40 Most Useful WordPress Plugins To Grow Your Blog In 2016

Planning on upgrading your WordPress website? Well, you came to the right place. In this article, we’re going to show you some of the most effective WordPress plugins of 2016 you can use to grow your website at a rapid rate.

First of all, congratulations on setting up your website with WordPress. You’ve made a wise decision. WordPress is the best platform for setting up a website, which currently powers over 76 million websites all over the globe. That’s 25% of all websites on the internet.

It’s no surprise why WordPress is the king of Content Management Systems (CMS). It’s easy to use, has plenty of great features, and, more importantly, it’s Free!

Another great thing about WordPress is its large collection of plugins that allow you to customize your website instantly. In the official WordPress marketplace alone, there are over 42,000 plugins available for you to download.

Of course, it would be a nightmare if you try to look for the best plugins on your own. So, to make things easier for you all, we’ve decided to make a complete list of 40 best and the most useful WordPress plugins you can use to grow your blog, including WordPress plugins for business websites, in both free and premium options.

Difference Between Free and Premium Plugins #

Why pay for plugins when there are thousands of free WordPress plugins out there? To answer that question, we have to find out how the developers of these “free” plugins make money.

There are two kinds of free WordPress plugins:

  1. Free plugins that let you access advanced features for a price.
  2. Plugins that lets you buy add-ons.

If you think about it, these plugins aren’t “free” at all. They either have limited access or limited features. But, it can be a great startup option and also a solid way to test out the features of a plugin before paying for the premium version.

Premium plugins, however, comes with lots of benefits. Including:

  • Extended customer support.
  • Quick updates.
  • Deep customization features.
  • Better and safer coding.
  • Ease of use.
  • And gives you the ability to compete with websites that use free plugins.

Clearly, going with the WordPress premium plugins is the safe solution to get ahead of your competition.

Before You Download.. #

Whether you choose to go with premium or free WordPress plugins, just remember to pace yourself. Because installing too many plugins can harm your website in several ways.

  • It will slow down your website.
  • They might expose your website to hackers.
  • Cause conflicts between different plugins.
  • Some plugins may even break your entire website.

It’s best to limit your website’s total plugins to a number between 7 – 10. And always backup your website before installing new plugins.

Now that we’ve got all the basics out of the way, let’s get to the best part of the article: The Plugins.

Security Plugins #

Installing these WordPress security plugins is essential to adding an extra layer of protection to your website and keeping hackers at bay.

Akismet #

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Price: Free  /  Download 

Akismet is a must-have WordPress plugin for filtering spam and harmful comments on your website. When active, this plugin will automatically detect and remove spam comments on your website. Keeping your blog comments spam-free plays a big role in ranking high on Google.

iThemes Security #

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Price: Free  /  Download

Hackers these days are quite smart when it comes to attacking WordPress websites. Manipulating vulnerabilities on WordPress plugins is one of their common methods of taking over control of websites.

iThemes Security is an all-in-one solution that allows you to secure your website in over 30 different ways, including brute force protection, strong password enforcement, and locking out bad users.

Security Ninja #

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Price: $12  /  Download

Security Ninja also comes with all the great features of iThemes Security, and with plenty more options to safeguard your website. Checking for various bugs, security vulnerabilities, preventing 0-day exploit attacks are only a few of the cool options available on Security Ninja.

Login Lockdown #

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Price: Free  /  Download

Just as the name describes, this plugin prevents people from trying to guess your WordPress admin password by limiting the number of login attempts. For example, if someone enters the wrong password into your WordPress login page for too many times, that person will get locked out and won’t be able to enter a password for an extended period of time.

Make sure you remember your password before installing this plugin or you will get locked out too.

Backup Plugins #

The internet is an unreliable place. You’ll never know when your website servers might get hacked or crashed and wipe out all the data from your website. Years of your hard work will all go to waste.

It’s important that you always keep a backup of your blog articles, photos, and all the contents, just in case. These plugins will help you get that done easily.

Backup Buddy #

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Price: $80 / year  /  Download

Backup Buddy is the most popular option for backing up WordPress websites. It allows you to backup your entire website to an offsite storage, such as Amazon S3, Dropbox, Rackspace Cloud, or even send the backup file to your personal email.

So, why the hefty price? Well, backing up a website involves a lot of work, maintenance, and cloud storage space. The price is like a service charge the company takes for taking care of all that work for you.

VaultPress #

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Price: $55 / year  /  Download

Similar to Backup Buddy, VaultPress is another great option for keeping backups of websites. And it includes automatic backups, daily security scans, and support from WordPress experts. VaultPress also makes the restoring process easier by letting you restore your entire WordPress site from a backup with a few simple clicks.

