Wordpress is a great CMS for your online business. Whether it’s a small blog or e-commerce store; your website can grow with your business over time. When you are ready to get serious about Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), optimising content to increase your website’s performance or converting more visitors with custom forms & opt-ins, then these wordpress plugins can help you with that. And the best thing: they are included (free) with our Premium website plan.
Let us dive into these plugins to see if they are the right tools for you.
With your website or blog growing over time, so does the amount of images. And with every image you upload, you might not realize it adds on average 1Mb, 3Mb or even more that your website needs to load every time it’s loaded. This effects not only the speed of the website loading for your visitors, but it can also affect things like Page Speed Metrics which could have a negative affect on your website ranking with search engines. The Smush Pro plugin has the following key features to help you deal with this.
Image compression & resizing
The great thing about Smush Pro is that it will automatically compress images when you upload them. Which is great, because when you are in a rush to get a new page or blogpost up this is the last thing you want to be spending time on. In addition, it will also resize and scale the image into the correct sizes for your website. And that’s great for Google’s Page Speed ranking too. Good to know: a backup is made of every image so you can always restore the original later on. Also, if you purposely want to display large images you can choose to ignore certain files from resizing. By default WordPress renders your image in multiple formats, including thumbnails. Now you have the option to get around this too.
Alternatively, you can also hand pick the images you want to compress from the Media Library.
Convert PNG to JPEG
While PNG is a great format for high quality photo’s, it is not the preferred format for websites since it will slow down loading time significantly because of larger file size. With Smush Pro you can choose to convert your images or photo’s automatically, which also reduce the file size.
Lazy-loading or deferring your off-screen images is a great way to help speed up your website. Only the images that are shown “above the fold” or that the visitors sees before scrolling are loaded. And when scrolling, more are loaded. This helps speed up the page load and also helps with your Google Page Speed ranking, so it’s a win-win.
Load images from a CDN
The closer your audience is to the server where your website is hosted, the faster they will be able to load your site. A CDN (Content Delivery Network) can help with that. It’s a series of servers around the globe; when a browser makes the HTTP request, the content is served from the closest server to its location.
Smush Pro has a 45-point CDN that can automatically resize your images as well and convert them to Google’s next-gen image format, WebP.
Convert images to WebP
WebP is what Google likes to call a “next-gen image format”. It has far greater image compression capabilities. Typically you can achieve 30% more compression compared JPEG and JPEG 2000. Which is great for page speed. With Smush Pro, you can decide if you want to convert your images to WebP alternative to loading them from a CDN or from WordPress (default).
While Smush Pro is a great way to get started with optimizing your website, you can get even more serious with Hummingbird Pro. The build-in audit is a great way to start: it will give you numerous recommendations to boost website loading times and search engine metrics. Where Smush only takes on images this plugin let’s you control cache settings, improving the load of scripts and css and even allows integration with Cloudflare.
One of the best options for improving page loading is the use of caching: making sure all not all images and code have to be loaded every single time a page reloads. Without getting too technical, caching can help only refresh the data or content that has not been changed. Hummingbird gives you the option to control page caching, browser caching, Gravatar caching and RSS caching.
These changes can make a great difference, but if you are not sure what you are doing it can also negatively impact performance. When in doubt, you can always ask us for advise. With our premium and E-Commerce maintenance plan this is included!
It’s also good to know that Hummingbird does not make any changes in your database. So you can easily reset your changes and go back to the default configuration.
Cloudflare Integration (CDN)
A CDN helps close the distance and between your website and your visitors. Regardless of how many files, images, or pages you have on your website, a CDN allows your visitors to experience and interact with your website just as fast as if they were locally based. And that’s a huge deal for websites with a lot of traffic or with a large global audience. Those few seconds you lose in load time (and potentially converted business) are valuable!
Using a CDN not only improves load times but it also allows you to handle more visitors to your site at the same time. If your site has ever experienced a sudden and unexpected traffic spike and gone down thanks to being featured on an authority news site in your niche, a CDN could have stopped this from happening.
Hummingbird gives you out-of-the-box integration with Cloudflare CDN, which makes setup a real breeze. Personal or hobby projects (not business critical) can use their free (!) monthly plan which gives you load balancing & DDoS mitigation. Professional businesses should consider one of the paid plans which add extra security features too minimize business risk.
I got my very own Cloudflare integration up and running under 15 minutes: it’s that easy!
WordPress tends to save unnecessary things in your database like post revisions or spam comments. If you have a big website, those things can become very big and slow down your website significantly. Within the advanced tools you can address thisproblem by cleaning your database.
Another cool option is to enable “Cart Fragments” if you have a WooCommerce shop. This enables the contends of the shopping cart without reloading the page. Your visitors will thank you.
Hustle is the ultimate email marketing and lead generation plugin for WordPress. It gives you everything you need to get more customers. From opt-ins, embeds, to social sharing, email marketing form integration and conversion reports.
