Plugins are essential for creating an easy to navigate website. The right plugins will also save you time, increase usability and ultimately generate more traffic, comments and likes.
If you want your travel blog to compete, then you’re going to need to provide a great user experience. The right plugins will help you get there. There are an amazing amount of tools to promote a website these days. Social networking sites such as Pinterest, Twitter and StumbleUpon have become essential to driving traffic to a blog.
While social media can help attract readers to your travel blog, it is even more important to keep them on your site. You want your readers to spend time exploring your website and clicking through to more than one page.
Plugins for your wordpress website can help create a great user experience. Plugins are easy to install and easy to use. Wordpress plugins do everything from allow your readers to easily share your content, to find related posts, and help you you with some behind the scenes magic. The bottom line, is to keep things simple for you and your readers.
WordPress Plugins for Travel Blogger Websites
Here are some of the most useful plugins that I have installed on this blog.
The most important plugin for you to track your traffic and be able to see what pages are viewed and where the traffic is coming from. If you don’t have Google Analytics tracking on your website, stop everything and add this plugin!
Yoast SEO (formerly known as WordPress SEO by Yoast) is the most complete WordPress SEO plugin that exists today for WordPress.org users. In a nutshell, this awesome plugin allows you to optimize each post for maximum search results. It tells you each item you need to complete to have an SEO friendly article. It incorporates everything from a snippet editor and real time page analysis functionality that helps you optimize your pages content, images titles, meta descriptions and more to XML sitemaps, and loads of optimization options in between.
Shareaholic allows you do add several features to your site and blog pages. My favorites are the related content feature that allows you to increase page views, engagement and time on site by highlighting relevant content. I also could not live without their social sharing bare that makes it super easy to share articles from your website to Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and more.
Similar to Shareaholic, Sumome is a suite of free tools that can be used to grow your website’s traffic. Sumome offer the social sharing buttons, but also offers a pop-up list builder that can convert one-time visitors into lifelong readers and email subscribers.
Jetpack is a WordPress plugin by Automattic, the company behind WordPress.com. Unlike most other plugins, activating it is a little more involved than a single click and you actually need to sign up for a WordPress.com account and activate it. Jetpack is comprised of 35+ “modules,” which you can choose to activate or deactivate as you wish. Modules range from sharing related posts to custom CSS and commenting. It also has some great stat modules.
Revive Old Post
The Revive Old Post plugin allows you to connect with different social media platforms to automatically send out posts/tweets as often as you schedule it on your old content. It takes the title of your post and attaches a shortened link. It’s as simple as that! It’s Twitter auto-pilot for your old posts.
Better Click to Tweet
Add Click to Tweet boxes simply and elegantly to your posts or pages. All the features of a premium plugin, for FREE! It’s a great way to encourage your visitors to Tweet specific content or phrases.
BJ Lazy Load
BJ Lazy Load improves the performance of your site by not preloading all the images in your blog post. So as a reader is scrolling down, the images will load dynamically.
In essence this improves initial page load times and therefore better performance
W3 Total Cache
This plugin gives you the ability to take advantage of things like “caching” and “minifying” of your code so that your page can be efficiently delivered to your readers. Your website needs to be fast. W3 Total Cache allows your website to load quickly and perform better. There is a lot of configuration work involved in W3 Total Cache but I consider this a must have.
Since you run a travel blog, chances are you want to give people as much information about your destination as possible. One great way to do this is to provide a map of your recent visits. You can do this by using the plugin Geo Mashup.
This plugin allows you to insert a customizable map using the Google Maps API anywhere into your site. A must have for those looking to create in-depth destination posts.
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What plugins do you love? Let me know in the comments below!