Top or “The Best” WordPress Plugins – Dan Picks!

This is my list of top wordpress plugins that are absolutely must have, and I generally install on every single blog I setup.

  • Subscribe to Comments Reloaded – This plugin is excellent for boosting a blog’s stickiness. It lets readers subscribe to a comment thread.
  • wp-db-backup – A plugin that automatically backs up a wordpress database.
  • WPTouch – Instantly create a mobile version of your blog.
  • Simple Tags
  • Breadcrumb NavXT – A wordpress plugin that adds some nifty navigation/link hierarchy thats useful for SEO and usability.
  • WP-Cumulus – Not particularly SEO friendly since it’s flash based, but a truly visually stunning tag cloud.
  • Subscribe2- An excellent email subscription plugin allowing people to get digest emails of your blog updates on a daily or weekly basis. See the guide for pictures and the other options I didn’t bother to mention.
  • Topsy Retweet Button – This button retweets your post, much like the more common tweetmeme variety. This one, however, adds in a nifty post ranking (top 10k, top 5k, etc.) that is generated by topsy’s specialized algorithm. In all other respects functions identically to the tweetmeme retweet button.
  • WP-to-Twitter – This plugin allows you to setup wordpress to tweet either a default or custom tweet to an account of your choice, complete with shortening, at post time.
  • TwiBadge – This plugin enables a widget that can be dropped onto a sidebar that shows a twitter stream. I like this particular one because it looks really cool, and has a few different color options. There’s a million different plugins that serve this same feature, however.
  • Facebook Fan Box – This plugin adds a facebook fan box widget letting you advertise your facebook fanpage with ease.
  • Share and Follow – Creates social media buttons both for sharing posts, and to allow users to follow you. Very customizable and has a level of functionality that is the equivalent to a combination of other plugins.
  • Google XML Sitemaps – This outputs an xml file to be given to google to increase indexability of the website. Presumably a boon to SEO.
  • Contextual Related Posts – This inserts a short bulleted link list of “related posts” to the end of every post. Good for SEO, and giving people more to read about automatically.
  • DISQUS Comment System – This plugin integrates the Disqus comment system into the blog. Disqus adds really cool features like avatar import from and posting to facebook, and twitter. Additionally it allows for subscription to posts, and inserts the comments into the actual wordpress database for easy removal if you later decide Disqus isn’t for you.
  • EzineArticles Plugin – This allows you to submit EzineArticles directly from your blog, as well as monitor their status from the administrative panel.
  • WP Super Cache – This plugin is so important it’s actually automatically included in all wordpress blogs setup at my webhost provider, Dreamhost. It can prevent a website from crashing when suddenly receiving a large number of hits (like those sent from a story going popular on Digg).