Most Effective and Useful Blog Widgets and Plugins in 2020
These days blogs seam to make the internet go round. In fact, the numbers are staggering- 50 million and growing every day. Bloggers come in all shapes and sizes and from all walks of life. Whether you are keeping your clients abreast of the current real estate market or you are blogging about your pet, there are all kinds of effective and useful blog widgets and plugins that can make your blog more exciting and appealing.
Widgets are a simple, effective, and handy way to add a little flare and excitement to your blog. Since the number of widgets and plugins available is virtually endless make sure you don’t go overboard.
Popular Blog Sites
Before we start looking at the various widgets and plugins you can use on your blog, let’s look at some of the most popular blog hosts. Everyone knows about WordPress, the number one used blog site, but there are plenty of other options you should be aware of so let’s get started.
Danga Software Powered
Danga Interactic was the brainchild of Brad Fitzpatrick’s company that created Live Journal and the backend to drive that software. There have been a number of contributors to this software since its early inception. The following are three of the main sites that are Danga powered.
InsaneJournal offers both free and paid accounts, with additional enhancements. It is a simple online diary that is very customizable, built on open-source software. InsaneJournal lets you keep in touch with friends and family. Don’t let the fact that it’s free to fool you. This is an excellent tool and the community is very tight-knit and accepting of everyone young or old.
JounralFen is directed towards “fandoms” such as various TV shows or movies like Harry Potter. It is designed for those over 18 years of age and is considered a journaling service for fans of television, movie, and music, as well as other media entertainment forms.
- LiveJournal.com Live Journal is one of the most well known and well-used blog hosts offering its users multiple account types including paid and ad-supported. This vibrant virtual global community is a social media platform where passions can be shared. There are hundreds of communities. You can keep a journal, diary, or blog.
Themed Blog Sites
.Blogabond.com This is a blog site dedicated to travel blogs and it includes map integration. Here you’ll discover tons of travel journals and photo blogs from individual travelers of the world. There is also maps, research, and plenty of resources if you are planning some backpacking.
• BlogCheese.com A video blogging site that’s packed with all kinds of great blogs. Whether it’s a blog on new electronics, the internet, or playing golf you’re sure to find one of interest here. It’s also a great space to start your own blog and get a little practice in.
BusyThumbs.com This UK based blog site is designed for camera phone images and text messages. It offers free moblogs, which is a mobile phone weblog or online journal that you send via a text message. Registration is free. There are hundreds of blogs to choose from, and it ranks well in the search engines. You can upload from your phone to your blog in minutes and is an excellent choice if you want to be able to
• Trippert.com Create and share your blogs that are related to travel. This is a strong community with a strong following and a great place to start your travel blog no matter where you live or travel.
• Ufem.com This is a blog site for women. There are multiple themes and plugins to choose from, and if your blog topic focuses on women this is a great place to start. It’s a well-visited site thanks to the great content and the additional resources relating to topics of interest to women.
• WordCountJournal.com This is a new blogging format. On day one you’ll write one word, on the second day two words, on the third day three words, and on it goes. By the end of the year, you will have written more than 65,000 words.
WordPress is one of the more popular blog publishing companies with a focus on usability, web standards, and aesthetics. There are a number of sites that are powered by WordPress.
• Blogetery.com Is a little known WordPress platform used by more than 70000 blogs. There are more than 140 free customizable themes, brilliant plugins, free sub-domains, anti-spam, and plenty more features. There’s an opportunity to make money for your blog.
• Edublogs.org WordPress powered blogs for educators is a resource that continues to grow and attract new visitors. Whether you are a teacher or a student you can quickly customize and design your own blog to include photos, podcasts, and videos. It’s secure, safe, and easy to use.
• WordPress.com This site offers you free, easy to customize blogs. Everything including, backups, spam blockers, security, upgrades, and setup is taken care for you. However, you have to use one of their themes and you cannot use plugins. There are plenty of widgets you can add, and tags are easy to add. You are not allowed to sell anything unless you are an artist or author.
• WordPress.org This site requires more technical skills. It also has to be installed onto a server and upgraded by you anytime there are upgrades. You can sell things, postpaid ads, and include a shopping cart. The software is free but hosting might cost you a few dollars a month.
Other Blog Platforms
• Blog Free blog hosting and best of all unlimited bandwidth with even their free package.
• Blogger.com This is a great site to get a taste of blogging from Google. Easy to use with plenty of tools to help you share your pictures, posts, and videos. You can make your blog look fantastic on a mobile device, and you can even view it before going live.
BlogSpirit.com This is a European based blog site with a 30-day free trial and it offers a large amount of storage. BlogSpirit is a complete suite of blog products and services. In just minutes you can make a professional blog.
• Blogster.com Free image hosting with your free blogs. Blogster is a blogging community that features specific interest blogs, with a large community of users and visitors.
• Bloki.com Here you can build a blog site and open it up for partnership if you want. Bloke offers user-friendly features and enough basic tools to help you get your blog up and running. It also features the ability to create links between your pages, and best of all it’s free.
• Bravenet.com Free blog and website hosting, build your blog using the easy web tools provided. It’s never been easier to put together your own blog and reap the benefits of the volume of traffic that stops by the site to visit.
• Xanga.com This is a blogging community where you can start your very own blog for free, share videos, and photos, and make new friends. It ranks well within the Google search engine and offers you high traffic volume.
• Zoomshare.com Zoom share reaches a large audience made up of small business owners and individuals. With more than 1 million users it is continually growing and members have a wide range of interests. You can build and promote your website and Zoomshare. You can also create and grow your blog.
Windows Live Spaces This was once one of the most popular free blogging sites through your MSN account. It was then moved over to Live Space and when Live Spaces decided to stop services it was made easy for you to move your blog to WordPress. As of March 2011 Windows Live Spaces had been closed down, but deserved mentioning because so many people used it
10 Essential Blogger Plugins and Blogger Widgets
When it comes to blogger plugins and widgets there’s no question there are hundreds, but we’ve picked our top 10 essentials for some serious blogging. Let’s have a look and find out what each has to offer.
