We are often asked for recommendations on best WordPress plugins and services. People particularly want to know about the plugins and tools that we use to run the WPBeginner website.
As a result, we have decided to create the WPBeginner Blueprint which gives you behind the scenes look at all the tools, plugins, and services that we use here at WPBeginner.
As you can guess, our website is powered by the best publishing platform on the web, WordPress.org.
It’s important that you know the difference between WordPress.com vs WordPress.org and choose the right platform for your needs.
While there are many blogging platforms out there, we always recommend using WordPress because of the freedom and flexibility you have to customize your website.
– Comparison of the Top Blogging Platforms
– Why is WordPress Free?
– 6 reasons why you should use WordPress?
WordPress Web Hosting
Web hosting is your website’s house on the internet. Every website needs web hosting, and each website has different needs.
At WPBeginner, we use SiteGround Enterprise Hosting version.
SiteGround hosts millions of websites, and they are one of the most popular hosting companies in the industry. With 1-click WordPress install, 99.9% uptime, and 24/7 support, it’s a smart choice for every growing business. (See our SiteGround review).
We understand there are thousands of web hosting providers out there. That’s why we have a step by step guide on how to choose the best WordPress hosting for your site.
Website Design / Theme
WPBeginner uses a custom designed WordPress theme built specifically for our website.
Unfortunately this design is not available for download or sale.
We built our custom theme on top of the Genesis framework. See our Genesis Framework review.
If you are looking for high-quality WordPress templates, check out these companies:
Need help choosing a WordPress theme? See our article on 9 things you should consider when selecting a WordPress theme.
VaultPress (Jetpack Backups) – We use VaultPress to create automatic backups. Automatic backups are your first defense against any security threats. Here’s our step by step guide to setup VaultPress automated backups. You may also want to see our comparison of the best WordPress backup plugins.
Sucuri – Sucuri offers web monitoring and malware cleanup service. It helps us enhance our WordPress security and actively block cyber attacks. See how Sucuri helped us block 450,000 WordPress attacks in 3 months
Login Lockdown – We use Login LockDown plugin to prevent brute-force login attacks. It locks user’s IP address after an X number of failed attempts. – See our Login LockDown review.
WP Rocket – We use WP Rocket for our page caching and browser caching to improve overall site speed. A lot of our caching is now handled on the server end by SiteGround and at DNS level by Sucuri.
Classic Smilies – We use classic smilies to turn off all emoji functionality in WordPress and replace it with older smilies from previous versions of WordPress.
OptinMonster – OptinMonster is the best lead generation tool for WordPress. We use it to get more email subscribers. See our OptinMonster review.
WPForms – WPBeginner uses WPForms to power all contact forms and form based lead generations (including email opt-ins and payment orders). See our WPForms review.
PushEngage – PushEngage is the best web push notification software. It helps us connect with visitors after they leave our website. Push notifications are a top 5 traffic source on WPBeginner. See how to add push notifications in WordPress.
MailChimp – MailChimp allows us to design, send, and track beautiful email newsletters to our readers. Every site owner should build an email list. Check out our MailChimp review.
MonsterInsights – MonsterInsights allow us to connect to Google Analytics for FREE. It shows us who visits our website, where they come from, and how they interact with our content.
AIOSEO – We use the All in One SEO for WordPress plugin to improve our on-page SEO by adding title tags, meta descriptions, XML sitemaps, and essential on-page SEO. This tool is much more beginner friendly than Yoast, and comes with powerful SEO features to help us get a competitive advantage. There’s a free version of AIOSEO available as well.
RafflePress – RafflePress helps us run viral giveaways and contests to increase our website traffic, social media followers, and email subscribers. We use the pro version, but they also have a free RafflePress version available as well.
Frame Buster – We use Frame Buster to stop content pirates from placing their calls-to-action, ads, affiliate links on top of our content. See our Frame Buster for WordPress review.
Nextiva – we use Nextiva for our business phone service. It allows us to have a professional business phone number that our team can share, have extensions, and use all the advanced call management features.
ThirstyAffiliates – We use ThirstyAffiliates to efficiently manage all of our affiliate links. It allows us to cloak links, automatically replace keywords, and more. See our ThirstyAffiliates review.
WP-Bitly – We use WP-Bitly plugin to automatically generate short URLs for our posts that look like
http://wpbeg.in/. See our WP-Bitly review.
Breadcrumb NavXT – We use Breadcrumb NavXT to add breadcrumb navigation showing the visitor’s path to their current location. See our Breadcrumb NavXT review.
Syntax Highlighter – We use Syntax Highlighter Evolved plugin to share code snippets in our posts. It is by far the best solution in our opinion. See our Syntax Highlighter review.
Compact Archives – We use Compact Archives plugin to make our archives page prettier. It helps us compress the output of month/year archive. See our Compact Archives review.
Akismet – We use Akismet to combat comment SPAM. Akismet lets us focus on writing quality content rather than moderating SPAM comments. See our Akismet review.
Subscribe to Comments Reloaded – We use it to allow our users to subscribe to comments. This way users get notification email when there is a new comment on the post. See our Subscribe to Comments Reloaded review
No Self Pings – We use it to stop WordPress from sending ping back notifications when linking to our own posts. See our No Self Ping review.
Behind the Scenes
There are several tools, plugins, and custom code snippets that we use at WPBeginner. Here is the list of our behind the scene plugins, code snippets, etc.
Edit Flow – We use Edit Flow to manage our editorial workflow. See our Edit Flow review.
Members – This plugin allows us to add new roles and limit content permissions by users. We use it specifically for role management in WPBeginner. See our expert comparison of 5 best WordPress membership plugins.
Advanced Custom Fields We use Advanced Custom Fields to add custom fields into WordPress posts and custom post types.
Post Types Order – By default, you can order your posts by ID, author, title, date etc. But there is no easy way to use a custom order. This plugin lets us do that with an easy drag-drop interface. See our Post Types Order review.
Simple Page Ordering – This plugin works the same as the one mentioned above, it allows us to set custom ordering but for pages. See our Simple Page Ordering review
Excerpts for Pages – We use custom code snippet to display excerpts for pages in WordPress.
Random Post Redirect – This custom code snippet allows us to redirect users to a random post in WordPress if they add /random/ at the end of the url.
Title and Nofollow for Links – We use it to add a title and nofollow fields to insert link popup in WordPress. See our Title and NoFollow for Links review.
Restore Image Title – We use it to add title attribute to the images we add into WordPress posts. See our Restore Image Title review.
WP Mail SMTP – We use it to make sure our WordPress emails are getting delivered to the inbox. To learn more, see how to fix WordPress not sending email issue.
That’s all for now. We will update this page when we start using some new plugin or tool on WPBeginner.
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