The issue you run into though is the more apps you install, the more potential problems you create.
They may not play well with each other (conflicts). And if you run into a problem it sometimes means turning off all the plugins and reactivating them one at a time until you get your site working again.
So I try to limit the number of plugins running on my sites. There are multiple plugins I keep going back to. So here are a few of my favorites…
#1 – Wishlist
Turn WordPress into a membership site. It’s the easiest tool I’ve seen for getting a membership site up and running. It supports multiple membership levels, sequential content, and integrates with most shopping carts/billing solutions. This is a premium plugin and it’s worth every penny. The above is an affiliate link.
#2 – WP Super Cache
This is an easy to install caching plugin that will speed up the delivery of your pages by producing a static html version of them. While WordPress is a great tool, it is generally slower than a static page because of php load times.
W3 Total Cache is another plugin that does the same job, but most people will not use all the features included in it. I find WP Super Cache easier to get installed and using quickly.
#3 – Google Sitemaps
This builds a sitemap that helps search engines better index your blog. The crawlers can see your complete site structure and retrieve it more efficiently. In addition, it notifies the search engines each time you post new content.
#4 – Google Analytics
This integrates your blog in with Google Analytics and makes it easy to see your traffic, outbound clicks, pageviews, where your traffic is coming from, and everything else offered in Analytics.
This plugin allows you to setup and run popovers on your blog to increase your subscriber numbers. There is a free version and a paid version, although you do have to register to activate. I’ve used several of these and this one is my favorite.
#6 – Similar Posts
This plugin shows a list of posts similar to the current based on your content, title, and tags. This is an easy way to both create additional internal links on your site for the search engines, and get your visitors reading more of your content.
#7 – Facebook Comments
One of the issues with blog comments is battling spam. You could use plugins like Akismet or Bad Behavior to deal with some of the spam, but another solution is to integrate your comments in with Facebook. Very few are willing to spam using their real Facebook profile, and that’s not even counting the extra exposure you get on Facebook for your posts.
#8 – Twitter Facebook Social Share
Add Twitter, Facebook, Google #1, and Linkedin sharing buttons in multiple ways and formats. You can even post them floating above the post on the left. You can also set which pages and posts these share buttons are available on.
#9 – WordPress Database Backup
Backup your database. That’s important no matter how you do or which plugin you use for it. I have noticed this plugin hasn’t been doing as good of a job lately. It used to be able to schedule and email the database backups, but has not done in with the recent upgrades. It still produces an on server back-up when requested in the tools section.
#10 – All In One Seo
You can optimize your page titles and meta tags for the search engines. You can customize your search engine settings for each individual page and post without having to mess with the code on your site.