Top 13 Essential WordPress Plugins For You in 2023
Now everyone needs a site of their own. 2023 is here, and WordPress plugins are all the hype. But before you start your website, you are going to need to know which essential plugins are worth your time.
Keeping all this in mind, we have put together a list of the 12 best WordPress plugins that are a must in 2023 if you are to create or maintain a WordPress website. So without further ado, we’ll get to the list of essential WordPress plugins.
- Fluent Forms
- WP Social Ninja
- Ninja Tables
- Fluent Support
- Ultimate Addons for Gutenberg
- Antispam Bee
- Wordfence Security – Firewall & Malware Scan
- Ahrefs SEO
An inseparable part of almost any website is a web form. A newsletter, contact form, donation form, etc., are some of the most notable webforms that dominate the web. However creating them can be a bit of a hassle sometimes, especially if you are new to this. But you need those forms. So what to do?
Cue Fluent Forms. It is the fastest and the most lightweight WordPress form builder plugin. The interface is so clean and comfortable that regardless you are a pro or a newbie, you are guaranteed to have a field day!
Fluent Forms is fully equipped with 45+ input fields, 70+ prebuilt form templates with conversational forms, 45+ integrations, drag, and drop form editor, conditional logic, partial form entries, user registration, multi-step form creation, calculated fields, webhooks, visual data reporting, form scheduling & restrictions, and many many more features which make Fluent Forms one of the most essential WordPress plugins.
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But if we had to mention some more key features of this must-have WordPress form builder plugin, the list would include:
- Multi-column form layout
- Conditional confirmation message
- 100% responsive and mobile-friendly
- Reusable templates
- Spam protection
- Placeholder customization
- AJAX submission
- Built-in data analysis
- SMS marketing
- Global styling
- Import/export form data
- PDF form submission
- Zapier integration
- Payment gateway
When it comes to CRMs, there are way too many options that can make any user go crazy. Luckily, we are here to give you the best WordPress marketing solution. If you are looking to automate your email marketing and manage customers, it does not make any sense to pay someone else to host your CRM.
This is only one reason why FluentCRM is the best WordPress CRM plugin in the business. FluentCRM understands its users’ needs, maybe even before the user does. The simplest and fastest WordPress CRM lets you build effortless email lists, manage customer relationships and email campaigns, build funnels so that you can generate higher profits and increase conversion.
But that’s not all. FluentCRM lets you in on detailed metrics, allowing you to better understand your users and design better funnels. And it is equipped with double opt-in forms that not only keep you GDPR compliant but also add quality leads to your list. Also, did we mention that FluentCRM offers unlimited contacts and emails? Additional key features of this WordPress CRM plugin include:
- Offline data storage
- Centralized user data
- Automatic contact import
- WooCommerce integration
- Contact segmentation through lists and tags
- LMS integration
- Exclude contacts from campaigns
- Block editor
- Dynamic content in emails
- EDD integration
- Scheduling emails
- Store all your email copies
- Dynamic smart codes
- Email sequencing
- Email automation
Having an email automation service is not enough. You need to make sure your emails reach their inbox and not get stuck in the spam. FluentSMTP can help you solve this problem. FluentSMTP does not only delivers your email but also does that in a super fast and secure way. This makes it one of the most essential WordPress plugins to have on your site.
This is your ultimate WP Mail plugin solution. FluentSMTP already connects to leading email service connections like Amazon SES, SendGrid, SendInBlue, MailGun, etc. Additionally, you can connect it to email service providers like Gmail, Zoho, Outlook, etc., via SMTP. You can also connect to the email service provider of your choice natively.