BackWP Up #

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Price: Free  /  Download

BackWP Up is the free alternative to Backup Buddy and VaultPress. It doesn’t have all the great features of those premium plugins, but with BackWP Up you can set up a schedule or manually backup your website to a third party storage like Dropbox and Amazon S3 for free.

Website Caching Plugins #

You may think that your website loading time is faster now, but wait until your blog gets filled with hundreds of articles, images, and videos. The best way to maximize your website loading speed is to install a WordPress cache plugin.

These plugins compress your website content and turn your data-heavy pages into static HTML files for faster and easier access.

WP Super Cache #

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Price: Free  /  Download

With over 1 million active installs, WP Super Cache is the most popular caching plugin available on WordPress. The plugin also gets updated more often and it’s a little easier to set up than the other plugins.

W3 Total Cache #

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Price: Free  /  Download

If you’re willing to go through the painful setup process, W3 Total Cache is the best plugin to add caching to your WordPress website. The developers of the plugin promise a “10x improvement in overall site performance” with the caching system of Total Cache.

WPRocket #

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Price: $39  /  Download

If you’re willing to spend a few bucks, WPRocket will be a wise investment you can make for your WordPress blog. This plugin does the same thing that W3 Total Cache and WP Super Cache, but only better.

WPRocket has more advanced caching options and you don’t need to be an expert to setup this plugin. You can install WPRocket and enable caching on your WordPress site with a few clicks.

SEO Plugins #

Optimizing your website for search engines is an important part of driving more traffic to your blog. These plugins will help you with that process.

YOAST SEO #

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Price: Free  /  Download

Yoast SEO plugin makes things easier for you to add an SEO title, description, and optimize each of your blog articles for keywords to rank well on Google.

JetPack #

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Price: Free  /  Download

JetPack is a multifunction plugin that brings a wide variety of service to your WordPress website, such as sharing buttons, basic website analytics, publicizing options, subscriptions, site verification tools and much more.

Schema Snippets #

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Price: Free  /  Download

This plugin helps you to optimize your blog posts to appear beautifully on Google, Bing, Yahoo, and Facebook by adding photos, star ratings, price, author, and more information for your links.

Redirection #

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Price: Free  /  Download

When you change URLs to your articles or pages users visiting the old links get lost in your website. They will end up on a 404 error page instead.

Redirection is a great plugin that allows you to redirect those lost visitors to the proper pages and make the best of your website traffic.

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Price: Free  /  Download

Breadcrumb NavXT is a quite useful plugin that shows your visitors the path to the page they’re on. So that they can trace back to the pages or categories they were browsing earlier.

Marketing Plugins #

Make the best of your website visitors with the help of these cool WordPress marketing plugins.

Contact Form 7 #

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Price: Free  /  Download

Every website needs a contact page to provide people a way to reach out to its owner. Contact Form 7 is the best and the easiest way to add a beautiful contact page to your WordPress website.

IceGram #

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Price: Free  /  Download

IceGram is a lead-capturing plugin that lets you show a pop-up box to your visitors to ask for their email and automatically add them to your email list. IceGram has plenty of templates and options for you to customize your message as well.

Ninja Popups #

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Price: $25  /  Download

Ninja Popups also works similar to IceGram, but it comes with over 40 different templates for making your email subscribe popups to look unique and competitive.

AddThis Share Buttons #

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Price: Free  /  Download

Getting your articles shared across social networks is a great way to get more people to visit your website. This free plugin will encourage your readers to share your articles by adding share buttons throughout the website.

Page-Building Plugins #

Following plugins will allow you to create and manage landing pages and sales pages right on your WordPress blog.

SiteOrigin Page Builder #

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Price: Free  /  Download

Use this plugin to build responsive page layouts through an easy-to-use drag-and-drop user interface.

Visual Composer #

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Price: $34  /  Download

Design beautiful landing pages, home pages, and more with this plugin, which allows you to customize your theme without any knowledge of web design or programming.

Custom Sidebars #

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Price: Free  /  Download

This plugin will give you more control over your website sidebar and let you replace the default sidebars, add more configuration options, and do much more.

Portfolio/Slider Plugins #

Looking for a way to add an awesome slider or a photo gallery to your website? Then these WordPress portfolio plugins will come in handy.

Slider Revolution #

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Price: $19  /  Download

There’s no better way to add beautiful sliders with amazing 3D effects to your WordPress website instantly than Slider Revolution. It’s been installed on over 1 million websites.

