There are many reasons why WordPress is the most popular Content Management System. One of the main reasons is the plethora of plugins (free and paid) available. No need to hire a team of developers to add customized features to your site. There is probably a WordPress plugin that does exactly what you need.
At ATAK, we are big believers in open source software. We embrace the community aspect and all it has to offer. Here are some of our favorite WordPress plugins, which we use on almost all of the websites we build. Click the Title to See the Plugin:
Gravity Forms is the most user- and developer-friendly custom form solution for WordPress we’re tried. You can use it for a simple contact form on your site or, thanks to a large variety of add-ons, it can do so much more. Create surveys, conditional notifications, or integrate with a newsletter service like Mailchimp or iContact. You can even use it as an ecommerce tool, thanks to advanced integrations with Paypal and Authorize.net. The Gravity Forms plugin even has the ability to handle products, shipping, inventory and carts.
The one cool thing we like? The integration with Slack so you can be notified in one of your Slack channels whenever someone fills out a form.
If the basic features of Gravity Forms are not enough for you, you can purchase an extension called Gravity Perks that lets you do even more, like multi-page form navigation, conditional pricing, or generating unique IDs (see the whole list here)
Yoast SEO is a complete website optimization package that we use on all our websites. Among other things, it lets you generate sitemaps and perform on-page analysis to make sure your posts have the right keywords and subheadings. Best of all, you can bulk edit WordPress titles and meta descriptions which is a real time-saver when you need to edit hundreds of pages.
Duplicator lets you duplicate, clone, backup, move and transfer an entire site from one location to another. You can also use it to pull a production site down onto your local machine for testing and validation. It also works well for developing a site locally and then pushing it up to a production server for a first time site release.
MetaSlider is a free and easy to use image slider tool. It’s very powerful, too. You can create as many sliders as you want simply by adding images from your Media gallery. Then, you can also customize the size of the slider, crop images if necessary, pause when hovering and also the entire navigation experience (time between images, look of navigation elements).
This plugin does exactly what the title implies. It lets you exclude pages from search results. It’s pretty useful if your site has a lot of pages and you only want to feature the most important ones in the search results. The way I use it? When I create a new page and need to send the link over for approval before we make it officially live. I still need to publish the page but I know that it will stay hidden from search. It’s also useful to hide past events so as to not clutter search results with irrelevant content.
Site speed has an impact on your SEO ranking so it should a factor in your SEO strategy. It can also negatively impact your ecommerce revenue. W3 Total Cache is a widely used WordPress plugin that allows you to optimize your site speed and performance to offer the best user experience. Use it to setup page and browser caching, compress pages for quicker downloads, and setup a content delivery network for your static files.
Are there any other WordPress plugins you like to use? This is a non-exhaustive list and there are of course plenty of other ones we use for more specific needs.
And don’t forget we also offer custom programming for anything else that the WordPress ecosystem does not cover.