December 13, 2016 Ryan Stone

7 Free & Essential WordPress Plugins for Small Business Websites

You may already have a small business website, or you may be looking to get one redesigned (if so, we can help!). If the site you currently own runs on WordPress, or if you’re looking to move your website to a WordPress-based one, then you should know about plugins.

What are WordPress Plugins?

Simply put, a WordPress plugin is a sort of software that can be added to a WordPress website, which will then execute certain functions to extend functionality or add new features to your WordPress-based website.

Why Do I Need To Use WordPress Plugins?

Synthesis summarizes the answer to this question nicely by noting, “The key to effective use of plugins is to deploy them only from properly vetted sources, and only when necessary. Plugins should solve a specific problem or provide an essential function. They should not indulge our vanity or our desire for a “shiny new object”.”

So, it’s best to get plugins that handle large, complicated tasks, as opposed to simpler ones that will just clog up your storage space and bandwidth (therefore, slowing down your site).

That being said, we have for you seven must-have plugins for your small business website and why you should get them.

7 – Jetpack

Jetpack, while great, does get some flak for being one of the most bloated plugins out there. That being said, if you have a lightweight site, or are managing the site all on your own, Jetpack can not only be a lifesaver, but a timesaver, too.

Jetpack does everything from security to image optimization to analytics to site customizations and much more. It might be easier to point out what you can’t do with Jetpack, but again, please note that this plugin will take up a lot of space so only use it if you have the space needed for it.

6 – Black Studio TinyMCE Widget

For those not HTML-inclined, Black Studio TinyMCE Widget is the perfect solution for adding functionality to your text boxes.

Instead of boring old text, TinyMCE adds different styling options to help you make the most out of your text. Plus, it’s really simple to use!

5 – W3 Total Cache

Site speed is a crucial element of any website, especially in 2016. Many Internet users go online on their cell phones, and in today’s day and age, everything is fast, fast, fast!

Make sure your site loads quickly by installing W3 Total Cache, a comprehensive plugin that does a lot of hard work for you.

Easily configure your settings to maximize your site’s potential and increase the speed in which it loads with W3 Total Cache.

4 – Meta Slider

Meta Slider is simple and great-looking. Display images in grand fashion on one of several slider styles included with this plugin.

A slider is commonly used on the homepage, but you can use a slider anywhere on your WordPress website, and Meta slider makes it easy to add images to your slider and customize it to fit your specific needs.

3 – Inbound Now PRO

This little-known plugin is actually quite the wonderful monster. This all-inclusive plugin helps with managing your inbound marketing on your website.

Inbound marketing for your website includes: landing pages, calls to action, and forms.

With Inbound Now PRO, you can create landing pages for sales or special products or other promotions, then add a call to action on the page with a form, and then track those leads that you get to fill out your form!

To maximize your leads from website visits, Inbound Now is a must-have.

2 – Yoast SEO

Every small business website should have the most basic SEO elements covered.

What is SEO, you ask? SEO stands for search engine optimization, and it’s a way to make sure that your business and the content on your website is visible in search engine results.

Yoast SEO is a complete plugin that handles onsite SEO, such as meta titles and descriptions, and much more.

Make sure to dot your I’s and cross your T’s by installing this easy-to-use plugin to make sure your SEO basics are covered.

1 – Contact Form 7 (and Contact Form DB)

Ok, we cheated a little bit, but these two plugins really should go hand-in-hand. Contact Form 7 is one of the simplest, yet most complete contact form plugins out there.

It’s important to have a mode of contact directly on your small business website, so that when potential customers are browsing your web pages, they have a form that they can fill out if they want to make an inquiry or just reach out to you and your business.

Contact Form DB is great because it keeps a comprehensive log of all the forms submitted through Contact Form 7. So you can always keep track of who contacted you, when they contacted you, and what they said.

Contact Form 7 (and its partner plugin, Contact Form DB) is a no-brainer and a must-have for any serious, small business website.

There are a number of great plugins out there – one of the reasons we love developing in WordPress so much – and we’ll showcase more in the future, all of which deliver key functionality to help turn your site into the most effective lead generator it can be! And if you’re looking to move your website over to WordPress or to bring your small business website to the next level, we can help you “Begin Your Ascent!”

Contact us for more information today.

If you’re ready to get the best WordPress-based website made for your business, contact us today!

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