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10 Terrific WP Plugins and Gadgets

Multiple PluginsI’ve been heads down the last few days getting up and running on my new blog which is to say that I’ve spent a good bit of time researching and seeking out great plugins and want to share my faves with you.  As one word of caution, while it is great fun finding and adding bells and whistles to your site, be careful not to overdo as having too many plugins may slow down your site.

Instant Highlighter

My friend Deborah A Ten Brink turned me on to the Instant Highlighter this morning.  It’s a very cool tool that makes it super simple to highlight and share content that you find of interest.  You can see it in action on her blog…and if you want to give it a try, you can get it on Deborah’s site or by searching for from within WP.

CommentLuv

This is a terrific plug-in that enables and encourages comment networking with other bloggers.  CommentLuv offers up a small form for your readers to fill out when commenting on your post.  The form includes a request (not required) for their site URL and when it is filled out, VOILA!  they get a link to their site.  How great is that?

Sexy Bookmarks and Add This

Admittedly, these two provide the same function so you will likely not want both although I’m showing you both at the end of this post for some time.  Both provide an impressive list of social sites that you can choose from for sharing but in very different ways.  Sexy bookmarks is extremely popular, adds the animated social badges at the bottom of your posts, is colorful and definitely more playful.  The plug-in allows you to choose and arrange the sites on which you want to share content.  Add This is much more streamlined, initially offering up a single simple graphic on your post however, when moused over, offers up an abundance of sharing opportunities.  Either will enhance your sharing opportunities depending upon your needs.

TweetMeme and Simple Facebook Share Button

TweetMeme and Simple Facebook Share Buttons appear to be the defacto standard for adding social proof to your posts and making it super simple for your readers to share your content.  I consider these to be “must-haves” for your blog.  TweetMeme certainly is the most visible around the ‘net’.   It is easy to set up and does give several choices for configuration (e.g. show how many tweets or display as a streamlined graphic).   There are several options for adding a Facebook icon to your posts and for now I’m really happy with the Simple Facebook Share Button which also gives you flexibility in display.   Both can be found by searching with WP for new plugins.

Facebook “Like” box

The Facebook “Like” box not only provides your readers with the latest happenings on your FB page, but makes it very easy for them to “Like” you without leaving your blog.  This one is very new (as with FBs shift from “Become a Fan” to “Like”).  I found the code for the Facebook “Like” box on Facebook, in the Developer’s area (link at the very bottom of your page) under ‘Social Plugins”.   If you are interested in the “Like Button”, you can find the code for it in the same developers area.

Twitter Feed and Google Friend Connect

I couldn’t very well add the Facebook Like box to my list and not mention a Twitter feed, or Google Friend Connect now could I?  They provide additional social interaction with your readers and give them great ways  to easily connect with you without leaving your page.   If you have a Google account, simply go to Google Friend Connect, select “Add the Members Gadget” and you’re off and running.  The code works in a text box on your blog.

and last but not least…

SEO All in One and Google XML Sitemaps

No “fave” list would be complete without mentioning the SEO All in One and Google XML Sitemaps plugins.  SEO All in One provides control over the Title, Keywords and Description meta tags for your post, a requirement for search engine optimization.  Google XML Sitemaps works in the background by generating a sitemap that facilitates your being found by Google.  This sitemap is not to be confused with your site’s sitemap.  (I know, huh?)  Your site’s sitemap is to facilitate navigation for your readers…this one is for code.  If you want to be found more quickly and easily, these are two more ‘must-haves’ for your site blog.

Akismet

I feel compelled to add one more for the road, a bonus if you will.  I use Akismet to filter out spam in my comments and find it to be very useful and extremely effective.  Haven’t had one sneak by it yet.  Thanks, Akismet!

I’d love to hear about your favorite plugin.  Which are your favorites and why?

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21 Responses to 10 Terrific WP Plugins and Gadgets

  1. Louis Di Bianco May 14, 2010 at 4:15 pm #

    Linnea, this is a wonderful post. It addresses an important need for all online marketers. I will definitely check out and add some of these plugins.

  2. Tommy DiPietro May 14, 2010 at 6:39 pm #

    Hi Linnea,

    I enjoy reading these plug-in posts. I feel Akismet is one of
    the most important you should use. The Comment LUV is great
    and a couple others I will have to look into.

    Thanks for the information.

    Tommy
    .-= Tommy DiPietro´s last blog ..Characteristics of a Good Mentor in Network Marketing =-.

  3. admin May 14, 2010 at 7:09 pm #

    Hi Louis,

    Thank you, I’m glad you enjoyed it. There are definitely a couple of must-haves in the lot. In doing my research, I’ve already found one or two that may well make my next list. What are your favorite plugins?

  4. admin May 14, 2010 at 7:14 pm #

    Hey Tommy,

    Thanks for the comment and you are most welcome.
    I absolutely agree with you on the Akismet plugin. Very important to have along with a few others.
    Do you have other must-haves on your list?

