Plugins allow you to extend the power and functionality of the WordPress platform. From optimizing for search visibility and traffic to optimizing your database for overall efficiency, they make it possible to take your blog to all new levels. Best of all, they are generally easy to “plug-in” to your system. There are tons of plugins out there and WordPress developers are creating more everyday. Here are five new ones to keep an eye on.
Are you the fanatic who obsesses over your blog’s activity when you’re away from the desktop? If so, then Pushover Notifications might be the plugin for you. This little extension makes sure you can keep up with what’s happing on your WordPress blog by delivering that information directly to your Android or iOS device.
Pushover Notifications informs you of activity such as:
- New users
- New comments
- Pings and trackbacks
- Password reset notifications for specific users
This is definitely one of the most interesting plugins I’ve seen in a good while. Mood Thingy is a new WordPress extension that lets you measure the emotional response to a given post on your blog. The creators say it is useful for gauging everything from the impact of an article to sociability of your visitors.
Mood Thingy has three main features:
- The Widget. The Mood Thingy widget is what allows readers to express how they feel about your content. Expressing those feelings are similar to liking or disliking, but better says the creators. The widget is easy to install and can even be enhanced with CSS customization.
- Administration panel. The administrative panel, known as Mood Thingy Admin, is where you go to see which posts are entertaining or failing to entertain your readers. This feature lets you sort content based on mood status, and useful for determining what type of content your audience is most likely to respond to.
- Featured content. This feature allows you to showcase the best content on your blog based on the emotional feedback collected with Mood Thingy. You can also use it to feature posts by criteria such as “all time” or “most recent”.
If you are using your blog to collect email addresses, then you understand the importance of a good web form. Breezing Forms offers a solution designed to support the form needs of the enterprise blogger. The creator claims that it is bringing revolutionary innovation to the world of WordPress forms, and the menu looks mighty impressive.
The core features of Breezing Forms include:
- User-friendly interface
- Compatibility with WordPress widgets
- Email marketing integration
- Mobile support (available in premium version)
- Salesforce integration (available in premium version)
- Ability to export to multiple files (CSV, PDF, XML)
The paid version of Breezing Forms has more bells and whistles, but the free version seems pretty efficient for those with basic needs.
Blogging is steadily evolving. Even simple elements like comments. oEmbed is a perfect example. This format provides an easy way for users to incorporate media from one website into another. In other words, it makes it possible to take a link and automatically transform it into embedded content.
WordPress previously supported oEmbed, but that support was limited to your actual blog posts. With oEmbed in Comments, that same functionality can be added to comments. This plugin ups the ante on engagement by giving readers a cool new toy to play with.
Last but not least is SideOffer, a WordPress plugin specially made for bloggers looking to boost their leads and conversions. With this extension, you get a unique sliding side tab that can be customized to meet your preferences. The tab appears on every page, which means more visibility for your calls to action and promotional content.
Whether you are trying to give away a free white paper, sell a new product, or increase your email subscriptions, SideOffer can be a nice addition to your inbound marketing strategy.
There you have it. Five of many WordPress plugins to recently hit the scene. I found these particular selections interesting because they focus on basic needs, but bring a little something new to the table as well. The directory over at WordPress.org continues to expand, and as it does, the platform continues to grow in power.
WordPress plugins are hard to keep up with. Notice anything we missed? Let us know in the comments.