Let’s Get Started with Best Free WordPress Plugins for your website.
With over 55,000 WordPress plugins available, it’s quite difficult for beginners to find the Best Free WordPress Plugins for their need. Often we’re asked by users if there is a magic list of “must have WordPress plugins” that all pros use. The answer is YES. Having the right set of plugins can make a huge difference in your blog / website growth. In this article, we have hand-picked the Best Free WordPress Plugins of 2019.
Our focus with this article is to highlight the Best Free WordPress Plugins in their respective categories. If you are not sure how to install a WordPress plugin or how to find the best WordPress plugin, then go through this article to find that information.
Depending on your use case, you might not need all of these plugins on your website, but we believe a lot of these are needed for just about every type of website.
Before we get started, it’s worth taking a moment to examine a few things:
Finding The Best Free WordPress Plugins
As we mentioned earlier, there are thousands of free and paid WordPress plugins. Locating a plugin for something that you want to do on your site can be difficult. Here is how you would begin your search.
The search feature on the WordPress.org directory can help you narrow down your quest. However, you will still have to scroll down a lot and many of the results will not be relevant at all.
The best way to search for plugins is by using Google Search.
When looking at plugins in WordPress.org directory, look at the plugin stats below each listing. It shows the total number of active installs for a plugin, higher installs means that it has been tested and used by more websites. You will also see the average review stars, last updated, and tested up to information.
Top WordPress Plugins – Free vs. Premium
There are thousands of WordPress plugins, which are available for free on WordPress.org directory. However, there are lots of WordPress plugins that are sold on third party websites as premium plugins. This makes many new users wonder whether premium or paid plugins are better in some way?
Free WordPress plugins are available to you without any warranties. Support for free plugins is usually limited, and it is not guaranteed. Some free plugin authors do provide excellent support for their free plugins, but sooner or later it becomes a chore. There is no financial incentive for plugin authors to keep answering user questions on their free plugins. This means that free WordPress plugins are available on an as-is basis with no warranties.
Paid WordPress plugins on the other hand offer premium support for their product. Most of them are licensed GPL too, which means they also come with limited warranty. But having access to support means you can get help much faster.
This does not mean that premium plugins are always a better alternative to free WordPress plugins. In fact, many of the most popular WordPress plugins are free. For example, Yoast SEO, WP Super Cache, WPForms, and many more.
You should focus on finding a good plugin, that is easy to use, and has excellent reviews. Once you have narrowed down your search, you can decide whether you want to go for premium plugin or a free alternative. You can try the free plugins first but if they are too difficult to use, then you can go for a paid plugin.
How to Install a WordPress Plugin
There are two easy ways to install a WordPress plugin from the admin area of your site. For free WordPress plugins, you can go to Plugins » Add New and search for the plugin name that you want to install.
Carefully look at the results to make sure that you are downloading the plugin you wanted and then click on the Install button. Once installed, you will need to activate the plugin.
If you downloaded a WordPress plugin in a zip file, then this is how you will install it.
Simply go to Plugins » Add New page, and then click on the ‘Upload Plugin’ button at the top.
WordPress will now show you a page where you can upload the plugin zip file. Simply click on the choose file button, locate the zip file on your computer, and then click on the install now button.
WordPress will now upload the plugin file to your website, extract it, and install the plugin. Once the installation is finished, it will show you a success message with a link to activate the plugin.
It is important to remember, that you need to activate a plugin before you could use it on your WordPress site.
Having that said, let’s take a look at the Best Free WordPress Plugins on the market.
Best Free WordPress Plugins: At a Glance
Here’re the top 37 Best Free WordPress Plugins that we believe you must consider.
- Yoast SEO
- Contact Form 7
- Google Analytics
- Easy Table of Contents
- Pretty links
- One-Click demo Importer
- Swift Performance Lite
- a3 Lazy Load
- User Registration
- Updrapt Plus
- Monster Insights
- CSS Hero
- Revive Old Post
- Smart slider 3
- WP mail SMTP
- W3 Total Cache
- Insert Headers and Footers
- Click To Tweet
- Code Snippet
- Really Simple SSL
SEO helps you get more visitors from search engines to your website. While WordPress is SEO friendly out of the box, there is so much more you can do to increase your website traffic using SEO best practices.
