10 Must-Have WordPress Plugins in 2022 [Mostly FREE!]

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Last updated on July 20th, 2022

I assumed that you have already started your blog with WordPress. But wondering which essential WordPress plugins you should install on your blog or website? 

No problem. I’ve got you covered!

In this post, I’ll share my favorite & Must-Have WordPress plugins for installing on new websites.

But a quick note first:

“Must-have” plugins don’t really exist, it depends on your blogging needs. And this type of plugin is quite essential. So, I’ll tell you how each plugin on this list will help you, and provide alternatives that may fit your needs or budget. 

Without worry! Let’s get started:

What are WordPress Plugins?

The great thing about building a website with WordPress is its versatility of WordPress. You can build any type of blog or website hassle-free.  

WordPress Plugins are software or languages that contain additional features in WordPress sites. And It simplifies the process of adding features to the site without compiling a single line of code. 

A WordPress plugin can be as simple or as complex as you want them to be based on your needs. 

It comes in both free and paid, so, you can choose either free or premium versions. 

Of course paid version – include more features, which are restricted in the free version. But It depends on your requirements.

Also, it provides robust functionality that allows you to alter existing or add new functionality with your sites. 

When you build high-traffic blogs and lead-generating business websites with WordPress. A lot of plugins help you to set up your website the way you want. 

So what are these essential WordPress plugins, what are we really talking about?  

Let’s jump into the list…

10 Must Have WordPress Plugins Every Website Needs 2022

1) UpdraftPlus Backup

Must-Have WordPress Plugins

The free version of UpdraftPlus is a very popular plugin that allows you to create backups of your website. You can download these and then import them in case you ever need to restore them from an older version. 

Alternatively, if your site ever gets hacked or damaged, you can simply re-import one of your old backups and get things back up and running quickly. 

Of course, UpdraftPlus also has paid plans if you want extra options like daily backups, multiple storage locations, and more!

The best part is you can use the Updraftplus (free version) to take automatic daily backup of your website in cloud storage like Google Drive or one drive. 

So, you don’t need to manually download and upload the backup files. You can also use the BackupBuddy plugin instead of Updraft Plus.

Here, you will get a complete WordPress website backup including Database and all WP files, Schedule automatic backups, and quick and easy restoration features.  

So, if you are looking for a premium backup plugin for your website then the BackupBuddy is the best option for you. Which I’m currently using on Passive Blogger and It’s awesome. 

2) Yoast SEO Plugin

Must-Have WordPress Plugins

Yoast is the most used and Must-Have SEO WordPress Plugins. If you want to drive more traffic to your website, blog SEO is the best option.

While there are many free tools available, you may want to go with a premium WordPress plugin if you’re serious about getting more traffic. 

One such plugin is Yoast SEO. It makes it easy for even beginners to optimize their site for search engines and reach higher rankings on Google. 

This can translate into more clicks, more sales, and more exposure for your business. Here’s a closer look at what you get with Yoast SEO:

Yoast SEO plugin will help you manage your sitemaps, robots.txt, meta tags, schema markup, and redirection. 

It also helps you in finding Onpage SEO errors and suggests ideas to improve the content. 

With this tool, you can connect your WordPress site with Google Analytics and search console with a single click. It also helps you analyze how your website will visible in Google’s SERPs. 

Here are some important features of the Yoast SEO plugin:
  • Schema controls
  • FAQ block
  • Image alt attributes check
  • Orphaned content finder
  • Internal linking suggestions
  • Readability analysis
  • Redirect manager
  • Breadcrumbs
  • XML sitemap

3) Kadence Blocks

Must-Have WordPress Plugins

Kadence Blocks, from Kadence Themes. It is a popular WordPress plugin that allows you to customize your WordPress website without any coding. 

You can design custom Homepage, contact, and services pages easily. With this plugin, you can design pages with all functionality like contact forms, FAQ blocks, testimonials, Author bio, categories and post Grids, etc. 

Here, you will get a lot of pre-made templates to fast-track your design process.

Here are the key features of Kadence Blocks:
  • Row layout
  • Tabs
  • InfoBox
  • countdown timer
  • Table of contents
  • Advanced Gallery
  • Forms
  • Accordion 
  • Advanced Buttons
  • Icon lists

All these features are free to use in Kadence blocks which made it super easy to create a professional website using Gutenberg editor. 

You can also use some pro-add-ons like Image Overlay, video popup, Advanced Image sliders, Product carousel, Post Grid, portfolio grid, split content, etc. 

4) Shortpixel Image Optimizer

Must-Have WordPress Plugins

Shortpixel is another Must-Have WordPress plugins for blogs in order to boost website performance.

Do you know that you can significantly improve your blog loading speed by optimizing the images?  Images take around 70-80% of the total web page size. 

So, to make a website load faster and make it core web vitals friendly you should use an Image optimization plugin in your WordPress website. 

So, you don’t need to manually compress the image and you can save some time on it. 

Shortpixel plugin will help you automatically reduce image sizes, without damaging quality. By converting your high-resolution photos into smaller JPEG or PNG images while maintaining visual integrity. 

It supports lossy, Glossy, and lossless image compression. It automatically handles any high-resolution images uploaded to your website and also optimizes pdf files.  

