The two main add ons for WordPress are themes and plugins…
Themes change the look or design of your website.
Plugins add extra functionality to your site
For instance, to add a contact form to your website you would use a plugin. Or to add an e-commerce shop to your site you could use a plugin.
You can use WordPress as a stand alone product. You don’t have to install any other add ons or plugins if you don’t want to.
Because this set of tutorials is designed to help new users get their very first WordPress website, we’re not going to install any plugins.
All I’m going to do is tell you about some of the more popular plugins. There are over 30,000 individual plugins so it wouldn’t be feasible to explain each one in detail.
I would encourage you to view some of the plugins listed below and see if you think any would be useful to you. If they are you could read the instructions provided, then install and experiment with them.
How to find plugins. In the WordPress Dashboard go to Plugins Add New.
Where do you get plugins from?
The WordPress Plugin Directory is the safest place to find plugins. Just browse through the directory and see if you can find something useful.
This is a very short list of some of the most popular WordPress plugins…
- WordPress SEO
- Contact Form7
- W3 Total Cache
- Tiny MCE
- Meta Slider
- Next GEN Gallery
Jetpack is a bumper bundle of plugins made by WordPress. Jetpack has something for almost everyone.
A word of warning…
It’s easy to install plugins that you don’t really need. My advice would be only install a plugin if you just can’t live without it.
Concentrate on providing good quality content and appealing images. Avoid bells and whistles. Clean and simple is often the best way to go.