In continually increasing numbers, small businesses are choosing WordPress as the CMS (content management system) for their websites. Whether you are working with a professional designer or developer or going the DIY route, there are many reasons that you may choose to work with WordPress.
While I am not going to spend time here covering the reasons you should choose WordPress, I am going to share with you my top 5 go-to WordPress plugins for small business websites. These 5 plugins (both the free and premium versions of some of them) have become a part of almost every site that I work on.
Don’t let the prices (or lack thereof) fool you… these are very useful and powerful plugins that most small business sites can benefit from.
iThemes Security by iThemes
Underestimating the need for proper website security can make for unpleasant and costly problems in the future. iThemes has created a powerful security plugin that will take care of a large number of the security tasks that are essential for keeping your site secure. Many of the features can be automatically set up by the plugin when you install it. Although the additional settings can seem complicated, the small amount of time invested in figuring these out upfront is well worth it, in my opinion. Find out more about the iThemes Security plugin on the WordPress plugin repository.
WordPress SEO by Yoast
Stay on top of many of the most important SEO tasks with an easy-to-use interface and a lot of guidance to help you optimize posts, pages, images and more. You can find out more about WordPress SEO in the WordPress plugin repository.
Contact Form 7 by Takayuki Miyoshi
Need a simple way to let customers/clients send you an email message through your website? Look no further! Contact Form 7 provides a very simple way to add as many forms as you want to create for your website. While many of the more advanced contact form features would require a more robust plugin, for 90% of the small businesses I work with, Contact Form 7 meets all of their needs. Check out Contact Form 7 here.
Google Analytics by MonsterInsights
Every small business needs to be keeping track of their website traffic data using an analytics platform such as Google Analytics. Google Analytics makes it simple to set up your site with GA tracking codes. As a bonus, the plugin adds an analytics overview right in your WordPress dashboard! Nice and convenient. Find out more about Google Analytics by MonsterInsights here.
Simple Social Icons by StudioPress
They said it when they named the plugin – Simple. A quick and easy way to connect visitors to your social media accounts. Straightforward settings let you add icons for all of the most common social networks to your widget areas and match your icons to your site design without using any code. Check out the Simple Social Icons plugin here, and while you’re at it, take a look at what else the people over at StudioPress are doing. I’m a big fan!
These 5 plugins are a part of the toolkit I use to make websites work for small businesses. If your website isn’t getting you results, what good is it? It’s no longer good enough to simply have a website. Best of luck as you turn your website into a 24/7/365 “employee” bringing enormous value to your small business!