To improve my workflow, I created a folder locally with a collection of plugins that I use as a base for every new project. I don’t always use ALL of these on every project, but rarely do I need any other plugins (unless the project calls for something very specific).
Have a look, and if you are familiar with WordPress plugins, and know of a better one than the one I am using, let me know!
1. Advanced Custom Fields
One of the greatest plugins I have ever used.
Basically, it allows you to add additional input fields all over WordPress (on pages, posts, custom post types, and even on a premium upgrade “options” page).
I use it to customize the user experience when entering data. For instance, if I am creating a slideshow on the homepage, I create a repeating field which allows me to create a table (with an add row button) where the user can enter a title, description and upload an image for each slide.
I rarely build sites without this plugin.
There are three premium upgrades for this plugin:
- The Repeater Field
- Options Page
- Flexible Content
All of them are $25 AUD and worth it if you are a developer that will use this plugin over and over.
WordPress.org Page: http://www.wordpress.org/extend/plugins/advanced-custom-fields/
Plugin Site: http://www.advancedcustomfields.com
2. Admin Dashboard Site Notes
by Ben Irvin
Create “documentation” all over your WordPress admin area. Perfect for adding notes around WordPress for instructions for your clients.
WordPress.org Page: http://www.wordpress.org/extend/plugins/admin-dashboard-site-notes/
3. Ajax Thumbnail Rebuild
For those of you who create new image sizes using add_image_size(); you’ll want this plugin to rebuild your images after you have changed dimensions or added new dimensions.
WordPress.org Page: http://www.wordpress.org/extend/plugins/ajax-thumbnail-rebuild/
Plugin Site: http://breiti.cc/wordpress/ajax-thumbnail-rebuild/
WordPress’ default spam filter. Works like a dream, but you’ll need a WordPress.com account to use it.
WordPress.org Page: http://www.wordpress/extend/plugins/akismet/
Plugin Site: http://akismet.com/?return=true
5. Custom Post Type UI
A way to create custom post types without using code. Useful for projects with small budgets when you want to quickly add post types on the fly.
WordPress.org Page: http://www.wordpress.org/extend/plugins/custom-post-type-ui/
Plugin Site: http://webdevstudios.com/plugin/custom-post-type-ui/
6. Google Analytics for WordPress
There are a lot of Google Analytics plugins out there, but you can’t go wrong with a plugin written by Joost.
WordPress.org Page: http://www.wordpress.org/extend/plugins/google-analytics-for-wordpress/
Plugin Site: http://yoast.com/wordpress/google-analytics/
7. Gravity Forms
This plugin is one of the only “paid” plugins I use, but it is BY FAR the best plugin for creating forms. I have used it to create posts, to link forms to external api such as “SalesForce”, and to enhance other third party plugins like “Cart66″.
If you don’t want to pay, go with Contact Form 7 – but if you are using forms on your site, you can’t go wrong with Gravity Forms.
Plugin Site: http://www.gravityforms.com
A collection of plugins that are used by default on WordPress.com accounts. Some really useful ones include:
- Extended Sidebar Widgets
- and much more…
9. Simple Add Pages or Posts
A great tool to create multiple pages or posts all at once. You can even create sub-pages all at one time by just including a list of pages (each page or post on it’s own line) with a “-” before sub-pages. Saves A LOT of time.
WordPress.org Page: http://www.wordpress.org/extend/plugins/simple-add-pages-or-posts/
Plugin Site: http://www.websitefreelancers.nl/
10. Simple Page Ordering
by Jake Goldman
Enables drag-and-drop ordering of pages (and custom post types that act like pages) on the index pages. Great for clients who don’t understand the concept of “Page Order” number.
WordPress.org Page: http://www.wordpress.org/extend/plugins/simple-page-ordering/
11. WordPress SEO
Again, there are a lot of SEO plugins out there – and I used to use a different one, but you can not go wrong with a plugin written by Joost de Valk. Great little plugin this is, and he also has a great website with lots of tips and information on WordPress development.
WordPress.org Page: http://www.wordpress.org/extend/plugins/wordpress-seo/
Plugin Site: http://yoast.com/wordpress/seo/
12. WP Jump Menu
by Jim Krill
Well, yes. This IS a plugin I wrote.
And yes, I use it on EVERY project.
Not only that, but I’m pretty sure my former employer still uses it on every project they create too. It’s that useful.
What does it do? Well – read about it here.
WordPress.org Page: http://www.wordpress.org/extend/plugins/wp-jump-menu/
Plugin Site: http://krillwebdesign.com/2012/03/wp-jump-menu/
13. WP Super Cache
Caching was the talk of all the WordCamps I went to a few years ago, and this plugin was a result of discussions I listened to there. I know there are a few other really good ones, but this is the one I went with.
Anyone want to make an argument for a better one?
WordPress.org Page: http://www.wordpress.org/extend/plugins/wp-super-cache/
Plugin Site: http://ocaoimh.ie/wp-super-cache/