40+ Popular Real Estate WordPress Plugins Reviewed

“Plugins should solve a specific problem or provide an essential function. They should not indulge our vanity or our desire for a “shiny new object”. (source: Web Synthesis)

If you own your real estate WordPress website there is a very good chance that you have imported and used a WordPress plugin to give your site extra functionality.

Adding cool features like IDX, CRM, Pop-ups, Shortcodes, SEO, Social Sharing, Sliders, can be done quickly and easily with the right plugin.

But how do you know if it is the right

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WordPress Plugins are defined as:

WordPress plugins are bits of software that can be uploaded to extend and expand the functionality of your WordPress site.

Note: One of the primary advantages of using the self-hosted version of WordPress from WordPress.org is the ability to upload and use plugins on your WordPress site. (source: iThemes)

You can find plugins on:

Plugins can add Social Sharing, Events Calendars, Memberships, Landing Pages, SEO optimization, Forms, Buttons, Sounds, Videos, Galleries, Widgets, and so much more.

What You Should Know About Using WordPress Plugins

While it may sound like getting free software that can fulfill the exact need you have for your website is too good to be true… it is not. But it does come with its fair share of dangers.

Here are some things to think about when you are thinking about using a WordPress plugin for real estate:

  • Some plugins are developed for the sole purpose of filling your website with adware or worse a virus.
  • Not all plugins are coded equally. Bad coding can equal a security risk or simply breaking other parts of your website.
  • Some plugins are not compatible with your hosting provider, or your theme, or other plugins you may have on your site.
  • Sometimes plugins are not kept up very well and when WordPress, your Theme, or other plugins update it can break your site.
  • Many plugins do not offer very good support so if you don’t have an idea of how to use it, it could become frustrating.
  • Plugins can put an excessive strain on your hosting and database resources. Kinda like using all the hot water.
  • How many plugins can 1 site handle… depends on the plugins you are using. Not all plugins are created equally.
  • Often times you can get by with the Free version of a plugin… so try it before you buy the premium version.

Still want to try plugins for your website?

Take some precautions before trying plugins:

  • Before you install or activate your first plugin make sure that you have a complete (wordpress and database) back up of your site.
  • Only upload and activate 1 plugin at a time. Once activated check to make sure that your website is still working correctly. That way you will know which plugin is not playing well with your site. Of course you will not know what part of your site the plugin is not working with, that will take technical trouble shooting.
  • Due your Due diligence and research the plugin you are thinking of trying and make sure that it does not have bad reviews. Your best bet is to get your Plugin from 1 of the resources I mention above so that you can check ratings.
  • All of the WordPress plugins listed below have been tested by our team on our own site and should be safe. That is not to say that they may not be incompatible with some part of your website.
  • Try to stick to trusted Plugin Developers.

16 WordPress Plugins For Real Estate You Should Be Using

1. Jetpack

Jetpack is the best plugin available, in my opinion. It does so much and is 100% free. This plugin is built by WordPress for WordPress and is designed to give you all the little useability, easability, and functionality you might find by using 10’s of 30’s different plugins in 1.

“Jetpack adds powerful features previously only available to WordPress.com users including customization, traffic, mobile, content, and performance tools.”

The plugin just does too much to list everything but a few of my favorites are:

  • Widget Visiblity
  • Sharing
  • Site Stats
  • Custom CSS
  • Commenting
  • Image Carousel
  • Testimonials
  • Enhanced Distribution
  • Related Posts
  • Spelling and Grammar

After you install this plugin your best bet is to log in to your WordPress Dashboard and click on the “Jetpack” >> “Settings” and take a look at what is available and see what, if any, of the features you would like to use.

COST: $0

2. WP Smush

Slow load kills User Experience and SEO rankings. One of the biggest drains on your sites resources when loading is images. And the more you have and the bigger they are the slower your site will load.

WP Smush helps with that. This plugin condenses the images that you load onto your site.

“WP Smush strips hidden, bulky information from your images, reducing the file size without losing quality.”

Just load your images and click the Smush button, or set it to work automatically when you load images.

WP Smush Pro

COST: $19 month

3. Leadin

My favorite Free plugin not named Jetpack. Since uploading this plugin to our site we have seen an increase in leads and sales. I am not going to pretend to tell you by how much percentage because there are to many factors that come into play… but it is not a coincidence.

I wrote a blog post about the plugin here:

Best Free WordPress CRM Plugin

First of all this plugin is made by the same people that make Hubspot. Hubspot is one of the best Small Business Lead Generation Software providers available and they decided to turn their talents to WordPress Plugins.

“Leadin is an easy-to-use marketing automation and lead tracking plugin for WordPress that helps you better understand your web site visitors.”

Leadin offers a beautiful pop-up lead capture, captures all leads on your site, drops them in a CRM in your WordPress dashboard, collects insights based on the email address, and syncs with the top email marketing tools to create an automated drip campaign.

COST: $0

4. WP Listings

WP Listings is fantastic free plugin that can bolster your Real Estate marketing and save you money. This plugin could be used for a replacement to IDX, although I would recommend using it as a complimentary tool.

