In Top WordPress Plugins for 2010 (Part One), I offered five of the best WordPress plugins I think are must-haves for your site. Lets move on to part two for five more of my favorite WordPress plugins.
6. Improve Search Engine Rankings with All-in-One SEO
By default, WordPress is a very search-engine-friendly publishing platform. Likewise, so are most WordPress themes. Whenever we develop a new theme here at Solostream, SEO is a key factor in deciding how it’s put together. Still, you can never have enough SEO for your site, and the All-in-One SEO plugin offers a set of features that can take your SEO to the next level.
One of the best things about WordPress is the community of savvy developers who create all those wonderful plugins. If you visit the WordPress Plugin Directory, however, you’ll find over 8000 available plugins to give your WordPress site a little extra bling.
Phew. That’s a lot to pick from. Unless you like to experiment ALOT, how can you possibly know which ones you should be using? So, with that in mind, here are 5 of my top WordPress plugins for 2010.
1. Stop Comment and Trackback SPAM With Akismet
If you get any traffic at all to your site, you will get some SPAM comments and trackbacks. The more traffic you get, the more SPAM you get. And you certainly don’t want Viagra ads popping up (no pun intended) all over the comments section of your site. So, you need some protection.
Akismet, created by the same folks who develop WordPress, is an awesome first line of defense. In fact, it’s the only SPAM plugin we use on all Solostream sites. The only minor drawback is you need to set up an account at WordPress.com, and get an API key to make Akisment work. And if you’re using it for a commercial site, you’ll need to shell out $5 per month.
Coming soon to a WordPress Theme Store near you … it’s a brand new WordPress theme we’re calling WP-Ellie, named after my lovable, but slightly overweight beagle (her name is Ellie). We’re still putting the finishing touches on her, but WP-Ellie should be out before Valentine’s Day. Perfect timing to buy your sweetheart a new WordPress theme.
Like many of our previous WordPress themes, WP-Ellie will have multiple home page layouts (see screenshots below). That includes a basic blog layout as well as several different magazine style layouts, one of which you can see on the WP-Ellie demo site. It also includes social networking site integration, including the latest tweet from your Twitter profile.
Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve spent some time playing with the new WordPress image editor that shipped with WordPress 2.9. It’s pretty cool and something you should play around with if you use any images on your site. I went ahead and did a short video tutorial covering the important parts. The video runs about 6 minutes.
It doesn’t happen often, but it does happen. There’s a SNAFU with your web host, and they tell you that your website is no more. It’s gone. Kaput. Like Elvis, it has left the building. And worse, they don’t have a recent back-up of the data. Or worse still … they don’t have ANY back-up copies of the data.
Think it can’t happen? It can. And it does. But it doesn’t have to be that big of a problem if you’re prepared for the worst.
Our latest WordPress Theme, WP-Launch, will be available very shortly, and I wanted to go ahead and publish a short demo video that I just uploaded. This video is a little under 10 minutes long, and it demonstrates some of the features of WP-Launch.
The video is still being processed by YouTube, so it may be a bit blurry still, but it will clear up in an hour or so.
If you’d like to embed the video on your own site, go ahead and grab the embed code from YouTube.