- Author Info Widget
Similar to WordPress author card info, which is displayed at the end of the post, Author Info Widget, will display the author biography at the end of each post for Blogger users. Author Info Widget shows you’re about me text, gravatar, social network, mail address, and contact links of your post author.
2.Google Buzz Share Count Button
These days Google Buzz is doing a lot of buzzing, and it can be seen in Mashable. You can opt for the same on your Blogspot/Blogger blogs. Add Goggle Buzz Share Count Button to your blog, which will count and allow you to buzz your blog.
This is a powerful free WordPress plugin. Every blog needs to have a social profile to get the users to stay updated with the blog updates. Most of the template comes with a subscribe widget on the sidebar and some don’t. If your template doesn’t have a subscription widget, you can make use of this.
- Recent Post With Thumbnails
One of the popular blogger widgets, created by Aneesh. Easy to customize, easy to integrate on your blogs, and the script is easy to install. The image thumbnails displayed for each related post are generated from the thumbnail associated with the relevant post page.
- Featured Content Slider
This elegant featured content slider from Bloggermint, is a must have plugin, which will smoothly show an unlimited number of posts. It is easy to integrate into blogger and compatible with all major browsers.
This is a unique blogger widget from Abu Farhan. This will show or hide your widget on your sidebar. A first of its kind for blogger makes it easier for the visitor to read and not show all long posts. The script will show only the first post, then hide the rest.
- Recent Post Sliding With Thumbnail and Simple Spy
This is another widget from Bloggertricks.com. Many would have seen simple spy in some design where the recent post fades in. This widget makes that possible with blogger blogs.
- Random Rotating Banner
One of the best money making widgets for your blog is this easy to customize a random rotating banner. You can even customize the number of ads to be rotated. You do have to do a couple of small template modifications for the banner to work.
- Twitter Follow Us Badge
Yet another blogger gadget that’s worth using. With one click, you’re able to add the floating Twitter follow our badge on your blog.
There are many more useful plugins and widgets available online but this is definitely a great place to start.
Best WordPress Widgets 2011
WordPress is like a gift from the search engine Gods. It is by far the most common blogging platform used. WordPress gives you an amazing opportunity to build a blog that ranks exceptionally well within the search engines, so if you haven’t yet setup your WordPress blog, now’s the right time to do that.
There are millions of WordPress blogs out there but only a handful get decent traffic. That’s because few bloggers understand anything about search engine optimization or traffic generation, both key to bringing visitors to your blog. If you are using your blog to generate some form of income, you can only be successful if you are able to bring targeted traffic to the site.
Adding WordPress widgets is the easiest way to include some interactive areas to your blog. Widgets allow you to customize your blog as much or as little as you like. A quick Google search, and you’ll quickly understand why you need a helping hand determining the best widgets to use in WordPress, which is exactly what we plan to do. Why not give your blog a little blogger power?
Don’t confuse WordPress widgets and WordPress plugins though. WordPress widgets and plugins are a bit different. Plugins are functions that do something to your blog. They may never be seen by your blog visitors only serving a back end purpose. However, a widget is generally the representation of a plugin in the form of an object that can be positioned anywhere on your website via the widgets interface in the appearance menu.
Widgets are always plugins, but plugins are not always widgets. A widget usually is an easy way of using a plugin. I hope this short explanation clears things up, for those who have just started using WordPress. You generally install WordPress plugins and then activate them. They usually help improve your blog’s functionality and the public never knows they are there. On the other hand, you can share widgets with your visitors, in the sidebar or the footer.
It’s a good idea to limit the number of widgets and plugins you incorporate in your blog. While there are thousands to choose from the reality is that too many can be overwhelming. Take time to decide what’s most important to you and then include widgets and plugins to support that.
There are a handful of mandatory plugins that you must install, then there are also paid plugins that can be of great value. We’ve accumulated a list of those widgets and plugins we think deserve looking at.
- All In One SEO Pack
You need to have this plugin! The All In One SEO Pack really is the ultimate in plugins. Features include:
• Automatically optimizes your titles for search engines.
• Provides SEO Integration for WP e-Commerce sites.
• Fine-tune Page Navigational Links.
• Advanced Canonical URLs.
• Built-in API, which allows other plugins/themes to access and extend functionality.
• Supports Custom Post Types Nonce Security.
• Avoids duplicate content typically found on WordPress blogs.
• Supports CMS-style WordPress installations.
• Automatically Generates META tags.
• Works right out-of-the-box. All you need to do is install. Great for beginners.
• For advanced users, everything can be fine-tuned.
• Backward-Compatibility with many other plugins, like Ultimate Tag Warrior or Auto Meta.
It’s also one of the most famous WordPress plugins and best of all it’s free!
- Google XML Sitemaps
The Google XML sitemap is pretty neat. In under, a minute can build your website an XML sitemap, which will help search engines like Google, Yahoo, Ask, or Bing to better index your blog. This sitemap makes it easier for the crawlers to see the complete structure of your site and retrieve it more efficiently. It will also ping the search engines each time you post new content. It’s a must-have plugin.
- WP Super Cache
This plugin is high up on my list for one reason, because it makes your site load much faster! What it does is store a static html version of your site making it use way less CPU so it will load much faster for the site visitor. It can be an enormous help to your overall site’s success. (people hate waiting for pages to load) 99% of all site visitors will be served by static html files. Static files are served to:
• Users who are not logged in.
• Users who have not left a comment on your blog.
• Or users who have not viewed a password protected post
- My Most Popular Posts.
This widgets is fantastic and so useful for you and your visitors. It helps you and your visitors navigate to the most viewed posts.
- SEO Smart Links
SEO Smart Links is not only cool it works great and is a highly effective SEO WordPress plugin. It will help you with on page SEO like most WP SEO plugins, automatically linking keywords to other pages on your site. All of this works to build a stronger page rank throughout your entire site. You can enter a custom set of keywords and URL’s.
