Blogger to WordPress: Ten (More) Must-Have Plugins for the Newbie
Okay, bloggy-friends, I have another list for you: 10 MORE must-have plugins for the Blogger to WordPress newbie.
1. Onswipe – Makes a simple custom theme for iPad readers. I am an iPad reader most of the time. So, I love to see this plugin in use. Even if you don’t have an iPad doesn’t mean your readers don’t, too. Think of them, and install this plugin STAT. It can be customized with colors, select fonts and even an uploaded logo & banner, if you wish. Suh-weet!
2. Widget Twitter VJCK – Okay, let’s face it – there are a lot of Twitter plugins out there. And if you have a public twitter account, you should connect it to your website. No doubt. After trying out a few, I finally settled on this basic Twitter plugin (view it in action on my sidebar), mostly cuz of its simple appearance. Sure, there are more involved plugins, with optional color selections and whatnot, but again, less is more, no? I found some of the other plugins to be complicated and confusing, and, if you’ve just moved to WordPress from Blogger, you’re already confused enough, are you not? So, my advice: start here … and then move on up once you get the hang of WordPress and its advanced terminology.
3. Twitter Friendly Links – This is a fun plugin. It gives every one of your posts and pages a unique tinyURL using your domain name. If you promote your posts via Twitter, this is a must-have. And it works with the SexyBookmarks by Shareaholic plugin, too. So, when your readers promote your posts for you, your custom tinyURL’s are promoted as well.
4. Tweet Old Post – An interesting plugin, if used correctly and in moderation. You can connect your Twitter account to your blog, and it will automatically tweet your old posts at a chosen interval, adding selected hashtags, if you so desire. Also, you can deselect certain posts to be tweeted. If you do choose to install this plugin, I recommend taking the extra bit of time to customize the options. Cuz I personally think that tweeting your old posts every 4 hours is a bit annoying. And it can get you un-followed in a heartbeat. Also, if you’ve posted about giveaways and such that are long-ago expired or the birth announcement of your now 4-year-old child, you should deselect them from the list. Just my advice.
5. Sidebar Tabs - I LOVE this plugin. It might even be my favorite plugin of all. Simply put, it compresses your sidebar widgets into a group of tabs. I’ll admit, there’s a *tiny* bit of know-how to set it up, but it’s definitely worth the effort. I compressed 4 of my widgets into one → Subscribe via email, search, archives, and a text widget. There are many options to choose from regarding coloring, tab appearance, etc, etc, etc, to customize it for your blog. And, best of all, it really cleans up your sidebar. I particularly despise cluttered sidebars. I can’t help it. So, this plugin – FANTASTICO!!!
6. Comment Luv – “Reward your readers by automatically placing a link to their last blog post at the end of their comment. Encourage a community and discover new posts.” I’ve seen it on other blogs myself & thought it was a great idea, so you know I installed it on my own.
7. Most Popular Posts - creates a basic widget for your sidebar based on the top commented-on posts.
8. Contact Form 7 – create a contact form so that your readers/advertisers can easily get in touch with you. I use it on my “About Me” page. If you do use this plugin, it’d be wise to also install the corresponding Really Simple CAPTCHA plugin, to weed out the trolls. Just some more friendly advice. When it comes to CAPTCHA in commenting, I always say no, cuz Akismet will grab it, but for these forms, it’s a necessity.
9. Add Link To Facebook - If you knew me IRL, you’d know I’m not a fan of Facebook. At all. But I’d be remiss to not recommend a plugin for it. This one will “automatically add links to published posts or pages to your Facebook wall, pages or groups and more.” Sounds simple enough.
10. WP Super Cache - speeds up pageloads for your visitors. In an impatient world, this plugin is uber-important!
Thanks for stopping by, and come back soon for more Blogger to WordPress tutorials!