The amount of plugins for WordPress has reached a point where it is easy to get confused trying to pick the best ones for your needs. The purpose of this article is to give you useful information about which premium WordPress plugins you should know about and use if you run a WordPress powered website.
WordPress is a free open source CMS that have changed the Internet rules completely within the last decade. In my opinion WordPress is one of the greatest gifts the Internet has seen since we got introduced to Google. WordPress was unveiled in 2003 and it soon started to take website ownership monopoly away from tech-heads and corporations by giving everyday people and small business owners access to create their own beautiful websites.
Today WordPress is used by everyone across the world from bored teens, fan clubs and mommy bloggers to online marketers making a living online. It’s fun, very customizable and easy to use and what makes it even stronger is it’s the open source nature of PHP and MySQL-based CMS platform. There’s a large amount of free and premium WordPress plugins that extend the functionality of WordPress and provide a wide range of extra features in all kinds of areas like layout features, social media, analytics, newsletter administration, simple site maintenance, SEO and more. It’s actually hard to imagine running a successful WordPress site without using several plugins to make things easy for you. Beside that you also need a good custom WordPress theme or a flexible theme with layout builder to get the look and feel you want on your website.
I hope you like this collection. Please share your thoughts and opinion in the comments section and feel free to suggest new awesome plugins to be applied to this list.
Disclosure: Please note that some of the links below are affiliate links and I will earn a commission if you purchase through those links (at no extra cost to you). I recommend that you do your own independent research before purchasing any product or service. This article is not a guideline, a recommendation or endorsement of specific products.
Slider Revolution Responsive WordPress Plugin – MORE INFO
Create a responsive (mobile friendly) or full width slider with awesome animation effects. Customize this slider with our convenient drag&drop backend to your very needs. This is a great plugin that features tons of unique transition effects, an image preloader, video embedding, autoplay that stops on user interaction and lots of easy to set options to create your own effects.
wpStickies – The Premium Image Tagging Plugin – MORE INFO
You can easily tag your images or you can create fancy tooltips on your images. It is compatible with most of the browsers and of course it is highly customizable! It supports also permission control and it is deeply integrated with WordPress. You can allow your users to create stickies but you can approve or reject them from a pending list.
Justified Image Grid – Premium WordPress Gallery – MORE INFO
This WordPress jQuery plugin aligns your thumbnails into a responsive and justified grid. Flickr and Google+ both featured images by their own implementation of this idea. This plugin behaves similarly. Let WordPress present your galleries in an eye-catching and unique new way! You have the control over every aspect: appearance, on the fly desaturation, color overlays, captions with details, lightboxes, animation. It’s easy to install and setup and it comes with 9 pre-sets out of the box.
WordPress Timeline Slider – MORE INFO
Timeline Slider is the definitive plugin to build your history timelines. Its main configuration can be easily customized due to its compact config parameters, directly from the html file. Also more configurations can be edited through the css style sheet file. It comes with 2 skins, Dark, Light, to make easy the integration on your web project. The powerful jQuery library makes this component cross-platform.
Fanciest Author Box – MORE INFO
Fanciest Author Box is a WordPress is a very feature-rich author bio plugin automatically added before or after (or both!) your posts, pages and custom post types. It has widgets for Major Social Networks: Twitter bio, latest tweet, Facebook Subscribe, Google+ Add to Circles button. This will make you instantly recognizable and easy to connect with your audience.
UberMenu – Top Megamenu – MORE INFO
UberMenu is a user-friendly, highly customizable mega menu ( or mega drop down menu ) best WordPress plugins. It works out of the box with the WordPress 3 Menu Management System, making it simple to get started but powerful enough to create highly customized and creative mega menu configurations.
Quform – WordPress Form Builder – MORE INFO
If you use WordPress, require custom forms and don’t like wasting time or simply don’t want to touch any code then this is the must have tool for you. Quform WordPress is a plugin that allows you to build multiple forms in WordPress easily and quickly with total control. If it’s a complex quote or booking form or just a simple contact form, Quform plugin will allow you to do this without touching any code. In a few clicks you will have a fully functional form. It’s that simple.
KenBurner Slider WordPress Plugin –MORE INFO
Customize this slider with our drag&drop backend to your very needs. Give each slider some captions to transport your message. Use your Ken Burns Animated banner elements with the possibility of playing YouTube and Vimeo clips in a special detail view with describing text.
