21 Most important Wordpress plugins in 2021

Aditi Chakraborty
7 min readOct 15, 2021

If you are starting your website building journey and exploring wordpress you would definitely have heard of WordPress. So coming to the next question, what are plugins?

Plugins are the building blocks of WordPress. It is a piece of software containing a function or group of functions that can be added to your wordpress website. It can enhance the functionality or aesthetic of a WordPress site. Plugins will help you optimize your site for search engines, protect it against spam, and improve the user experience.

But shouldn’t a website be doing all of this? After all, what have I paid for? Hosting, domain, SSL etc. Is this paid?

You are absolutely right, getting a website up for the first time can be overwhelming when you don’t know how to get a blog/website running as you want to. Don’t worry, it’s not that difficult. Let me explain it to you using an analogy.

Buying the domain name is like building your house or identity. That is where people will come to visit you.

Hosting is where your domain name will reside. So your house (domain) could be based out of India, Europe, any other country where the server is present.

So these are the 2 main things you need to pay for. Now coming to plugins. They are like apps for your phones and they work on a freemium model usually. Most of the important apps that you need for performance or aesthetics are usually free so it won’t burn a hole in your pocket. For advanced plugins, there are paid models which you choose once your website/blog starts growing.

Let’s now talk about the 21 most important wordpress plugins your website must have in 2021 to ensure sustainable performance.

  1. Akismet — We all hate spam, being flooded with random comments or messages on our feeds. Here comes Akismet that reads and filters out spam and bots so that you don’t have to.

Pricing: Like always you have a free version for a Person blog that is not monetized. When your site starts getting bigger you have price plans from 8$ — 250$

2. Jetpack — Jetpack is a multi-solution plugin with 3 key areas of expertise — Security, Performance and CRM tools. You have access to features like Backing up your wordpress website, avoiding spam, site search, boost using SEO and of course a CRM for your business

Pricing: Starts from 250 Rs per month for backup to Rs 3.7K INR for all the plans combined.

3. Yoast — If you are looking to grow your blog, you are most likely looking for tools that will help you build your SEO backbone. Understanding keywords, help with metatags, URL, slug and much more. Also you can understand what is the readability for your blog and where you need to add more keywords.

Pricing: 89$ for an year

4. Squirrly — Another plugin that is SEO focused. But why am I suggesting 2 plugins of the same genre. Squirrly has research tools inbuilt where you can search for relevant ideas, keywords while on the WordPress editor itself. It has the blogging assistant which makes crafting your blog much simpler. Combined with Yoast it works like a charm in lifting your website off the ground.

5. Google Site Kit — While a lot of analytics plugins help you with understanding website analytics, there’s nothing quite like Google Site Kite — It helps you connect to Google analytics, Google Tag manager, Google search console. With Tag manager, you can add measurement codes to your website, with Search console you can check your site’s presence in Google search results. Get insights about how people find and use your site, how to improve, and monetize your content, directly in your WordPress dashboard.

Pricing: Completely free

6. Smush — Optimize images, resize, compress & improve your Google Page Speed with the incredibly powerful WordPress image size condenser tool. Npw choose the most unique photos and

Pricing: Starting from 5 dollars per month to 15.83 dollars per month for all the WPMUDev plugins.

7. Elementor — Remember when people used to say WordPress is really difficult to design with in spite of its amazing features. Well that time is far behind, now. With it’s clean and simple UI along with drag and drop features and advanced level capabilities for building web pages, landing pages etc

Pricing: Elementor starts from 49 dollars per year for a single website to 999 dollars per year for 1,000 websites

8. iThemes Security — iThemes security takes the guesswork out of your website security so that you can be prepared for all malicious attacks on your website. From your content to secure details, everything is at stake.

Pricing: Starts at 80$ per year for a single website to 199 $ per year for unlimited websites.

9. Updraft plus — In case, something does happen to your website — hacking, site crashes, a new update doesn’t work. This is why you need Updraft plus to backup your site regularly.

Pricing: Starts at 70$ per year and then becomes 42$ per year from the next year onwards.

10. Woocommerce — another Industry leading plugin for building your ecommerce website. Build a high functioning Ecommerce store with this plugin. It also helps you create the pages and store data in the backend in a database too.

Pricing: Free

11. Yet another related posts Plugin (YARPP) for bloggers — Would you like people to stay on your site for longer, discover and read more of your content? Well the solution is YARPP. This plugin, when added to your website, will show relevant posts/categories of posts that might interest your reader or even trending content on your website.

Pricing: Free to start with

12. Broken link checker — Very important plugin to keep a check on broken links, deleted pages etc. This hampers your SEO rating and negatively impacts your Search ranking. This plugin goes through and checks all the pages and reports if there are broken links in any. This is another plugin by WPMUDev

Pricing: free for now

13. Learn Dash — For all our teachers, educators, course creators this is an essential plugin. Whether you want to build up your course (and add payment gateways) or create a membership plan for students, clients.

Pricing: starts from 159$ and goes up to 329$ for the entire year. This can be for multiple sites, more storage space etc.

14. Redirection — Redirection is a popular redirect manager for WordPress. With it you can easily manage 301 redirects, keep track of 404 errors,tie up any loose ends your site may have. This can help reduce errors and improve your site ranking.

Pricing: Free as of now

15. Seedprod — Seedprod is a plugin exclusively for building Landing Pages. You can create a highly converting product/services sales page using this plugin. It comes with templates and reference that help you take reference from already existing

Pricing: 39.5 $ dollars per year for one 1 site to 239.6 $ for unlimited pages with various added functionalities.

16. Better click to tweet — This is a great way to understand your true fans. When you are a content creator and creating valuable pieces of content, you can measure one success metric as people sharing your content.

Pricing: Free but other features/ add-ons available at various charges starting 29$ per month

17. Instagram feed — One of my personal favourites. Like the content you create for blogs, you can repurpose it for Instagram/social media — same way you can put the social content across your website, blogs as per relevance. This creates a beautiful harmony between your website and

Pricing: You do have a free version, and the paid one goes from 49$ to 299$ per year.

18. Insert Headers and Footers — A plugin created by WP beginner, you can use this to grow your blog, business or website in multiple ways. You can add Google analytics or Facebook pixel codes to check the website growth or you can add codes or plugins to nudge people to share their email addresses with you.

Pricing: Free as of now

19. WordPress importer — WordPress importer can be used for everything from migrating content from a legacy CMS to WordPress to pulling data fro an ecommerce store to displaying live stock quotes or sports scores.

Pricing: Free as of now

20. W3 Cache — W3 Total Cache (W3TC) improves the SEO and user experience of your site by increasing website performance and reducing load times by leveraging features like content delivery network (CDN) integration and the latest best practices.

Pricing: Free as of now

21. Google XML sitemaps — Imagine a place where you keep working continuously but nobody can see it or acknowledge it. Well this is the same case with a blog if you haven’t submitted it to Google for crawling. Google won’t know what’s there on your website and as a result not be able to show your content. This is why you need to update and send sitemaps of your website to Google regularly.

Pricing: free to start with, can add different plans once website reaches 500 pages and more you can upgrade.

Originally published at https://marketingandgrowthacademy.com on October 15, 2021.

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Aditi Chakraborty

A freelance Web designer. I help people start profitable side-hustles by offering key marketing skills — Social media management, web design, copywriting & more