This is Day 15 of 31 Days to Start a Freelancing Business (or Make Yours a Better One). If you want to catch up, click here to read Day 1.
Yesterday you installed your WordPress site and picked a theme to use.
Today you will install plugins into your site. Plugins are functionalities that allow you to easily do things in your site – technical stuff, like backing up your data, or things to help make your site easier for your readers to use.
Plugins make your WordPress professional website powerful, even if you don’t know anything about HTML coding or website authoring.
Here’s a list of 10 WordPress plugins I think every freelancer should use:
1. Akismet – helps screen out spam comments
2. WP-DB-Backup – automatically backs up your WordPress database
4. Social Bookmarks – adds social bookmarking buttons on your posts so your readers can easily share or tag them. You don’t need this plugin if you’re using the Headway theme, since Headway has its own widget for this.
5. Yet Another Related Posts Plugin – automatically makes a lists of posts related to the current one, with links to each post. You can see it in action below this post, under the photo credit.
6. Tweetmeme – tracks the number of times your post has been Tweeted about, and displays a button so that readers can easily tweet it.
7. wp-cache – helps your site load up faster. Especially helpful if you’re a graphic designer with a graphics-heavy site.
8. All-in-One SEO Pack – easily optimize each post/page for your target keywords. You don’t need this if you’re using either Thesis or Headway or some other theme with SEO functionality.
9. Photo Dropper – finds Flickr photos with Creative Commons license, so you can enhance your post with a picture without ever leaving the WordPress editor.
10. What Would Seth Godin Do – allows you to display a customized message either on top of, or at the bottom of each post. Use it to invite readers to sign up for your RSS feed or newsletter. You can have different messages for first-time and returning visitors. See my message to you at the bottom of this post.
By the way, if you need step-by-step help to use WordPress, you can see free tutorials here.
Are there any plugins I missed? Let me know by posting a comment below.
PS: Need more detailed help with setting up your professional website? Check out “The Savvy Freelancer’s Website Secrets: How to Create a Client Magnet Online.”