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  • 7 Best WordPress Plugins for Non-Profits

    Monday, June 12, 2017 by
    Best WordPress Plugins for Nonprofit Website

    7 WordPress Plugins for Non-Profits

    Sadly, a lot of stellar non-profits are limited by what they can do due to lack of funding. A website could be the solution to this problem, and you don’t have to be a tech genius to have a highly functional and useful website for your non-profit. With the help of WordPress you can transform your existing non-profit website into something that helps your organization grow. Below you’ll find the most useful WordPress plugins for non-profits and explanations of how they can help you solve specific challenges. The plugins below will help you with certain website and company issues like: overall website security, community event management, fundraising assistance, and website and community growth. Recommended WordPress Hosting

    1. Give

    Give Give is an incredible donation management plugin. This plugin allows supporters to make donations via PayPal. Sure, you could just include a PayPal donation button on your site, but this plugin extends that functionality even further. Give goes well beyond just being a simple payment processor plugin; it helps you do things like track who made donations (so you can thank them), set donation goals, and even track progress over time. Some of the main features of this plugin include:
    • Custom donation reporting
    • API support to integrate with other plugins
    • Zero commission charges from Give
    • Custom emails upon donation received
    • Goal tracking to hit funding goals
    Best of all this plugin is entirely free and will help take your online donations to the next level.  

    2. Yoast SEO

    Yoast Yoast SEO is the standard for SEO plugins. With the help of a solid SEO plugin you can help your website rank and get more traffic from search engines. Although community events and general word of mouth are both effective tools for non-profits, getting free search engine traffic can still be valuable. Even though you probably don’t have the time, or the budget, to create a full-fledged content strategy to maximize your rankings, this plugin will help you get the most from what you already have. Some of the main features of this plugin include:
    • On-site page analysis for your chosen keyword
    • Optimization recommendations
    • XML Sitemap creation and optimization
    • Meta optimization
    Yoast SEO is a great free plugin that can be a valuable addition to any non-profit website looking to amplify their existing traffic.  

    3. The Events Calendar

    Events Calendar Fundraising and hosting events are two crucial activities for any non-profit. For this reason it’s important to have an easy-to-access events calendar on your website. With the Events Calendar Plugin you can quickly setup great looking calendars that contain relevant event information. This information is invaluable to vendors, volunteers, donors, and attendees. Plus, this plugin integrates with Google Maps, so you can show the specific location of your event. Some features of this plugin include:
    • Easy and fast setup
    • Ability to save vendor and organizer information
    • Can export event details to iCal or Google Calendar
    • Widgetized for easy site placement
    If you’re looking to manage your events with even greater efficiency you can utilize a plugin add-on called Event Tickets. This plugin will give visitors the ability to RSVP to your events in order to help make planning much easier.  

    4. UpdraftPlus Backup

    Updraft Plus It’s always a good idea to backup your website on a regular basis. Sadly, a lot of non-profits neglect this and can end up losing precious files as a result. There’s nothing worse than scrambling to find a backup, only to realize your site hasn’t been backed up in years, or ever! Don’t let this happen to you. With UpdraftPlus WordPress Backup you can easily backup and restore your site. Plus, this plugin integrates with some of the most popular storage providers today. Some features of this plugin include:
    • Automatic and scheduled backups
    • Quick restore
    • File backup selection
    • Integration with storage environments like Dropbox, Google Drive, Amazon S3 and more
    There are both free and premium versions of this plugin available, but the free version should be enough if you’re just getting started.  

    5. UkuuPeople

    UkuuPeople When you’re running a non-profit the relationships you have are everything. With this free plugin you can easily manage your contacts and relationships without the need of an expensive CRM. Plus, this plugin integrates right into the backend of WordPress, so you don’t have to leave your site to deepen valuable relationships. This plugin has a wide variety of features like:
    • Meeting assignment and management
    • File attachment support
    • People search function
    • Task assignment
    • Email list integration
    • Relationship tracking
    If you’re looking for a way to manage your relationships without the need of an expensive CRM, then give this plugin a try.  