- My Random Posts
Random posts will display all of your posts randomly in my sidebar. Your visitors just might find a post they find interesting without a visit to the sitemap page.
- SEO Friendly Images
Images are a well-kept secret. Most bloggers are unaware that images can be a huge source of traffic. This cool plugin helps you optimize your images so they rank well in the Google Image search.
- My Recent Post Widgets.
By default, it is installed with WordPress. It displays what you have written recently, so your visitors can quickly see the most updated posts.
- Top Bookmarks
Here is another very useful plugin. Before each post, it will display a bookmarking tab that lets readers share your content on social network/bookmarking sites like Facebook, Twitter, StumbleUpon, and Digg.
- Fast Secure Contact Form
This is a very useful plugin that lets you create contact forms anywhere on your blog. It is an easy way to collect a large number of contacts.
- My Categories
This built in widget allows you to show as many categories as you want. It also displays the most popular category.
- Category RSS
The RSS widget lets you provide links that allow your visitors to subscribe to your blog posts for any category they find interesting.
- LJ Longtail SEO
While it’s weird name might have you overlook this plug in it’s actually very useful because it tracks all incoming visitors and the keywords they used to find your blog. It then takes that information collected and places a link in your sidebar using the keyword as anchor text linking to the post or page the visitor came to.
This is another built in widget that displays archives to your visitors showing what you’ve posted to your blog so far.
- Search widget.
Some themes have the search box while others don’t. If your theme doesn’t have the search you can activate this widget box. It’s very helpful for visitors who want to find a specific post.
- WP DB Backup
The WP DB Backup is more than capable of running your site’s backups, which are essential in case of a server crash that leaves you with your posts all gone.
This plugin encourages visitors to leave comments by offering links to their last posts. Once installed, when a visitor posts a comment, they will get a link back to their last blog post. It’s simple to install and use, yet so very powerful.
As a member of The ComLuv Network, when you can register your site URL you receive 10x the Luv when you comment on enabled blogs. If you begin a blog here, you can even add your twitter and Digg accounts to your returned posts or add up to 5 more blogs.
- SEO Pressor
SEO Pressor is one of those famous SEO plugins, used by thousands. It works by telling you exactly how to optimize your posts for search engine domination. Now that’s handy! SEO Pressor will score you out of 100 for your on-page optimization for the keyword you input, and it will also provide you with a checklist of things to “optimize”.
- Pingback Optimizer
This great little plugin really helps, especially if you are an article marketer. It collects all of your blog’s pingbacks, then it uses them to create RSS feeds, and submits them to the top RSS aggregators. Pingbacks are backlinks, so when other blogs link to yours, you want them indexed, and it does a great job of this and it leads to increases traffic.
20.WP Silo SEO
This great little plugin is for SEO and internet marketers who understand LSI. You will be able to rank for all kinds of search terms with no effort on your part.
There you have it a list of what we consider mandatory WordPress plugins and widgets that you shouldn’t be without if you want to make the most out of your WordPress blog. Just because everyone you know is running a blog, doesn’t mean it’s successful. Running a blog is hard work and plugins and widgets just make it that much easier.
50 Best WordPress Plugins and Widgets for Power Blogging
We’ve just had a look at what we consider to be 20 mandatory WordPress plugins and widgets, but there are plenty more. Since WordPress is one of the hottest blogging platforms, we thought you could use a little more help. You’ll find 50 of the best WordPress plugins and widgets below broken down by category. Don’t be afraid to give them a try. Power blogging just got a little easier.
Manage WordPress Comments
• Subscribe To Comments This robust plugin enables commenters to sign up for e mail notification of subsequent comment entries.
• WP AJAX Edit Comments Users are able to edit, move, or blacklist their own comments on a post online for a limited time using AJAX and Admin can edit all comments. You can undo functionality for most of the editing options, and you can choose different icon sets to use on your blog.
• Close Old Posts Allows you to close comments on old posts without the need for a DB query.
• WP Grins Allows you to put clickable smilies on your post and comments forms.
• Live Comment Preview This is the easiest way to see what you’re your comment will look like on the site as you type it.
• Show Top Commentators Encourages more posts by visitors, by displaying their names and number of comments they have made recently to your sidebar.
• MyAvatars Shows MyBlogLogs avatars in your comments
• Comment Relish This slick little tool will send a thank you email to your first-time commentators.
• Favatars Displays the favicon linked with the commenter’s website.
• Dofollow Allows you to remove the nofollow attribute from your comments.
• OpenID Comments for WordPress Users are able to leave comments using their OpenID.
• Extended Comment Options You can switch comments or pings on/ off for batches of existing posts.
• Get Recent Comments Displays excerpts of the most recent comments and/or trackbacks that have been posted to the articles in your blog.
Expert WordPress SEO
You will significantly increase the traffic to your WordPress blog by using SEO tools. Titles and content should be optimized for keywords. Here are some of the best WordPress tools.
• Google XML Sitemaps Generator A sitemap is created for all articles on your WordPress blog, which aids Google and other search engines to quickly index all content you write.
• Permalink Redirect If the requested URI is different from entry’s permalink it replies with a 301 permanent redirect. It is used to ensure that there is only one URL associated with each blog entry.
• All in One SEO Pack Your WordPress blog will be optimized for the search engines
Head META Description Post excerpts are used to insert HTML META description tags.
• Enforce www. Preference Helps preserve your permalinks by enforcing your no www or yes www preference and will strip off index.php from the ends of URIs.
• Broken Link Checker Monitors and notifies you for broken links on your blog.
• Quick META Keywords tags are automatically added to every post based on the category the article is filed under.
Easy WordPress Navigation
Easy navigation is important to your blog and sidebars are an integral part of every WordPress blog. These widgets and plugins can help you make the most of your blog theme.
• Related Entries Provides a list of the associated entries based on active and/or passive keyword(s) that match. It will increase your page views because it targets related content.
• Yet Another Related Posts Plugin (YARPP) gives you a list of posts and/or pages related to the current entry.
