WordPress powers over one-third of the web, making it one of the most popular Content Management Systems (CMS) for businesses. However, if you want your website to stand out among competitors and serve as a powerful marketing tool, you shouldn’t rely on built-in functionality alone.
One of the best things about WordPress is the plethora of plugins and add-ons available for it. These plugins can expand the capabilities of your website, and make it significantly easier to reach your marketing goals. For example, in addition to simplifying content optimization, they can also help automate email marketing campaigns.
In this article, we’ll explain how plugins can be used to enhance the functionality and performance of your WordPress site. Then we’ll discuss five essential plugins for online marketers. Let’s get started!
How Plugins Can Improve WordPress Websites
The scale and scope of available WordPress plugins is a major benefit to using WordPress as a CMS. The WordPress Plugin Directory is filled with extensions to help every kind of business and website, from small blogs to major e-commerce merchants:
There are hundreds of ways to use these plugins. They can help with site security and maintenance tasks, for example, such as scheduling automatic backups and scanning for site vulnerabilities.
Of course, your website is probably also the anchor of your online marketing efforts. Fortunately, plugins can act as marketing tools to make meeting your goals both easier and more convenient. This includes solutions for Search Engine Optimization (SEO), social media integration, and email marketing campaigns (just to name a few).
5 Must-Have WordPress Plugins for Better Marketing
The good news is that there’s no shortage of plugins to choose from. The best ones to use can depend on the specific needs of your site. However, there are a handful of tools that are beneficial to nearly every website looking to boost its marketing. Let’s take a look at five must-have WordPress plugins.
With the free version, you can send email campaigns to up to 2,000 subscribers. Plus, you can quickly create attractive forms to encourage sign-ups on your site.
One of the reasons you might consider opting for the premium version is for features such as the Styles Builder. This lets you create forms directly from the WordPress dashboard. The premium plans also come with more options for custom branding and templates, as well as advanced audience insights.
2. Yoast SEO
The importance of SEO in online marketing cannot be overstated. However, it’s one thing to understand that SEO is crucial, and another to know how to go about optimizing your content.
Yoast SEO is a plugin that takes a lot of the legwork out of content optimization:
This free plugin adds an extension to your WordPress site’s pages and posts, which guides you through creating SEO-friendly content. For example, you can choose a ‘focus keyword' for each post, and the plugin will tell you where the phrase should be added throughout your content.
Yoast also notifies you if the content is written or formatted in a way that goes against SEO best practices. Plus, it reviews the ‘readability’ of your content and offers suggestions for how to improve it.
Of course, Yoast SEO is not the only tool you'll need handle SEO. For example, you can use Google Keyword Planner to conduct keyword research. Then, you can leverage Yoast's features to make sure you're getting the most out of those keywords.
This tool connects your Google Analytics account to your WordPress website. It makes it easier to track analytics for multiple platforms and campaigns all in one place.
Another benefit of using MonsterInsights is that you can integrate it with our Pretty Links plugin for better link tracking and monitoring. You can also use this plugin for e-commerce, outbound, and affiliate link tracking.
MonsterInsights is available as a free plugin. However, to get the most out of the features that can help boost your marketing strategy, you may want to consider upgrading to the premium version.
Similar to Mailchimp, OptinMonster is a plugin you can use to grow your email list and create beautiful forms:
However, one of the advantages of OptinMonster is that you can create pop-up forms that serve as effective Calls To Action (CTAs) on your site. Pop-ups present an opportunity to capture information from your site's visitors, and turn them into repeat visitors.
With OptinMonster, you can increase your subscribers and create custom offers targeted at visitors based on their activity. Essentially, it lets you nurture leads in a more meaningful way.
OptinMonster is free to download, and lets you choose from an array of designs and styles for your forms. However, as with the other plugins on this list, you can also consider upgrading to a premium plan to access a suite of advanced features and functionalities.
5. Pretty Links
Our own Pretty Links plugin is a link shortening tool that makes it easy to transform long, cluttered URLs into ones that are more concise and memorable:
Once installed, you can use this extension to shorten links directly from your WordPress dashboard. It lets you condense and customize the slugs, and turn otherwise bulky links into clean URLs.
You can also use this plugin to brand your links. URLs that incorporate your brand name appear more trustworthy, making it more likely that users will click on them. Plus, they’re easier to share on social media and in email campaigns.
Another way our Pretty Links plugin can help with marketing is through the Social Buttons Bar. This feature adds social icons to any page or post, making it that much simpler for visitors to spread your content to their own networks.
The plugin is available in both a free and a Pro version. While the free plugin lets you shorten links, upgrading to Pro unlocks premium features such as link branding and social sharing as well.
WordPress is a cost-effective platform for businesses to create and host their websites on. However, the success and usefulness of your site hinges largely on the extensions you use for it.
These five must-have WordPress plugins can help businesses conduct better marketing:
- Mailchimp to create effective email marketing campaigns.
- Yoast SEO to optimize your site’s content for search engines.
- MonsterInsights to connect your site with Google Analytics.
- OptinMonster to add pop-up forms, and grow your email and subscriber lists.
- Pretty Links to shorten and brand links.
Do you have any questions about using WordPress plugins for better marketing? Let us know in the comments section below!