Yoast SEO is one of the most popular Best Free WordPress Plugin of all time. Out of all the WordPress SEO plugins, Yoast offers the most comprehensive solution with all the features and tools that you need to improve your on-page SEO.
It helps you add meta tags, generate sitemaps, connect your site to Google Search Console, optimize it for social media, and more.
Yoast comes with a powerful Redirect feature that lets you easily create 301 redirects which is extremely helpful. It also detects change of URLs and create auto-redirects, so you don’t have any broken links on your website.
My website has a contact form on my Contact page. It’s an awesome feature to have, as people (like you!) can fill in the form and send me an email without logging into their own email provider. If you want to do something similar, definitely get this plugin. P.S. Here’s a step-by-step guide for setting it up.
Interested in tracking your visitors/traffic and their behavior? Just install the plugin, connect it with your Google account and you’re ready to go.
A user-friendly featured focused plugin which allows you to insert a table of contents into your posts, pages, and custom post types.
- Automatically generate a table of contents for your posts, pages, and custom post types by parsing its contents for headers.
- Optionally enable for pages and/or posts. Custom post types are supported, as long as their content is output with the the_content()template tag.
- Optionally auto-insert the table of contents into the page, selectable by enabled post type.
- It provides many easy to understand options to configure when and where to insert the table of contents.
30+ million downloads
Though it was only released in 2016, Elementor has quickly shot up the ranks and is now one of the most popular page builders in existence with over 1.2 million active installs, according to WordPress.org.
It offers a generous free version that lets you build complex designs using simple drag and drop and a live, visual preview.
And Elementor Pro – the paid version – lets you build your entire WordPress theme using the same drag-and-drop interface.
With MailPoet, your website visitors can sign up as newsletter subscribers and build your mailing list, all without leaving your WordPress admin.
Mailpoet’s newsletter builder integrates perfectly with WordPress so any website owner can create beautiful emails from scratch or by using our responsive templates that display flawlessly across all devices. Schedule your newsletters, send them right away or set it up to send new blog post notifications automatically in just a few clicks.
Trusted by 300,000 WordPress websites since 2011.
The best part is you can use every feature of the premium plan of Mailpoet till you reach 1000 subscribers.
This is one of the best email marketing tool out there which I also use for Electrobot and My other niche sites.
Pretty Links enables you to shorten links using your own domain name (as opposed to using tinyurl.com, bit.ly, or any other link shrinking service)! In addition to creating clean links, Pretty Links tracks each hit on your URL and provides a full, detailed report of where the hit came from, the browser, os, and host. Pretty Links is a killer plugin for people who want to clean up their affiliate links, track clicks from emails, their links on Twitter to come from their own domain, or generally increase the reach of their website by spreading these links on forums or comments on other blogs.
This is a link setup using Pretty Links that redirects to the Pretty Links Homepage where you can find more info about this Plugin:
Here’s a named pretty link (I used the slug ‘yourpreferredname’) that does a 307 redirect to a random affiliate link for xyz:
Here’s what Sumo can do for you:
- Grow your email list with timed popups across your site
- Schedule one-off marketing emails or email drips to communicate with your subscribers
- Ecommerce integrations and features to win back customers who abandon their cart and increase average order value
- See the ROI from every email subscriber and sale you make
I use Sumo me for the share button which you can see on the left side of the website. It can help your website grow social shares which is one of the top Google SEO ranking factors.
This is the simple plugin by which you can import the theme demo content and widgets with just one click. It supports the themes created by the phoeniixx.
- It can import the demo content of the themes and also import the widgets.
Whatever theme you install in your WordPress, just use this plugin to import the demo content and later you can customize it according to your needs.
Smush has been benchmarked and tested number one for speed and quality and is the award-winning, back-to-back proven crowd favorite image optimization plugin for WordPress.
- Lossless Compression – Strip unused data without affecting image quality
- Lazy Loader – Defer offscreen images with the flip of a switch
- Bulk Smush – Optimize up to 50 images with one click
- Image Resizing – Set a max width and height and large images will scale down as they are being compressed
- Incorrect Size Image Detection – Quickly locate images that are slowing down your site
You Have Just 3 Seconds To Impress Your Visitor. Don’t Lose It By Slow Loading. 95% of customer’s don´t wait if a website takes longer than 5-6 seconds to load!
