Want to grow your WordPress website without spending tons of cash? A good plugin has the power to help you build a bigger following, have a beautiful site, and deliver the best user experience.
WordPress has 55,000+ plugins, so this guide has narrowed down the best free WordPress plugins for your website in 2019.
The Best Free WordPress Plugins
To help you navigate this post, we’ve summarized the top “must-have” WordPress plugins and their main focus here:
- MonsterInsights Lite — Google Analytics
- WPForms Lite — Forms
- SeedProd — Coming Soon & Maintenance Mode
- TrustPulse — FOMO & Social Proof
- WP Mail SMTP — Transaction Email
- UpdraftPlus — Backup
- Sucuri — Security
- Beaver Builder — Page Builder
- Yoast SEO — SEO
- WooCommerce — eCommerce
- W3 Total Cache — Performance
- Pretty Links — Affiliate Marketing
- Smush — Image Optimization
- Better Click to Tweet — Twitter
- Instagram Feed — Instagram
- Envira Gallery — Gallery
- Smart Slider 3 — Sliders
- Print, PDF, Email by PrintFriendly — PDFs
- TablePress — Tables
- WP RSS Aggregator — RSS
- Lazy Load by WP Rocket — Page Speed
- Shared Counts — Social Sharing
- Insert Headers and Footers — Headers & Footers
- Simple Author Box — Author Name
- Duplicator — Site Migration
- Shortcodes Ultimate — Shortcodes
- Broken Link Checker — Broken Link
- Easy Google Fonts — Google Fonts
- Really Simple SSL — SSL
- Autoptimize — Minifying
- Login Lockdown — Login Security
- WordPress Importer — Import
- Disable Comments — Comment Disable
- WP-Optimize — Cleanup
- The Events Calendar — Event Calendar
- Editorial Calendar — Editorial Calendar
- Code Snippets — Code Snippets
- Redirection — Redirection
- Advanced Custom Fields — Custom Fields
- Enable Media Replace — Media Replacement
- OptinMonster — Lead Generation
So if you’ve been asking yourself what are the best free WordPress plugins, here’s the list you’ve been looking for:
MonsterInsights Lite gives you a simple way to connect your WordPress website to your Google Analytics account. With it, you can see just how site visitors find your website and what they do while there. With this data, you’re able to capitalize on what site visitors like to keep them coming back for more.
See real-time stats in an easy to read report found right in the dashboard of your WordPress site. Plus, know that your stats are never skewed thanks to the universal tracking system that’s in place. In other words, if your site visitors switch from a mobile device to a desktop, you’ll still get accurate data counts.
If you want to get even more data about your site visitors and their behavior on your site, consider upgrading from the free version to MonsterInsights Pro. You’ll be able to track eCommerce stats, traffic sources, advertisements efforts, and more in separate dashboard reports.
Plus, you’ll have access to the MonsterInsights Forms addon, which lets you see your form conversion rates so you can make improvements and grow your business online.
Best Alternative: MonsterInsights Pro (Paid)
2. WPForms Lite
One of our favorites on this WordPress plugins list of free must-have plugins is WPForms Lite. It comes with a drag & drop WordPress form builder so you can easily create contact forms for your website.
In addition, it has pre-built form templates, complete with the form fields you need, so you can customize your form as you see fit. Plus, it’s 100% responsive, mobile friendly, and is optimized for SEO. Not to mention, it’s one of the fastest contact form plugins around.
With WPForms, you can grow your newsletter and email list quickly by creating a simple contact form (here’s a step by step guide). And after you fall in love with the free version and you’re looking for a more powerful solution, be sure to check out WPForms Pro.
You can collect payments from customers, conduct surveys, hire for a new position with a job application form, and even enable smart conditional logic with the feature-packed premium version of the world’s most beginner-friendly form plugin. In addition, it’s consistently rated as one of the best paid WordPress plugins on the market.
Best Alternative: WPForms Pro (Paid)
SeedProd lets you work on your site in private while your website visitors see a Coming Soon or Maintenance Mode page. It’s raved about on WordPress.org and boasts thousands of 5-star reviews.
This is especially helpful if you’re just launching a site and want to have leads and traffic as soon as it’s live. Also, SeedProd helps you gather email addresses while also getting a jump start in search engine rankings by having your site live while you work on it. Google actually advises to use a Coming Soon Page for every new site, so this WordPress plugin is a must-have.
TrustPulse leverages FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out) to help drive more conversions and sales on websites through social proof. Social proof is a psychological and social phenomenon where people rely on actions and feedback of other people to decide what to do. And you should definitely be using social proof on your site, especially if you have an eCommerce store like WooCommerce.