• WP PageNavi Adds advanced page navigation to WordPress, which is helpful for navigation on index and category pages.
• Evermore When viewed on multiple post pages it abbreviates all posts. Supportive when creating WordPress expandable posts summaries.
• Random Redirect You can create a link to a random post on your blog. It allows readers to browse in a manner similar to StumbleUpon.
• WP Cumulus Displays your tags and/or categories in 3D by placing them on a rotating sphere
• Homepage Excerpts Gives the flexibility to use both full posts and excerpts on the homepage.
• WordPress Mobile Edition A powerful interface intended for viewing on mobile devices.
• Popularity Contest Keeps count of your posts, archive views, categories, trackbacks, comments, etc. and uses this information to determine the most popular posts.
• Clean Archives Displays your archive listings in a clean and organized manner. It lists the month/day/year of published articles, the title of each blog, and the number of comments made on each blog.
• Custom Query String Sets the number of posts for each page on your blog like archives, categories, or search results pages.
• KB Advanced RSS Widget This WordPress widget offers you total control over how RSS feeds are parsed for your sidebar.
• Permalinks Migration Plugin Safely change your permalink structure without breaking the old links to your website or affecting your search engine rankings.
Stop WordPress Spam
While spam may be a fact of life if you have a blog, WordPress tools have gone the extra mile in an attempt to reduce spam and they’ve done a good job. Let’s have a look at some of the most popular.
• Akismet Intelligent blocking of spam comments by checking your comments against the Akismet web service to determine if they are/are not spam.
• Bad Behavior This is a set of PHP scripts that stop spambots from being able to access your blog. It does this by analyzing the HTTP request and then doing a comparison of the spambots.
• WP Contact Form with Spam Protection A contact form is created on your blog, which allows readers to easily contact you.
• Defensio A spam filtering web service to block comment spam.
• Digital Fingerprint Useful for detecting content theft.
WordPress Twitter Plugins
• TweetSuite Integrate Twitter with your blog with server-side TweetBacks, ReTweet These buttons, Digg
like Tweet This Button, automatic tweeting of new posts, etc.
• WP Twitip ID Add your twitter username to the comment form
Interactive WordPress Posts
• Share This Allows visitors to add your post to a variety of social bookmarking sites, or send friends a link by email.
• Sociable Automatically adds links to your favorite social bookmarking sites on your posts, pages and in your RSS feed.
• WP-Email Lets visitors recommend and send your blog post to a friend.
• WP PostRatings Adds the AJAX rating system to your blog’s posts.
• Viper’s Video QuickTags Easy posting of videos from various websites such as YouTube, DailyMotion, Vimeo, etc.
WordPress Admin Management Tools
• PodPress Adds all kinds of features intended to make WordPress the ideal platform for hosting a podcast.
• TinyMCE Advanced 16 plugins are added to TinyMCE, which is WordPress’ WYSIWYG editor, and it adds more than 40 new buttons to the toolbar, which is now two rows plus one hidden row.
• Exec PHP Permits php tags inside the content of your posts/pages to be executed just as usual PHP files.
• Photo Dropper Now you can easily add free photos to your blog posts without leaving WordPress.
• WordPress.com Stats Tracks views, post views, clicks, and referrers. A WordPress API key is required.
• Admin Drop Down Menu Eliminates double-clicking on Admin screens by letting you see the second level menu by mouse hovering over a main menu.
• Maintenance Mode Plugin Adds a splash page to your blog telling visitors your blog is down for maintenance. Logged in administrators get full access to the blog including the front end.
• Theme Test Drive Lets you safely test drive any theme on your blog as an administrator, while visitors continue to see the default one.
• WordPress Database Backup Offers on-demand backup of WordPress database(s), so you can back up your blog daily.
• WP Supercache A variation of WP-Cache producing static Html files.
• DB Cache Another caching plugin that will let your site work much faster and it will use less disk space for cached files.
• WP DBManager Lets you optimize, repair, backup, restore, and delete backup database, drop and empty tables, and run selected queries.
• Ad Rotator Ads are randomly rotated from a specified text file.
• AdSense Deluxe A WordPress plugin providing advanced options to manage the automatic insertion of Google AdSense ads or Yahoo Publisher Network (YPN) ads to your WordPress posts.
• Buy Me a Beer Lets your readers donate money to you using PayPal with the cause of being buying a beer.
• WordPress BankRoll Help to eliminate the middleman by letting advertisers buy reviews directly on your blog.
WordPress Blog Translation
• Global Translator Translate your blog into multiple languages in a search engine friendly way.
• Translator Plugin Pro Provides automatic machine translation of your blog in 13+1 languages.
Enhance WordPress RSS Feeds
• FD Feedburner Redirects the main feed and optionally the comments feed to Feedburner.com
• Simple Feed Copyright Adds a copyright notice to WordPress feeds.
Random WordPress Stuff
• Democracy Adds AJAX polling functionality to your WordPress blog.
• FlickrRSS Makes it easy to display Flickr photos on your blog.
• MyBlogLog’s Recent Readers This widget is a hit amongst blog owners; its popularity even managed to convince Yahoo into buying MyBlogLog. The widget lets you see the avatars of recent visitors to your blog, provided they’re also members of MyBlogLog.
• Mashable get the latest social networking news from this very site.
• Flickr Flash Photo Stream Badge Displays images from your Flickr profile using a Flash photo stream.
• Preview Anywhere See a live preview of outgoing links in a small popup, which activates on mouse over. Some find this annoying, while others might find it useful.
• Twitter Badge A Twitter badge is the ideal counterpart for your blog if life is busy and you want to share it with everyone. It’ll proudly displays your recent tweets.
• Digg News Display the latest Digg links on your WordPress blog. Theme able and completely customizable.
• FEEDJIT Provides real time traffic data directly to the sidebar of your blog.
• LineBuzz Provides inline comments to your blog, which is convenient for blogs with live discussions.
• Flixn Displays a direct webcam stream, so your blog visitors always know what’s going on.
