As a marketer, you’re great at growing a website, but you probably don’t know how to make one from scratch. That’s not a problem because you can easily create one using WordPress.
WordPress makes it super easy to create a website by installing “plugins.” Just like on your smartphone, plugins are “apps” you can install to give your WordPress website more features, and without having to write a single line of code.
But the problem with WordPress is that there are over 44,000 plugins to choose from, and the majority of them, well… suck. Some of plugins are so bad that they can dramatically slow down your website, which may have negative consequences to your search ranking results.
Fortunately, with this list, you’ll only see the best WordPress plugins recommended by the best marketers. Everyone mentioned in this list have built several websites and have tons of experience using WordPress plugins.
Let’s get started...
1. Noah Kagan (Co-founder of SumoMe and AppSumo)
Noah was employee #4 at Facebook, Director of Marketing at Mint, and is currently the Co-Founder of SumoMe & AppSumo.
Suffice to say, Noah has built plenty of websites and many of them on WordPress. His favorite plugin is Share. Share makes it very simple for your visitors to share your content to their friends, family, and others. The more people that share your content, the more viral traffic you’ll get to your site.
2. Pat Flynn (Owner of Smart Passive Income)
Pat’s website, Smart Passive Income, has over 150,000 email subscribers and his podcast has been downloaded over 8 MILLION times. One of the most common questions he receives is which plugins his website uses.
Here’s his response each time:
Pretty Link: “Pretty Link allows me to take long links with lots of characters and quickly create nice looking, short and trackable links that are easy to share and remember. This is handy for me, but also handy for those listening to my podcast or watching my videos who don't have access to a computer or pen and paper!”
CoSchedule: “CoSchedule allows me and my entire team to be on the same page when it comes to our editorial calendar. It can even help you schedule your social media posts to promote your content ahead of time.”
3. Lewis Howes (Host of The School Of Greatness)
Lewis has built several multi-million dollar online businesses, including The School Of Greatness podcast, which has received millions of downloads.
His favorite plugins?
LiveFyre: “This lets me show all the social media comments from my podcast episode posts on the actual show notes blog post as well as comments people make on the blog. It's awesome to be able to have all the comments consolidated in one place under the show notes, plus I can moderate the comments easily from that plugin.”
Pretty Link: “I can make short, easy to remember URL links like http://lewishowes.com/book to redirect anywhere I want. This is super helpful to promote things like my books and podcast without the hassle of getting my developer to make special links for me.”
4. Chris Guillebeau (Owner of The Art of Non-Conformity)
Chris is both a New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller. He’s the author of The Art of Non-Conformity (translated into 20+ languages), The $100 Startup (300,000+ copies sold), and The Happiness Of Pursuit (NYT Best Seller).
For his personal blog, his two favorite plugins are:
Wufoo Shortcode Plugin: This plugin makes it super easy to include surveys into your site so you can gain a better understanding of your audience. Here’s what Chris had to say about it, “It helps me integrate awesome survey forms (example: http://chrisguillebeau.com/side-hustle-survey)”.
Widgets on Pages: The default WordPress settings makes it difficult to manage widgets on your page. But this plugin makes it super easy, as Chris said, “It makes arranging and updating things so much easier”.
5. Jeff Goins (Author of The Art Of Work)
Jeff is an author of four books including the national bestseller, The Art of Work. He also has a personal blog where he shares his reflections on writing and life. For his blog, these are his two favorite plugins.
Welcome Mat: Jeff was able to acquire 100,000 readers in just 18 months. To do this, he used Welcome Mat to display a full-screen call to action like a welcoming landing page to collect his visitors’ emails. What were his results? Here’s what Jeff had to say, “Crazy conversions on that thing!”
All In One SEO: On top of being an author, Jeff is also really good at SEO. Just type his domain into Ahrefs and you’ll see that he’s able to rank for some pretty competitive keywords. A big part of this is using the All In One SEO which automatically optimizes his site for SEO. Here’s what Jeff had to say about it, “Great simple tool to make sure all your metadata is solid.”
6. Sol Orwell (Co-Founder of Examine)
Sol has been an online serial entrepreneur for over 15 years, created 6 companies, and generated more than 8 figures. With all his current projects, he does not take any outside investments and instead bootstraps them all himself.
Which plugins does he use for his sites?
Yoast: “Why Yoast? Because it makes optimizing for Google, Facebook, and Twitter (modified tags are KEY for virality and social sharing) simple stupid.”
Facebook Comments Plugin: “I'm a big fan of associating comments with the actual person who makes it; it builds a one-on-one community aspect, makes it easy to comment (most people have FB), and keeps the trolls at bay.”