    6. Wired Impact Volunteer Management

    Wired Impact Having a steady supply of volunteers is absolutely crucial for the survival of your non-profit. However, it can be difficult to keep in touch with your volunteers if you don’t have a system in place. This plugin is that system. This plugin will allow you to post volunteer opportunities as they arise, track participants, and much more. Some great features of this plugin include:
    • Create on-site sign up forms for volunteers
    • Send out reminder emails to volunteers
    • Quickly post new volunteer opportunities
    • Track participants and volunteers
    If your non-profit needs a steady supply of volunteers, then make your life and volunteer turnout better with this plugin.  

    7. SumoMe

    Sumo SumoMe is a great website enhancement plugin. SumoMe offers an entire suite of tools to help grow your site and retain your readers. This plugin is the perfect compliment to any existing website strategies you’re employing to gain traffic, collect leads, and retain readers. There are a ton of features of this plugin like:
    • Pop-ups to help grow your email list
    • Website analytics and monitoring
    • Heat maps to see where your visitors are clicking
    • Social sharing buttons
    Even if you just end up using one of the many features this plugin offers, it will be worth your time. There’s both a free and paid version of this plugin available, but the free features will be more than enough to get started. There is a near endless supply of WordPress plugins you can utilize to improve your existing non-profit website. The above plugins are a great way to get started and will help you get the most from your website. Any stellar non-profit plugins we missed in the list above? Share your favorites in the comments below.
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  • Best WordPress Plugins for Wedding Websites

    Monday, April 24, 2017 by
    Best Wordpress Plugins for Wedding Websites Your wedding is an incredibly special day in your life. Building a beautiful website around the day is a great way to keep guests informed and it can help commemorate the magic. With a wedding website you can communicate the details about your wedding like: location, directions, accommodations and gifts. All the needed information will be in one place, there is no need to spend hours on the phone speaking to each guest. Beyond highlighting certain wedding details, you can use your site to showcase beautiful pictures, videos and more, so you can remember your big day anytime you’d like. If you’re utilizing WordPress for your wedding site, then there are all kinds of plugins you can use to extend the functionality of your website and make it do whatever you wish. Below you’ll find five plugins that are invaluable additions to any wedding website. HostGator WordPress Hosting  

    1. WeddingPress

    Wedding Press WeddingPress is the perfect all-in-one wedding plugin for your WordPress site. This plugin is great in that you’ll really only need this single plugin to make your wedding site more functional and useful. Whether you’re looking for a way to add a gift list, create a way for guests to RSVP, or even create meal lists, then this plugin is a good choice. Some of the most useful features of this plugin include:
    • Creating an online gift list that syncs with PayPal for easy payment
    • Social media and email list integration
    • Easily create an online guest list for quick RSVP
    • Let guests choose their preferred menu options
    WeddingPress will run you $30, but is a great way to provide a seamless registrations experience for your guests.  

    2. Events Planner

    Events Planner is a free plugin that’ll help you manage any kind of event. Although technically an event management plugin, it’s perfectly suited to the wedding environment where you have things like a reception, rehearsal dinners, the actual wedding, and the after party all occurring in close proximity. Events Planner can help you plan and manage your wedding guest list, while keeping them in the loop about the latest details related to your wedding. Some of the main features of this plugin include:
    • Easy event registration
    • A built-in form manager
    • PayPal integration (if payments are necessary)
    • Confirmation emails for all registrants
    There is also a pro edition of this plugin, which will unlock features like: availability of an unlimited number of dates, prices and times, the ability for both individual and group registrations, a visible attendee list, and ability to send emails.  

    3. WP Google Maps

    Google Maps Your visitors need to be able to easily locate your venue, especially if you’re expecting guests to travel for your wedding. What better way to do this than to utilize the power of Google Maps? WP Google Maps is a great plugin that will help you provide exact wedding location details via Google Maps. This is an incredibly easy plugin to use, but is still quite rich on features. The free version of this plugin has features like:
    • Classic Google Maps and Street-view support
    • Widgetized for easy placement
    • Re-sizable to fit your site
    • Can add map markers, animations, and images
    If you upgrade to the paid version of the plugin you’ll access additional features, like the ability to create more than one map, show the locations of your visitors and icon upgrades.  