This plugin can be a replacement for the Single Property Websites that you may be paying for. How you say… Read This Blog Post To Find Out:

Creating Single Property Websites With WP Listings

You can use it to create a library of listings you have sold or showcase a particular niche of homes.

“WP Listings uses custom post types, taxonomies, templates, and widgets to create a listing management system for WordPress. It includes custom templates and widgets for front end display.”

WP Listing Themes

COST: $24.99

5. Yoast SEO

The definitive word in WordPress SEO is Yoast. WordPress SEO is a tricky thing. You will hear that the WordPress platform is SEO friendly, and it is. You will hear that your Equity or other premium theme is SEO friendly, and it is. You hear that this plugin is SEO friendly, and it is. Then I am going to tell you that SEO friendliness will not get your site to rank on the search engines without content.

Yoast knows this to and that is why his plugin not only focuses on optimizing your site (on on-page SEO), but also helps you to build SEO friendly content.

“Improve your WordPress SEO: Write better content and have a fully optimized WordPress site using Yoast SEO plugin.”

You can learn more about the plugin here:

WordPress SEO Plugin

COST: $0

6. Formidable Forms (Gravity Forms, Contact Form 7)

When you are talking about lead generation you can not have a conversation without mentioning contact forms. A landing page without a contact form is just a business card in the clouds. You can give it to them and hope and pray they call you… but they won’t. They might fill out your contact form.

“Beautiful forms in 60 seconds. The WordPress form builder that enables you to create forms with a simple drag-and-drop interface and in-place editing.”

There are 3 Contact form plugins that I recommend.

We use Formidable Forms Pro and have for many many years. That being said; Gravity Forms is the industry leader. Contact Form 7 is bar far and away the best free contact form plugin.

You can learn more about Formidable here:

Formidable Forms Pro

All 3 Form Plugins are fairly easy to use and come with more features than you will ever use.

Formidable Forms Pro

COST: $47 year

Gravity Forms

COST: $39 year

7. IDX Broker Pt.

I talk at length about the major IDX plugins here:

Best IDX WordPress Plugins

Having developed WordPress websites for a long, long time no other IDX plugin has worked as consistently well as the IDX Broker Platinum plugin. What more can I say.

“Over 600 IDX/MLS feeds serviced. The #1 IDX/MLS solution just got even better!”

If you use the Equity Framework for your Real Estate Theme then you will also notice the plugin integrates more smoothly.

IDX Broker Platinum offers hundreds of awesome features, here are a few: New Omni-Search Widget, Cloud Hosted, Never Framed, Design Community, Mobile Responsive and Mobile-Friendly, Map Search Widget, Build Neighborhood Pages, The Best Office IDX Available, Affordable Pricing.

IDX Broker Lite

COST: $39.99 month

IDX Broker Platinum

COST: $59.99 month

Teams and Office

COST: Check Pricing

8. BJ Lazy Load

Remember earlier we talked about how much images can slow down your site? Along with shrinking their size you can also have “Lazy Load”.

Lazy loading only loads the images that are visible on the screen. By doing this you put less strain on your server and your site loads faster.

“Lazy loading for images and iframes makes your site load faster and saves bandwidth. Uses no external JS libraries and degrades gracefully for non-js”

COST: $0

9. Triberr

You don’t hear about Tribe Marketing as much as you did a few years back… now we talk about Influencer Marketing. Triberr is a great place to find influencers and have them share your content with their audience. Of course you need to share others content with your audience, but trust me it is a win-win scenario.

“A community of talented Bloggers and Influencers come together to read and share great content.”

This plugin syndicates my blog posts to Triberr for my tribe mates to share with their audience. This drives some traffic, introduces me to new and interesting people, and increases my social footprint.

I wrote about Triberr here:

Triberr Blogger Network

Triberr Premium

COST: $10 month

10. Genesis Agent Profiles Extended (If you are using the Genesis Theme)

This plugin only works on the Genesis Framework, which is a bummer because I have started building primarily on the Equity Framework. If you are on Genesis and have a real estate website chances are you need an agent, or agents, or team page or pages.

You can build these pages without a plugin, but this plugin sure does make it easy. And when all the information is added the pages look professional. There is also a widget you can use to display a small agent profile on the home page.

“Creates a real estate agent directory for Genesis child themes. Adds functionality to the Genesis Agent Profiles plugin. Improved shortcode sorting options, random display on page load and 4 column responsive grid.”

The original plugin is simply called Genesis Agent Profiles, but the extended plugin is just a bit nicer.

COST: $0

11. Shareaholics

I wrote a blog post about the Shareaholics plugin:

Best Social Sharing Plugin

“The easiest, most effective way to grow your website traffic, effectively engage your audience, monetize, and gain insights for free.”

You can get a nice social sharing feature on the Jetpack plugin, but it is not as nice as the Shareaholics social sharing.