Create pop-ups, opt-ins with build-in templates
With build-in templates for pop-ups and opt-ins you don’t need to be a designer to add a promotion or newsletter sign-up to your website. Just select the type of promotion, decide where and when to show it to your customers and adjust the styling to match your website’s theme.
Schedule campaigns & target specific visitors
By applying one or more of Hustle’s visibility rules, you can target only the visitors you want to see your messages using specific conditions and settings to suit your needs. For example: you can show a promotion only to logged-in visitors, or visitors from a specific country.
If you run an E-Commerce store, Hustle can also help improving your sales with specific conditions for WooCommerce-powered sites. For example: if you are running a sale for a specific product, you can set WooCommerce conditions to run promotional campaigns offering specials or discounts on its product page.
View e-mail subscribers
You can view a list of everyone who has subscribed through any opt-ins you added on your website (including any third-party lists you connect). If you have a sizeable email list, you can use filters on the submission page to save time bulk editing, finding, viewing, and sorting specific subscribers or segments of your email list.
Integrates with your favorite email service
If you like to use tools like HubSpot, Convertkit or Mailchimp, you can send your newly generated leads directly to each of these third-party tools. And with use of Zapier, you can even integrate with a 1000+ other services.
What’s in the name! Forminator let’s you create forms, quizzes, polls, collect payments from Stripe & PayPal, and much more!
With basis form templates, you will have a website form setup in no time. Forminator comes with out-of-the-box templates for:
- Blank – Design your own form from scratch.
- Contact Form – Includes essential information for users to contact you.
- Quote Request – Lets users choose your services, add notes, and reach out to you.
- Newsletter – Perfect for collecting email addresses and getting users to subscribe to your newsletter.
- Registration – Requires users to set up a username, their email, and a password to register.
- Login – Customize this form to allow your registered users to log in.
- Create Post – Perfect for multiauthor sites, this allows users to create a post, upload featured images, add a category, and create a post.
Payment forms (with Stripe and Paypal)
This might be the coolest feature of Forminator and ideal for collecting simple payments for services or a membership, without setting up a webshop. When creating a new form, you can choose to add either Stripe or PayPal to collect payments right from the form. For more information on how to set this up, check out this article.
Polls & quizzes
Polls are great for gathering information, creating tests or adding a fun element to your website. For privacy, there are options to disable storing submissions in your database. You can also change how long you want to retain a poll’s submission and adjust how long you want to keep IP addresses before a submission is anonymized.
Send Form responses to Slack
Instead of sending responses from your website form to your inbox, you can send them directly to Slack! Or to a 1000+ other apps with use of Zapier.
SmartCrawl is a great tool for improving your website’s SEO. Optimizing your website for more traffic and better search engine results. It has similar features compared to other popular plugins like Yoast SEO and RankMath but it adds features for changing your schema markup. There’s actually too much features to mention, so I’m going to stick with the most noteworthy for the purpose of this post.
SEO scanning & reporting
With SmartCrawl you can do a full SEO-scan of your website to see how good your site is optimized for search engine optimization and social media. The Site Crawler also detects any URL issues like broken links, 404s, multiple redirections etc. that might interfere with rankings. You can choose to schedule checkups and have the report send straight to your inbox.
Of course, any recommendations can be actioned directly from the SmarCrawl dashboard.
Control titles & meta
Appearances are important. SmartCrawl lets’s you customize your titles and meta to be more Google-friendly. For example, it shows you recommendations of the number of characters to use, a live Google preview, and also offers other pointers.
Optimize social appearance (OpenGraph)
Control how your pages and posts appear on social media, leading to better engagement and traffic. You can enable OpenGraph, Twitter Cards, and also turn on Pinterest Verification. OpenGraph adds metadata to your pages to make them appear amazing when shared on popular social networks.
With Twitter Cards, you can add metadata to your pages to make the appearance of your posts better with rich photos, videos, and media experiences.
Turning on Pinterest Verification will verify your website with Pinterest. This will attribute your website when your site’s content is pinned to the social platform.
Integrate with MozRank
Moz is the industry leader when it comes to SEO reports. With MozRank activated, it will provide reports that tell you how your site is performing against your competition. You get crucial SEO measurement tools, like ranking, links, and more.
Improve your website’s schema markup
And last, but definately not least: schema markup helps search engines better understand your site’s content and increases your visibility.
Have you ever seen review ratings, recipes or events in Google’s search engine results that are not just normal listings but also contain additional information? We call those “rich snippets” and they are thanks to schema markup. According to Google experiments, rich snippets can increase clickthrough rates. This means that whilst remaining at the same positions in Google’s search result, you could still drive more traffic to your website. Schema may not directly improve your search rankings, but it can still be beneficial for your SEO.