The Ken Burns is totally customizable: Start-, End Point, Zoom In or Out, Zoom Factor are all in the different slider parameters. Or go nuts and choose “Random”!
Banner Rotator / Content Slider – MORE INFO
All In One Banner WordPress plugin includes 5 types of WordPress banners plugins: Banner Rotator, Thumbnails Banner, Banner with Playlist, Content Slider, Carousel
jNewsticker for WordPress – MORE INFO
jNewsticker for WordPress brings the power of jNewsticker to your WordPress website. With this plugin you will get nice and eye catching News sticker without doing any hard work yourself.
Thumbnail Scroller – MORE INFO
This Plugin will help you to easily add a thumbnail scroller to your WordPress website or blog. The scroller is completely customizable, resizable and is compatible with all browsers and devices (iPhone, iPad and Android smartphones). You will be able to insert it in any page or post you want with an inbuilt short code generator.
LayerSlider – MORE INFO
This is the WordPress plugin of LayerSlider! You can create as many layers and sublayers as you want. You can use unlimited images with links. The script is very user-friendly, you can add global settings or local (per slide) settings to each layer or sublayer. You can change delay times, easing types, durations and much more.
Media Grid – WordPress Responsive Portfolio – MORE INFO
Media Grid allow you to create unlimited responsive and filterable portfolios with ease. The plugin uses the latest CSS3 and jQuery technologies to adapt each portfolio to its container. No matter if is wide or short, the grid will be always displayed correctly.
Also in responsive themes, you can choose if use the automatic resizing system or set a relative width to keep the grid items always on the same size, they will be placed in the best way possible to ensure the best layout. Lastly, Media Grid integrates each item with Pinterest , the new popular social network.
WordPress Email Newsletter Plugin – MORE INFO
The email newsletter plugin is an advanced bulk emailer designed especially for WordPress 3. It is very easy to use and feature rich. Heaps of features which allow you to quickly send professional newsletters to your existing wordpress user database.
WPSubscribers – Best WordPress Plugins – MORE INFO
If your serious about list building and adding a large group followers to your website you need a good list building plugin. There is a lot of them to choose from and I won’t be the judge here, but I think this is one of the best WordPress plugins. It give your visitors multiple chances to connect with you increasing the chances of getting an opt-in.
Magic Members – Plugin WordPress – MORE INFO
A premium WordPress membership plugin that allows you to create a closed site that’s only available to paying members. It offers lots of great features to totally customize your WP site and transform it into a professional premium content members-only website that’s easy to use. Magic Members best WordPress plugins also allows you to sell your posts and downloads separately.
Gravity Forms – MORE INFO
Build and publish your WordPress forms in just minutes. No drudgery, just quick and easy form-building. Select your fields, configure your options and easily embed forms on your WordPress powered site using the built-in tools.
Ether Content Builder WordPress Plugin – MORE INFO
Ether Content Builder WordPress Plugin is a powerful tool for building custom content pages. It is equipped with many commonly used widgets that can be laid out via interactive drag&drop interface.
Sidebar & Widget Manager for WordPress – MORE INFO
With this premium WordPress plugin you’ll get full control over Page Content, Sidebars (Widget areas) and Widgets. When you “widgetize” a page you can drop and drag widgets in page content area with vertical or Horizontal widgets alignment. And you can create custom sidebars so you can display relevant content on different pages
Visual Composer – Shortcode Plugin – MORE INFO
Visual Composer best WordPress Plugins will save you tons of time working on the site content. Now you’ll be able to create complex layouts within minutes!
Special Recent Posts PRO – MORE INFO
Special Recent Posts PRO is a very powerful plugin/widget for WordPress which displays your recent posts with thumbnails. It’s the perfect solution for online magazines or simple blogs and it comes with more than 60+ customization options available. You can dynamically re-size thumbnails to any desired dimension, drag multiple widget instances and configure each one with its specific settings. You can also use auto-generated PHP code/shortcodes to insert the widget in any part of your theme.
FontPress – Font Manager Plugin – MORE INFO
Personalize your wordpress website with customized fonts. With FontPress you can do that without put your hands on any file or writing any line of code.
Forget wasting time in editing your CSS or JS files to test a single font, with FontPress it’s all very simple.
Usernoise Pro advanced Modal Feedback & Debug – MORE INFO
Usernoise Pro is a WordPress plugin for gathering and discussing public feedback using a modal window. Users can leave their thoughts, comments and rate them. Also, deep debug info can be gathered every time feedback is submitted.
