Plugins

What’s a plugin?

The official WordPress Glossary explains this along with defining all of the other basic terms you will soon become familiar with in mastering WordPress software:

“A Plugin is a group of php functions that can extend the functionality present in a standard WordPress weblog. These functions may all be defined in one php file, or maybe spread among more than one file. Usually, a plugin is a php file that can be uploaded to the “wp-content/plugins” directory on your Web server, where you have installed WordPress. Once you have uploaded the plugin file, you should be able to “turn it on” or Enable it from the “Plugins” page in the administration interface of your weblog. The WordPress source code contains hooks that can be used by plugins.

Plugins are free or paid customizations written by anyone of thousands of independent developers. They are just one of many features that make WordPress a very powerful and customizable content management system (CMS). You could write a plugin someday if you work at learning the coding mechanics of WordPress…

All of the following are installed in every DesignWise hosted Website built with WordPress CMS at the core.

MY TOP TEN+ FAVORITE FREE PLUGINS
(Updated and revised 11/23/2011)

Social Sharing:

Sexy Bookmarks replaces Sociable
Whether your visitors are on Facebook, Twitter, Digg, Delicious, Google+ or any other social networking or sharing network, a social sharing Plugin is essential since it allows your posts or page content to be linked to your readers’ social media thought stream, making your content known to the world. Both plugins include print, e-mail and PDF-this article features that can be included by adding one simple plugin.

WP FollowMe is a WordPress plugin that allows you to add a twitter “Follow me” badge on your WordPress blog. Look to the right side of this page to see it beckoning…

Comments, Contacts and Spam filtering:

Apture was cool, but has been gobbled up by Google… RIP.

Akismet checks your user comments against the Akismet web service to see if they look like spam or not. This plugin is bundled with WordPress by default. But, you need a WordPress.com API key to use it. You can review the spam it catches under “Comments.”

Contact Form 7 allows you to flexibly design user contact form that generate email. You can manage multiple contact forms as well. But, Gravity Forms is even better says, Yaost.com – “A few years back I developed my own WordPress contact form plugin, which, admittedly, isn’t as shiny anymore as a WordPress plugin should be. So when I needed a more advanced form plugin, I started looking around and quickly found Gravity Forms.”

Image Gallery:

NextGEN Gallery is a fully integrated image gallery plugin for WordPress with dozens of options and features.

SEO:

Google XML Sitemaps will generate a special XML sitemap which will help search engines like Google, Yahoo, Bing and Ask.com to better index your blog.

SEO Post Link will automatically make your post links short and SEO friendly by removing unnecessary words from your post slug.

Mobile Friendly:

WordPress Mobile Pack replaces Wapple Architect Mobile Plugin because it is a fast and clean way to mobilize your WordPress Website… We have installed it on lots of sites including this one.

Security

WP-MalWatch scans your WordPress system nightly or on demand with a WordPress malware detector that posts a report on the Dashboard.

e-Commerce:

ECWid free, e-commerce widget, shopping cart software replaces WP Shopping Cart in providing one of the very best WordPress shopping carts available. It is one of the few solutions that can embed your e-commerce directly into a Facebook Business Page within minutes.

Need a Paypal Business Account? Here’s a quick banner link to get you to the right spot in Paypal…

Click to open a Paypal Business Account


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