Moreover, FluentSMTP takes care of routing your emails, both transactional and marketing, so you don’t have to. It is a new plugin, but it’s growing rapidly due to its speed, reliability, and scalability. Some notable features of the fastest and the most advanced WordPress Mail SMTP, FluentSMTP, are:
- Real-time email delivery
- Automatic email routing
- Email logs
- Resend emails
- Detailed reporting
- Superfast UI
- Native API connections
- Data security
WP Social Ninja
Social media is the next big thing. It is already here, it is super engrossing and it will only get bigger from here. And why not? The possibilities for brand promotion, sales, awareness, etc. are limitless. However, blending it with your business model and figuring out the perfect recipe that works for you can be a little bit tricky.
And that’s where WP Social Ninja comes in. It will single-handedly do the work of three WordPress social media plugins – collect and display user reviews straight ffrom your social media to your website, exhibit real-time social media easily using shortcodes, and also ensure instant communication with the help of social chat widgets.
And that’s hardly the tip of the iceberg. WP Social Ninja made it’s debut in September 2021 and it’s already a big hit amond WordPress users. Despite being fresh into the market, all the features and functionalities included in the package give even veteran social media plugins a run for their money. And it’s only just beginning.
- 3+ Social feeds template
- 9+ Social review platforms
- 14+ Social chat platforms
- 18+ Prebuilt templates
- In-depth filters
- Chat widget settings
- Detailed customizations
- Post and feed settings
- Searh engine accessible
- Auto-update with new posts
Data tables are an absolute must for a lot of sites like WooCommerce stores, online marketplaces, stock markets, sports sites, etc. Ninja Tables, a WordPress table plugin, provides easy table creation and customization for all of these sites, without any coding.
Moreover, data tables frequently take ages to load. But that is one less thing you have to worry about with Ninja Tables. The fast and dynamic tables don’t slow down your site either. This is a crucial feature among all essential WordPress plugins. The SEO-friendly table maker comes with the most advanced frontend table styles, unlimited table colors, and customization.
Besides, you can create and manage tables easily from the admin panel by choosing from 100+ table styles. You can also add pagination and sort and filter the tables as you wish. Some key features of Ninja Tables, the best WordPress table plugin, are listed below:
- CSS libraries
- Hover rows
- Table inverse
- RTL support
- Stackable table
- Bootstrap table styles
- Live connect with Google Sheets
- WP Posts/custom post type integration
- Conditional column formatting
- FrontEnd table export
- Custom SQL table and SQL query
If you are having trouble managing support tickets for your business, then this helpdesk tool is perfect for you. Once you use Fluent Support, you will forget all your ticket management troubles in a jiffy.
Fluent Support really does provide what it cames. With this, you get the three F’s that make customer service efficient – fast responses, fun workflows, and fluent integrations.
But is Fluent Support the right tool for you? Well you run online shops, digital agencies, or provide any sort of service, then yes, you can be benefitted greatly from it. But don’t simply take our word. Check out these super cool Fluent Support features and see it for yourself
- Unlimited support agents
- Unlimited tickets
- Reply via Slack and Telegram
- Create a ticket with an email
- Guest ticket without login
- Bulk ticket reply
- On-the-go response
- Priority management
- See activity logs
- Performance report
- Internal notes
Even if your WordPress website is a day old, you should already hear about website builder Elementor. Here, you won’t face any restrictions in terms of design, so you have creative freedom over your site. Moreover, Elementor also delivers sophisticated page design and complex capabilities.
Elementor comes with an intuitive drag and drop editor that makes website creation an effortless process. The interface is straightforward and fun to work with. And the unique features include amazing overlays, hover effects, animations, box shadows, etc.
Furthermore, with Elementor, you don’t have to work on the backend and keep wondering or hitting the preview button to find out what the frontend looks like. Now you can make live designs and instantly see on the page the changes you have made. Some highlights of Elementor include:
- 300+ blocks
- 100+ full page WordPress templates
- 40+ free widgets
- Responsive live editing
- Motion effects
- Custom CSS
- WooCommerce builder
- Global widgets
BookingPress is an essential WordPress plugin for appointment booking that comes highly recommended! It’s so powerful yet user-friendly that even non-coders can manage it with ease. This means that any service-based business can take advantage of its awesomeness and simplify its appointment booking process on its website.