    4. Bean Registry

    Wedding gift registries are an important part of any wedding. But, instead of sending your guests a random assortment of links to different websites, why not host them all in one place? With Bean Registry you can use their list of shortcodes to easily add your registry links to their supported stores to anywhere on your site. Some features of this plugin include:
    • An easy process to add items to registry and link to existing stores
    • Large number of stores to choose from
    • Easily add your URL through a shortcode
    This plugin connects you to over 15 current stores, and is a great way to create a registry for your wedding site without a lot of hassle. Wedding websites are becoming more and more popular; with the plugins above you’ll be able to transform your existing wedding site into something useful and beautiful. Any plugins we missed that are a must-have for your wedding site? Please share in the comments below.
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  • 8 Best WordPress Plugins to Monetize Your Blog

    Wednesday, April 5, 2017 by
    Best WordPress Plugins to Monetize Your Blog If your blog isn't monetized, you’re losing money. Blogs can be monetized regardless of their topic, number of followers, or purpose. Even if it’s your passion project, your blog can and should make you money. Both new and older posts can bring in passive income. Making money with your blog is easier than you might think; all you need are the right tools. We’re going to take a look at the 8 best WordPress plugins to monetize your blog. Don’t have a blog yet? No problem—get your site published in minutes with HostGator’s one-click WordPress installs. Learn more here.   HostGator Website Builder  

    1. OptinMonster

    Optin Monster

    OptinMonster is the most popular conversion optimization software available. It helps you convert abandoning website visitors into subscribers and customers, so you can grow your email list, increase your page views, and make more money. You can use their pre-made templates and drag-and-drop builder to create high converting optin forms including popups, slide-ins, and floating bars. The tool comes with behavior targeting so you can show the right message to the right person on the right page at the right time, thus making maximum revenue. Cost: Plans start at $9/month when paid annually.   

    2. WPForms

    WPForms WPForms is a customer acquisition tool that lets you easily create customized forms designed to capture visitor information for lead nurturing purposes. It has pre-built templates that are all mobile responsible and translation ready. This means you’ll never lose a single customer, no matter what device they’re on or where they live. WPForms offers additional features to monetize your blog. Their true customization options—including the ability for users to upload files and make payments or donations— lets you create forms for everything from initial contact request forms, customer service questions, new subscriber optins, and even membership and product orders. It’s the easiest form creation software to use, and it’s flexible enough that you can make any form you need to bring more profit to your blog. Cost: Plans start at $39/year  

    3. Insert Post Ads

    Insert Post Ads The Insert Post Ads plugin inserts ads directly into blog posts themselves instead of just having ads on the periphery of your page where they are easily ignored. In-content ads have increased visibility and a significantly higher likelihood of engagement, drastically increase click-through rates and revenue. The plugin can even insert these ads automatically so you don’t have to manually enter each one into every post, saving you a ton of time and simplifying the process. Its flexibility lets you choose where and how often you want the ads to show up, giving you complete control over how many ads are showing up in your content for maximum potential revenue. Cost: Free  

    4. ThirstyAffiliates

    Thirsty Affiliate

    Aside from ads, affiliate selling is perhaps the fastest way to monetize your blog. ThirstyAffiliates lets you import affiliate links from Amazon and other major selling sites. You can quickly and easily earn commissions from sales just by placing these links in your content. They have a link creator that cloaks the affiliate link in your URL; when a user clicks, they’ll see a redirection from your URL instead of a traditional affiliate link. This also ensures reliable sales tracking so you earn commission on every sale, guaranteed. Unlike other similar plugins, ThirstyAffiliates has options like “Open Link in New Window” so you won’t lose readers from your blog in exchange for commission. You can also add images and graphics to affiliate links to make them more eye-catching and dynamic, driving more clicks from the customer and commission for you. Cost: Basic plan is free, with add-ons available for purchase  

    5. WooCommerce Memberships

    WooCommerce WooCommerce’s Memberships plugin lets you create membership-only sections on your site. You are in complete control of how much access you want to give and to whom, allowing for different levels of membership (and price points) to be created. You can even drip content to different levels of membership, giving new content to “premium” members first, which can incentivize users to pay for more exclusivity. You can sell memberships as an exclusive product or as part of a different package purchase, so you can offer the types of memberships that benefit your business and sales most. Cost: $149/year for a single site  

    6. Ad Blocking Detector

    Ad Blocking Detector Ad Blocking Detector can detect the ad blocking software that has cost bloggers large amounts of revenue. This plugin will automatically replace blocked ads with other types of content like newsletter sign-ups, which provide alternative methods to monetize your blog and prevents overall loss of revenue. It recognizes all major ad blocking browser extensions to offer you the best protection possible against lost opportunities for monetization. Cost: Free  