• 3Jam Allows site visitors to end messages to your mobile phone, without knowing your phone number.
• Jaxtr With Jaxtr, your visitors can actually call you to your mobile phone; again, your number stays private.
• LinkedInABox Show off your LinkedIn profile. Perfect for personal blogs.
• Price of Gas Displaying gas prices on your blog might seem unnecessary to some, but it’s cool if you have a traffic/travel related blog.
• Begin Weather Widget Display weather information in your sidebar. Just like with Price of Gas, works great with travel related blogs.
• ClockLink Display time in various time zones with these nifty Flash clocks.
• Film Loops Display the latest loops from your FilmLoops account.
• Daily Painters Display paintings from famous painters on your blog.
• WhoLinked show your visitors which sites have recently linked to your web site. Works with all major blog
• Stockalicious track your portfolio with this widget, and share it with others. Let everyone know how much money you’ve lost.
• Yahoo! For Good Dreate a charity badge and ask for donations for a worthy cause.
• Giftspace Your friends never know what to buy you for birthday? Let them know what you really want with this nifty widget.
• MixMap See where are the visitors to your MySpace profile from on a map.
• Google Map Widget Display a searchable Google Map on your website.
• Google Video Search Add a video search form and selected videos to your web site.
• Odeo Player Display an Odeo player for and podcast right there in your sidebar
For the Blogger
• AjaxWP Adds AJAX to all of your WordPress site, so load time faster.
• Alexa Rank Display your Alexa rank.
• asTunes Retrieves data from your Audioscrobbler/last.fm profile and posts it as a list on your blog.
• Codebox Creates a side scroll box where code snippets are displayed.
• Crossroads Adds thumbnails and comments from your Flickr account.
• FireStats Full featured statistics including referrers, popular pages, etc.
• Google PageRank Lets you display your Google Page Rank on your blog.
• Hardened Trackback Generates a single trackback use to aid in fighting trackback spam.
• Live Spell Checker In the admin area a spell checker is added to your posts.
• Plug ‘n’ Play Google Map When longitude and latitude are included in your post, it will be automatically added to a Google Map on a separate page. It’s very useful for finding restaurants, shopping, etc.
• WordPress Mailing List if you have a mailing list readers are able to subscribe and unsubscribe from the front page of your blog site.
For your Readers
• AJAX Comments 2.0 – Smoothly automatically updates the comments page with no full reload.
• AJAX Google Video Search – Search Google video without ever having to leave your favorite blog.
• Cool Weather – Lets your visitors see the weather forecast for any location.
• Currency Converter – Adds a real time currency converter to the page with data from Yahoo Finance.
• Google Map Search Widget – Lets your readers search Google Maps without ever leaving the page.
• Gregarious – Social bookmarking plugin that adds Digg, Reddit, Feedburner FeedFlare buttons and more.
• Hottaimoijiruna – Adds a self-updating clock to the site for a timezone defined by the blogger.
• Inline Ajax Comments – Hides comments until the user clicks on them.
• Tagboard Widget – Adds an auto-updating tagboard to your site that displays new messages as they are posted.
• Units Converter – Converts hundreds of different units of length, area, volume, weight / mass, and speed without reloading the page.
• Akismet – WordPress Anti-spam plugin utilizes a central database of spam comments to identify and flag spam. Requires a free API key obtainable from WordPress.
• Spam Karma – Uses karma system to analyze spam comments.
• Bad Behavior – Prevent spam-bots from accessing your blog by analyzing HTTP requests.
• Did You Pass Math? – A simple math question before comments are posted.
• Comment Timeout – Closes comments on all old posts.
• BlogFollow Shows a snippet of the blog beneath their comment.
• DoFollow Removes nofollow attributes from links in comments so search engines can follow them.
• DoFollow Trackbacks Removes nofollow attributes from trackbacks.
• Nicer Trackbacks – Improves the overall look of trackbacks from other blogs.
• WP-NoSh*t – Filters out bad words from comments.
• Numbered Comments Adds numbers to comments.
• AuthorHighlight – Highlights comments by the author of the blog.
• Comment Highlighter – Styles comments based on the author’s name, URL, or email.
• Wp-chunk –Long URLs are truncated in comments to stop them from stretching the page.
Enable Rich Comments
• Custom Smileys – Adds clickable smiley emoticons to comments.
• TinyMCEComments – Turns the comment box into a full-featured rich text editor.
• Live Comment Preview – Allows readers to preview their comment before posting.
• Edit Comments XT – Allows users to edit their own comments.
• Gravatar – Displays user-selected avatars next to comments.
• Favatars – Pulls the favicon from a commenter’s blog or website and uses it for their avatar.
• MBLA – Adds user images from MyBlogLog to comments.
• OpenID Comments – Lets readers comment with their OpenID identity.
Show Off Comments
• WP-Most Commented Posts – Shows posts with the comments in the sidebar.
• Latest Comments with Avatars Reloaded – Shows the latest comments along with the MyBlogLog avatars of those who commented.
Allow Better Conversation
• Simple CoComments Tracks conversation across blogs.
• Comment Karma Digg style voting on comments.
• Quoter Lets users quote previous comments in their comment.
• Whisper Lets users whisper comments which only one person can see.
• Comment Twitter SMS Notification Using SMS through Twitter you are notified when there are new comment.
• Bannage Gives you the ability to ban users from commenting by name, IP, or email.
• CommentCentral Lets batch opening and closing of comments on multiple posts.
• 404 Notifier Provides a 404 error log.
• Admin Dropdown Menus Streamline your crowded admin menus by turning them into dropdown menus.
• Admin Panel Comment Reply In the admin area comment section it adds a “reply to comment” option.
• Ajax Spell Checker Uses a variety of dictionaries to spell check posts.
• Auto hyperlink URLs Provides you many options to turn URLs in to hyperlinks automatically.
• AWSOM Pixgallery Designed to allow artists/web comic creators to create an artwork portfolio.
