Are there any free WordPress plugins?
You will find a large selection of free plugins for WordPress. These are often developed by private users and are also dependent on the help of private programmers for updates. You can download and use these plugins for free. There is an option to leave a small donation for the developers’ efforts. However, this is not mandatory.
If you just run a private blog or don’t want to spend a lot of money on your website, free plugins are the right choice for you. However, always keep in mind that paid plugins often have more to offer. The prices are usually in the range of a few euros; plugins that cost more than 50 euros are the absolute exception. Which free plugins are excellent? We have some suggestions for you:
- YOAST SEO: This plugin forms the basis for all your SEO activities. You can use it, for example, to set a keyword and always get direct feedback as to whether your post has already been written to match the keyword or, for example, the density is still too low. Simple, practical, and free!
- WP Smush: With this plugin, you compress all the pictures that you have ever uploaded. It would help if you did this regularly to reduce the amount of data that needs to be loaded. This makes your site faster – even though the plugin is free.
- Cookie Notice: There are now numerous plugins with which you can make your users aware of your cookie settings to receive the appropriate consent to track the behavior of the people.
- Contact Form 7: Would you like to receive inquiries or other messages via your website? Then you can insert attractively designed contact forms with this free plugin and set them up very quickly so that you receive the messages sent here directly by email.
- Antispam Bee: The previously mentioned plugin automatically detects spam comments and moves them accordingly to the spam area, where you can then delete them collectively with just a few clicks. Simple and practical!
There are tons of other free plugins out there that sure make sense and are plentiful. We have deliberately only made a small selection because you have to adapt the plugins according to your own needs.
For example, if you run a static website based on WordPress, you won’t need a plugin that recognizes and deletes spam comments. It is different if you have an active community that likes to leave comments and that also reads the comments of others. So you have to individually choose which plugins are so relevant for you that you use them. Always keep in mind that each plugin requires storage space and that your loading time will be insufficient if you have too many plugins.
Plugins and GDPR compliance
When you install plugins, you always have to ask yourself which GDPR aspects can be relevant here. In the meantime, the developers of the plugins have already reacted and practically always made sure that the necessary standards are met. However, you are always responsible and, therefore, sometimes have to make manual adjustments.
An example of this is contact forms that you create with plugins. It is important to include appropriate check options with which your users consent to process the data they have provided to answer their request.
Aside from checking whether you have to consider GDPR aspects when installing and setting up the plugins, you should install ongoing updates. You can do this with just a few clicks in the “Updates” area. This way, you keep your plugins up to date and minimize the security risk. The updates must always be compatible with your WordPress version; a corresponding note is always included with the updates. You also have to update the WordPress version itself regularly to be on the safe side. With entirely new WordPress versions, updates for individual plugins may be only available after a few days or even weeks – so check the update options regularly.
Find and install WordPress plugins
First, go to the dashboard of your WordPress site. On the left side, you will find all menu items. Search for the menu item “Plugins.” Here you can find all installed plugins, install new ones and edit existing plugins.
To install a new WordPress plugin, first, click on the menu item “Plugins” and then on “Install.” You will get to an overview page on which popular plugins are automatically recommended. Look for the plugin you want to install in the “Browse plugins” field on the far right. It will then be displayed to you, and all you have to do is click on “install now.” Some external paid plugins are not displayed in this WordPress overview, such as WP Rocket. You buy and install these plugins via the websites of the respective providers. Here you will be guided through to the installation. The implementation of external plugins is also uncomplicated.
What should you look out for with WordPress plugins?
The basic rule for using plugins is quality, not quantity! Too many plugins slow down your website’s loading time. So make sure to find precisely those plugins that offer you real added value. You may be able to omit others and find another solution yourself instead, for example, when it comes to checking outdated links – this is also possible manually if you are consistently behind them. Avoiding unnecessary plugins is essential, and with all those plugins that you install, you have to take care of the ongoing maintenance. So keep updates regularly and make sure that your plugins are always up to date. It is also essential that you keep an eye on the data protection aspects of all plugins and make appropriate adjustments if necessary.
FAQ and conclusion
So that you can quickly get an overview of the essential points about WordPress plugins, we have summarized some relevant information for you.
Which WordPress plugins should I use?
Whether you run a private blog, a company website, or another project, different plugins may be suitable for you. Plugins that improve the loading time of your website are always helpful, for example, those for compressing images and using the cache.
How many plugins should I use?
As little as possible, as many as necessary. Plugins require resources and generally slow down your website, so you should only install essential plugins.
Are there any good free WordPress plugins?
Yes! The selection is enormous, and we have already presented some recommended plugins available free of charge in this post.
How do I install WordPress plugins?
If you are logged into your WordPress backend, you will see the item Plugins in the menu in the left sidebar. There you can search for plugins or upload the corresponding plugin files and then install and activate them.
In conclusion, it should be said that WordPress is so popular precisely because of the variety of plugins. Useful plugins ensure that websites can be designed professionally quickly, for example, using simple contact forms. At the same time, the plugins also help improve the website technically, for example, in terms of loading time. The downside is that the plugins themselves are resource hogs and should therefore be used sparingly.