As I’ve recently written about here on BestTechie, I recently went through the process of migrating my office’s company website to the WordPress content management platform. While I was a bit naive about the whole process at first, I will say, I am definitely glad that I took the plunge. In my article, I explained that one of the things that I liked most about WordPress was the fact that it acted as a form of a blank canvas in providing a basic infrastructure that could be extend to my needs with third-party contributions.

Having played around with WordPress for the last couple of days, I have tried a number of third-party plugins, five of which I would highly recommend to anyone looking to use WordPress to manage a business website. In no particular order, here they are:

Google Analytics for WordPress

Previously, I’ve expressed my love for Google Analytics. While I have tried other web statistics software in the past, no other platform has given me the level of insight as to the traffic my website was getting. However, adding tracking codes manually to each and every page of a website can be a real pain. With the Google Analytics for WordPress plug-in, one can easily implement Google Analytics tracking across their entire website with only a few clicks of the mouse. Once the add-on is installed, it can be accessed from “Google Analytics” under the “Settings” region of the WordPress administration area. From there, adding your tracking code is as simple as authenticating with Google, and selecting the account and site you wish to track. You don’t even need to get your hands dirty with code.

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All in One SEO Pack

Tracking the number of people visiting your site is definitely important and informative. However the ability to track this information is somewhat useless if no one ever visits your site. This is where the process of SEO (search engine optimization) and the All in One SEO Pack add-on for WordPress comes in. SEO Pack allows you to rewrite your post titles in ways that are friendly to search engines, automatically generate meta tags so that search engines can better index your site, and help to clean up the navigation of your site. With this add-on, you will make your site more accessible and appealing to search engines, ultimately aiding you in getting better rankings and ultimately better traffic. Worried about getting confused? Don’t. Once activated, the All in One SEO Pack immediately takes affect, and can be fine tuned from the WordPress administration panel if need be.

Contact Form 7

This WordPress plugin provides a dead-simple method for adding a contact form to your website. Sure, you could just give out an email address on your contact page, but having a contact form ultimately helps to make it easier for potential clients to get in touch with you without jumping through hoops. One of the things that really strikes me about Contact Form 7 is the fact that it allows you to customize a contact form to your liking with the use of text boxes, radio buttons, check-boxes, etc. Being finely tuned to your need and liking, Contact Form 7 is super easy to integrate into a page or post.

NextGEN Gallery

Gone are the days when a website could get away without having a photo gallery. Sure, WordPress makes it dead-simple to upload and insert photos into pages, but NextGEN gallery takes it a step further by allowing you to upload entire zip archives and insert seamless and dynamic photo galleries into individual pages or posts. For my office with several product series, the addition of multiple professional-looking galleries was a very necessary component of creating my office’s website. NextGEN gallery took a process that I had originally anticipated taking hours of time, and turned it into a process that took only a matter of minutes.

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WP-DB-Backup

One of the things that initially drew me away from using WordPress as my content management system was the fact that it was heavily reliant on a MySQL databasing back-end.. This being, my experience with MySQL was very minimal, and I was somewhat afraid of not being able to back up the database. However, with the WP-DB-Backup add-on, backing up the WordPress database takes only a matter of seconds through the tools menu of the WordPress administration panel. WP-DB-Backup also gives you the option to have your database backed up routinely and emailed to you, ensuring that you don’t need to worry about constantly backing up.  An alternative to WP-DB-Backup you may also want to consider is VaultPress – you can learn more about VaultPress here.

I hope you find these suggestions for WordPress plugins helpful. They sure have helped me in the website creation process and made my job a lot easier.

Do you have a WordPress plugin recommendation? Let us know in the comments!


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