    7. Videe.TV Monetization

    Videe.TV Monetization The Videe.TV Monetization plugin lets you place high-engaging video ads in your content. This means more clicks and more commission while enriching your blog posts with relevant videos. This plugin provides you with a library of video content you can choose from to create playlists that you know your audience will find relevant and interesting, maximizing views. Each user view earns you a commission, and their real-time reporting helps you track every cent as you earn it. Cost: Free  

    8. Mobile Ad for WordPress

    Mobile Ad for WordPress The Mobile Ad for WordPress plugin focuses on the increasingly-important mobile ad revenue. It offers ad units designed specifically for mobile users and sites. The ads they serve load faster and don’t use as much data as traditional ads, resulting in optimal performance and more clicks. This plugin gives you plenty of customization options, including different ad formats to choose from and the ability to choose when users see your ads. You can even wait to show users an ad until they’re clicking away from your site, so you don’t lose traffic until they’re already leaving.  Cost: Free  

    Conclusion

    Monetizing your blog doesn’t have to be difficult; these plugins allow you to generate additional income on all of your posts without a lot of hassle. Choose one of the plugins above to get started and you’ll be on your way to making money from your blog.
  • Best WordPress Plugins for Musicians

    Monday, February 6, 2017 by
    WordPress Plugins for Musicians Having a website is basically mandatory for any profession, including musicians. In fact, with the ability to build an audience and sell directly to your fans, establishing an online presence is becoming even more enticing. Luckily, WordPress has a lot of tools available for musicians. Even if you’re not very tech-savvy, you can still use the power of WordPress to create a beautiful and functional website. Below we dive into a few of our favorite plugins that will help take you, or your band’s, website to the next level.  

    1. Manage Tour Dates With GigPress

    GigPress WordPress If you tour on a regular basis, then GigPress is a plugin you’re going to want in your arsenal. This plugin allows you to easily manage your upcoming and past performances. This plugin allows you to easily customize how you want your tour dates to look, so you can integrate your upcoming shows into your existing site. It even includes links for your fans to buy tickets, and is easy to organize your shows.  

    2. Stream Music With Soundcloud or Spotify

    SoundCloud WordPress plugin If you currently have your music uploaded to Soundcloud, then why not let fans listen while they're on your website? This plugin displays your Soundcloud playlists or tracks you’ve uploaded yourself. Spotify WordPress plugin However, if you don’t utilize Soundcloud and your music is on Spotify, then you can use the plugin called Spotify Master. This enables you to display entire albums, playlists, or even select tracks.  

    3. Connect To Your Fans With Thank Me Later

    Thank Me Later WordPress plugin As you grow you’re going to need a way to keep in touch with your fans. It’s easy in the early stages when you can take the time to respond to everyone, but over time it’s nearly impossible to respond to every request, comment, and email. One cool plugin we like is called Thank Me Later. Whenever a fan adds a comment they will receive an automatic response via email thanking them for the comment. Little personal touches like this can really go a long way.  

    4. Sell Digital Downloads With Music Store

    Music Store WordPress plugin Some musicians prefer to be in complete control of how their music gets distributed. A great plugin that allows you to sell your digital music directly to your fans is called Music Store. This plugin also includes an audio player, so your fans can profile the track before they decide to buy. The free version of this plugin lets you share basic tracks, but if you’re looking to sell entire collections of music, run discounts, and offer coupons, then you’ll have to upgrade to the premium version.  

    5. Sell Your Merchandise With Foxyshop

    FoxyShop WordPress plugin As a musician you make most of your money selling music and playing live shows; however, a good portion of your income can also come from merchandise sales. Most of this stuff is usually sold at a booth at your live shows, but you can still sell the same goods online. Luckily, there are a variety of plugins you can use to sell your merchandise to those fans who desperately want a t-shirt with your latest album cover. One of the most common storefront plugins is Foxyshop. This plugin connects to their hosted shopping cart service, which enables you auto manage your inventory from within your WordPress dashboard. Foxyshop also has support for selling digital goods and subscriptions too.   The above plugins are a great way for you to connect with your fans and bolster your income as a musician. Did we miss any must-have plugins? Share your favorite WordPress plugins for musicians in the comments below.
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  • 6 Must-Have WordPress Plugins For Real Estate Agents

