One the WordPress store and the online space, there are alot of free WordPress plugins that can be installed on your website.
But the word „free” in our case its not the best option that we can have.
Well in most cases, the free version of a plugin has also a pro one. So you can imagine that the most interesting features are missing from the 0$ one. This is somethat to be expected and you just also give credit to the developers that offer a free version of their work in the first place.
But the most frustrating part in this ”free plugin space” is that fact that not all the plugins are great. Some of them cause you website to crash, move slowly or in some isolated cases corrpot your intire database (happed to me once).
Hmm…now…there is such thing as a best free WordPress Plugin?
Yes, there is and in this post i will share with you my top 5 best free WordPress plugins that are a must to install in every project that you manage.
Basically those plugins will help with your website speed, security and overall functionality.
But lets start with the first free WordPress Plugin.
Rank Math SEO
Rank Math SEO is the first plugin in this list for the best free WordPress plugins and it deserves its place.
Rank Math SEO is a relatively young plugin in this space but the team managing the software did an incredible job with the overall feature set and user experience.
Basically as you may already know, this plugin helps you with your SEO.
On each page/post you have a SEO meter that ranges from 0 to 100. When you start imputing text and images or other content the meter start to change the color and also gives you a score on the overall probability that your page/post will rank on the search engines.
What is cool about the plugin that makes me recommend it is the fact that you can easily make a page nofollow or noindex,set redirects and change the schema type right from the page, no need to enter settings.
Those are just a few cool features that the plugin has, i encourage you to give it a try.
PS: it has data importing abilities from other popular SEO plugins.
Easy WP SMTP
As an example, lets say that you have a WordPress eCommerce website. On each order that the client places on the web page it will receive an automated email from the Woocommerce plugin with the order details.
Everything fine and dandy, but when take a look at the default email address from which the client receives the correspondence it will be something assigned from the server and it looks totally unprofessional.
Easy WP SMTP lets you change the default email address from which WordPress plugins send the confirmation emails.
All you have to do is create a new email address from Cpanel then enter the login detail in Easy WP SMTP.
W3 Total Cache
To be completely honest this is one of the must frustrating plugins to setup and in most cases you server should be Litespeed enabled.
But if you are willing to have patience and alocate a few hours of your time you can manage to obtain some wonderful results.
W3 Total Cache is one of the best free caching/optimizing WordPress plugin that i know.
The plugin offers you the ability to improve page loading speed drastically in some situations and also marginally helps with SEO.
Inside the plugin there are a ton of options for caching/compressing CSS and JS files, cache objects or database files, optimize images, offers the ability to integrate with some payed CDNs and also some security features.
Asset CleanUp: Page Speed Booster
WordPress websites (as any other webpages) use HTML&CSS and also JS code in order to display the content and enable the functionality.
But some of this code doesn’t need to be loaded on each page, at least some of the CSS and JS code that some plugin use.
So its best do disable those CSS and JS plugin files on pages that we dont need them in order to improve general performance.
From my test, on websites that use a ton of plugins, the performance increase is quite significant.
The plugin is relatively easy to use and on the free version it has a lot of the functionality enabled.
All In One WP Security & Firewall
WordPress is a decent platform in terms of security, but is far from perfect.
There are a significant number of „holes” that are not „plugged” even in the latest version of the CMS.
So in order to percent attacks and spammers you must rely on custom plugins that enhance the WordPress standard functionality.
One of the best free WordPress security plugins is All In One WP Security & Firewall. Not only that is 100% free of charge but it offers a complet set of functions to prevent brute force attacks, vulnerability exploitation and spam.
The security optimizations are not only for the front-end of the website but also for the admin area.
The setup process is pretty straight forward and it allows you to manually setup the plugin or use automated settings.