7 Free WordPress Plugins to Help You Manage Your Site

Today we will be looking at 7 of the most useful WordPress plugins which will be helping us to better optimize out website. It doesn’t matter what type of WordPress site you have you can use thee free WordPress plugins to manage your site better.

But I bet you are already using at least one of these free WordPress plugins. But to those of you who are not familiar with these plugins. I will provide you with a simple insight to why you need them in your website. Let us start with our list of some great plugins.

CONTENTS

UpdraftPlus
Yoast SEO
WPS Hide Login
Loginizer
AMP
Regenerate Thumbnails
Autoptimize

#1 UpdraftPlus

To see the plugin, click here.

Let me ask you about your website’s backup option. How often do you actually take backups of your site? I bet you take the backup through the cPanel, which is a great way to backup IMO. But when it comes to WordPress level backup you should regularly maintain at least one state of your website.

updraft plus homepage which provides some insight

I myself have lost important data because I was too foolish to even think that I might need to back things up. And when I look back I laugh at myself because well, I did not use to back things up. But I have left that habit of mine far away and now I am accustomed to multiple ways of backing things up.

In case of any emergency whether it be site failure or an update gone wrong or even hacking. The most important thing is your data, the rest comes second. To recover quickly from disastrous events you need proper planning which will obviously include backup. Let us look at the PROS and CONS of UpdraftPlus even though the pros and cons they provide a very generous free plugin features.

PROS

  • Automated backups at specified time
  • Ability to do manual backup
  • Flexible settings to keep or delete the backed up files
  • Can upload the backups directly to third party providers ( e.g. Google Drive, AWS, FTP, etc. )

CONS

  • Free tier can be quite limiting
  • Requires payment to perform fine tuned backups

Regardless of the pros and cons you can quickly head-over to the marketplace and install it right away. It is one of the best free WordPress plugins out there which you will be needing.

#2 Yoast SEO

To visit plugin website, click here.

Worried about your SEO? At least I am which landed me right here. You don’t need to be an SEO expert especially if you’re just getting into this field. And now even Yoast claims: “We walk you through every step: no need to be or hire an SEO expert.”. Hence, there is no need for you to hire an expert in SEO. Because you are SEO expert yourself, all you lack is practice.

yoast plugin page listing about it’s highlighted features

With enough research and trial and error you will very well become one familiar with SEO. Now coming back to the free plugin, you will be absolutely amazed by what it has to offer to you. And the best part about the plugin ? It’s completely free, though it has a paid variant with more features. But trust me when I say all you need is free Yoast plugin to help you level up your SEO game.

So far the experiences with Yoast SEO is extremely awesome. I cannot even imagine to publish another website without using Yoast SEO. I have listed out the PROS and CONS of this plugin below.

PROS

  • Check for various SEO mistakes and corrects them
  • Suggests multiple ways how the reading, SEO can be improved
  • Helps integrate Facebook and Twitter meta tag
  • Per page description and other meta which helps in SEO

CONS

  • None

These are my experiences with the free Yoast SEO plugin for WordPress. I highly urge you to install if you haven’t already.

#3 WPS Hide Login

To visit plugin homepage, click here.

Can you guess the downside of using the world wide famous CMS ? I hope you guessed it right because the problem is your website is open to attackers and hackers. Since these highly skilled individuals can exploit the tiniest bit of detail in your site. I suggest you take the first step to Website security by the use of this plugin.

wps hide login free WordPress plugin homepage

But what does the plugin do ?

This plugin helps you change the default login URL. Which is well known and someone might try to attack using the brute-force technique or some other technique in the login form. This plugin will help making your site a bit more secure because only you will know which URL you should use for login.

Yes, this will not prevent hackers who have made up their mind to hack you. But it will make it difficult for the prying eyes and helps your to be extra careful. And that is already more than enough for people starting out there is more to web security than a single plugin, but let us take one step ahead.

PROS

  • Helps you change the default login URL
  • Helps you redirect non logged in session to wp-admin to 404

CONS

  • None ( it’s really light plugin )

So far I have good experience with this plugin on multiple websites that I have published.

#4 Loginizer

To visit the plugin homepage, click here.

Yet another one among best free WordPress plugins to have in your active WordPress installation. What more can I say about it than it is really very good at what it does. With the plugin mentioned above WPS Hide Login, this plugin can really help you secure your website.

loginizer security plugin homepage

It has other features too such as filtering the IP address and setting custom message to failed login attempts. It also efficiently tracks the brute-force attack and lock anyone out who tries to access the site forcefully. But be careful not to lock yourself out of your own website.

