Whether you’re a Wordpress novice or a seasoned user of the popular CMS, it pays to keep abreast of which plugins are likely to be most useful for your site.
For those who are new to the game; plugins are simply Wordpress integrations that boost the functionality of your website. Similarly to how you might download apps for your smartphone, plugins are downloaded in the backend of your site and can then be used for their various functions, like embedding an events calendar into your homepage, or increasing your website’s SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) value.
What plugins do I need for Wordpress?
The integrations you need for your Wordpress site will depend on the website’s main use and your own marketing and business goals. That’s the beauty of plugins – they’re there to help you customise your website and ensure it’s as slick and robust as it needs to be for its particular purpose. There are some standard plugins that everyone should have though, like those for SEO, as well as contact forms and analytics integrations.
The Wordpress plugins landscape is an ever-shifting thing, with new, game-changing iterations added almost daily. For that reason, we thought it’d be useful to list some of the best ones available right now, for both events sites and beyond:
This is one of the most popular SEO plugins around, and offers a comprehensive set of features that enable you to optimise your site with little SEO knowledge. Alongside a whole host of functionalities, it helps you add meta tags and metadata across your site, providing useful analysis of the quality of your titles and descriptions. It also lets you generate sitemaps, optimise your site for social media, and connect it to Google Search Console. Plus, it automatically detects URL changes and creates auto-redirects so you don’t have to worry about broken site links. There are tons of other features too, which all go towards ensuring you’re playing by search engines’ rules – we’d definitely recommend installing this, no matter what the purpose of your website is.
If you’re using Ticket Tailor to sell tickets for your event/s, you’ll be pleased to know you can integrate it with your Wordpress website. This enables you to sell tickets directly from your site instead of directing customers to a separate landing page, which may suit your needs better. In just a few simple steps you can integrate your full Ticket Tailor events booking form onto one or more pages of your site, streamlining the buying process for users and resulting in happier customers all-round.
The Events Calendar
The Events Calendar is another super-popular plugin for any organisation that wants to display multiple events on their website. Features include a useful calendar view of all events, as well as a handy side-screen widget displaying those that are upcoming. It also lets you integrate a map into your site so users can easily locate events, and it lets customers add these to their own Google Calendars, too. Watch out for the high fees though - it’s $89 for the entry level package.
OptinMonster is all about converting abandoning website visitors into email subscribers and even customers. It works by providing you with pre-made high-converting opt-in forms that are easily customisable, and which help you to capture email addresses from anyone leaving your website – including those abandoning their shopping carts.
You can personalise messaging on the forms too, enabling you to convert website visitors and increase your mailing list massively.
No business – big or small – is immune to the threat of cybercrime, which is why plugins like Sucuri are so important. It offers website security via a plugin and a web application firewall, which monitor your site for various malware threats and cyber attacks such as brute force attacks and XSS attacks.
It’s essential for any site to install a firewall and this one is definitely one of the most robust out there, promising to protect your website and business from a potentially catastrophic cybercrime incident.
WP Rocket is an incredibly useful plugin because it helps to drastically increase the speed of your website. Page loading speed is crucial for both customer impression and SEO (if a site is slow, search engines read this as a sign of poor user experience which can negatively affect your rankings). WP Rocket automatically turns on the best Wordpress caching features for improving speed, including page cache, gzip compression and cache pre-loading. As well as this, there are tailored options you can choose from, and other useful features include Imagify – an image optimisation tool that won’t cost you a penny and will really improve your site’s performance.
Whether you're planning a large-scale event, or you offer a service or sell products, incorporating a live chat feature onto your site can be a great way to improve your customer service. The LiveChat plugin lets you do just that. It’s really user-friendly so you’ll have no problem getting started, and you can customise everything down to a tee so it’s all fully on-brand. You can also integrate it with your email marketing and other support tools you may be using.
You might want to make extra cash selling visual merch on the side of your event, or be looking to run a full-blown online store. Whatever your online selling needs, the WooCommerce plugin is where it’s at. With over 4million users, it’s definitely the most dominant online store plugin on Wordpress, and is every bit as powerful as you’d expect. Plus, it’s really easy to set up and is fully scalable, so you can go as big or little as suits your needs.
Plugins are all about enabling you to make the absolute most of your site, so it really does pay to do your research. With a little bit of digging, you’re sure to find a whole host of tools and features that take your website to the next level of functionality and efficiency. Nice.