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Mel K
LInux Guru and Technical Writer

Top Free WordPress Plugins to use in 2018

In this guide, we’re going to be covering the Top free WordPress plugins to use in 2018 that I think everyone should know about.

Insert Headers & Footers

insert header and footerThis plugin once installed allows us to quickly and easily add different tracking codes to our WordPress site without ever having to edit our theme files. These tracking codes are used for linking things like Google Analytics and Google AdSense to our site.

Lazy load

lazy loadSo normally when we visit a page on a website, all of the images on that page are loaded up at the same time. This can sometimes have a very negative effect on the pages loading times, especially if it’s a page with a lot of images on it. But when we install the lazy load plugin, it changes it so that only the images that will be visible load up at first, then as we scroll down the page, the other images will load up as they’re needed. Another great thing about these plugins is that it needs absolutely no set up at all, we literally just install and activate the plugin, and all of our images will be lazy from now on. So there is no reason for you not to have this plugin installed. It is free, it has no setup, and can dramatically decrease your sites loading times.

WP Smush

The WP Smush plugin gives us the ability to compress the file size of any images we have on our site without affecting the quality of the images themselves. Compressing the images on our site can really help with our sites overall loading times, and even more so when used along with the lazy load plugin that we just covered. This is definitely a must-have plugin for all WordPress users and I would recommend installing it on your site as soon as you get the chance.

Link Checker

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Using the link checker plugin, we can check all the links on our site to make sure they’re working properly, and if any of them are broken, the plugin will let us know. This is especially handy when we publish a new piece of content, or before launching a brand new site for the first time.  Not only is it good practice to check that the links are working for user experience, but also too many broken links can negatively affect how our site performs in the search results.

Contact form 7

We can use the contact form 7 plugin to add custom forms to our different pages, posts, and widgets area on our WordPress site. It is also currently active on more than 1 million WordPress sites at the time of writing this article.


backwpupAs the name suggests, this plugin allows us to backup our WordPress site, making sure we don’t ever lose any of our hard work. There’s a whole heap of different options for where to save our Backups to, including having them sent to us by email, or saved to Dropbox.

Coming Soon CC

This plugin allows us to add a really nice looking coming soon or under construction page to our site within a couple of minutes. The best part about this plugin is it allows us to collect emails from people while we are working on our site, and we get sent an email every time someone subscribes.

Yoast SEO

The Yoast SEO plugin comes with a ton of different tools that will help us get our site ranking better in the search engines. These tools include things like an XML sitemap generator, a Google snippet preview, on-page SEO analysis, and a lot more. Now, there are far too many different parts to this plugin for me to cover here in this review, but once again a quick search on Google will bring back plenty of in-depth tutorials on setting it up.

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