It’s that time of the year when people tend to draft new projects and set personal and professional resolutions. Launching or revamping a new website is a common goal among webmasters. We want to help our readers accomplish this goal, so we have listed here the 10 best WordPress plugins to use in 2024.
Most likely, some of our suggestions are already installed on your websites, but let’s hope that you will find at least one hidden gem on this list. Without any further ado, here are the top picks of WordPress plugins to enhance your website in 2024.
Yoast is the leading SEO WordPress plugin, and for good reason. However, it faces an increasing number of competitors challenging its dominance. Rank Math, an SEO plugin launched in 2020, appears to be a serious contender to Yoast. It is a newer-generation plugin with innovative features. Additionally, it harnesses artificial intelligence for both website ranking and content generation.
You can test Rank Math anytime by downloading and installing the free version. While it has limited functionality, it provides enough insight into the plugin’s potential. Some of the most attractive premium features include:
- Keyword rank tracker, eliminating the need for another tool to monitor your site’s ranking for desired keywords.
- AI-generated content.
- Advanced schema generator, a valuable tool to enhance your website’s ranking in podcast, carousel, or dataset schemas.
- SEO performance analysis of individual posts.
With over 2.18 million users, Rank Math has already become a star in the WordPress plugins industry. It deserves your attention if you haven’t tried it before.
WPMU Dev is a renowned company that specializes in developing WordPress plugins, and Smush stands out as one of their premier products. The free version, accessible on the WordPress repository, boasts an impressive 1 million+ active installs and an outstanding rating of 4.8 out of 5 stars. I used it on many websites and clearly, Smush did a great job (no affiliate links here). All you have to do is to install and configure the plugin; once you did these Smush would do the optimization in the background.
Smush excels in compressing and optimizing all images, converting JPG and PNG formats to WebP, adding lazy loading to images, and offering bulk compression/restoration for an unlimited number of images. One of Smush’s notable strengths lies in its user-friendly interface—a visually appealing and user-centered design. As a result, I believe that the average WordPress user has no problem utilizing the plugin effectively.
This plugin includes a collection of top-class blocks that help you create good-looking webpages. Spectra seamlessly integrates with Gutenberg and customizing its blocks is intuitive. Moreover, Spectra offers a variety of high-quality templates that can be effortlessly imported into your projects.
It’s noteworthy that Spectra is a lightweight plugin, ensuring that it doesn’t slow down your website. Besides, it works lag-free in the WordPress dashboard and is SEO-friendly.
If you haven’t yet discovered Surfer SEO, you’ve missed out on a fantastic tool for content creators and webmasters. Surfer SEO isn’t a WordPress plugin per se, it’s rather an integration of an AI tool in a WordPress website. Once you experience Surfer SEO, you’ll find it indispensable. That’s because it helps you to optimize the posts in a precise way by offering clear improvement suggestions. It grades your content, so you know when a piece of content is better than the competitors. Furthermore, Surfer SEO goes beyond by generating AI content based on your specifications, conducting content audits, and performing professional keyword research.
The primary drawback lies in the pricing – the most affordable yearly plan starts at $69/month, and the monthly plan at $89. While the tool delivers real value for your money, the upfront cost of $828 for individuals can be a financial burden.
As a webmaster, you often find yourself investing a significant amount of time doing mundane tasks to improve your website. While these tasks aren’t necessarily rocket science, the time spent on them can be substantial. A plugin to automate the boring and repetitive tasks is a must-have for a modern webmaster and Uncanny Automator might be the solution. This plugin, amongst other things, does the following:
- 1-click integration with 150+ tools like WhatsApp, Google Sheets, Facebook pages, OpenAI, X and Learn Dash;
- Create simple automations that connect plugins, WordPress sites, and non-WordPress apps;
- Automate actions based on different triggers like comment submission, product purchase, or newsletter subscription;
- Send emails to subscribers anytime a new post is published;
- Schedule and post on social media.
Before making a purchase decision, you can test the free version available on the WordPress repository.
Some WordPress projects heavily depend on social networks, making the addition of streams from these networks to your website a necessary enhancement. Smash Ballon is a simple and effective plugin to solve this issue. It adds streams from the most popular social networks: Facebook, Instagram, X, YouTube, and TikTok. With Smash Balloon, you have complete control over the feed and its placement on your webpage. Importantly, the plugin doesn’t compromise website loading speed and is SEO-friendly.
Unfortunately, the plugin doesn’t have a free version and the paid version is costly. However, you may purchase the plugin individually for your favorite social network.
Every webmaster is aware that speed is crucial for any website, and speed optimization is an ongoing, and not a set-and-forget task. Despite WP Rocket was launched in 2015, it’s still relevant and massively used by the WordPress community. Typically, speed optimization and caching plugins are hard to configure, and less-trained users hate them. It’s not the case with WP Rocket that comes with a great user-friendly interface and out-of-the-box configuration that requires minimal user intervention.
WP Rocket doesn’t have a free version, but it does the job of several plugins. In some instances, you practically save a few bucks by purchasing this plugin. It does a few actions that 100% will speed up your website, including the following:
- Website caching – a mandatory element for any modern website;
- Media optimization – enabling lazy loading for large images and iframes may result in saving precious milliseconds for customers
- Database optimization – a behind-the-scene job that fastens the loading speed
- Code minification – it sounds terrifying for inexperienced users, but it’s just a matter of a few clicks thanks to WP Rocket’s cool interface.
What would you say about a plugin that is trusted by prestigious institutions like Duke University, Harvard, Smithsonian, and Vimeo? Certainly, it piques your interest, and you might be tempted to use it in your project. MetaSlider is the plugin that boasts those reputable customers and it aims at creating multimedia sliders hassle-free.
This plugin creates sliders featuring images, videos, posts, pages, or products ensuring a consistent and excellent user experience across all devices. It perfectly integrates with the WordPress media manager and works on both block-based and standard themes. Despite its extensive range of features, MetaSlider is user-friendly and accessible to inexperienced users.
It’s hard to believe that there are functional websites that don’t have at least one form inserted into its structure. Luckily, webmasters have plenty of choices when it comes about WordPress plugin forms and we consider that Everest Forms deserves to be mentioned in this honoring list. That’s because Everest Forms empowers webmasters to do any kind of forms without writing a single line of code. Some other cool features of Everest Forms are:
- Advanced building tools – it allows building surveys, polls, quizzes, multi-step and conversational forms.
- Advanced analytics – you have complete control over submissions, percentage of visitors, impressions, conversions, and bounce rate;
- Unlimited automated email notification – send a message such as a welcoming email when a user completes a form;
- Cloud storage for all the submissions – rest assured that the messages you get are stored safely.
Akismet is a silent plugin that performs a crucial but often overlooked task: blocking spam messages. The significance of this plugin becomes apparent only when it’s not installed on your website. Installing Akismet takes just a few minutes and effectively eliminates spam messages. Depending on your project, this plugin may be available free of charge, but you are welcome to donate a few bucks to support its use.
Over to You
Certainly, most, if not all, of the plugins are familiar to you. However, introducing even one of the above plugins for the first time can be a real gain. Additionally, you are welcome to contribute to the list of the best WordPress plugins. Feel free to drop a comment with your favorite plugin and share your experience with it.