One of the biggest strengths that WordPress has is extensibility that won’t necessarily break the bank, something that’s especially important to small business owners. These WordPress plugin categories should be in your toolkit to help grow your website along with your exciting venture:
First and foremost: make sure people can buy your products or avail of your services online, straight off your website. No matter how large or small your business is, there’s bound to be a shopping cart or catalog management solution that meets your needs. Some of them you don’t need to pay for.
Analytics & Insights plugins
This isn’t about shady tracking or snooping on users, but getting to know potential customers better and optimizing for them. Whether your full-blown website is already up and running, or it’s just a “coming soon” page, make sure you’ve got at least one analytics system installed as soon as you possibly can.
Marketing & SEO plugins
Planting your small business firmly in the online world can take huge effort, so every bit helps. Make sure you have good social media and email marketing integration, a sitemap generator & broken link checker so search engines can crawl all your pages issue-free, and plugins to optimize your keywords, titles, content, URLs, and link sharing previews.
Backup, Security, & Performance plugins
Keep all your hard work safe with tools to automatically backup, import, export, and secure your site. Besides having a secure login password to the WordPress administration dashboard, and making sure your site is already on HTTPS, it’s worth installing additional plugins such as firewalls, spam blockers, vulnerability scanners, and theme/plugin checkers. It’s also more crucial than ever to have a performance-optimized website that doesn’t bog down the devices of your users and eat up too much data while loading, so look for performance plugins that do caching, minification, compression, and more.
Maintenance Mode / Coming Soon plugins
If you don’t have any comprehensive content yet, or if you’re in the middle of upgrading your site, having a splash page with the help of maintenance mode and coming soon plugins help retain website visitors during this chaotic time.
Contact & Customer Support plugins
If they can’t reach you, they’ll go elsewhere and you lose their business. Put up all the necessary information on your site, including business hours and policies for shipping, refunds, and privacy. Plug in a good contact form (and make sure the messages get sent to your inbox) and you can go the extra mile with a CRM that offers support tickets you can triage, and a FAQ / knowledge base section that they can help themselves to when you’re out of the office.