Social Image Hover for WordPress – MORE INFO
Social Image Hover for WordPress combines all of the web’s most popular social services into one easy to use plugin. Social Image Hover allows you to quickly and easily add hover-over social buttons to your images on-the-fly making them instantly “shareable” on Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, and Google Plus. Even better, the hover effects are silky smooth, cross browser, and come with multiple overlay images.
Facebook Likebox Slider for WordPress – MORE INFO
Nice looking slider plugin for facebook and other social sites.
Social Network Tabs For WordPress – MORE INFO
Combine all of your favorite social networks profiles & feeds into slick slide out or static tabs with Social Network Tabs for WordPress. Fast loading with each social network feed loaded using AJAX only when required!
SocialBox – Social WordPress Widget – MORE INFO
With SocialBox you get an absolutely easy to use Plugin for WordPress which enables you to add a sleek social widget to your WordPress site or blog. It displays the current numbers of Facebook likes, Twitter followers and YouTube Channel and Feedburner Feed subscriptions. You can enter default values which will be shown if the related API is not reachable.
Social Content Locker for WordPress – MORE INFO
Social Content Locker for WordPress gives you instant access to over 2 BILLION social media users allowing them to share your content to unlock it. Combine Facebook, Google Plus, Twitter, and LinkedIn to create a social media traffic generating powerhouse of your WordPress site.
Facebook Like to Download for WordPress – MORE INFO
Facebook Like to Download for WordPress allows you to turn the Like Button into a social media like / traffic building download button.
Facebook Walleria – MORE INFO
Facebook Walleria is a WordPress Plugin that embeds a number of Facebook Objects into your website. It uses the Facebook Graph to pull information about Albums, Photos, Feed, Comments, Events and presents the information on your website in a sleek style. Instead of doing a double job of updating your site and Facebook profile, Facebook Walleria enables you to update your albums, events and feed on Facebook with the changes appearing in real-time on your website.
HTML5 Video Player WordPress Plugin – MORE INFO
HTML5 VIDEO PLAYER is a powerful plugin with multiple skins and with all the controllers usable in full screen mode, including playlist. It responsive and also works on Android plus includes 3 types of video players: RightSide Playlist, Bottom Playlist and Without Playlist. You have a complete sound control. You can also set the initial volume.
Multipurpose Bookshelf Slider – MORE INFO
Multipurpose Bookshelf Slider – WordPress Plugin is useful for displaying products such as books, magazines, dvd, cd and others. It’s a way to showcase products in an attractive manner. Features of “lightbox” to display images, videos (Youtube and Vimeo) and any html content (WordPress editor). Can be added detailed content to each product. Easy to add into WordPress using widgets or shortcodes.
Some Great Free Plugins – You should Also Know About
After The Deadline – WordPress Grammar Plugin – MORE INFO
The use of good writing skills and grammar is important to get good ranking in search engines and also to leave the right impression with your readers. Your WordPress installation has a spell checker already, but this plugin will give you a quick proofreading assistant. I checks your content against bias language, clichés, double negatives, jargon, hidden verbs, and more. do some proofreading really quickly.
Facebook AWD All in one – MORE INFO
Facebook AWD is an all in one Facebook capabilities for wordpress. Add like button, like box, activity box, FB Comments, Open Graph and FB connect.
Pretty Link – MORE INFO
Shrink, track and share any URL on the Internet from your WordPress website. Unlike other link shrinking services, this plugin allows you to create shortlinks coming from your own domain! Pretty Link tracks each hit on your URL and provides a full, detailed report of where the hit came from, the browser, os and host.
What Would Seth Godin Do – MORE INFO
This plugin has a very simple task. What it does is it displays a custom welcome message to new visitors to your blog. You can set the number of visits after which the message stops to display. This is a great opportunity to welcome all newcomers and let them know what your site is about and why it deserves their attention. It’s also a great place to convince someone to subscribe to your RSS feed or email updates. I’ve written a more in-depth post about this plugin earlier this year. Particularly, about how to create a custom (and good looking) welcome box.
WordPress SEO – MORE INFO
WordPress SEO plugin is a great plugin that will help you get your on page SEO right. Search engines are an important source of traffic for many websites. Having a good SEO plugin will help you get their attention and provide the content in a way search engines are expecting it.
I hope you’ll find these plugins useful. Please, don’t forget to shoot me a comment if there are any other plugins you’d like to include here.