TrustPulse comes with an easy-to-use social proof notification builder that let you to build WordPress FOMO popups that are proven to convert visitors. It’s easy to customize things like the colors, message, and images, so you can brand your notifications to look like your site. You can show a live stream of recent activity (purchases, registrations, email signups, etc) as well as an ‘on-fire’ campaign that shows how many people took action on your site during a specific time period.
5. WP Mail SMTP
If you’re having problems with WordPress not sending emails, you’ll need a solution like WP Mail SMTP to help you out. This free plugin helps reconfigure the wp_mail() PHP function to use the proper SMTP provider. In other words, it makes sure any emails that are suppose to send out from your WordPress site are delivered to the recipient’s inbox as they should.
And the great thing about this plugin is that it brings together all SMTP providers into one plugin so you don’t have to use separate plugins for each provider.
There’s nothing worse than losing all your site’s content to a hacker, server crash, or other website malfunction. That’s why using a free auto backup solution like UpdraftPlus is so important.
You schedule an automatic WordPress backup of your website’s files and database, and store your backups in a cloud service such as Dropbox, Google Drive, or Amazon S3. That way, you can restore your website instantly using a one-click restore button if something happens.
Best Alternative: BackupBuddy (Paid)
Sucuri is an industry leader when it comes to all matters related to website security. It has features like activity audits, remote malware scanning, blacklist monitoring, security notifications, and post-hack security actions so it doesn’t happen again.
And the great things is, Sucuri does its best to keep its feature packed security plugin lightweight so it doesn’t weigh your site’s resources, and loading time, down.
With this amazing plugin you’ll get monitoring and protection from DDoS attacks, malware threats, brute force attacks, and even XXS attacks so you can rest assured your site’s data is safe.
Best Alternative: Wordfence
Beaver Builder is one of the best free WordPress plugins on the market. It’s a drag & drop page builder that works on the front end of your website, so no matter your skill level, you can build a website in a cinch.
Content modules include HTML, photo, text editor, audio, video, and the sidebar. It’s mobile friendly, works with pages, posts, and custom post types, and even comes with photo, color, and video row backgrounds so you can build a beautiful looking website without messing with HTML.
If you want additional modules like a contact form, tabs, a slider, social icons, and more, consider upgrading to the premium version of Beaver Builder. You’ll receive expert support, access pre-made layouts, and even be able to save, export, and reuse full-page layouts, rows, and modules.
9. Yoast SEO
A lot of people ask us which SEO plugin is best in WordPress and we always have the same answer — Yoast SEO.
Yoast SEO is one of the most popular SEO plugins on the market today. It helps you create an automatically updated XML sitemap for your website, preview your content’s search snippet so you can see what site visitors see, and even gives you the green light when your content is SEO optimized.
In addition, you can add meta tags, set canonical URLs to avoid duplicate content and Google penalties, and integrate with Google Search Console so you can see how search engines are indexing your site and fix any crawl errors that exist. If anyone asks you what is best WordPress plugin for SEO, you’ll never go wrong telling them about Yoast SEO.
There’s a pretty easy answer if you’re asking what are the best WordPress plugins and you want to sell products online. It’s WooCommerce, the most popular eCommerce platform for online stores that usually ends up at the top of every list with the best WordPress plugins for eCommerce.
Integrating seamlessly with WordPress, this online shop creator gives you complete control over the design and functionality of your online stor.
So sell anything you want, complete with varying shapes, sizes, product variations, and configurations. And offer a wide range of shipping options such as free shipping or shipping that’s calculated in real time.
Plus, accept major credit cards, BACs, and cash on delivery, so people can make their purchases how they want. And best of all, you own all of it so you never have to worry about a third-party platform packing up and taking your store’s data with them.
Best Alternative (for membership sites): MemberPress (Paid)
11. W3 Total Cache
Another one of the best free WordPress plugins for 2018 is W3 Total Cache. Since site speed is one of the most important SEO ranking factors, you need to focus on improving your site speed in any way you can to boost rankings, site traffic, and conversions.
Best Alternative: WP Super Cache
12. Pretty Links
Pretty Links is an alternative to using link shorteners like tinyurl.com or bit.ly. Now you can make your links look clean all from your WordPress dashboard. Plus, Pretty Links tracks each hit on your URL and gives you a full report on where the hit came from, the browser, the os, and the host.
