When it comes to website design there are so many different approaches to take. Here at Foundation we’re a fan of WordPress, and many of its plugins. There is so much out there that the large majority of functionality you require for your website is already there and ready to go. Because there is so much choice we’ve compiled a list of our top 5 WordPress plugins.

contact form 7.

Contact Form 7 - Top 5 WordPress Plugins

One essential of any website is a contact form. It provides people with an easy way of making contact with your business without having to pick up a phone and call, something a lot of customers may not be comfortable doing.

There are a number of options out there when it comes to contact form plugins, but for us Contact Form 7 is the king. You can have multiple contact forms throughout your website and configure each one to send to different email addresses, ideal when your company has different departments. As well as this you can set up an autoresponder with ease to let your customers know that your have received their enquiry.

Overall it’s a very well built plugin with great flexibility, which goes someway to explain why it currently has well over 1 million installs and makes our list of top 5 WordPress plugins.

Get Contact Form 7 here.

yoast seo.

Yoast SEO - Top 5 WordPress Plugins

A great website design is means nothing if your customers can’t find you. SEO is crucial if you want a successful website and a good return on your investment. Unfortunately, SEO is an incredibly complex and ever changing game, so making a success of it is very hard work.

Anything that can help simplify and guide you through the process of improving your website SEO is a great asset to have. This is why Yoast SEO makes our list of top 5 WordPress plugins.

There are numerous tools within Yoast that helps to improve the appeal of your website to search engines, including setting up an XML sitemap and setting your social media sharing. But one of the most handy tools is how it helps you to write content that will please search engines.

Search engines rankings are being powered more and more by relevant content, written for people, not search engines. Yoast provides you with the option of entering a keyword or phrase that you would like that page to rank for and then gives a set list of criteria your copy needs to hit in order to be favourable to search engines. It does this using a very easy to follow ‘traffic light’ system grading you with either red (bad), orange (needs improvement), and green (good). Green lights across the board should mean your page or article has a good chance of ranking well.

Get Yoast SEO here.

w3 total cache.

W3 Total Cache - Top 5 WordPress Plugins

How fast your website loads is so so important these days. With so many people viewing your website from mobile devices, running on mobile data, it’s imperative that your website page sizes are kept as small as possible.

W3 Total Cache offers some great tools to help shrink your page size and decrease load times and that’s why it’s on our top 5 WordPress plugins list. Not only, as the name suggests, will it cache your pages for instant loading for repeat visitors but it will also help those visiting your site for the first time by minimising your HTML, CSS and JavaScript files all with the click of a button.

This isn’t just a great tool that benefits your customers viewing your website, but it also helps you search engine ranking as faster loading websites are deemed more worthy of higher ranking than slower loading pages.

Get W3 Total Cache here.

tawk.to.

Whilst not the most well known of WordPres plugins Tawk.To is something well worth considering. Tawk.To gives you the ability to have a live chat facility on your website so that customers can drop you a message immediately without having time to overthink things.

A fantastic feature of Tawk.To is that you have options as to how you receive messages from customers. If you, or your staff, are at a computer during the day at all times you have access to your own dashboard where you can set up accounts for different members of staff to be able to respond to customers. If you’re a one man band who is on the move often you can have the messages directly sent to you phone via the Tawk.To app. You never have to miss an enquiry again.

Get Tawk.To here.

wp google maps.

The final addition to our top 5 WordPress plugins gives you a feature that is a staple of basically every website in existence, a map to show your location. At the very minimum you should have an address on your website to allow customers to locate you. But why force them to then put that address into an online map to find out your location? Having a map embedded in your website prevents your customers from having to leave it.

It goes beyond just having a map on your website though. WP Google Maps makes our list of top 5 WordPress plugins because of what you can do with a map. If you’re a business with multiple branches or offices then WP Google Maps allows you to have multiple locations within one map, making it easy for a customer to find their nearest branch.

One other fantastic feature of WP Google Maps is its integration with another plugin (Snazzy Maps) which allows you to create your map with different styles. This means that you don’t have to stick with the default appearance of a google map. This is great as it means the map on your website can match your own branding and website design, adding an extra layer of cohesion.

Get WP Google Maps here.

that's our list of top 5 wordpress plugins.

Now you have a read through our top 5 WordPress plugins for any website hopefully you’ve found it helpful. If there is a great plugin you feel we’ve missed and that can really benefit any WordPress website owner please feel free to let us know in the comments.

About the author

Mark is a logo design and brand identity specialist, and founder of Foundation Design Agency. He has worked for many years as a freelance logo designer operating www.thelogomark.co.uk. He has a passion for all aspects of brand identity design as well as being a keen NFL fan and occasional songwriter.

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