Shortpixel also helps you sever the image in web format even if you have uploaded it in Jpeg or PNG format. So, it greatly reduces the image size without losing quality. 

You can also integrate Cloudflare with the Shortpixel plugin or connect any image CDN with it. so, it is a must-have image optimization plugin in WordPress. 

5) WP Rocket

Must-Have WordPress Plugins

Wp Rocket is one of my favorite WordPress plugins. I think it is essential WordPress plugins for any type of website in terms of improving Website speed.

It helps load your website faster and increases conversion rates. The reason for that is simple: Google really likes fast-loading websites. 

The use of WordPress can make websites a bit slower than those run on static HTML due to its large number of small elements that all need to be loaded individually from a remote server, causing a delay in page load times.

As the core web vitals is now a ranking factor, it is important to load the website as fast as possible. You can achieve this using the Wp-rocket plugin. 

It helps you Lazyload images, defer javascript, and Minimize the web page size with Code minification. 

Here are the key features of the WP Rocket Plugin. 
  • Browser Caching
  • Cache Preloading
  • GZIP Compression
  • Database Optimization
  • lazyload images and videos
  • Defer Javascript
  • Delay Javascript
  • HTML, CSS & JS minification

There are some free & Paid alternatives of WP-rocket plugins available like Litespeed cache, W3Total Cache, NitroPack, etc.

6) Itheme security

Must-Have WordPress Plugins

Protecting your website with a security plugin is essential, especially if you’re running an e-commerce site or collecting user data. 

With over 50 million downloads, iThemes Security (known as Better WP Security prior to 2017). 

It is one of the most popular free WordPress security plugins available, and it also comes with a premium version. 

In addition to its built-in firewall capabilities and role-based access control systems. It allows you to schedule automated scans and keep an eye on traffic statistics. 

Its emergency function also lets you quickly disable plugins, terminate web sessions, or restrict IP addresses if needed. 

All in all, iThemes Security is a great option for beginners and experts alike—especially if you’re looking for a premium plugin with no additional costs. You can also consider Wordfence security as an alternative security plugin. 

7) Akismet Anti-Spam

Must-Have WordPress Plugins

Whether you’re trying to clean up your comments on a small business website or reduce comment spam on your big company’s site, Akismet is an essential plugin. 

It’s effective and easy to use, protecting over 2 million blogs. You can customize its features by setting a few options and then letting it go to work.

Akismet is free to use but requires registration to activate. Also, remember that you’ll need an API key from Akismet to make it work, which is another extra step. 

Still, many find it well worth these minor inconveniences for a higher quality comment section and safer website.

8) Header Footer code Manager

Must-Have WordPress Plugins

This Header Footer code Manager plugin lets you customize your website’s header and footer codes with a few clicks. 

It makes changes to your website without editing a single line of code or file so that you do not need to go through any tedious coding process. 

It is designed to be easy to use for both novice and professional users. Novice users can use it to design their websites, while expert users can use it for development purposes. 

The plug-in also comes with a quick view feature which lets you see your changes immediately after making them. 

It updates as soon as you save your changes, even if you are working on a live site. No need to worry about downtime due to header or footer code modifications!

It also helps you load the code on particular pages or devices which is super helpful to maintain the site speed. 

So, you don’t need to modify your original theme code files which may cause problems sometimes. 

9) Pretty Links

The Pretty link is the Must-Have WordPress Plugins for the affiliate marketer. This plugin gives you clean, customizable URLs that are also easy to share.

And as long as you don’t mess with its code, it’s virtually unbreakable. (Though I think we all have our limits!) 

If your audience or clients see pretty links instead of ones that look like a jumble of letters and numbers. 

They will be more likely to click them, improving your website’s performance in search engines. Plus, pretty links make sharing easier too!

So, if you are running an affiliate website and don’t want to show the ugly affiliate links to the users then you can consider the pretty link plugin. 

So, it helps you shorten the long links and manage affiliate links for easy use in the future. 

10) Ad Inserter

Must-Have WordPress Plugins

Ad Inserter is the last Must-Have WordPress Plugins on our list. Using Ad Inserter, you can add ad spaces to your site quickly and easily.

There are many layout options to choose from, so your ad space will look exactly as you want it. Best of all, it’s completely free! 

You don’t need any coding skills or design experience to use Ad Inserter—it couldn’t be easier. This plugin works with Google Ads and other popular pay-per-click networks on the web. 

If you have a website that doesn’t make much money (or any at all), pay-per-click advertising is a great way to start earning some cash fast. It gives you a lot of customization options for placing ads on the website. 

With this plugin, you can display ads to specific pages, and devices and even control how it loads on the front end. 

Conclusion

So, these are the 10 Must-have WordPress plugins that every new blogger should use on their website. 

The plugins discussed above are highly customizable and super helpful to make things easier. I personally use these plugins on all of my WordPress websites. 

Which among the plugin do you like the most and why, let us know in the comment section.

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Hey, It’s me behind Passive Blogger.  Fd Shakil is a Blogger & Freelance writer with a passion for side hustling, passive income, and the gig economy. Passive Blogger is all about providing people with honest ways to make money by using the internet.

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