The best part? BookingPress automates the booking process for you, making it a perfect appointment booking plugin for a wide variety of businesses, such as doctors, salons, spas, tutors, consultants, wedding planners, gym and yoga studios, dealers, and restaurants. Its flexible online booking capabilities allow you to accept bookings online without any fuss easily.
There is also a free version of BookingPress available on the WordPress.org platform. But, it is recommended to use the premium version of BookingPress in order to fully unlock its capabilities and enjoy its full range of features.
Some notable premium features of the BookingPress Plugin are:
- 33+ Premium add-ons for free to use
- Integration with 15+ online payment gateways
- Award-winning responsive design
- Fully customizable design
- Advanced reports and analysis
- WhatsApp, E-mail & SMS notifications
- Invoicing feature with PDF support
- Calendar integrations (Google & Outlook)
- Advanced staff dashboard
- Custom booking fields with conditional hide/show options
- Customizable booking forms and customer panel
- Cart facility for multi-booking
- 24/7 customer support
Ultimate Addons for Gutenberg (UAG)
The Gutenberg block editor has brought in a whole new and modular approach to creating websites. Using the block editor, you can add a block for just about any element on your page. From headings and texts to images and videos, you are just a block away from creating some stunning web pages. You’d agree that it’s a significant jump from the old classic WordPress editor.
But, what if you could add some advanced and powerful blocks to the existing list? Blocks such as star ratings, Lottie animations, review schema, WP Search, and much more. And the best bit is that you can have these 30 awesome blocks for free when you install the Ultimate Addons for Gutenberg.
Ultimate Addons for Gutenberg (UAG) has been built by Brainstorm Force, the team that’s behind the very popular Astra theme. UAG offers you several creative blocks using which you can build and design pages and posts without a single line of code.
In addition to the Gutenberg blocks, you also get your hands on some professionally designed website templates that’s built using Gutenberg and the Astra theme. Simply import a template of your choice, tweak it to suit your needs and launch your website in minutes!
Some of the features include:
- Easy to install and use
- 100% responsive and mobile-friendly
- 30 powerful Gutenberg blocks
- Easily customizable without writing a single line of code
- 20+ professionally designed website templates
- Full-width support for Gutenberg blocks
When you go live with your website, one thing you need to be prepared for is comment spams, lots and lots of comment spam. Whether it’s a person trying to market their brand, or a bot messaging you with absurd content, comment spams are an indispensable part of the digital experience.
There are WordPress solutions for this. One such solution is Antispam Bee. It is an entirely free plugin that you can use on as many sites as you want. It blocks trackbacks and spam comments without the use of captchas which makes it one of the most essential WordPress plugins.
Moreover, your personal data is also safe with Antispam Bee as it is absolutely GDPR compliant. You can also block or approve comments geographically. Antispam Bee further validates Gravatars of commenters. Elaborate feature list consists of:
- Language-specific comment approval/rejection
- Country-specific comment approval/rejection
- IP address validation
- Comment time consideration
- BBCodes are spams
- Search local spam database
- Auto delete existing spams after a certain time
- Limit comments/pings
- Optional exclusion
Wordfence Security – Firewall & Malware Scan
Firewall and security measures are a must if you are running a WordPress site. To safeguard your site against cyberthreats, download and install Wordfence Security – Firewall & Malware Scan.
This WordPress security plugin is armed with the newest firewall rules, malware signatures, and even ill-natured IP addresses. It is essentially divided into some segments like – WordPress firewall, WordPress security scanner, Login security, Wordfence central, and Security tools.