    Friday, December 2, 2016 by
    WordPress Plugins for Real Estate Agents Whether you’re a realtor or a developer, it’s important to have an understanding of how you can build the most effective and useful WordPress site for your needs. WordPress is an incredible framework for most website builds, as it’s extremely flexible, functional, and easy to use. Luckily, there are literally hundreds of plugins for you to choose from that will help to increase the functionality of your real estate website. However, with the sheer number of plugins available it can be overwhelming deciding which plugins will be the best fit for your needs. To simplify your search we’ve decided to break down a handful of the very best plugins for real estate agents. Let’s dive in! Recommended WordPress Hosting  

    1. WP-Property

    WP-Property - WordPress Powered Real Estate and Property Management This is an intuitive plugin that can benefit both real estate agents and property managers. You can easily create, edit, and manage the property listings across your website. WP-Property has a very easy to use user interface, so adding properties to your site is a breeze. Some of its features include:
    • Supports translation into Italian, Russian, and Portuguese
    • Allows for Google Map integration and the use of included shortcodes
    • Can allow you to display different types of templates for a wide variety of property-types
    • Well optimized for SEO purposes, to increase traffic to your listings
     

    2. IMPress Listings

    IMPress Listing - A Plugin For Realtors IMPress Listings is a free open source plugin that allows you to create a more effective listing management system for your website. The plugin was designed by the team Agent Evolution, who specializes in web solutions for agents and brokers. This plugin easily integrates into your existing theme with its pre-made templates. Features include:
    • Can create featured listings to show your favorite properties up top
    • Fully responsive, so it displays well across any screen
    • Very high number of data fields to easily customize your listings
    • Can create a default sorting structure for your listings
     

    3. Estatik

    Estatik - Full Featured Real Estate Plugin For WordPress Estatik is a relatively new WordPress real estate plugin. It seeks to be a clean and minimalist version of the other real estate plugins that are currently out there. The free version includes all of the features highlighted below, but is also available in two premium packages, including the Pro version, and the Pro version plus an additional theme. Some of its features include:
    • It’s fully responsive, so it’ll look good across multiple screen sizes (perfect for agents on the go)
    • It comes with its own custom themes, but can still integrate with most other themes in the marketplace
    • You can completely customize every listing
    • You can allow other agents to modify the listings from the front end
    • It has several other widgets that include advanced search, property slideshows, and location maps
     

    4. Easy Property Listings

    Easy Property Listing Through WordPress Easy Property Listings seeks to be the best plugin for easily adding real estate listings to your website. It works with most themes that are currently available without causing too much fuss. This plugin focuses on a single feature, and does it very well. In addition to the free features highlighted below there are also paid add-ons, which will enhance its functionality even further. Check out some of its features below:
    • Contains a “theme compatibility mode” to help with integration into your existing WordPress theme
    • Gives you multiple listing and pricing options for simple listing customization
    • Caters to international listings by allowing multiple currencies and locations
    • Can make showing and inspection appointments through the calendar function
     

    5. WP-Real Estate

    WP Real Estate - A WordPress Plugin WP-Real Estate is a great all-around plugin that will help to build your real estate website. If you’re looking to add additional functionality to your existing website, or truly unlock the potential of your site from the start, then give this plugin a go. Features include:
    • Can easily add and customize property listings
    • Has a translation feature to translate your site into multiple languages (perfect for cities where multiple languages are the norm)
    • Has an in-depth property search website to easily navigate between properties

    6. WPL Real Estate

    Real Estate Plugins - WPL Real Estate WPL Real Estate is a great plugin choice for real estate agencies. This plugin is designed to help improve your data management and listing management processes as a realtor. However, it can also be used for several other purposes, such as:
        • Adding properties to your listing wizard, and enable other agents to add listings as well
        • Easily categorizing your listings based upon property type, number of bedrooms, etc.
        • Displaying your listings on Google Maps to better gauge location
        • Sharing your listings to Facebook, email, Twitter, and more
    As a realtor it’s important to have a plugin that will help you achieve your goals and more easily manage your listings. The plugins featured above will help to improve the overall functionality and usefulness of your site.