5 WordPress Plugins that make Website Management Easier
We talk a lot about managing WordPress websites, especially about security updates it in order to keep the bad guys out. Regular maintenance also keeps a website healthy. Here are some of our top WordPress plugins, ones we recommend to make maintenance easier and more efficient:
Broken Link Checker
Like the name implies, it checks if you have a link on your site that’s broken. For example, it’s very common to refer to another website in a blog post. But what if the link changes it’s name or becomes unavailable? Rather than having a dead link, this handy plugin alerts you that it needs to be fixed. Dead links annoy visitors, and contribute to a poor website experience. Over time, your Google Analytics stats — like number of page views and length of stay on your site — will begin to suffer if broken links aren’t fixed.
By the way, if you’ve been creating content for a while there’s a high probability that other websites are referring to you. We call this link love, and it contributes to your SEO rankings. If you make changes to a post’s or page’s url without using a 301 redirect, you’re breaking your inbound links. You’re unnecessarily throwing away your SEO equity.
Having trouble with spam? This cool WordPress plugin taps into a community to target and identify spam. When a sender has been identified as a spammer via the community, it’ll get tagged and relegated to the spam filter. While it doesn’t catch all spammy messages, it takes a considerable dent in the avalanche of crapola floating in cyberspace Just remember to clean out the spam trash folder. By the way, this is the only plugin automatically installed by WordPress.
One rule of managing a WordPress website is back-ups. Not backing up your website databases is analogous to driving without a seat belt. Never a good idea. While you can manually backup your site, this subscription plugin automates backups for a mere $15 a month. For our clients we have redundant systems. Why? We’ve found that when websites break, it can affect multiple systems.
There are lots of plugins to help you create forms for your site, but we think that Gravity Forms (we’re paid users) is the best. The level of integration they offer and sophistication of the form structure is great. Also, Gravity Forms offer additional plugins making it simple to connect other applications like Salesforce, MailChimp, Paypal and much more.
This WP plugin ties many of WordPress.com’s functionality to a self-hosted website. Jetpack includes forms, notifications, subscriptions, spell/grammar checks, extra sidebar widgets, and much more. Most of the features are free. How cool is that?
CMS Tree Page View
This neat little plugin helps you organize and visualize your website structure much more easily. CMS Tree Page View allows you to look at the structure of pages on your site from above, clearly seeing which pages are parent pages, and which are children. Using the Tree Page View you can structure your site easily and logically for both SEO and users.
Update 05/21/18 – Cleaning Out The Trash
When you’re looking for new plugins, it’s important to check how many other users are using the plugin, and how recently it’s been updated. If a plugin isn’t used, it’s unlikely that it’s being maintained. And if it isn’t being maintained then it could pose a security risk for your website. As a result of this WordPress have announced that they will soon begin clearing out the WordPress directory and getting rid of unused plugins. So, if you think you’re running any plugins that might be a bit out-dated, now might be a good time for a spring clean.
Are there other WordPress plugins you use for maintenance?
How can we help?
Need help with adding widgets and plugins to your WordPress website? Or, are you tweaking your website’s functionality?
We are The Spectrum Group Online, and we offer strategic and tactical consulting so you can monetize your online presence. Call us for a complimentary 30-minute consultation to discuss your website’s user experience and translate that into sales.