Yes, that´s a big number.
People spend a lot of time and money on building websites and even more on marketing to get traffic… but what happens when those people come to your website and the website is slow to load? You lose sales.
Slow-loading websites lose visitors and sales.
But we have a solution! Say goodbye to slow loading websites and say hello to Swift Performance Lite or Pro!
Get a complete Cache & Performance plugin for free or as a pro.
Swift Performance will increase the loading speed of any WordPress website and provides an intelligent, modern caching system. You can even cache AJAX request, dynamic pages, and you can add exceptions (URL, page or content-based rules).
If you are wondering how to optimize your website and how to design a website that load fast enough. a3 Lazy Load is a Mobile-Oriented, very simple to use a plugin that will speed up sites page load speed. The more content-heavy your site the better the plugin will perform and the more you will see the improvements in performance. See this demo of a page with 1,000 images (yes 1,000 images) to load.
a3 Lazy Load is the most fully-featured, incredibly easy to set up lazy load plugin for WordPress. Use the plugins admin settings to easily define what elements are lazy loaded and when they become visible in the users browser. As the user scrolls down the page the next lot of elements you have applied lazy Load to are only loaded as they become visible in the view port.
A powerful plugin from the brilliant team behind the WordPress software itself (Automattic), Jetpack is a must have plugin for every WordPress website. As the name suggests, it offers a pack of awesome features for your website to fly up high and make it a success.
Jetpack takes care of your site security, website performance, traffic growth, image optimization, website appearance and a lot more.
It features enhanced distribution which automatically shares your published content to third-party services like search engines and helps to increase your reach and traffic. Additionally, it creates sitemaps so that search engines can easily index your site.
Most of all, it protects your website security by preventing brute force attacks. It also monitors your site every five minutes for downtime and instantly notifies you for any issues found.
Akismet is yet another plugin developed by the people behind WordPress (Matt and his team at Automattic). It is one of the default plugins of WordPress that comes with every new WordPress core installation. It is basically an anti-spam plugin which checks all comments and filters out the spammy comments.
The plugin provides a status history for each comment so that you can learn which comments were found spammy by Akismet or the moderator. Moderators also can view the number of approved comments for each user, see the URLs in the comment body and remove the suspicious links.
The plugin is free for the personal site and blogs while you have to subscribe to its monthly plans for commercial sites. The premium plans provide advanced security solution besides spam protection.
It is a useful plugin to protect your WP security.
WordPress user registration is yet another integral feature you would not want to miss. Essentially, ‘register’ feature is available on the default WordPress installation which can be enabled from WP dashboard following the given steps.
Go to your WP admin panel > Settings > General.
As shown in the image above, you can simply put a check on the ‘Anyone can register‘ option to enable WordPress registration or membership feature.
Once it is enabled, users now can find a register option at your website’s login page ((e.g: yoursite.com/wp-login.php). Now, users can get registered to your site by entering a username and email, however, it doesn’t look ideal.
First, it’s not user-friendly that a user must find the login URL to get registering option. Next, as a website owner, you cannot collect more information as it has a limited two-field form allowing users to enter just a username and email.
Therefore, you need a virtual WordPress registration plugin. Thankfully, here is a carefully crafted simple and user-friendly plugin at your disposal: User Registration.
User Registration is a free drag and drop user registration plugin for WordPress. The plugin comes up with plenty of amazing features so that you can easily create a beautiful front-end user registration form within a few minutes.
Some of the main features of the plugin are Unlimited registration forms, multi-column support, ReCaptcha support, email notifications, etc. In addition, you can extend its features by purchasing its premium add-ons.
You can use WooCommerce to sell both physical and digital products (though many people opt for the next plugin in this section for digital products).
Beyond the core WooCommerce plugin, there’s a massive marketplace of official and third-party extensions that can help you add all sorts of additional functionality to your store.
You might have a great website with a remarkable number of daily visitors and doing a good business too. But have you ever thought about how users will react if they landed on a broken page? You can make a guess – that’s how you lose the possible customer as well as create a worse impression about your site. That’s devastating – you hate broken links.