This free WordPress plugin is great for those who participate in affiliate marketing, track clicks from email addresses, and have a large Twitter following and want to know when clicks come from Twitter to your site. The better your affiliate links look, the more your URLs are shared, the more professional your site looks, and the more successful you become.
Images tend to take up the majority of your website’s page weight. And, without image optimization (for speed and performance) your loading times will suffer. Smush takes the hassle out of optimizing your site’s images by doing it automatically for you anytime you upload a new image to your Media Library.
This free plugin resizes, optimizes, and compresses all of your images, without sacrificing their quality, so your website performs at optimal speeds and continues to rank high in search results. And the best part is, Smush servers do the work, not yours, reducing the additional strain and resource use.
Best Alternative: reSmush.it
Better Click to Tweet gives you a chance to create tweetable content for your site visitors throughout your content. Using a simple shortcode, or the Visual Editor button, just add your text to the code that displays.
Then, on the frontend of your site, users will see your quote and have the chance to click on it to tweet it to all their own Twitter followers. This free plugin is a great way to expose your content, and brand, to a broader audience in a simple way that engages readers.
Best Alternative: Social Warefare
15. Instagram Feed
People are visual by nature. And, if the kind of website you have relies on stunning imagery and social media platforms like Instagram, you’re just in luck with the free plugin Instagram Feed. Display Instagram photos from any non-private Instagram account directly on your website. Be it your own social media account, or images from those that will inspire your readers, you can display photos on a single feed or separate them into multiple ones.
Your Instagram feeds will always look good on mobile devices, they can be customized using shortcodes, and you can even display thumbnail, medium sized, or full-sized photos. Plus, you can infinitely load more images into your feed and show a “Follow on Instagram” button to expand your reach.
Best Alternative: Feed Them Social
16. Envira Gallery
Envira Gallery is a free WordPress plugin that’s both user-friendly and powerful. Create responsive photo and video galleries with ease using the drag & drop photo gallery builder that lets you upload your images, rearrange them how you want, and publish them to your site within minutes.
This free plugin also comes optimized for speed, SEO, and mobile devices so all site visitors can view your images perfectly. And, you can add meta data, deeplinks, and pagination to your galleries for easier site navigation and a better user experience. Not to mention, you can share photos using the social sharing integrations and sell on the popular WooCommerce platform (one of the most popular WordPress plugins) as a way to make more money online.
Best Alternative: Envira Gallery Pro (Paid)
17. Smart Slider 3
Smart Slider 3 is the most powerful and intuitive WordPress slider plugin around. It’s completely, the sliders are gorgeous, and it’s also SEO optimized. On top of that, it works with any WordPress theme.
This free plugin lets you make beautiful sliders that tell the story of your website and business, without writing a line of code.
Do you want to give your site visitors a way to view and print PDFs of your site’s content? If so, you should look into using PrintFriendly’s free WordPress plugin. Users can view content in PDF form, print content in user-friendly formats, and even share content via email. Your site’s content is not stored on our servers; it’s permanently deleted after your used has time to download the file.
With Print, PDF, Email, you can brand your prints and PDFs with copyright information, customize the buttons, and include custom headers and footers. Plus, you can allow users to preview content before printing to save paper and ink.
Best Alternative: PDF & Print
TablePress is an impressive free plugin, raking in tons of 5 stars on thousands of reviews and testimonials in the WordPress plugins directory. With it, you can create and manage beautiful tables that you can embed into posts, pages, and text widgets, all with a simple shortcode.
You can enter any type of data you want, from a simple list to a pricing table with formulas that will be automatically evaluated. Plus, you can import and export all tables to/from Excel, CSV, HTML, and JSON files. Lastly, access the library for functionality like sorting, pagination, and filtering so site visitors can view your tables with ease.
Best Alternative: Ninja Tables
What is an Autoblog in WordPress? Well, an Autoblog or an automated blog is a website that automatically pulls content from other websites using RSS feeds. You can pull things like blog posts, job listings, podcasts, and YouTube videos from places like news sites and display fresh content on your site, all automatically.
So if you’re looking for the best WordPress autoblog plugin, you’ll want to check out the WP RSS Aggregator plugin. This easy to use autoblog plugin is known for having great support and it also offers a premium version with extensions to help you with things like keyword filtering.
The speed of your website is crucial to the user experience and your Google search rankings. With Lazy Load by WP Rocket, your site’s images will only load when they become visible to site visitors. This reduces the number of HTTP requests that are made and improves your page loading time.
This free plugin works on thumbnails, post content, avatars, and iFrame images. And the plugin itself is super lightweight so it doesn’t affect your site’s speed and performance either.
