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20 Must Have WordPress Plugins for 2015 (Expert Pick)

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20 Must Have WordPress Plugins for 2015 (Expert Pick)

Are you looking for the must have WordPress plugins used by WordPress experts? Well, then you’re in the right place. In this article, our expert team has hand-picked the best WordPress plugins for 2015.

Choosing the best plugin for your WordPress site will help make your day-to-day life easier and deliver a better experience for your users as well.

Having that said, let’s take a look at the top WordPress plugins for 2015.

1. WordPress SEO by Yoast

WordPress SEO by Yoast

WordPress SEO is not just an SEO plugin, it is the complete website optimization package. Apart from adding titls and descriptions to your articles, it also allows you to add open graph meta data, do page analysis, publish xml sitemap, and so much more. It is easy to install and setup and that’s why we use it on all our websites.

2. BackupBuddy


BackupBuddy is the easiest and most beginner friendly WordPress backup and migration plugin. It allows you to quickly setup automatic backup schedule for your website. You can store your backups on the cloud and sleep easily, knowing all your content is backed up. See how to keep your WordPress content safe with BackupBuddy.

3. W3 Total Cache

W3 Total Cache

Your site’s speed plays an important role in search engine rankings. W3 Total Cache helps you optimize your WordPress site for speed and performance. It allows you to easily setup page and browser caching, compress pages for quicker downloads, and setup a content delivery network for your static files. See our guide on how to install and setup W3 total Cache for beginners.

4. WPForms


WPForms is the most beginner friendly contact form plugin for WordPress. This drag & drop online form builder allows you to easily create contact forms, email subscription forms, order forms, payment forms, and other type of online forms with just a few clicks. We use it on WPBeginner and all of our other sites.

There’s a free WPForms Lite version available for those who are looking for a simple solution.

If you want more advanced features, then get the Pro version. Use this WPForms coupon to get 10% off your purchase.

5. OptinMonster


OptinMonster is the best lead generation plugin for WordPress (See how it helped us increase our email subscribers by 600%). It allows you to create beautiful optin forms and popups for your WordPress website and convert your users into subscribers. It comes packed with features like page-level targetting, analytics, split testing, and exit-intent technology which allows you to display optin form when a user is about to leave your site.

6. Edit Flow

Edit Flow

Edit Flow provides an efficient editorial workflow management system for WordPress. It allows you to see your editorial calendar, manage authors, assign posts, leave editorial comments, and much more. You can create your own custom post status and plan your content strategy with in your WordPress dashboard.

7. Soliloquy


Soliloquy is the best responsive WordPress slider on the market. Most slider plugins will slow down your website which would hurt your SEO. Soliloquy, on the other hand, is the fastest slider plugin which loads your sliders at blazing fast speeds. It comes packed with features and even has a free version that you can try on right away.

8. Sucuri


We use Sucuri to monitor the security of our websites. Any website on the internet can get hacked or attacked by malicious denial of service attacks. It is better to be prepared than sorry. Sucuri offers real time alerts, website security scanner, and even offers malware removal service. Take a look at the 5 reasons why we use Sucuri to improve our WordPress security.

9. Floating Social Bar

Floating Social Bar

Most social media plugins for WordPress come with a lot of bloat. With countless social networks that no body wants, and unnecessary scripts that slow down your website. Floating Social Bar is the best social media plugin for WordPress, it allows you to add only a handful of social networks that really matter. It is highly optimized for speed so that your social buttons don’t slow down your website.

10. Disqus


The default WordPress commenting system works well for websites with fewer visitors. However, for larger sites with lots of user comments you are better off with Disqus commenting system. It is a third party commenting system, which means comments will not affect your server. It does not affect your site’s page speed and comes equipped with anti-spam filters. See our guide on how to add Disqus comment system in WordPress.

Update: We no longer recommend using Disqus. Read how switching away from Disqus increased our engagement by 304%.

11. AdSanity

Ads displayed in Adsanity Ad management view

AdSanity is a WordPress ad management plugin focused on ease-of-use. Adding new ads in Adsanity is very similar to adding a post. It comes with with widgets and shortcodes support to display ads, so you can display ads in sidebars, posts and pages. You can create either time-based ads (that run for a specific time) or infinite ads (that would keep running unless you remove them). It also has graphs and stats for ad views and clicks. If you’re looking to display advertisement in WordPress, then you should be using this plugin.

12. Envira Gallery

Envira Gallery

If you run a photography site or post a lot of images, then Envira Gallery is a must have plugin for you. Enivra Gallery is a responsive WordPress gallery plugin which allows you to create beautiful image galleries with lots of powerful effects, easy navigation, and responsive design. It loads brilliantly fast and looks pretty on all devices. There is also a free version called Envira Gallery Lite which you can try right away. See our guide on how to easily create responsive WordPress image galleries with Envira.

