You Asked… Plugins I Use (Part 1)

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I’ve had a lot of questions lately on which plugins I use on my blog so I thought it’d be fun to do a plugin post and share everything I currently have activated.  Let me know which ones you’re using, too, which ones you’re going to add, and if you’ve got suggestions on what else I should consider I’d love to hear your thoughts!

My plugins change regularly, so this is just what’s active today.  :)

Akismet: Eats spam.  I don’t recommend blogging without it!  My blog gets 200+ spam comments a day but with this plugin active 99% of them go straight to spam and it rarely catches a good comment accidentally.

All in One SEO Pack: Lets you add custom titles, descriptions and keywords to your pages and posts.  Helpful if you want more control over your search engine optimization.

aMember: I use aMember Pro to deliver digital products so I’ve got their WordPress plugin installed to connect WordPress and aMember.

Audio Player: Makes it easy to link to an mp3 file with a nice flash player.  Not sure I’m actually using this one at the moment but in the past I’ve used it to add easy playback for teleseminars.  (Thank you Rebekah Jones for introducing me to this one.)

AWeber Footer SlideUp: Should I share this secret?  I wanted a slideup footer to offer a subscription to my newsletter so I did some searching and found this.  It’s also available in other versions for other autoresponder systems.  And with some hacking you can make it work with any system.  I’ve setup it for Aweber on my blog (see the bottom of the window).

Broken Link Checker: Discovered this one during the 31 Days Blog Challenge and it’s fabulous!  It checks all your links and helps you fix them easily.

CommentLuv: This plugin is the only reason I haven’t switched to the Disqus comment system.  It lets each commenter add a link with their comment to a recent post on their own blog.  I love it!  I hope they find a way to integrate it with Disqus.  Eventually I’ll probably switch to Disqus either way (see notes above about comment spam) but this plugin rocks.

Contact Form 7: Makes it easy to add a contact form to your WordPress blog.  I’ve tried at least half a dozen different plugins for creating contact forms and this is my favorite.

Do Follow: Removes the “nofollow” from links to commenters.  This one is controversial, I suppose, but I like it.  My two cents is here.

Estimated Reading Time: This adds the “estimated reading time: 5-6 minutes” to the top of my posts.

fbLikeButton: Another one of my favorites, this plugin is what adds that “like” button and displays who’s liked a particular post.

FD Feedburner Plugin:  If you use Feedburner to offer email subscriptions to your blog, this plugin will redirect your feeds to FeedBurner for you.

Follow Me: Click that “Follow Me” image on the right side of this post to see what this plugin does.  Makes it easy to put all my social networking profile links in one spot.

GoCodes: GoCodes rocks.  I wrote a post about link shorteners including GoCodes.  Highly recommended if you do any affiliate marketing.

There’s part one of the plugins I use.  Yeah I have a lot of plugins activated.  And in part two I’ll tell you which caching plugin I use along with a bunch more.

If I had to choose a favorite from this list… It’d be GoCodes, fbLikeButton or CommentLuv.  Which plugins are you using?  Any from this list you love (or hate)?

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  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Michelle Shaeffer, Gypsy ~ Kimberly. Gypsy ~ Kimberly said: RT @SmallBizMuse: Blog: You Asked… Plugins I Use (Part 1) […]

  2. Michelle:
    Excellent, helpful post!

    I am a bit of a plugin junkie, I suppose. One of my favorites is Simple Pull Quote — ( Some themes don’t give enough emphasis to pull quotes, so I have found that this little plugin solves the problem beautifully.
    Traci Hayner Vanover recently posted… Boomers Use Their Experience &amp Resources as EntrepreneursMy Profile

    1. Ooooh, nice plugin! Thanks, Traci.

  3. Hi, my name is Jim and I’m a plug-inaholic LOL

    if you do any affiliate marketing, this one is pretty cool…

    Mtn Jim
    mtnjim Fisher recently posted… Three Common Tasks You Can OutsourceMy Profile

    1. Thanks, Jim! And that’s okay, I don’t think we need a 12-step program for plugins (yet).

  4. Wow, Not sure I’d ever use all of them. I don’t do WordPress so can’t use akismet but I monitor my comments. I added a Tweetthis button and BlogLovin link. Via blogger I have a FB this and Tweet this as well on the side bar. I have an email feedburner subscribe on the sidebar as well.