22. Shared Counts
Plus, it supports share counts for a ton of social media platforms like Facebook, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and Twitter (using the NewShareCount API). On top of that, Shared Counts also combines the share count, so you can show the total # of shares right next to the buttons.
Sometimes you need to add code into your site’s header and footer section to enable certain functionality like Google Analytics tracking, Facebook Pixel code, or even plain old custom CSS.
And, while some people are advanced enough to know how to change their theme’s files, not everyone knows how to, or wants to take that risk. That’s where Insert Headers and Footers comes in. Insert scripts into the simple interface and let the plugin do the rest. You’ll never have to worry about messing with your theme’s files and breaking your site again.
If you want an easy way to display an author profile at the end of your website’s posts, consider using the Simple Author Box plugin. Show an author name, gravatar, and description so site visitors can get to know who is writing your killer content. In addition, add some of the over 30 social icons so site visitors can click and link to social media profiles of authors they want to connect with.
Customize the author box to match your website’s design, rest assured it will render well on all devices, and know that the plugin comes with both RTL and AMP support for a better user experience.
Moving your WordPress website from one location to another can be very difficult, even for those with experience. Luckily, Duplicator makes migrating, copying, moving, or cloning a site from one location to another super simple. Not to mention, this free plugin acts as a backup solution too.
Duplicator boasts zero downtime while you move, migrate, or clone a WordPress site between domains or hosts. It also makes pulling a live site to a staging environment easy, and moving it back just as easy. Lastly, you can easily duplicate a live or staged site for use elsewhere, which streamlines site development, especially for those who create multiple sites for clients.
Many WordPress themes come with built-in custom shortcodes to extend the design and functionality of your website. But sometimes, you want something that just isn’t there. With Shotcodes Ultimate, you can access a comprehensive list of visual and functional shortcodes that can be used in the post editor, text widgets, and even template files.
Create tabs, buttons, boxes, sliders, and so much more with the one-click shortcode generator preview panel. From there, customize your shortcode to meet your needs and add it to your site. This free WordPress plugin is mobile responsive, translated into 9 languages, and works with any WordPress theme.
All that control over how your website looks makes Shortcodes Ultimate one of the best WordPress plugins for design.
Internal and external links get broken from time to time. But having broken links on your website is not only bad for SEO, it also hurts the user experience.
Broken Link Checker actively monitors your website for broken links, and immediately notifies you if it finds any so you can fix them. It checks your posts, pages, comments, blog, and even custom fields.
Broken Link Checker also detects links that don’t work on images, which is also important when it comes to image searches. Manage notifications via email or in the WordPress dashboard, prevent search engines from following broken links, and even search and filter links by URL, making your job so much easier.
This type of tool is one of the best WordPress plugins for blogs since content-heavy sites can contain a lot of links.
If your WordPress theme doesn’t come with the Google Fonts you want, you can always use the Easy Google Fonts plugin. With it, you take control of your website’s typography.
This free plugin integrates with your WordPress Customizer, so accessing the 600+ fonts is easy to do. Preview font changes in real time, create your own font controls and rules, and automatically enqueue all stylesheets, all without any coding or editing of the main stylesheet so when your theme updates, you don’t lose your custom work.
Securing your website’s data is crucial, especially if you collect payments from customers from your website. And, it just so happens that one of the best ways to do this is to move your site to HTTPS/SSL. Doing this will also help you avoid the “Not Secure” warnings Google is adding to all non-secure websites.
There are plenty of free SSL certificates available, but moving your entire site to HTTPS can be tough if you’re not sure what you’re doing. The good news is that’s where Really Simple SSL comes in to help. This one-click solution redirects and updates all old URLs to reflect the change to a secure site and handles everything else that comes with migrating your site to HTTPS.
In doing this, your site’s speed increases dramatically, which in turn helps SEO, drive traffic to your site, and boost conversions or sales.
31. Login Lockdown
You should know by now that using a strong username and password combo is important to your WordPress site’s security. But there are more steps you can take to help secure your site’s data.
Login Lockdown limits the number of login attempts a user can make while trying to log into your site. And, after three incorrect attempts within 5 minutes, your site will automatically lock the person trying to log in out of your website for one hour.
If you find yourself needing to import content from a WordPress export file, such as demo content for a new WordPress theme, WordPress Importer is the way to go. This free WordPress plugin will import posts, pages, custom post types, comments, custom fields, categories, tags, and even authors. All you have to do is run the importer, upload the files you want to import, and click Import.
33. Disable Comments
Comment spamming happens. And because it can be annoying, some website owners don’t want a comment system enabled on their website.
