WordPress is a lot like a huge cyberspace box of Legos. The “pieces” it offers you in building an effective website or blog can be assembled in virtually countless ways.
For those who are taking the first steps in creating a blog, choosing which available features to hook together is a daunting task. There are over 46,000 plugins alone that can be hooked into WordPress’s already highly functional basic format.
Here are four foundational plugins you can pluck from the vast plugin ocean of those available that will help strengthen your blog in key areas from the start.
First and foremost, blogging is about getting your ideas out into the web and having them consumed by people who could benefit from them. Your brain or your business could be brimming with powerful plans ready to be unleashed on the masses, but if no one can find your blog to click on it, all that power is neutralized from the start.
You need the proper search engine “bait” to maximize your potential web exposure. Optimizing the use of keywords through custom titles and meta descriptions, Infinite SEO essentially becomes a kind of GPS system that leads search engines like Google and Bing to your blog.
Another feature of Infinite SEO that vastly increases the opportunity for your ideas to be consumed is that it automatically links your content together. Using pre-determined words and phrases, a reader who gets onto your site for a specific bit of information discovers the vast scope of your ideas simply by following the links.
According to wpvirtuoso.com, there are over 152 million blogs currently on the internet. There are a myriad of blog choices dealing with every conceivable topic in the blogosphere. Because of this, it is important to do everything you can do to get your blog noticed.
Soliloquy is a highly versatile slider plugin designed to grab a random viewer’s attention and draw them into your ideas. It allows you to use the featured image from your post, along with the title and a featured excerpt as a slide, that highlights and accentuates what you have to offer. It would be a pity for your ideas to be skipped over simply because of a bland and uninviting look on the screen. What you have to say deserves better.
Responsive Video Embeds
Although the written word has formed and toppled governments, fueled revolutions and changed the course of human history innumerable times, today’s fast-moving, media-saturated world often considers a collection of words on a page to be rather boring.
People want something that moves faster and hits harder than words. Videos are the go-to source for information that packs a punch. One only needs to look at the cultural phenomenon of YouTube to see that people are enticed by videos. Incorporating a video component into your blog can make it come alive.
With the Responsive Video Embeds plugin, you can easily insert a video anywhere within a single blog post and it will automatically resize the video to fit into each different screen size. It currently supports videos hosted by YouTube, Vimeo, DailyMotion, Scribed, Hulu.com, WordPress.tv, and many others.
Contrasting paragraphs and pictures with videos keeps your blog interesting, gives it momentum, and establishes some cultural “street cred”.
One of the first lessons we are taught in preschool is the importance of sharing. Today’s social media networks have taken this age-old lesson to heart and redefined it. When it comes to creating a wider audience for you blog, it’s all about the sharing.
Though a basic sharing mechanism is already built inside WordPress’s basic format, the Monarch plugin is a more powerful and more streamlined way to vault your blog into the social media universe. It gives you more options, both in how sharing icons are displayed within sidebar and widget areas as well as giving you the option of popover and fly share boxes.
Monarch has an extremely easy to use interface and it allows for flexible use of your share numbers. It will optimize your ability to get your blog in front of the maximum number of eyes quickly and efficiently.
All Lego creations, no matter how elaborate, are assembled the same way: piece by piece. Adding these four plugins to the solid foundation WordPress has already established is a good start to building your blog into a unique and powerful platform for your ideas.