    Haven’t looked into adding plugins to blogger (not as easy as wordpress because they just give you a list and you put it into your blog ) I am still not a wordpress fan – I get used to something and then stick with it.

    I do like your footer pop up.

    1. Blogger has some nice features, too, I’m just not familiar enough with them to recommend any. Appreciate the comments as I’m sure others on Blogger will find that helpful! :)

  5. Thanks Michelle this is great, I discovered a couple of new ones I don’t use- looking forward to part 2
    Suzie Cheel recently posted… Monday Inspiration- Revolution of The HeartMy Profile

    1. Just posted it. Thanks, Suzie!

  6. OOOooo! Thank you Michelle! I always enjoy reading what other plugins people are using. Comment Luv is my only regret in going with Disqus. :( But I really will need to add the estimated reading time to my blogs!

    Thank you,
    MJ Schrader
    MJ Schrader recently posted… What Can I Do to Eliminate Limiting BeliefsMy Profile

    1. Yeah, I know it’s just a matter of time before I give in and switch to disqus but I love comment luv… I don’t want to let it go.

      1. Did some searching and it looks like Comment Luv won’t be coming to Disqus (bottom of the comments):

        I’ll probably switch soon then. I was hoping if I held out it’d be available eventually but I really want the social networking integration of Disqus.

  7. This is a great post! I also love plug-ins… These are the ones I’m curently using for All In One SEO Pack, cbnet Ping Optimizer, Efficient Related Posts,, OnlyWire for WordPress, TweetMeme Retweet Button,WP OnlyWire Auto Poster, Statpress, LinkToThisPage, hitcounter, Google XML Sitemaps,Follow Me, Favicons, Fast Secure Contact Form, April’s Facebook Like Button, and Akismet. Wow, I have a lot!! :)
    Janis Bennett recently posted… Freebie Alert – Win A Copy Of The Practical Freelance Writer’s Guide to Author WebsitesMy Profile

    1. Thanks for sharing these, Janis – I’m going to have fun exploring your list.

  8. Hi Michelle, again!
    What is that keyword ball thing you have in the section “What I’m Blogging About”? I’d love to use that on my site instead of the usual list of tags at the bottom of my page.

    Janis Bennett recently posted… Freebie Alert – Win A Copy Of The Practical Freelance Writer’s Guide to Author WebsitesMy Profile

    1. That’s WP-Cumulus. Might also look at Fat Life’s tag cloud. Both are flash animations of the tags. Fun!

  9. Michelle,

    you shouldn’t use Akismet at all to fight spam – try Anti-Captcha, GrowMap’s Anti-Spambot or WP HashCash. Akismet has chosen a really poor way to fight SPAM by categorization (telling you as a developer of categorization systems).

    Disqus sucks. Badly. Even if I have something interesting to say – I’ll never bother to use Disqus.
    Slava recently posted… Blog posts droughtMy Profile

    1. I’ve found Akismet to work really well for me, but I haven’t compared it to other options so I’ll check those out. Thanks!

      Is it the login required that you don’t care for with Disqus? That annoyed me at first but it’s got some great social network integration that seems like it’d be nice to have. Do you prefer the built-in WordPress commenting or a different plugin (Intense Debate or something else)? I’m definitely interested in perspectives on that one – I don’t want to make it more difficult for commenters. :)

      1. I, too, have no issues with Akismet. I have just installed Intense Debate as well — and between the 2 plugins, lets just say my “weeding” through the comments has been tremendously lessened. LOL and I just like looking at the little Akismet box that tells me how much spam was caught ;)

        PS … thank you thank you for your list of what you use. I am working on building some wordpress sites for others and it is nice to have a variety of plug in ideas to share with them to add. course, I’ve learned this past week that it is NOT wise to work in a subcontracting field in this industry. I really would rather work straight with the client. Makes my life a whole lot easier ;)
        Kimberly recently posted… I met Jeanette Brooks!My Profile

  10. Just wondering if you noticed a performance hit in adding those plugins?
    Mark recently posted… CouponPress Review – Coupon Theme for WordPressMy Profile

    1. Yes, definitely saw speed issues especially with anything pulling in external scripts, so not all of the plugins but some. I got rid of as much as I could that was pulling from other servers and installed W3 Total Cache and it helped tremendously.

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