All these segments work comprehensively to ensure your site’s cybersecurity ranging from real-time firewall rules to live traffics to two-factor authentication (2FA). Some of the key features of the WordPress security plugin include:
- Malicious traffic block
- Real-time IP blocklist
- Endpoint site protection
- Does not break encryption
- No data leakage
- Brute force protection
- Core files, themes, plugin check for defective URLs, backdoors, redirects, SEO spams
- File repair
- Assess security status
- Monitors hack attempts, monitor visits, etc.
A vital aspect of running a website includes monitoring the traffic. Tracking events, eCommerce reports, custom dimensions, form conversion, and affiliate links, etc., are of paramount importance as a lot depends on it.
The ExactMetrics Google Analytics for WordPress (previously known as Google Analytics Dashboard WordPress) can help you in this regard. This WordPress plugin lets you keep up with the spikes, surges, and consistency in traffic and provides you with actionable insights, so you get detailed reports and make informed decisions.
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ExactMetrics operates in real-time and does not require you to log into the Google Analytics website. It is also GDPR compliant and also respects other privacy regulations like the CCPA. This is a crucial feature since you’ll essentially be dealing with people’s data.
Some key features include:
- Real-time stats
- Affiliate link tracking, ad tracking, file download tracking, author tracking, referral tracking
- Scroll depth tracking, popular post tracking, page-level tracking, custom events tracking
- Performance add-on, Google Optimize add-on
- Overview report, publisher report, search console report
- Customizable Google Analytics dashboard widget
- Email summaries, PDF exports
If you are thinking of eCommerce, you cannot do that without WooCommerce. It is by far the most popular WordPress eCommerce plugin. WooCommerce is free, flexible, and it is continually being contributed to by a global community.
And if you have doubts about the ownership of your data, you can rest assured. Since it is an open-source WordPress plugin, all the data and content of your site remain with you. It doesn’t matter whether your business is 100% online or a physical shop with a geographical location; WooCommerce is one of such essential WordPress plugins that everyone can be benefitted from.
Make impressive storefronts with awesome themes that play well with your business. WooCommerce blends your site’s contents perfectly with commerce, so you don’t have to worry about your reach. Some key features of WordPress eCommerce plugin WooCommerce are:
- Modular product blocks
- Bookings, memberships, subscriptions extensions
- Setup wizard
- 100+ payments gateways
- WooCommerce shipping
- Google Ads integration
- WooCommerce tax
- Facebook integration
- WooCommerce admin
- In-dashboard marketing hub
- Mobile app
- Hooks and filters
- Rest API
- WooCommerce GitHub Repository
Now that all is said and done, you need to manage content properly if you are to rank on search engines. And that calls for search engine optimization. Ahrefs SEO is a great lightweight WordPress plugin that will expertly guide you through all things SEO.
This plugin audits content, which helps you get a more significant share of organic traffic. You will be able to publish detailed content regularly that works well with both your target audience and the search engine.
Ahrefs is a big name among other SEO tools, and now a plugin has been molded out of it so WordPress users can reap its fruits. If you are already using an SEO plugin, don’t worry. Ahrefs compliments other SEO plugins eloquently. It is one of the most essential WordPress plugins and in summarizing the critical features of Ahrefs, we have:
- Backlink index
- Auto-update in every 15-30 minutes
- Google Analytics Integration
- Traffic and conversion data analysis
- Google search console integration
- Content audit
Essential WordPress plugins in a nutshell
Now that you have read about the top ten WordPress plugins you need for 2023, get right to it. The links to all the plugins’ free versions are provided, so you can go to the link and try some of the best free WordPress plugins out there.
While you are at it, learning a thing or two about user engagement strategies will also do well for your business.
All the tools listed above are fantastic in their own right. Check them out and if you have any questions about these essential WordPress plugins, feel free to ask us through our social media channels.
Mahiyath is a digital marketer for Fluent Forms. She likes to explore through the alleys of WordPress and learn about the themes and plugins, currently specializing in WordPress forms. When she’s not doing that, she’s planning her next adventure.