WordPress CRM Plugins
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) plugins deal with everything that has to do with customer relationship management. It’s hard to define exactly what a CRM plugin should include, but in its very basic form, it has to provide the ability to communicate with clients, retain their information, and, if possible, their purchase habits and much, much more. We have a great list of the best CRM plugins here.
HubSpot’s WordPress plugin has a ton of useful features for your site. This single plugin has it all — from email marketing, CRM, live chat, forms, to site analytics. That means you don’t have to download lots of different plugins to get marketing, CRM, and customer service capabilities on your site. Use HubSpot for marketing campaigns, contact lists, email newsletters, chatbots, forms, and all the other essentials for helping your site grow.
Best WordPress Calendar Plugins
Calendar plugins are exactly what they sound like. They offer you the ability to note down events on your calendar, set up reminders, create meetings, invite people to those meetings, and more. Here you can find the full list of the best WordPress event calendar plugins.
The Events Calendar
The Events Calendar is an easy-to-use calendar tool that allows you to quickly add new events. It has the option to add google maps, it’s easily exportable and is optimized for speed.
Modern Events Calendar Lite
Modern Events Calendar Lite is a comprehensive events management plugin. It is user friendly and comes with a free version. It boasts more than 40 event display layouts.
Best WordPress SEO Plugins
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is one of the most important factors that directly affect the success of a website. SEO plugins will make sure that your content is optimized, allow you to tweak the meta content, and provide you with suggestions regarding the best SEO practices. Here’s the full list of the best WordPress SEO plugins.
Yoast SEO is one of the more popular free SEO plugins out there. It has all the right tools to help you with your SEO needs including sitemaps, previews, meta tags, duplicate content avoidance, and other tools.
Best WordPress SMTP Plugins
In simple terms, WordPress SMTP plugins help you make sure people get the emails that your WordPress site sends to them (notifications, confirmations, etc) since the default WordPress mail often sends these emails to the spam folder. Here’s a list of the best SMTP plugins out there, both free and paid.
Easy WP SMTP
Easy WP SMTP is a popular, free WordPress plugin that lets you connect your WordPress site to your SMTP server of choice.
Post SMTP is another SMTP plugin that comes with a built-in email logger, a smart email failure detection system and it also offers a chrome extension among its other many features.
More Free WordPress Plugins
As Elementor users, whenever we need to duplicate a post, we usually save it as a template in Elementor and then insert it elsewhere. An alternative way to do this is by using the next plugin on our list, Duplicate Post Plugin. It can also be used to duplicate custom fields, titles, etc. for new and future posts.
Google Tag Manager
Google Tag Manager is Google’s free tool that anybody can use to deploy analytics and marketing tags.
Intuitive Custom Post Order
How many times have we had to reorganize posts and pages, as well as customized elements? Well, our guess is that the Intuitive Custom Post Order plugin was designed by someone else who had to reorganize their content one time too many because this is a tool that you can use to visually switch the order of your posts and pages very easily.
If you’ve been managing sites long enough, you’ll know how often posts are renamed, deleted, or recreated, and how annoying it can become. Redirection is a plugin that was designed to ensure that a proper 301 redirection is created to the modified page URL, so all that link juice leads to the right place.
Smart Slider 3
Smart Slider 3 is one of the most powerful WordPress plugins that enables you to create sliders. It’s fully responsive and SEO optimized.
Really Simple SSL
Duplicator is a migration plugin. It allows you to clone your WordPress site and move it between domains or hosts with no downtime whatsoever. It also allows you to backup your WordPress site.
Enable Media Replace
Enable Media Replace is a lightweight plugin that allows you to easily replace an image or file in your media library. You don’t have to delete, rename or re-upload files.
Advanced Custom Fields
Advanced Custom Fields is what it sounds like. It allows you to take full control of your WordPress edit screens. You can add fields anywhere, including posts, users, taxonomy terms, and more.
Code Snippets is an easy plugin that enables you to run PHP code snippets on your site. It removes the need to add custom snippets.
The Activity Log is an extra-light plugin that generates a log of every activity occurring on your WordPress website. Imagine that it works like an airplane ‘black box,’ recording events, and alerting you when a post is deleted, a plugin is activated, or if someone is attempting to log in or hack your site.
MemberPress is a great membership plugin. It’s easy to set up, and it allows you to easily accept payments, with Stripe and PayPal. It has numerous integrations with which you can make your workflow much better, and it has an affiliate program.
Visualizer is a nice plugin for creating responsive, fully customizable tables and charts and editing them directly on the posts, in a nice editor. It allows to import data, it’s very flexible and interactive and.
TablePress is another plugin that allows you to create and manage tables. You can easily add them to your posts and pages with a simple shortcode. No coding knowledge is required to use this plugin.
WooCommerce is one of the most popular ecommerce plugins for WordPress. It provides a full WordPress integration. In short, it allows you to create an online shop with full control over its design and its functionality. With it, you can sell anything you want, use the many different payment options, and grow your sales.
Ecommerce plugins can make your ordinary WordPress website into an online shop. WIth them, you can add shopping carts, payment pages, product listing, and more. Elementor offers you the ability to easily integrate WooCommerce and use Elementor’s WooCommerce Builder.
W3 Total Cache
Pretty Links is a great plugin for making your affiliate links look better. It’s best for those who manage affiliate links and track their metrics from emails, social media, and other places. It tracks each link and provides the user with a full report of the statistics.
Smush is an image optimization plugin and is another way to accelerate your site. A good, free way of achieving this is by trying the Smush Image Compression and Optimization plugin. It includes a truckload of useful features, including Lazy Loading, Bulk action, automation, and all while preserving the high quality of your images.
TinyPNG is another image optimization tool with great features. It is a plugin by TinyPNG which is often used to compress images online.
Optimole is yet another image optimization plugin. It is very popular, easy to use, and fast since it’s cloud-based. It also gives you the ability to add watermarks, for that extra protection.
WP RSS Aggregator
WP RSS Aggregator is an RSS plugin that allows you to pull information from blog posts, YouTube videos, news sites, and much more, automatically. It’s very easy to use.
Lazy Load only displays images on a page only when they are visible to the user, meaning that it doesn’t upload all the images at once, thereby making the page upload very quickly and improve the user experience.