7. Nathan Chan (Creator of FoundrMag)
Nathan is the creator of Foundr, a digital marketing magazine dedicated to helping entrepreneurs all over the world. He’s interviewed some of the highest profile entrepreneurs including: Richard Branson, Tim Ferriss, Seth Godin and many more.
His favorite WordPress plugins?
Optimizely: “Great for A/B testing to find out what's working and what's not. It's extremely important for us as a data driven company to constantly re-work and out perform our conversion stats.”
Smart Podcast Player: “Looks amazing, and allows people to access our podcast easily. Our podcast is a big part of what drives traffic to our site, so it's important that we make it super simple for people to listen to episodes when they view our website.”
Pretty Link: “Nice little easy tool to create custom links that we use frequently!"
8. Justin Mares (Founder of Kettle & Fire)
Justin is only 26 years old and has started several successful companies, including: Programming For Marketers ($60K in 5 months), Traction Book (over 175 5-star reviews), and Kettle & Fire (6 figure business in less than 1 year).
Whenever he uses WordPress for his websites, these are his two must-have plugins:
SumoMe: “Makes capturing email addresses SUPER easy”
GoSquared: “It's a really cool real-time dashboard to use to evaluate traffic stats.”
9. Ryan Stewart (Founder of Webris)
Ryan is a leading digital marketing consultant who has been featured on many of the top blogs including Kissmetrics and MarketingProfs. For his clients, he often recommends these two plugins:
Yoast SEO: “It’s a pretty heavy plugin, but it's worth it. If you've ever optimized a non-WordPress site for SEO, you understand how much of a pain it is to change titles, metas, URLs, sitemaps, etc (especially if that site has thousands of pages). Yoast cuts through needing a dev or access to a site's root, it's incredibly powerful and the team at Yoast is constantly updating the software with new features.”
Live Composer: “It's a front end page builder that allows you to drag and drop pages, similar to designing in Weebly. My background is actually in graphic design so I've always been a HUGE believer in building content that looks amazing. Using a plugin like this also allows us to be agile, get things done quicker without having to go through Photoshop and our dev team. I don't use it to build websites, but it's incredibly handy to design blog posts and content / guides.”
10. William Harris (Founder of Elumynt)
William is a growth marketer who has helped several businesses grow exponentially. He’s been featured on publications such as: Entrepreneur, SocialMediaToday, Search Engine Journal, and much more.
As far as his favorite plugins goes, whether if it’s for his clients or for his personal blog, he highly recommends these two plugins:
Postable: “I love drafting in Google Docs, but hate having to reformat everything in Wordpress. Postable makes it super easy to migrate my Google docs articles to WordPress with literally a click of a button, which is a huge time saver.”
Plugin Vulnerabilities: “Because I really really really hate the idea of getting hacked, and want to keep my plugins up to date”
11. Sarah Peterson (Owner of Unsettle)
Sarah has built several passive income businesses and is also the Marketing Sumo at SumoMe. For every single online business she builds, she always downloads these two plugins:
List Builder: “List Builder is one of the apps that contributes the most to the growth of my email list. By creating a bonus for my most popular articles, visitors have to provide their email to access the bonus material. Since I don’t know how to code, I use List Builder’s Click Trigger feature to do all of this. I’ve created Click Triggers that convert over 70% for my content upgrades.”
Yoast SEO: “I love Yoast because it guides me through optimizing my content without me having to be an SEO expert. It makes SEO simple, and also allows for custom meta so you can control how your content shows up on different social platforms.”
12. Benji Hyam (Co-Founder of Grow And Convert)
Benji has built several websites, including ThinkApps where he was responsible for turning it into one of the top 30,000 US websites with the most traffic. For each of his websites, he installs these two plugins:
Revive Old Post: “It automatically takes old post from your blog and shares them on Twitter. All you have to do is set it up once, and it automatically schedules and tweets out old content.”
Shortcodes Ultimate: “It allows us to place nicely designed callout boxes and buttons on our blog, which helps us increase our conversions.”
These Plugins Are Just The Tip Of The Iceberg
We just gave you 25 of the best plugins determined by expert marketers. But there are still plenty of amazing WordPress plugins you should be aware of (we have blogs on the best WordPress plugins for photography, SEO, video display, e-commerce sites... just to name a few).
That’s why we decided to crowdsource, curate, and brainstorm all of the best, plugins out there - no matter what you need. We then organized it so you can easily find the exact plugins that are relevant for your business.
Click here for the 57 best WordPress plugins to help you take your website to the next level.
Wilson Hung writes actionable step-by-step guides for SumoMe. Join our Sumo community of over 450,000 subscribers to learn how to grow your website and build your email list. Click here for the 57 best WordPress plugins to help you take your website to the next level.