• Batch Categories Makes it easier to add posts to another category, or to organize posts when importing from another blog.
• Custom Admin Menu Gives you the ability to hide, move, or rename almost everything in the admin area.
• Custom Write Panel Lets you customize the WordPress write panel by hiding the things you don’t need and adding things you would prefer easier access to.
• Dashbar Allows administrator(s) to access admin area while working in your blog’s frontend without the need for multiple windows open.
• Dashboard Editor Customize your admin dashboard using PHP, HTML, and widgets.
• DashNote Adds a post it note feature to the dashboard so you can make quick notes to yourself.
• Domain Mirror Allows one WordPress install to be accessed from multiple domains.
• Download Counter Counts and tracks all your file downloads.
• Email Users Lets you mail registered users on your blog based what their role is.
• Enforce WWW Preference Provides 301 redirects to queries with index.php and enforces your use/non
use of www to ensure uniform search engine indexing.
• Excerpt Editor Provides you with greater control over the excerpts such as auto creation.
• FeedBurner FeedSmith Ensures every RSS feed subscribers is counted in your FeedBurner subscriber count.
• Fix Database The WordPress database is checked for errors and then it tries to fix any found errors.
• Genki Announcement You can add an announcement before your first post and you don’t have to edit your themes.
• Genki Pre Publish Reminder Lets you write reminders for things to do before you post.
• Google Analyticator Google Analytics code is inserted on each page.
• Google Sitemaps Generator Will create a Google compliant sitemap of your blog.
• GT Post Approval On the administrators view a approve and reject buttons are added to on all posts, a handy feature for blogs that have multiple authors.
• Instant Update Takes care of the dreary chore of upgrading your WP install with just one click.
• Just Unzip Uploads a zip folder from the Write page, and then unzip the content and associate it with the current post.
• Khanh’s Instant Notepad (KIN) Lets you make notes to yourself on a notepad.
• Leprakhauns Word Count A Java powered word counter is added to your editing page.
• Mass Post Manager Move and/or delete all the posts in a category all at once.
• Mutliply Lets one administrator control multiple blogs.
• NextGEN Gallery An image gallery is added to your control panel.
• OneClick Install This powerful uploader and installer for plugins and themes to WordPress, eliminates the need to unzip or FTP.
• Page Link Manager You can quickly and easily hide, rearrange, and move pages.
• Permacop Lets you to redirect one URL to another.
• Post2Page Allows you to take existing posts that you have and convert them into pages.
• PlugInstaller Helps you install new plugins by obtaining, uploading, and unpacking it.
• podPress Includes numerous features for bloggers that want to add podcasts to their WordPress install, such as cast to posts, RSS feeds, previews, etc.
• Search and Replace Search all your posts at once for specified text, quickly replace it.
• Share This Adds social bookmarking links and an e mail function in one button.
• Simple Pop up Images Adds a thumbnail image to your post. To get larger picture user clicks on thumbnail.
• Simple Tagging Simplifies the tagging process to a drop down menu and includes the capability to import from current tagging plugins.
• Site Unavailable Publishes a message that your blog is down while still allowing admin to login.
• Throttle Monitors bandwidth and limits any non essential items during heavy load times to ensure best performance.
• Wikipedia NoFollow This plugin lets you add nofollow to links you give to Wikipedia pages. It was written because Wikipedia’s implementing a nofollow rule to their outgoing links.
• WordPress Mobile Edition Strips your blog to make it easy for reading on mobile devices.
• WordTube Instead of Youtube this flash player lets you display your videos how you like.
• WP Grins Adds clickable smilies to the admin and comment section.
• WPAds Adds rotating banners and text ads to any location you identify on your blog.
• WP Custom Login Lets you modify the user login page logo to your choice of images.
WP DBManager Lets you with the ability to optimize your database, back it up, restore, remove emptied tables, run selected queries, etc.
• WP phpMyAdmin Allows you quick access to your PHP databases from the WP admin area without having to login to phpMyAdmin.
• WP Plugins Tracker Verifies all of your plugins are the latest version by checking against the wp plugins
• WP Super Edit Provides you with more control over the Visual editor including emoticons, layers, style attributes, and more.
• WP Table Allows you to add a table directly in the Visual mode or import from a spreadsheet.
Image Management Tools
Images are an integral part of your blog and these widgets and plugins and help you get the most out of all your images.
• Aniga Gallery Lets you create picture galleries that use the WordPress comment system.
• Batch Image Uploader All at once you can upload and resize multiple images to your blog.
• Duh Gallery Create a photo gallery from your uploads folder in WordPress.
• ImageManager Includes are the interface for browsing, uploading images, and other basic tools such as cropping and rotating.
• WP Image Gallery From within WordPress you can create photo galleries and display them in posts.
• fMoblog Post pictures with descriptions from a mobile phone.
• Pop up Image Gallery Photo gallery plugin with various options for transitions.
• PhotoZip Allows you to upload a .zip file to create an image gallery.
• PictPress Automatically generates a picture post from a directory on your server and resizes pictures on the fly.
Importing Images from Other Services
• Another Flickr Allows your readers to browse thumbnails from your Flickr albums and go directly to full size images.
• BubbleShare Display photo galleries from your BubbleShare account.
• Facebook Photos Shows thumbnails of photos from your linked Facebook account.
• Flickr Photo Album Your Flickr photo sets and displays are pulled and then placed in albums in WordPress.
• FlickrRSS The most recent images are displayed from any RSS feed from Flickr such as a user, group, or tags page.
• Fotobook Import your Facebook photo albums into a WordPress page.
• ImageShack Uploader Upload an image to ImageShack’s free storage service and insert a thumbnail into your posts.
• Slickr Gallery AJAX photo gallery that pulls in images and photosets from Flickr.
• Smugmug Gallery Bar Directly insert photos from your Smugmug account into your blog posts.
Image Display Effects & Hacks
• Enlarger Displays a thumbnail but loads the bigger image in the background when thumbnail clicked.