    Linnea

  5. Chris Bernardo May 15, 2010 at 12:03 pm #

    Thanks for sharing this information, I am going to share this with my list as i find great value in it. Have an Awesome Day!
    Chris
    .-= Chris Bernardo´s last blog ..Teaching My Children Law of Attraction =-.

  6. Linnea May 15, 2010 at 3:17 pm #

    Hi Chris,
    You are more than welcome and thank you for commenting!
    I’m glad you found my article of value.

  7. Karen Smith May 15, 2010 at 10:33 pm #

    Linnea, This is great. I have seen so many things that a nice short list is easy to maneuver through. Thanks for sharing. Karen
    .-= Karen Smith´s last blog ..Today I show Appreciation for the UnifiedTribe! =-.

  8. Linnea May 16, 2010 at 9:10 am #

    Hi Karen,
    You are welcome. Glad to be of help. I’m all for ease of use! ~ Linnea

  9. Rachel Hall May 17, 2010 at 2:28 am #

    Some great info here, but concise so easy to pick up any that have been missed.
    .-= Rachel Hall´s last blog ..Article Writing for Online Marketing =-.

  10. Jane May 17, 2010 at 4:22 am #

    Linnea:

    Thank you for this article on plugins. What a resource! There are so many plugins and it can be so overwhelming on which ones to use. There are two plugins that I will be downloading today.

  11. Linnea May 17, 2010 at 9:06 am #

    Hi Rachel,
    Indeed. Hope you find them useful.
    Do you have a favorite?

    Linnea

  12. Linnea May 17, 2010 at 9:07 am #

    Hi Jane,

    You are very welcome. I hope to have more tidbits for you soon.
    What are your favorite plugins?

    Linnea

  13. Yorinda August 16, 2010 at 11:23 pm #

    Hi Linnea,

    great helpful information.

    Thanks for the tip on where to find the code for the like button. How did you install the plugin itself?

    Much appreciated.

    Have a great week
    Yorinda
    Yorinda recently posted..Active ListeningMy Profile

  14. Linnea August 17, 2010 at 9:05 pm #

    Hi Yorinda,

    I just used the quick install for the plugin… Searched for it from within my WP back office and then clicked on ‘install’ on the right hand side of the description. Then, in the plugins section of WP, I activated it and selected the setting for it. I chose the ‘compressed’ version mostly because I like the look of it but also because I thought it lined up better with my Twitter button. Let me know if you need more on this. I’m more than happy to help.

  15. Linda Thomas October 9, 2010 at 6:37 pm #

    Hi Linnea,
    Thanks for this information about plugins! I must run over to my site and see if I hve Akismet, as I have been receiving tons of spam…hmmm.

    So, you see, you may have just offered a solution to a very real issue for me!

    Looking forward to spending some time learning from your many posts over time!
    Thanks!
    Linda
    Linda Thomas recently posted..Entrepreneurs Select Associates With a &8220Strong Desire To Succeed&8221My Profile

  16. Linnea October 11, 2010 at 7:52 pm #

    Hi Linda,

    By all means, stamp out that spam! The longer you go, the more you’ll get. If for some reason you aren’t terribly happy with Akismet, I’ve heard another recommendation of late called WP Spam Free. You could check that one out if you need more.

  17. Christina York December 4, 2010 at 8:05 am #

    Hey Linnea, You Rocked It with some awesome plugins I don’t have on my blog! THANKS! I’m excited that you shared a couple more great plugins to add to my blog! Have a great day!
    Christina York recently posted..Nadine Star If I Had To Do It Over Again- I Would Pick More Daisies!My Profile

  18. Linnea December 7, 2010 at 9:53 am #

    Hi Christina,
    I’m so glad you like the plugins and you are most welcome. I may have even more for you soon. Perhaps you’ll come back and let us know how these work for you on your blog. Take care.

  19. Eldon Beard May 10, 2011 at 7:42 pm #

    Hi Linnea,

    One type of plugin I recently started using is a caching plugin. This helps speed up the load times for your blog, especially if you have a lot of images and things like “Google Friend Connect” or “Networked Blogs” installed. Anyway, one excellent choice is “WP Super Cache” and there are others that do a good job as well.
    Eldon Beard recently posted..Creating Your Online Home for Personal BrandingMy Profile

  20. Linnea May 10, 2011 at 10:47 pm #

    Hi Eldon,

    Thanks so much for this. I do actually use that plugin as well. While there are others out there, I heard a ‘horror’ story a year or so back where someone lost all of their posts due to a caching plugin. I’m very glad to say that I’ve not personally had that experience but it certainly does emphasize the need to back up … often! Thanks so much for sharing that one with us.

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  1. Tweets that mention 10 Terrific WP Plugins | Linnea Kline -- Topsy.com - May 14, 2010

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Louis E. Di Bianco, The Unified Tribe. The Unified Tribe said: Hi everyone @lvkline shares 10 favorite and must-have WP plugins & gadgets for your blog http://bit.ly/cKeisz #UTribe […]

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