The more traffic your website generates the more hackers and attackers it attracts. If you have other protections in place then this will be an additional feature which will help secure your site against the visitors with malicious intent. Because it really helps block out and filter the request to your login page. And once it is combined with the WPS Hide Login it can be really powerful against prying eyes.

PROS

  • Helps you filter IP addresses
  • You can filter IP with either a blacklist or a whitelist
  • You can see number of failed login attempts and more
  • Helps in setting default login attempts and lockout time

CONS

  • Can be irritating ( it never identifies my real IP address )
  • You can lock yourself out if you’re too paranoid

I always use this plugin on each one of my WordPress site. Though security lies somewhere else but you cannot really ignore the importance of something so good.

Also Read: 5 Productivity Tips and Tricks for Ubuntu

TECHENUM

#5 AMP

To visit the plugin homepage, click here.

Now that brings us to Accelerated Mobile Pages (formerly), now just AMP. Why is AMP and why is it really very awesome ? Well it is a HTML framework for mobile devices which can serve contents at the speed of light. Technically all the contents in web are served at the speed of light.

amp homepage

Jokes aside if you really study and integrate AMP into your WordPress website. You can gain much better speed in both desktop and mobile. You can do pretty awesome stuffs with AMP for non WordPress websites too. But today we are all about free WordPress plugins. So, let us just look at what might improve if we include the AMP plugin for out website.

With AMP you can achieve ridiculous speed with your website. But beware you cannot use any other JavaScript with it AMP. AMP will then make your components invalid, you will need great caution while using this.

But, If you have free theme or theme with lots of elements. It will throw out much errors which you might neglect. And for this reason this is really great to have and both irritating at the same time. Don’t try it out on live website at once, first make a playground(ish) website and that experiment with it.

PROS

  • Sites load ridiculously fast
  • Can be even used for desktop version of your website
  • Doesn’t require much maintenance

CONS

  • Cannot be used with other JavaScript libraries
  • Most free themes are not compatible with AMP
  • Need to get technical every now and then

Regardless, it is really a great plugin to have if you really know what you are doing. Even if you’re not are familiar with technologies you can get good with time and practice.

#6 Regenerate Thumbnails

To visit the plugin’s homepage, click here.

This is another really good free WordPress plugin to use in your website. And to cover that up it is developed by someone who worked in Atuomaticc (parent organization of WordPress). So there is no room for doubt with this plugin.

plugin page for free WordPress plugin to regenerate image

Now what does the plugin do? This is a really great question to ask. This plugin generates the multiple images of different sizes for using in thumbnails. It is really handy tool to have it in your list of plugins alongside other.

Sometimes we might want to refresh our thumbnails because we have a requirement of different size. That might be for many reasons like theme switching or something else. But the problem is now you do not have the right dimensions for image. What do you do the ? That’s right go to your menu and just regenerate thumbnails.

PROS

  • Helps generate the thumbnails for multiple configurations
  • Can batch process images so that you don’t have to manually keep pressing

CONS

  • None ( it’s fantastic )

This plugin was maintained by open source contributor Alex Mills, he will be missed.

#7 Autoptimize

To see the plugin homepage, click here.

This is another great plugin for your WordPress site which caches most frequently used data. Not only caching import data but also it optimizes your website. Now what does optimization mean ? It means that it makes your website more responsive and faster.

To get into a little bit of technicality. When someone visits your website, the browser sends request to the server. And the request is for the resources required such as the page (HTML) and styling (CSS) and interacting elements (JavaScript).

If the theme is poorly designed it will make multiple calls to the server which can be really request intensive. Hence, appearing to be slow. But there is another problem even when multiple requests are not made. The response can be quite large and un-optimized.

And this plugin makes sure your visitors get the optimized version of these files. It even caches some of them into the cache so that when requested it simply serves the files without any other look ups.

PROS

  • Minifies HTML, CSS, and JavaScript
  • Helps in lazy loading the images
  • Special optimization for google fonts

CONS

  • None ( tell me when you find one )

That concludes out list of 7 free WordPress plugins for your websites. There are a ton of plugins out there that I have not covered (and cannot). This list is just the plugins which I have used and wanted to share with you. Please leave a comment on what you think about this.

Also Read: 3 Free Tools To Help You in SEO Keyword Research

TECHENUM

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