• IImage Panorama Aids you in creating a 360 degree panorama picture you can add to your blog.
• Image Headlines Creates cool text images for your post titles.
• Lightbox 2 Generates thumbnails that when clicked load in a lightbox.
• Multi Topic Icon Shows images that symbolize each of the assigned categories to the blog post.
• Random Image Pulls a random image from your blog and then links it back to the post it came from.
• Transparent PNG Fix Makes certain your PNG files don’t look nasty.
• WP Wetfloor Create the ever popular reflection effect for the images on your blog.
• Del.icio.us MP3 Player Links to MP3s in your posts are made playable and you can easily post them to del.icio.us.
• Audio Player A simple MP3 player is inserted into your posts that allows you to play uploaded audio files.
• XSFP Player Flash player that allows you to embed music on your blog via http.
• DG PlayingNow Updater Displays the song you are currently listening to on MSN Messenger, J. River Media Center, or iTunes.
• EZ Scrobbler Displays the most recently listened to tracks on last.fm.
• iTunes Spy Displays the most recently listened to tracks on iTunes.
• Pandora Feeds Displays data from Pandora feeds, for example, a list of your stations, bookmarked songs, and bookmarked artists.
• onAirNow Now playing plugin that displays most recent song from iTunes or WinAmp.
• Podcasting Tools
• Odeo Embed a podcast that you recorded on Odeo.
• Podcast Release A “release” form for guests of your podcast, accepting your terms.
• PodPress Full featured plugin for podcasters including feed generation, iTunes preview, and download stats.
• iPodCatter Helps podcasters create a valid feed for the podcast directory on iTunes.
Miscellaneous Audio Tools
• Evoca Browser Mic Allows your blog readers to send you voice comments, which you can later post to your blog.
• Odiogo Converts your text to speech and provides a link for your readers to listen to your posts.
• Anarchy Media Player Plays a wide variety of audio and video file formats in the correct player on your blog.
• Easy Inline SWF Lets you insert Flash files in .swf format into your posts and there’s no need for strange tags.
• SeeTheFace Complete tool for recording video and then posting it to your blog.
• Extreme Video Plays any .flv file on your blog with support for YouTube, Google Video, Quicktime, and more.
• Noembedder Automatically adds a noembed section to any embedded content that does not already have one.
• YouTube Brackets Allows you to enter just a URL for a YouTube video instead of having to copy and paste embed code.
• WordTube A video player that also has the ability to program a menu of videos.
• TubePress Display YouTube galleries as blog posts or a sidebar item.
• YouTube Video Gallery Displays thumbnails for any gallery from YouTube.
• vPIP vPIP stands for “Videos Playing In Place,” meaning it will only embed after a specified image or link is clicked by the user.
Stats for the Blog Owner
AWStats Xtended Info Used in conjunction with AWStats, and adds things like Flash, Java, and PDF support.
• Backlinks inbound links counter Used in conjunction with MSN to track all incoming links to your blog.
• Bluetrait Event Viewer (BTEV) Tracks logins, invalid user names, last passwords, deleted users, and more.
• Bsuite Tracks search terms, and page loads, used on performing posts, incoming links, top, and lists related posts at the bottom of every entry.
• CountPosts Shows the number of times each post is visited and ignores admin visits.
• DownloadCounter Counts downloads of files you attach to your posts.
• Dschini Bot Checker Allows you to see which pages are checked by which search bots and how often.
• Feed Statistics Monitors your feeds and reports to you which readers are being used, the links readers are clicking on, and the stories vistiors are reading.
• FeedBurner SiteStats Enabler Helps you install the FeedBurner script on your blog with instructions in English and Italian.
• FeedBurner StandardStats Simplifies the installation of the FeedBurner script so you can monitor your RSS feed statistics.
• FeedStats This statistical tool counts your feeds, measures the length of stay on your blog and more. Stats appear on your dashboard.
• FirStats Full featured, Ajax powered stats for your admin area.
• GoStats web counter Lets you install the GoStats counter in your blog as a text widget.
• Lightstats This plugin generates pie and bar graph statistics about your posts, categories, and comments.
• Live You can watch your blog activity in real time. See things like new comments, posts visited, feeds grabbed, etc.
• Open Web Analytics Tracks visits, page views, unique visitors, referring websites, clicks, and plots visitor geography on Google Earth.
• Posts/Comments Time Shows you the number of posts and the number of comments for each hour of every day allowing you to plan efficiently for blog posting times.
• Search Phrases This easy to use plugin displays what search terms brought the visitors to your site.
• Social Traffic Monitor Monitors social sites like Digg, Reddit, Newsvine, Slashdot, Fark, StumbleUpon, and Del.icio.us.
• Ultimate Google Analytics The Google Analytics script is added to your blog while also counting downloads and outbound links.
• Word Count Tracks the word count of your posts.
• WordPress.com Stats The WordPress API key is used to pull stats and place them in a page in your admin section.
• WP OnlineCounter The number of readers currently online is counted by this plugin, including stats such as the highest number of visitors at the same time, and the total visitor count.
• WP SlimStat Tracks all standard stats you’d expect to see, but in a very compressed database so the load on your server is minimal.
• WP Stats A general stats package that focuses on the number of posts, comments, etc.
Stats to Share with Visitors
• Akismet Spam Count Show off your Akismet spam power while letting spammers know you’re protected.
• Alexa Rank Lets you display your Alexa rank for everyone to see.
• GeneralStats Displays your choice of categories, number of users, posts, pages, comments, links, words in comments, words in pages, and words in posts.
• Google PageRank Shows your Google Page Rank on the front page.
• Impress Shows the number of users, pages, posts, categories, comments, words, etc.
Post Administration & Layout
• Add Graphic Signature Adds a graphic of your signature to your posts either automatically or via the insertion of a simple tag.
• Adman Allows you to post ads such as Google AdSense at the beginning or middle of a post.
• Another WordPress Meta Plugin Allows you to add Meta tags and keywords to your post to try to further optimize your blog for search engines.
