In this episode we are going to talk about WordPress plugins! Which ones that will make your site awesome and which ones will make you scream in pain and agony.

Show Notes

 

Why WordPress is the Most Popular Website Platform for Authors

  1. Plugins!
  2. Power
  3. Price
  4. Popularity

What is a WordPress Plugin?

An app for your website.

How to Add Plugins to Your Website
  • You need either WordPress.org (Bluehost, WP Engine, etc.) OR the $25/mo version of WordPress.com.
  • Install from your dashboard (free plugins).
  • Upload a zip to your dashboard (paid plugins).

 

The 5 Best Free WordPress Plugins for Authors

 

#1 YOAST SEO

What it Does

It helps your site rank better on Google by helping you with SEO (Search Engine Optimization)

Why it is the Best

Yoast does what often takes two or three other plugins to do. It also teaches you about SEO as you use it.

Why this is Important

If you don’t rank for your name and your book titles, someone else will rank for you. Best case scenario you miss out on money, worst case scenario it makes your fans mad.

Repository Link

#2 Google Analytics Dashboard for WP (GADWP)

 

What it Does

It integrates your website with Google Analytics to collect detailed statistics. It also puts a Google Analytics dashboard in WordPress dashboard so you don’t have to log into Google Analytics to see your stats.

Why it is the Best

You don’t need this plugin to use Google Analytics, but it makes it easier. Also, in my experience authors never log in to Google Analytics to do anything other than prep a book proposal. This makes the analytics nearly useless.

Why this is Important  

Analytics can teach you about your readers and about yourself. But only if you use them regularly.

Repository Link

#3 Jetpack

 

What it Does

Jetpack is the Swiss Army Knife of plugins. It protects your site from spam, improves the speed, provides a contact form, related posts and a lot more.

Why this is Important  

Jetpack replaces the need for at least half a dozen other plugins. Spam will ruin your comments without some kind of filter, readers will get frustrated without some kind of contact form, and the slower your site loads the less time people will spend on it.

Why it is the Best

Jetpack is made by Automattic the company behind WordPress. They have the best developers and the most money. If you get the other plugins we recommend in this episode, the free version is all you need.

Repository Link

#4 MyBookProgress

 

What it Does

It puts a progress bar on your website to show your readers the status of your WIP. It also integrates with MailChimp and with your blog.

Why this is Important  

WIP status is the number two reason people visit author websites. If you keep this up to date, you will have more traffic and a lot more repeat traffic. You will also have a bigger email list and more successful launches.

Why it is the Best

This is one of the only (if not the only) progress bar designed specifically with authors in mind. It has a dashboard that not only keeps your readers up to date, but it helps keep you on track as well.

Repository Link

#5 MyBookTable

 

What is Does

It creates a bookstore for your website where the buy buttons go to Amazon, BN.com and dozens of other stores. It helps you organize your books by author, series, genre and more.

Why this is Important  

The more books you have the more work it is to keep them organized on your website. While only somewhat helpful if you have a single book, where MyBookTable really shines is in helping you organize many books across multiple series, genres and co-authors. This is the kind of plugin you can grow into as an author.

Why it is the Best

This is by far the most powerful bookstore plugin for WordPress. It is also the most popular.

Repository Link

Plugins to Avoid

  • WooCommerce – Massive overkill for what authors need. Don’t use unless you plan to ship dozens of books directly to authors every month.
  • MySpeakingPage – Nearing the end of its life
  • MySpeakingEvents – Nearing the end of its life

 

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