Top WordPress Plugins For 2019

WordPress is the world’s most popular CMS, and with over 60% of the market share in 2019, this year has only seen its popularity grow. There are many reasons to love WordPress, but today we’re looking at the plugins – over 55,000 of them – allowing users to do almost anything from custom fields to performance and SEO.

But it’s easy to get carried away, and you don’t want to bog your site down with dozens of plugins either. Less is more, as they say. In that spirit, here are our top picks for 2019.

Advanced Custom Fields

Advanced Custom Fields is one of our favourite WordPress plugins. It allows users to add custom data to WordPress edit screens, including posts, users, categories, media and comments. You can even create custom options pages.

The PRO version goes even deeper, with features including repeatable fields, ACF blocks and flexible content fields. We love the PRO version for sections like Google maps and clone fields. This plugin allows for a level of customisation within the CMS that takes WordPress to a whole new level.

Along with this, ACF also creates locals JSON files for each new field group on the site – allowing it to load the relevant field group and settings from this file, which greatly reduces the number of database calls and therefore improves site speed.

You can read more on their website, or download the plugin.

Autoptimize

It’s a well-known fact that internet users have little patience for slow websites, and many will quit a website that takes more than 3 seconds to load. Site performance is therefore crucial for businesses that stand to lose revenue from a drop in visitors.

Autoptimize is designed to make optimising easy. It allows users to aggregate, minify and cache scripts and styles, as well as cleaning up CSS and scripts. The plugin also features extensive API – allowing the plugin to be tailored to each specific website. The features are easy to use and comprehensive, making this a powerful tool for performance and site optimisation, both for novice users and professional developers.

You can read more on their website, or download the plugin.

Google Authenticator

Cyber crime costs the UK economy billions of pounds every year, targeting both businesses and individuals. Security compromises can also lead to data breaches, causing irreparable damage to both customer trust and a company’s reputation.
Two-factor authentication is one way to ensure that only the people who are meant to access your website’s backend are able to do so. Using the standard Google Authenticator app, this plugin adds another level of security to your website.

Customisable features also allow two-factor authentication to be enabled on a per-user basis, or disabled for apps using the XMLRPC interface – allowing users to continue maintaining blogs from a mobile device.

You can read more on their website, or download the plugin.

ShortPixel Image Optimizer

As we mentioned earlier, site speed and performance is critical, both for user experience and search engine rankings. Google hates slow, unresponsive websites, and image loading is one of the key factors influencing performance.

The difficulty is that while large images take a long time to load, small, pixelated images send visitors running for the hills… or to another website, at least. ShortPixel Image Optimizer is a lightweight plugin that optimises any image, or PDF document, without reducing the visual quality of a website.

We love the fact that after compressing any existing images, it works quietly in the background, optimising any new uploads automatically – allowing users to focus on content.

You can read more on their website, or download the plugin.

User Activity Log

We’re not trying to cause any office rifts here, but it’s good to know when users are accessing the backend, and keep track of what’s going on back there. For many businesses, it can present a huge vulnerability in terms of data protection, sales and reputation.

User Activity Log tracks user logins and activity, and also allows you to receive notifications every time someone logs in to your website. This adds a layer of security against password hacking, as well as any internal vulnerabilities.

You can read more on their website, or download the plugin.

Yoast SEO

WordPress is already an excellent SEO platform, but in highly competitive online marketplaces, excellent isn’t always enough.

Yoast takes SEO beyond excellence, and it caters to everyone. From novice users to advanced marketing teams, Yoast provides a solid toolset that is both far-reaching and easy to use, allowing users to add and edit meta tags, generate sitemaps, control breadcrumbs and perform keyword analysis.

The simple traffic light system and full back-end integration allows users to quickly optimise any existing website pages, and focus on what they do best: creating great content. We love that it analyses website copy for readability, and suggests on-the-spot improvements.

You can read more on their website, or download the plugin.

GDPR Cookie Compliance (by Moove Agency)

GDPR law came into full effect in 2018, meaning that all online businesses operating within the EU must now be compliant with these regulations.

Our GDPR Cookie Compliance Plugin is actively installed on over 70,000 websites and is one of the most popular plugins that assists website owners with cookie compliance and consent notice requirements on their website. The plugin deals specifically with websites cookies, and the data they collect. One of the best features of this plugin is that it gives end users full control over exactly which cookies they consent to, with the option of editing their choices at a later date.

The plugin is also fully customisable – allowing users to add their own logo, fonts and colour palette, and edit all of the display text. This high level of customisation allows the front-end display to reflect the look and feel of the website. And given that it’s one of the first things new visitors see, we think that level of consistency in the look and feel is important and is one of the reasons that the plugin is so popular.

You can read more on our website, view a short demo video or download the plugin.

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