13. Login Lockdown

Login Lockdown

By default, a user can try to login into your site with as many incorrect attempts as they want. Most hack attempts usually rely on breaking into your site’s admin area by using password lists. Limit Login Attempts simply puts a limit on how many times a user can try to login. After a given number of login attempts it locks down the admin area for a limited time. Take a look at this tutorial on how to limit login attempts in WordPress.

14. Term Management Tools

Term Management Tools

Categories and tags, along with custom taxonomies play an important role in how you sort content on your website. However, many beginners don’t know the difference between categories and tags and the SEO best practices on using them. This is where term management tools come in handy. It allows you to merge and bulk edit categories, tags, and custom taxonomies.

15. TablePress


WordPress post editor does not come with a button to create tables. If you need to insert tables in WordPress, then you would need TablePress plugin for that. It allows you to easily create tables with in WordPress, add them to your posts, pages, and even widgets. You can also export your table data if you need. Check out this tutorial on how to add tables in WordPress posts and pages without writing any HTML or CSS.

16. WPtouch

WPtouch - Mobile Suite for WordPress

WPtouch offers a mobile suite for WordPress that gives your website the powerful features and capabilities that responsive themes simply cannot match. If you want to create a mobile version of your website, then WPtouch is your answer. It has built-in support for eCommerce, mobile-advertising, custom content, and most importantly it allows you offer an app for your site without the App Store. See our tutorial on how to use WPtouch.

17. Compact Archives

Compact Archives

By default WordPress creates a long bulleted list of your monthly archives. If you have been blogging for a while, adding monthly archives would make users scroll a lot. Compact Archives solves this problem by displaying your monthly archives in a compact block. Checkout this tutorial on how to create compact archives in WordPress.

18. ThirstyAffiliates


If you want to make affiliate marketing one of the main source of income for your site, then you need an affiliate link management tool. ThirstyAffiliates is the best affiliate link management tool for WordPress. It allows you to easily add affiliate links, cloak links, auto insert on certain keywords, and even export your links. See our guide on how to add affiliate links in WordPress with ThirstyAffiliates.

19. Display Widgets

Display Widgets

Sometimes you need to display or hide a widget on certain pages. Display Widgets allows you to easily show or hide widgets on selected pages and posts. You can even show widgets only to logged in users and hide for everyone else. Take a look at this tutorial on how to show or hide widgets on specific WordPress pages.

20. WP Mail SMTP

Due to configuration settings on some WordPress hosting providers, your WordPress emails may not get delivered. To solve this problem you would need WP Mail SMTP plugin. It allows you to use an SMTP server to send your WordPress emails instead of PHP’s mail() function. You can even use Gmail’s SMTP server to send your WordPress emails.

We hope this article helped you learn about the must have WordPress plugins for 2015. For tools beyond WordPress, take a look at these 40+ useful tools to manage and grow your blog

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Google+.

Editorial Staff at WPBeginner is a team of WordPress experts led by Syed Balkhi. Page maintained by Syed Balkhi.

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  1. Aayush Ghimire says:

    This listing is awesome . Thanks for sharing it with us .

  2. John Paulson says:

    you know you are amazing because you express Simple way, Short and most important that you are on the point.

  3. Munna Hossain says:

    I know that without installing different plugins we can not do anything on our WordPress blog. There are a lot of plugins for the users. So it is really a hard work to select the perfect plugins. But your article has solved my problem. Now I know which plugins should I use. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Nancy says:

    you know what i love most about this website, the posts are straight to the point unlike some other websites that gives you tales by moonlight. Nice post thanks.

  5. Sanjib says:

    First of all thanks to the person behind this blog post. I have learnt lots of valuable information about wordpress plugin from this blog. I have a site based on generatepress theme and hopefully I can implement few of this plugins to my site.

  6. Linda says:

    In one of your recent reply about DISQUS plugin, you promised to write an article about why you discontinued the plugin on this site. Please, this article is very important to me as I just configured disqus on my site. I need to know why I should Uninstall it and a better alternative to the plugin.

  7. Kapil Suryawanshi says:

    How to create a plugin for wordpress, with below feature.

    In settings:
    Taking the Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin and Google+ page links
    and its respective user name and password.(without using API
    I.e. App_id and Access_key)

    Post and Page edit:
    Show Share button, while editing page and post.

    When the share button is clicked, it should automatically share
    that post / page to respective Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin and
    Google+ page.
    have the option to enable / disable each social media links.
    i.e. if we want to post in Facebook alone, it should have the
    option to disable other three

    if there is plugin then send me the name of the plugin otherwise help me to create such a plugin.
    I’m beginner to WordPress. Advance thanks for help.

  8. Jason Stanley says:

    Great List I have many of these in my blog.

  9. Jeny Berline says:

    Nice to see WPFORMS in the listing. I’m using that and it has great usability and friendly to beginners. Thanks for sharing other nice plugins.

  10. asad says:

    you have great info about wordpress thanks nice….