And, here is good news – a handy plugin will monitor your website for all the broken links. Just install the free plugin Broken Link Checker and take a nice nap because it will do the job automatically. The plugin checks all your posts, comments and other content for broken links and instantly notifies you if any are found. In addition, it reports on the missing images as well so that you fix them quickly.
Furthermore, the plugin has options to prevent search engines from following the broken links, display the broken links differently, etc. You can get notifications either via email or WP dashboard.
You might have seen extra pieces of information like star ratings, images, number of reviews etc. below some of the pages on the search results. They provide further information about the post/ page which users may want to know. Such brief extracts/ pieces of information like ratings are called Rich Snippets.
Rich snippets are the best way to beautify the appearance of your page/ post on search engine result pages. The snippets provide the main information about the product/ page briefly i.e. highlight the attractions of the product. This is why they help you get more click-through rates through search engines.
To create rich snippets in WordPress website, you can use the handy plugin All In One Schema.org Rich Snippets. It provides the search engines with the precise information to be displayed in the search engine result pages. This helps your site rank better as well as get more click-through rates.
UpdraftPlus is the most popular WordPress backup plugin on the market. It allows you to set up automatic backups and safely store them on a remote location like Google Drive, Dropbox, S3, Rackspace, FTP, email, and more.
It also makes it super easy to restore your website from a backup. Their base plugin is free, but they also have a paid plan with extra features and priority support.
Alternative: BackupBuddy and VaultPress (Jetpack Backups) are also excellent solutions, but they are paid only.
MonsterInsights is the best Google Analytics plugin for WordPress. It allows you to “properly” connect your website with Google Analytics, so you can see exactly how people find and use your website.
The best part is that it shows you all the important stats that matter right inside your WordPress dashboard.
You can then optimize your website accordingly to increase your traffic, subscribers, and revenue. We have detailed guides on how to install Google Analytics in WordPress, how to use Google Analytics to enable eCommerce tracking, and how to track user engagement.
MonsterInsights has a free version, but the true power of it only unlocks when you upgrade to the Pro version. MonsterInsights is used by over 2 million websites.
Security should be a top priority for all online business owners. Sucuri offers a WordPress security plugin and web application firewall that is probably one of the best protection you can get for your site.
They monitor and protect your site from DDoS, malware threats, XSS attacks, brute force attacks, and basically every other type of attack. If you don’t have a firewall on your website, then you need to add one today.
To learn more on how to strengthen the security of your website and protect your business, see our ultimate WordPress security guide with step by step instructions for beginners.
WordPress themes rely on CSS for the visual appearance of your website. If you want to make customization to your theme, then you will have to learn CSS. This can be time-consuming for a business owner.
CSS Hero is the best free WordPress Plugin that allows you to customize any WordPress theme without writing a single line of code. Check out our review of how CSS Hero makes WordPress customization easy for more information.
It’s not a drag & drop page builder like BeaverBuilder that helps you build custom layouts. Rather it helps you customize any WordPress theme available in the market within minutes to match your needs.
It makes it easy to create all sorts of tables. You can import from JSON, CSV, Google Sheets, Excel, etc. And then you can edit your table using an Excel-like interface right in your WordPress dashboard, including basic formulas.
If you need to create any kind of table at your site, TablePress is a great first option.
Revive Old Post allows you to automatically share your new and old posts on your social media accounts. It enables you to share your content on multiple platforms including Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. It also allows you to track clicks.
You can set a sharing interval and choose the number of posts to share. You can also post with featured images in your tweets to boost your click-through rates.
Smart Slider 3 enables you to quickly build a slider the way you want. Let’s take a look at a few features of Smart Slider 3:
- Slide library: Easily build a slider with the hundreds of premade slides.
- Layer animations: It gives layers motions and transitions.
- Dynamic content generator: Import content from external sites, like Instagram, YouTube, Flickr, and more.
WP Mail SMTP helps fix the email deliverability issue that many WordPress sites encounter by routing emails through a proper SMTP protocol instead of your default hosting server.
Popular email clients like Gmail, Yahoo, Outlook, etc are constantly improving their services to reduce email spam. One of the things their spam tools look for is whether an email is originating from the location it claims to be originating from.
If the proper authentication isn’t there, then the emails either go in your SPAM folder or worst not get delivered at all.
WP Mail SMTP solves this issue. This is a MUST HAVE plugin for all websites. Currently running on 900,000 WordPress sites.