WordPress will let you disable certain comments on certain parts of your website, but the Disable Comments plugins gets rid of all comments on your entire website.
Lose the comments across your entire multisite network and remove all comment-related fields from edit and quick-edit screens. You can also get rid of comment-related items on your WordPress dashboard, in widgets, and in the Admin Menu and Admin Bar.
Part of optimizing your WordPress website for speed and performance is cleaning up the insides of your website. This means removing unnecessary data that is piling up in your site’s database to make more room, reduce the strain on your server, and increase your site’s speed. With WP-Optimize you can get rid of spam comments, pingbacks and trackbacks, and any other stale data that’s sitting around.
Schedule automatic clean ups, control which optimizations you run, and even trigger an automatic site backup if you use the UpdraftPlus backup solution. This free plugin is mobile friendly, easy to use, and even comes translated into several languages.
The Events Calendar makes creating and managing a frontend calendar for your site visitors a cinch. It works right out of the box and only takes a few configurations to match your unique needs. From there you can quickly add new events, display a calendar view with tooltips, and allow for saved venues and organizers.
Plus, use the built-in Google Maps so people know how to get to your event, export events to Google Calendar and iCal, add a widget to display upcoming events, and even allow sorting based on events for an improved user experience. And if you’re worried about site speed, don’t be; there’s built-in caching support too.
This plugin will easily become one of the best WordPress widgets on your site.
Your content marketing strategy is the key to consistently publishing valuable content for your site visitors. One of the best ways to organize your website’s content is using the free WordPress plugin Editorial Calendar.
See all posts and when they’re scheduled to go live, drag & drop post due dates on the calendar, quickedit post title, content, and publish times, and even manage posts for multiple authors. With this plugin, you can fill in the gaps where content needs to publish so your website is continually churning out posts that will drive traffic, boost conversions, and increase sales.
37. Code Snippets
If you want to add code snippets to your WordPress website, without having to mess with your site’s functions.php file or worry about breaking your site, Code Snippets is a great solution. Add new code snippets, complete with a custom title and description. Once you save a snippet, it automatically becomes active on your site.
This plugin works out of the box and you won’t lose your snippets if you change WordPress themes. Plus, if you want to move your website to another server, you can use the built-in import tool and transfer all your snippets with your website.
With Redirection, a popular free WordPress plugin raking in over 1 million active installs, you can easily manage 301 redirects, track 404 errors on your site, and make sure the user experience on your website is exceptional. No matter how many URLs you need to change, this free plugin can help, all without having any technical knowledge.
Redirect based on login status, browser, referrer, cookies settings, IP address, and more. Plus, manage the redirects from the backend of your site so you know how many are happening on your site at any given time. With Redirection you can also see which posts and pages aren’t loading right so you can fix them right away, preventing site visitor frustration and ensuring you don’t lose business.
After having used WordPress for some time, you may notice that sometimes it doesn’t have the built-in flexibility you need to really create the website you want. Luckily, with a free WordPress plugin like Advanced Custom Fields, you can. You want to create custom fields for practically any part of your website, including posts, WordPress users, media, comments, and custom pages.
Advanced Custom Fields comes with over 30 different field types, lots of documentation to help you get started, and a simple interface. Though it might be a little tricky to use at first, don’t worry, with a little experimentation you’ll get the hang of it quickly.
Have you ever wanted to replace an image in your Media Library without having to delete the old image, rename the new file, and upload it to your site? The good news is, with Enable Media Replace you can. With this neat WordPress plugin, all you have to do is either replace the old file with a new one or replace the old file with a new one that has a new name and update all links throughout your site to point to the new file.
41. OptinMonster (Paid)
Ok, we know you do need a paid subscription of OptinMonster to use this plugin, but since this it’s the best lead generation plugin in the world we couldn’t resist adding it to the list — nothing else compares. OptinMonster is simply a must-have for any website.
That’s because this plugin comes with a treasure chest of valuable features to grow your business online popups, fullscreen welcome mats, and exit intent. So you can turn site visitors who were headed to abandon your site, into subscribers instead.
And with all the cash you save on the free plugins listed above, you’ll be able to put your money toward this insanely helpful website tool. Plus, there’s a 14-day guarantee so you can try it risk-free.
And there you have it! Now you know the best free WordPress plugins in 2019 for your site. We hope this list helps you make improvements to your site in ways that help you push ahead of the competition, provide a better user experience, and achieve the goals you have set out for yourself.
So, what are you waiting for? Get started with the most powerful WordPress forms plugin today.