  11. Mark R says:

    People are abandoning Yoast in en masse. Check out the user comments for The SEO Framework. It’s a much better solution for a variety of reasons.

    • Bookish Freaks says:

      Surely only people who cannot follow simple instructions are abandoning Yoast en masse?

  12. Kate says:

    Looks like a great article, several of these plug ins could be useful to our site. Because our web designer cratered on us, it’s been my job to do the overhaul of our site, something I was assigned to do but for which I have no experience.
    I have found a couple of very helpful tutorials which go through the entire process (Thanks ). The forums I find are often too technical (I do not write code) and mostly closed to further questions.
    Because I am still on the low end of the learning curve, what I need are comprehensive tutorials on how to install and use these plugins. So is there any possibility you can post these resources in your plug in descriptions?

  13. Drappa says:

    Disqus is really overrated and slows down your site.

  14. Robin says:

    Out of 20 lists, Currently, I’m using 15 plugins on my blog. But hope so in future I’ll be using rest of 5 plugins. And thanks for this post which give me a good information about plugins.

  15. Nathan Brook says:

    Most of the plugins you have mentioned in your post are new for me.Surely I’ll use those SEO plugins in my blog.Thanks for your great post.

  16. Kate Sheren says:

    Awesome list of plugins! I will definitely need to update my plugin list after this… Thanks for sharing this!!!

  17. prem vaishnav says:


    very knowledgeable and helpful artical. when i checked my site in gtmetrix having error of minize request size in which unknown ads website js is there .Any help to remove these ads js and also m using disqus plugin


  18. Sacha says:

    Disqus is a disgraceful plugin. I’m amazed you even tried it, judging by all it’s issues. Now they’re turning it into some social site. It’s a load of rubbish, the default WordPress comments are perfectly fine. Stick with what you’ve got, I love your site. Although, I would like it to be mobile friendly.

  19. Nabeel says:

    Nice list by the team. Almost all of the themes are really “must haves”. However I was wondering if the Table’s plugin is really that necessary as you can get the same by installing a shortcode plugin along with a lot of other features.

  20. Hemang Rindani says:

    Nice article Syed and team.

    CMS helps to develop a website that acts as a sales machine. It is important to consider each and every aspect of business and select the themes, modules and plugins accordingly. WordPress is a great platform that helps to create a dynamic website through easy to use interface. The rich set of plugins make it one of the most trusted CMS. Use the plugins strategically with the modules to add variety of functionalities. Website must be able to provide a great user experience and at the same time it should be easy for employees to manage the content.

    Bigger the website, more the loading time and thus it is important to use certain plugins like W3 cache to make the webpage load faster. For developers, Edit flow is one of the useful tools that represents the site map graphically and helps them to edit the flow through a few mouse clicks. It is important to redefine the menu structure and avoid the 404 errors. Use tools to optimize the content and make the site user friendly.

    Thanks for the article.

  21. Prasad T says:

    Hi – I want to publish a list such as to 50 books or top 50 movies. I would like to use lists from goodreads to populate this automatically or (I can do it manually, if that is not possible). I want to link each book that is listed there to the amazon store (as I am an affiliate).

    My question is – is there a plugin/theme that lets me do it in an elegant way?

  22. Brad Bush says:

    Hello, I want plugin for my blog section which provide me various layout as per my blog post.

    • Brad says:

      I have found Blog Designer for same. It offers a number of features and flexibility to get more attractive blog and archieve pages. You can change blog page design easily anytime with our favorite design collections, show/hide post meta, social share and much more.

  23. Amit Patil says:

    I want plugin for login, logout and user registration functionality with custom fields.
    plz suggest me which is that?

  24. Sunita Biddu says:

    Good list. Got 3 new plugins to test next month. Thanks for sharing

  25. Dave Linabury says:

    I used to use the WP Touch plugin UNTIL I noticed that it causes your site to fail Google’s new mobile site tester.

    While your site will indeed be mobile-friendly, Google will not see it that way (the plugin doesn’t work on search bots) and will mark your site as Not Mobile-Friendly.

    Not sure if there’s a fix for that in the works…

  26. Bill Gibson, II says:

    “Participants Database” Plugin seems to be well thought-out. One of our faculty wanted a way to generate student photos for a student roster in our LMS. This plugin installed easily. I added a dropdown list for a course list, and added an upload photo option. When the user submits their info, an email is generated giving them a private “update record” URL so that can add to or modify their personal info. There is also an option to re-send the update record URL to their email address. Uses shortcodes and shortcode switches/modifiers to post database info to one or more pages.

  27. Monyane Ramollo says:

    Best plugins indeed, thank you

  28. Hfarazm says:

    where is “WordPress Fence Security” and “Theme Check”?

  29. rahul says:

    Thanks for the list, I am currently using catablog plugin to manage my affiliate content. However its options are limited for front end uaer, is there any alternative. Thanks in advance.

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