WPML is a premium translation plugin that allows you to translate your posts, pages and custom post types. It’s advised to make a full back up of your site before installing it on your website.
Unlike most other translation plugins, WPML is compatible with most major WordPress themes and plugin, so you don’t have to patch your themes or plugins to make WPML work. It even allows you to translate web copy created with popular drag & drop page builders.
If you need help with human translation, then WPML connects you to leading translation services. WPML takes care of all multilingual SEO and works seamlessly with popular SEO plugins. You can use as many languages as you like with WPML.
They offer 3 premium plans based on the number of features. With every premium plan, you get unlimited websites usage right.
WPML is the oldest and most reliable plugin for creating multilingual WordPress websites.
Best alternative: TranslatePress. Check out this TranslatePress review.
AdSanity provides an easy way to insert affiliate banners inside a post or sidebar widgets. You can manage your affiliate campaigns and ads within your WordPress admin panel.
The main benefit of using AdSanity is you can display affiliate banner only on a specified timeframe on your website. With its performance report, you can easily track the performance of each banner you publish on your site.
With over a million active installs, W3 Total Cache is one of the most popular caching plugins for WordPress. It improves your server performance by caching every aspect of your site and also offers content delivery network integrations.
It’s been used and recommended by countless companies and publications like AT&T, MattCutts.com, Mashable.com, and others. Whether your site is hosted on a shared hosting network or a dedicated server, you’ll find the plugin helpful to improve your web server performance and reduce page load time. Perhaps, it’s the only plugin designed to optimize all practical hosting environments.
It offers support for Google Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) and Secure Socket Layer (SSL).
Best Alternative: WPRocket
Insert Header and Footer is a simple utility plugin that lets you insert code like Facebook Pixel, custom CSS, meta verification, and others in your website’s header or footer area.
This saves you from editing your theme files. You can make all the changes from a simple interface inside your WordPress dashboard.
It’s being used on over 400,000 websites.
The new Popups plugin can display multiple popups. Is the perfect solution to show important messages such as EU Cookie notice, increase your social followers, add call to actions, increase your mailing lists by adding a form like mailchimp or to display any other important message in a simple popup.
The simplest way to add and manage redirects in WordPress is by using the Redirection plugin. Install and activate the plugin. Once activated, visit Tools » Redirection to setup your redirects. Redirection plugin not only allows you to setup redirects, it also helps you find out 404 errors on your WordPress site.
Relevanssi replaces the standard WordPress search with a better search engine, with lots of features and configurable options. You’ll get better results, better presentation of results – your users will thank you.
This is the free version of Relevanssi. There’s also Relevanssi Premium, which has added features. For more information about Premium, see Relevanssi.com.
Do note that using Relevanssi may require large amounts (hundreds of megabytes) of database space (for a reasonable estimate, multiply the size of your
wp_posts database table by three). If your hosting setup has a limited amount of space for database tables, using Relevanssi may cause problems. In those cases use of Relevanssi cannot be recommended.
Code Snippets is an easy, clean and simple way to run PHP code snippets on your site. It removes the need to add custom snippets to your theme theme’s
A snippet is a small chunk of PHP code that you can use to extend the functionality of a WordPress-powered website; essentially a mini-plugin with less load on your site.
Most snippet-hosting sites tell you to add snippet code to your active theme’s
functions.php file, which can get rather long and messy after a while.
Code Snippets changes that by providing a GUI interface for adding snippets and actually running them on your site just as if they were in your theme’s
If you consider performance important, you really should use one of the many caching plugins to do page caching. Some good candidates to complement Autoptimize that way are e.g. WP Super Cache, HyperCache, Comet Cache or KeyCDN’s Cache Enabler.
Really Simple SSL automatically detects your settings and configures your website to run over https.
To keep it lightweight, the options are kept to a minimum. The entire site will move to SSL.
THREE SIMPLE STEPS FOR SETUP:
- Get an SSL certificate (can’t do that for you, sorry).
- Activate this plugin
- Enable SSL with one click
Also, Check out:
- 97+ Best Affiliate Programs in India – Highest Paying | (2019)
- Best Free Email Marketing Tools For WordPress I Use | (2019)
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Have a good day:)
SEO’ Digital Marketer and Blogger @ electrobot.co