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Plugins are an ah-mazing resource for helping grow and optimize your blog.

The only problem? There’s a ton of plugins out there and it’s hard to know which ones you actually need.

You don’t want to add too many plugins to your site because it can slow down your blog and irk your readers.

That’s why today I’m sharing 7 essential (and amazing) plugins that’ll help you grow your blog! These are all plugins that I use to run my own blog, so I know they can help you, too!

HOW TO INSTALL PLUGINS

Before we get started, I wanted to show you how to install plugins real quick. If you’re brand-new to blogging, it can be a little confusing.

First, hover your cursor over plugins on the left-hand side of your dashboard, and click Add new.

how to install plugins on WordPress

In the right-hand corner, you’ll see a search bar where you can type in the plugin you’re looking for.

how to install plugins on WordPress

Once you’ve found the plugin you want, you’ll click the orange install button.

After the plugin downloads, make sure you activate the plugin! If you don’t, it won’t actually work.

And that’s it! Now let’s get back to the kick-ass plugins that will help you grow your blog business!

1. MONSTER INSIGHTS

This is the plugin I use to keep track of my analytics for my blog. It allows you to see your Google Analytics right on your WordPress dashboard.

Although there is a paid version of this plugin, the free option is what I use and it’s great for beginner bloggers.

Here’s what the MonsterInsights dashboard looks like:

You can view your sessions and page views for the last 30 days, as well as how long on average people were on your site.

This plugin also shares with you where your traffic comes from with your top referrals and also what pages have the most page views. This helps you see where your marketing efforts are paying off, and where you may need to spend more time promoting your blog.

2. SOCIAL WARFARE

When it comes to growing your blog, you want to make it ridiculously easy for your readers to share your posts! This helps get more eyes on yo’ blog, so it’s important to have share buttons easy-to-click.

For my blog, I use social warfare! This free plugin allows you to put share buttons on the top + side of each blog post, which makes it easy for your readers to share your content!

You can also choose whether you want to have the share count visible or not. Personally, I don’t mind it being visible. 🙂

3. wpDISCUZ

This is the plugin I use to customize my comment section. The basic WordPress comment section can look a little unprofessional, and there’s a ton of options available using this plugin!

4. Yoast SEO

When people search on Google for things that you write about, you want to be on the front page (ideally, the very first link that comes up) This helps drive more traffic to your blog and increase your reach.

That’s where Yoast SEO becomes a HUGE help! This plugin helps make sure all of your blog posts are optimized for search engines such as Google.

In other words, this plugin helps you rank higher for certain keywords that someones searches on Google.

This leads to more eyes on your blog and eventually more sales, which is what we want!

5. AKISMET

Nobody likes spammy comments on their blog. As you start to get more traffic to your blog, those spammers just get worse and worse, so this plugin is a must!

6. WP CACHE

It’s important to have some sort of cache for your blog to keep it clean and not slow down your site for your readers. I like to use WP cache, it’s very easy to use and helps make sure my blog is running fast.

Hopefully this list gets you started as you begin setting up your blog with all the essential plugins. 🙂

Although these are the essential plugins I use, there are a ton of there to choose from so find what works for you! Just be sure not to add too many plugins so you don’t slow your blog down and frustrate your readers.

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