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Price: Free  /  Download

Envira is one of the best free WordPress gallery slideshow plugins available today. No complicated coding or customization necessary, this plugin will let you add galleries anywhere on your website.

LayerSlider #

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Price: $18  /  Download

LayerSlider is like a combination of Slider Revolution and Envira Gallery. This plugin lets you create both image galleries, sliders, and slideshows as well.

Essential Grid #

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Price: $26  /  Download

This is a must-have plugin for eCommerce websites, especially for listing products in pages and creating portfolios.

eCommerce Plugins #

With the help of these WordPress eCommerce plugins, you can transform your ordinary WordPress website into an online store or even start selling products through your blog.

WooCommerce #

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Price: Free  /  Download

WooCommerce is widely known as the best way to build an eCommerce website with WordPress. It’s easy to setup and can be customized with lots of additional add-ons.

WP eCommerce #

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Price: Free  /  Download

WP eCommerce is not as feature-rich as WooCommerce, but sometimes having too many options can confuse people. This is an eCommerce plugin for setting up a basic shop on your WordPress site.

Easy Digital Downloads #

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Price: Free  /  Download

Another simple and user-friendly plugin for selling digital products through your blog.

Comment System Plugins #

Once your blog starts to grow with lots of articles, managing comments will become much more difficult. These are the best WordPress comment plugins that you can use to moderate your website comments to maintain a better blog.

Disqus #

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Price: Free  /  Download

Disqus is a plugin used by many popular blogs for managing comments and communities. This plugin will allow your visitors to leave comments by logging in with their Twitter, Facebook, or Disqus profile.

Yoast Comment Hacks #

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Price: Free  /  Download

Redirecting your commenters to a thank you page, adding limitations to comment lengths, and cleaning up notification emails are some of the main features of this plugin.

Comment Ratings #

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Price: $21  /  Download

Let your visitors vote for the best comments on your website

Other Cool Plugins #

Here are a few more plugins to make your WordPress site much cooler.

Google Analytics by Yoast #

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Price: Free  /  Download

Accessing and managing all your website analytics through the official Google Analytics page can be a little difficult to newcomers. This great plugin makes it easier for you to understand your website analytics by adding a visitor metric dashboard inside your WordPress admin page.

WP Featherlight #

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Price: Free  /  Download

This plugin will make sure your visitors remain on the same page when they click on the images on your website by enlarging the images on a lightweight jQuery lightbox.

WPML #

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Price: $29  /  Download

Make your website multilingual with WPML plugin, which allows you to translate your pages and posts in over 40 different languages.

PolyLang #

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Price: Free  /  Download

PolyLand is a great free alternative to WPML for translating your pages and articles.

Private Content #

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Price: $19  /  Download

This plugin lets you build a premium content section inside your WordPress blog that will give access to the content only for premium users. It’s a great way to sell exclusive products, such as online courses, through your website.

Bookly #

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Price: $46  /  Download

This plugin will add a booking or appointment system into your website. It even works with WooCommerce.

Live Client Chat #

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Price: $20  /  Download

If your business website has a customer support system, adding a live chat option will make it easier for your users to get in touch with you. This is a plugin made just for that purpose.

Go Pricing #

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Price: $20  /  Download

Add beautiful and responsive pricing and compare tables in your website.

Can’t get enough of WordPress plugins? Then try visiting CodeCanyon, Elegant Themes, WPmudev websites to browse more great plugins.

6 comments

  1. Hey Jaka,
    that’s a nice list. Some of them like Jetpack or Yoast are already installed on my blog. Are you open for another great plugin? I use Blog2Social (http://www.blog2social.com/en/) for publishing my blogposts to Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn etc.
    – scheduling
    – pages, groups
    – images from your blogpost will be send with the Social Media post

    It saves me some time.

    1. We already mention similar plugin Share Button by Add This above and it looks like it does the same thing as your’s. Can you tell me the differences between those two before I give your’s a try.

      Thank you for your suggestion!

  2. Thanks for Amazing Blog.
    I have found recently launched the plugin for Blog and I would like to recommend Blog Designer which has features,
    ~ Multilingual Translation Ready
    ~ 15+ Different and Unique Blog Templates
    ~ Fully Customizable Admin Interface
    ~ Import/Export
    ~ Custom Post Type Support
    ~ Revise, edit and reorganize your blog page
    ~ Live Preview
    Check at: https://goo.gl/Qpkgpt
    It’s available in Lite and Pro version.
    Hoping it helps.

    1. I see a lot of you guys recommend bunch of plugins I’ve never tried before. It looks like I will have to make another list with plugins I’ve not mention here.

      Thank you for your suggestion, it really means a lot.

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