If you run a local business and your company website is powered by WordPress then don’t miss out on the following list of WordPress plugins. They will help you automate the majority of the technical tweaks on your website and even if you are not that tech-savvy your website will have that extra edge over your competitors!
The plugins listed below will not only improve your site’s visibility in Google search results, but will also help increase its loading speed as well as keep potential threats at bay, ensuring that your site is safe and secure.
In other words: if you want your target audience to find you easily online, and if you want to rule the Local search results then make use of these Top 10 WordPress plugins that will facilitate your SEO, Social Media and Content Marketing campaigns.
1. W3 Total Cache
With Google moving to mobile-first index, having a fast-loading website has become of utmost importance in terms of rankings. In general, a sluggish website can lead to a high bounce rate and negative user experience as a whole. That’s the reason why Google is ‘penalizing’ websites with slow loading speed, by pushing them further back in their index.
The plugin helps reduce your site’s loading time by serving customers the cached version of your site whenever a query is made. Therefore, if you want to improve user experience – this is the number one plugin that you ought to have on your website.
2. Akismet Anti-Spam
Spam is another factor resulting in slow loading speed as it eats into the given website’s database space. Installing a robust WordPress plugin like Akismet can be quite beneficial to your business. It doesn’t only automatically check and filter out spam comments but it also saves you time when it comes to comments moderation.
3. Yoast SEO
This is by far the best plugin when it comes to optimising your website for users and search engines. Yoast SEO plugin allows you to improve your site’s overall structure making it SEO-friendly.
This plugin helps you create an XML sitemap for your site, which aims at eliminating inaccurate page indexing and leads to enhanced rankings on search engine result pages (SERPs). Yoast also helps in improving your on-page SEO by analysing your pages for proper keywords, image ALT tags, meta titles and descriptions as well as content length in order to ensure higher click-through rates.
All local businesses should be aware and take advantage of this plugin as it will guarantee that your site is well-optimised even if you are not that SEO-savvy yourself.
4. Contact Form 7
A local business website is incomplete without a Contact form. A Contact form helps customers to get in touch with you easily in case of a query or a complaint. It is also the best way to garner more leads. One of the easiest ways to create a Contact form for your website is through the use of this simple yet powerful plugin – Contact Form 7.
With 5+ million active installations, this WordPress plugin is the most popular contact form plugin through which you can create multiple contact forms for your website as well as customize it as per your needs and requirements. In addition, it provides you with features like SPAM and Bot prevention via CAPTCHA codes.
5. WP Google Maps
Having a map on your website is crucial for helping your customers to easily locate your business. Without it, the risk of losing out on potential customers rises drastically. Hence, if you are looking for an easy-to-use WordPress plugin then WP Google Maps would be your best choice.
Easy-to-install and configure, with this plugin you can create a map for your site in seconds simply by entering your address or GPS location.
The best part, it comes with 9 pre-built themes and you can add animations or polygons to your map markers making it more visually alluring. It also offers you the Store locator functionality that will give directions to the given location, making it easier for customers to locate your store in real time.
6. All In One Schema Rich Snippets
Structured data and schema markup can help boost your online visibility. By using an effective plugin like the All In One Schema Rich Snippets that allows you to create rich snippets for your site, you are helping search engines and users alike to better understand what you are offering and to stand out in the search result pages.
From a local business perspective, it allows you to mark up essential information about a product or a service, star ratings, reviews, addresses, phone number, working hours, etc. And this, in turn, helps Google better interpret your business and, consequently, rank it higher in relevant searches.
Hacking is a real problem in the online world and as such, in order to ensure that your hard work doesn’t go down the drain and your files are safe and secure, it is important that you take a regular backup of your entire website as well as the whole database.
It is essential to have a good web hosting provider that offers regular backups of your site. However, you shouldn’t rely on them only with your site backup. Make sure to have your own personal backup of your site’s files and database instead and BackUpWordPress is the one tool you need to manage this critical task.
This plugin is simple to use, it takes automatic backups on a predefined time set by you, and also has the option to email each backup file to an email address of your choosing.
8. WP Smush.it – Smush Image Compression and Optimization
While beautiful images make your site look more alluring to your customers, having un-optimised images and large media files on your website can slow down your site considerably as they take a lot of your database space. It is crucial that you compress and optimise your on-site images before you upload them to your website.
However, once you’ve published a post with unoptimized images you still have the chance of fixing the error simply by using the WP Smush.it plugin. It will automatically optimize and compress images without compromising their quality. Your site will enjoy a good loading speed and Google will reward it with high visibility in its index.
The plugin also allows you to compress images in bulk which will save you much time and efforts if you are fixing them on a one-by-one basis.
9. Broken Link Checker
Dead links or 404 error pages are one of the biggest causes for a high bounce rate. Having too many broken links on your website can also affect your site’s ranking in Google’s search results. Thus, in order to ensure that you don’t lose your website’s traffic, finding and fixing broken links on your website is extremely important.
WordPress makes this task easier for you with the help of the Broken Link Checker plugin. When activated on your site, this plugin monitors your posts, pages, comments, etc and notifies you of broken links via the WordPress Dashboard or by email.
Moreover, this plugin allows you to edit broken links directly from the plugin’s page, instead of you having to manually navigate to each problematic page and update it. In addition, it also helps detect missing images on your website, thus ensuring that your site offers optimal user experience at all times.
10. AddToAny Share Buttons
Social media should be a part of your Local SEO marketing strategy if you want your business to grow in the online world. Having social media profiles for your local business on relevant websites, hosting social media contest and events, responding to comments promptly will all help improve your brand’s visibility.
The AddToAny Share Buttons plugin comprises of various social media buttons for different social platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+ and other social media sites and apps. Install this plugin on your site if you wish to improve engagement with your audience and garner more traffic.
You can easily customize the plugin functionalities based on your needs. Plus, it allows easy integration with Google Analytics and other tools like Bitly and Google URL Shortener, that makes tracking of shared links easy.
The above top 10 WordPress Plugins are a must-have for all local businesses as they can help optimize your site and thus increase its online visibility and organic traffic.
Moreover, they will also ensure that your site is performing and functioning at its best at all times. By providing your customers with an enhanced user experience when browsing your website you will be able to ultimately boost your ROI – it’s as simple as that!