WordPress is the most used CMS on all internet, it powers 39.6% of websites, and the number keeps rising.
WordPress plugins are very easy to install and configure and, in case you have any issue within those plugins there is also an extensive community which is very important to discuss any issue. When you install WordPress, some plugins need to be installed and configured for WordPress to function correctly.
Security system Plugin
#1 plugin that is going to protect our website with a firewall and security system is Wordfence Security
When you install Wordfence, it will show you this pop-up. Click to configure.
Now, enable to configure the plugin that will secure your website from hackers and spammers.
#2 Plugin is going to protect your site from spammers
How do we install this plugin? look for in the search plugin tab Akismet Spam Protection
this plugin will help you to fight spammers, and simply because without this, you will notice once you publish your blog, spammers are going to start writing down spam comments, making your blog look like a scam
Once you click on set up your Akismet account, they will ask you to sign up for one of their plans; for the time being, select the personal plan,
Next, you’ll need to insert some details about you and your website; once you’ve done that, continue with an individual subscription
Great! now Akismet will send you an activation API key to your email, get the code, head over to the plugin settings, and paste the key, and that’s it, very simple.
Backup Your WordPress Website
#3 Plugin is to backup your website, and this is very important. In case your site breaks or gets hacked, you’ll have a backup to restore it
the following plugin we are going to install is called Updraft, one of the best plugin, and it has more than 3 million active installations
Once you have installed this plugin, head over to settings and select Updraft
Let’s briefly sum up what is a backup, It is like taking a snapshot of your website files database data, so it will take the data and save it somewhere else
to be on the safe side. I recommended using cloud storage. In my case, I use Dropbox, creating an account with Dropbox is free
Hover over to settings, and you will have many cloud storage options you can save on. In our case, we choose Dropbox; I would recommend saving backups weekly and retaining the backups for seven weeks, then go down and save changes.
To finish the Updraft (backups), scroll down and save. The plugin will ask you to authorize your website with dropbox, then click complete setup.
The Contact Form 7 Plugin
#4 Plugin This is a contact form plugin, in case your readers would like to get in touch with you
Now, we need to create a contact form, it will automatically create the form by default, the only thing you need to do is name your contact form, save it, and it will give you a shortcode
We need to create a page where we are going to paste our short-code
Let’s check now if the contact form works
Once a reader will contact you, the message will be sent to your WordPress email address. Where is this email address you may be asking? Head over to your WordPress general settings and there you can change your email address, that simple
Now, you have a contact form, but how will people reach out to you and, more importantly avoiding making sure the email ends up in the inbox and not in the spam? We need to use an SMTP service or ( Simple Mail Transfer Protocol) we use an SMTP provider to help us reach the inbox and have better overall delivery rates
SMTP Email Provider
#5 Plugin To look professional, you need to make sure your emails reach the recipient inbox. To do this, we need to use an SMTP service.
When we talk about SMTP services, we have a lot of options. In our case are going to use a plugin called WP Mail SMTP by WPForms. This plugin allows you to configure a custom SMTP. It is recommended to use SMTP, as web hosting companies may block port 25 to block spammers, head over to add a new plugin and select WP Mail SMTP by WPForms.
Once you have installed the plugin, click on settings. Next, you need to set up the email address. In my case, I will be using SendGrid. They have a free plan to start with if you are a beginner.
Once you sign up with SendGrid, hove over to Email API, then select Integration guide. Then you can choose web API next, select any language you want. In my case, I will choose C#. Then it will ask you to generate an API key. I will say blog API. Once you have created the API key, copy it and paste it into the SendGrid API key and click save.
Let’s make a test if the system is working correctly, hover over to settings–>email test, send an email to your Gmail account, you should receive a successful test email to your Gmail inbox, Congratulations!
Tracking Analytics Plugin
#6 Plugin One of the most important plugins is G Site Kit, developed by Google, why is so important this plugin? because it allows you to track users coming into your website, now, let’s configure this plugin,
follow the setup wizard, choose an account you want to use to sign in, once you have installed the plugin,
it will show you no data, that is normal, it will need some days to start gathering data
Set Up Tracking Pixel
#7 Plugin If you want to run Facebook ads or Google ads, any social media platform ad, you need to install Pixel Tracking on your website. Let’s assume you are a beginner and don’t know what a Tracking Pixel is. If you want to create a Facebook ad, you have the option to create a custom audience based on the source of traffic, your website.
Facebook will track your website, visitors, and you can create a Facebook ad targeting your website visitors. It’s a crucial concept in marketing because when you target someone who already knows you, you have a higher chance of selling him something. In marketing, this is called re-targeting, so how do we track our website visitors? We need to get the pixel code from Facebook,
head over to your Facebook business manager, select event manager–>connect data sources, and choose Facebook pixel as a connection method. Select Manually add Pixel code to the website
Facebook will give you a code. To use this code, we need to install a plugin called headers and footers, making the job easier.
Once you have installed the plugin, then hover over on settings and paste the code on the scripts header section,
Don’t worry if WordFence will give you a warning. It’s good because you are installing a script inside your website code, WordFence will think that is suspicious activity, and so it will warn you, allowlist this action to proceed and refresh the page, and then save.
#8 Plugin In this last section, I want to talk about SSL or ( Secure Socket Layer) is a fundamental concept to know as you are probably planning to build your website, whenever you open a web browser and see this warning, your connection to that website is not secured
When you connect your device to a website host web server, we combine these devices on the internet. Without an SSL certificate, our network connection would not be secured, so any hacker can sit between these devices, listen on the network, and steal information.
For example, suppose you buy something from an e-commerce website without SSL. In that case, you may expose your credit card credential because these data are transferred in a connection without security, are not encrypted. We call it a “man in the middle attack.”
If you want to learn how to install wordpress on a VPS and get higher performance then click here
Having an SSL certificate secures the traffic between your devices and the webserver you are connecting to. How to fix this issue?
We need to install a straightforward SSL plugin, follow the wizard instructions to activate the SSL quickly, and refresh your page. And congratulations! Now you have a secure website,
I hope these plugins are going to help you with your website performance. If you find this article useful, share it with your friends, and if there is anything unclear, let me know in the comment below.