• Corrector Adds Google Spell Check to your admin area and can spell check in 27 languages.
• DropCap First Character Produces a magazine appearance by enlarging the first character of a post.
• Front Page Excluded Categories Allows you to exclude posts from certain categories on your front page.
• Limit the size of main page posts Set the number of words you want each of your main page posts to contain so that if they exceed that limit, a link is provided to a page with the complete post.
• Notify On Draft Post Notifies the editor when the authors of a multi author blog post a new draft for review.
• Post Notification Sends an email to a list of registered users when you make a new post. Includes the option to include the post in the email.
• Post Repeater Re posts an entry with significance every week, month, or year.
• Post Templates Allows you to set up repeating templates such as a “Picture Of The Day” without all of the tedious copy and pasting.
• PostPost Allows you to add content such as advertisements before or after every post.
• Posts Expire Set an expiration date on your post.
• Subscribers Only Lets you mark a post as “subscriber only” so they are visible only to members of your site.
• Subscribe Remind Adds a reminder to the bottom of each post to subscribe to your RSS feed.
• WordPress PDA Helps your readers view your blog on a PDA browser.
• WP orderposts This plugin allows you to custom order your posts (as opposed to the default reverse
• WP Sticky Make a post the default first entry on your blog.
• Author Complete Post List Gives you the ability to display all the posts by an author, including the ones where they are co author.
• Blog by Mail with Categories Changes the “Blog by Mail” feature in WordPress so you can also set the category.
• Easy Post To Post Links Allows you to use a shortcut when writing a post linking to another post on your blog.
• On This Day Displays posts posted on the same day in previous years.
• Plain Text Paste Helps to ease the pain of pasting something you wrote in Microsoft Word into WordPress.
• TD Word Count Displays a word count for each post on a blog, and gives you a total count.
• WP Footnotes Allows you to add footnotes to a more detailed post.
• wpSpoiler Allows you to hide text behind [spoiler] tags. Ideal for sites with TV or movie reviews.
• DJ Email Publish Once you publish on your WordPress blog, this sends the post as an email to your other blogs such as MSN Spaces.
• Live Space Sync Allows you to import all your posts to your Microsoft Live Spaces so you can advertise your blog to your contacts.
• Add to Any Subscribe Button Allows your readers to subscribe via most popular RSS readers.
• Add This Sidebar Widget Adds RSS info and social bookmarking links to the sidebar.
• Better Feed Adds a “read more” button, a copyright notice, and a “Add to del.icio.us” link.
• DeCat Allows you to select certain categories to not be included in your feeds.
• Feed Control Gives you the ability to exclude posts from your feed, add pages, and more.
• Feed Footer Adds copyright and advertising to your RSS posts.
• Feed Master Assigns a number to your feed readers to give you a better idea of stats specific to them.
• Feed Styler Allows you to style your feed.
• FeedBurner Make sure all your RSS feed subscribers get counted along with the ones signed up via FeedBurner.
• FeedStats Gives you statistical data on your feeds.
• Feedvertizer Add text links to the end of your feed posts.
• Slash Comments Adds info to your feed about how many comments are on the post.
• Subscribe Remind Adds a little reminder to subscribe to your feed at the end of each post.
Social Site Integration
• Blogmark Integration Display your Blogmarks list on your blog.
• DiggClick Add the Digg button to the beginning of your posts.
• DiggIT Allows you to add the Digg button even if someone had already submitted your post.
• Facebook Comments Allows you to bring comments on your Facebook notes over to the relevant blog post.
• Gregarious Combines a Digg button plugin with Alex King’s popular “Share This” plugin for social bookmarking.
• Ma.gnolia Widget Display links from your Ma.gnolia account using this widget.
• Reddit Button Adds a Reddit button to your blog posts.
• StumbleCrumble Display a pre determined number of your latest Stumbled websites on your own blog.
• 360Voice Bits Plugin Connects with 360Voice.com to post the latest info on your 360 standings.
• AIM Online Status Indicator Let your readers know if you’re online.
• IM Online Presence indicator for AIM, MSN, Yahoo!, Google Talk, Skype and ICQ.
• MeeboMe Plugin For WordPress Display a Meebo widget on your blog so you can chat with your visitors.
• WP ICQ Status Display your current ICQ status on your blog.
• Xbox 360 Gamercard WordPress Plugin Allows you to display your Xbox 360 Gamecard.
Miscellaneous Site Integration
• Mac Sidebar WP Plugin Display information from your .Mac account in your WordPress sidebar.
• Amazon Wishlist Add your Amazon Wishlist to your blog.
• Bloggersnap Allow your visitors to take a webcam shot and post it to your blog.
• EasyPayPal Allows you to accept payments for many services including subscriptions, trial periods, and more.
• Ebay Sales Lister Display Ebay listings (from your account or others) on your site.
• Facebook Photos Allows easy access to your Facebook photos for use in your blog.
• GetWiki Embed a Wikipedia article in your blog.
• iTunesSpy Display your latest played songs on your WordPress blog.
• Last Amazon Review Displays latest reviews from an Amazon RSS feed. Supports Associate IDs.
• MasterWish Place your wish list from MasterWish.com on your blog.
• Netflix Share portions of your Netflix queue with your readers.
• Phoogle Add Google Maps with markers you choose to any of your posts.
• Slashdot.org Headlines Display the latest headlines from Slashdot on your site.
• PayPal Donate Button Allows you to add a “Make a Donation” button powered by PayPal.
• WP Twit Display your latest Twitter postings on your site.
• Your YouTube Favorite Videos Display your favorite YouTube videos on your site.
Not Just WordPress
By now you might be thinking that much of this e-book is dedicated to WordPress blogs and while you are correct it’s important to note that many similar tools are available for other blogs and many of these tools work in other blogs. The reason for the focus on WordPress widgets and plugins is simply that it is one of the most popular blog platforms, and in such a small e-book it’s impossible to give every blog the attention it deserves. We hope that this guide leads you down a path of success when it comes to blogging.