We all know as busy business owners that time is precious, don’t we? I did a post on time management last week, which is something that is never far from my mind.
It can be really tough sometimes to find the time to fit everything in, and your website updates can find themselves being pushed down to the bottom of your list.
So, in this post I’m going to suggest five WordPress plugins which will make running your website easier. Let’s dive in!
Plugin #1: Elementor
Elementor is a page builder which makes constructing each page on your website a lot easier. I’ll admit that when I first came across page builders as a tool, I was pretty suspicious. It felt like another “thing” to have to learn. But having used Elementor for some time, I am a complete convert.
It allows you to position and style your content in such a way that results in really nice-looking pages, with content arranged in an easily digestible format. This is super important as people will just bounce off your website if it looks too wordy and they can’t easily skim through and find the info they want.
The visual, drag and drop builder that Elementor provides for your site will make managing your content much easier for you, and dare I say, even an enjoyable experience!
Plugin #2: Yoast SEO
SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation and Yoast SEO is one of the most popular WordPress plugins for helping you find tune your website optimisation. It allows you to customise the meta titles and descriptions for each page and post on your website, and gives you a preview of how the page results will look in search engines like Google.
The plugin also provides guidance on what steps you need to take on each page, with a really handy traffic light system to help you identify which pages need more work.
And … yes, and! … the plugin automatically creates XML sitemaps for your website. An XML sitemap is a list of all the posts and pages on the site in a specific format that helps search engines find and index all the content. When we launch a website we always register it with the Google Search Console and submit the sitemap to help Google pick up on the site as quickly as possible.
Plugin #3: UpdraftPlus
There will always be times when you want to make a backup of your website. For example, when you’re about to make some major content changes, or when you’re about to install a new plugin. With UpdraftPlus you can run a backup at the click of a button and download it to your computer (we do this ALL THE TIME with websites we manage).
You can also schedule it to make automatic backups as often as you wish, so if you’re running a busy ecommerce site you can be confident that there is always a recent backup to fall back on if you need it.
If you do need to reinstate a backup, you can do that through the plugin too. And we even use it to move sites from one domain to another. I can’t tell you how much we love UpdraftPlus!
Plugin #4: Akismet
One of the ever-painful facts about websites is that they attract spam. That could be spam submissions through your contact form, or it could be spam comments on your blog posts. Sometimes the level of spam can feel manageable (just a bit of deleting) but other times you can find yourself trawling through it trying to make sure you don’t miss anything genuine.
Akismet is an amazing tool for helping you manage spam. You can have it running on your contact forms and blog comments. It will automatically identify the spam and stop it from distracting you from the important stuff. We’ve tried various ways of handling spam and Akismet is one of the most effective we’ve found. Of course, the occasional spam message will slip through, but it really does save you time and takes away something that can be a constant niggle.
Akismet is a third-party service, so you need to sign up for an account – for a business there’s a small charge, but if you’re a non-profit you get it for free. But even if you have to pay for it, it’s well worth it.
Plugin #5: Fathom Analytics
Finally, we come to Fathom Analytics. This is something that we’ve started using over the last few months and if I tell the truth I’m a little bit in love with it.
Fathom provides analytics that track users on your website – in other words visitor numbers. I love it for two reasons:
- It shows you your visitor stats on one easy-to-understand page. Okay, it doesn’t give anywhere as much detail as Google Analytics but for me that makes it all the more appealing. No more having to dig around for the simple bit of data you need or trying to figure out what terminology GA is currently using. You can easily see at a glance how your website is performing – time saver!!!
Like Akismet, Fathom Analytics is a third part service with a cost attached to it. But the good news is that if you sign up for our Website Management service we will provide it as part of that fee. (If you’re an existing customer and are interested, you may find that you’re already using a different system – just give us a shout and we can switch you over to Fathom. We’re nice like that.)
Or you can sign up for your own Fathom account here (disclaimer, this is our affiliate link, so if you do sign up for an account we will get a small reward)
So, there you have it. They are my five recommended WordPress plugins which will truly make running your website easier. If you’re curious about any of them and would like a helping hand with implementing them on your site, pop over to our contact page and send us an enquiry.
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