The Good:

  • You can customize the bejeezers out of the social buttons
  • Floating Social Share
  • Works well
  • Asks people that share content to follow you
  • sharable Images (adds a “pin it” button overlay on your images)

The Bad:

  • A bit resource heavy
  • Adds Affiliate Links and Promoted Content to your site by default (you need to make sure and turn this off, unless you run a site where you get enough traffic that you can earn money by promoting other people’s content and are not worried about loosing your visitors to spammy sites)

COST: $0

12. LeadPages

If you want to generate leads on your real estate website you will need Landing Pages. You can buy landing page services such as; IDX plugins, Home Value Leads, and Top Producer are some you are probably familiar with.

But if you want to make your own you can either slog your way through trying to hand design a WordPress Page or you can use the Point and Click, Highly Customizable, Extensive Font Collection, Ton’s Of Beautiful Templates to Start From, Publish a Landing Page in minutes LeadPages tool.

“Our easy-to-use LeadPages® plug-in allows you to customize one of our proven landing pages and post it to your WordPress site in a matter of minutes.”

LeadPages has far to many features to list them all but rest assured it is still easy to use.

I wrote about Real Estate Landing Pages in detail here:

Real Estate Landing Pages

13. Swiftype Search

How can we have a top-notch real estate website without top-notch search. This is not associated with your IDX home search this is your “Search This Site” box. If you are going to take time to add content to your WordPress website than you need to have a search box.

“Fast, intelligent, and fully customizable search for your site. Comes with detailed analytics and controls in the Swiftype Dashboard. “

The search box that comes standard with WordPress does the job but it is kind of lame. Swiftype makes your search bar awesome. When you search my site you will notice that once you start typing you get suggestions, like Google. Then the results that you get are sorted in order of relevance not date.

You will also get analytics and can see what your visitors are searching for.

SwifType Pro

COST: $19 month

14. Auto Terms of Service and Privacy Policy

Did you know that in order to advertise your website on Google, Bing and Yahoo it is required that you have a Privacy Policy and Terms of Service? It is also just good business… better safe than sorry.

“Put your own details into a modified version of Automattic’s “Terms of Service” and “Privacy Policy”. 3 short codes available.”

Unless you are good at legalese you can use this plugin to create the content for you. Just fill in your business name and city and add the shortcode to a page.

COST: $0

15. Google Analytics Dashboard for WP

You have done all this hard work to get your real estate website just right. Now it is time to see how you did. You can track the success of the site using Google Analytics.

There are also Site stats available on Jetpack if you are not interested in going through this much trouble. The Jetpack site stats are a good… but the Google Analytics stats monitor more categories of stats.

In order to use this plugin or Google Analytics in general you will first need to create your account on Google Analytics.

Once you have created your Google Analytics account you need to verify that own the site that you want Google to track. They will give you a code that you can add to this plugin to verify your site.

“Displays Google Analytics reports in your WordPress Dashboard. Inserts the latest Google Analytics tracking code in your pages.”

In addition to assisting you verify your site the plugin adds an easy to read analytics dashboard to your WordPress dashboard.

COST: $0

16. Akismet

Akismet comes with every WordPress install for a reason. It is a must. WordPress websites by default allow your readers to comment on your content. Unfortunately spammers, bots, and scammers like to try to take advantage of your website by posting spam, links, and viruses to your comments section. Akismet virtually erases all of that.

“Akismet checks your comments against the Akismet Web service to see if they look like spam or not.”

My Akismet has protected my site from 276,893 spam comments already, this month. In addition to blocking the spam you can also tell it to delete all spam so that you don’t have hundreds of thousands of spammy comments filling up your database.

COST: $0 (requires a WordPress.com account)

6 Plugins That Are Not Essential But Still Cool

1. MapPress Easy Google Maps

If you are going to be adding community pages or a sold gallery, or just want to show off your office this plugin may come in handy.

“MapPress is the most popular and easiest way to create great-looking Google Maps and driving directions in your blog.”

COST: $0

2. The Events Calendar

Think it may be a value add to your website to display the local events? This plugin should give you all you can handle.

“The Events Calendar is a carefully crafted, extensible plugin that lets you easily share your events. Beautiful. Solid. Awesome.”

COST: $0

3. Google Language Translator

Do you speak multiple languages, have clients that do, or just want to look like an international player? The Google Language translator gives your site an international flair.

“Welcome to Google Language Translator! This plugin allows you to insert the Google Language Translator tool anywhere on your website using shortcode”

COST: $0

4. Membership 2

You may want to create a Membership style site where you require your visitors to become a member to access your special training material. This is the best plugin I have found for that.

“Membership 2 transforms your WordPress website into a fully functional membership site.”

Membership 2 Pro

COST: $19 month

5. TubePress

We so often talk about adding video to your real estate website…well, why not add all your videos to your real estate website?!

Instead of copying and pasting individual videos to your site, now you can add an attractive grid style video series that will not only get folks to your site but more than certainly will keep them there!

“Modern video galleries for the web Adding video galleries to your website has never been easier.”

Easy to install and even easier to set up, this plugin offers a great way for you to take your videos and add them to your website without any technical knowhow!

Once this plugin is installed, it will feed all your videos so all you have to do is add them to your YouTube or Vimeo channel.

TubePress Pro

COST: $39.99 year

6. Simple Real Estate Pack

I like to use this plugin for displaying Education.com school information for your local area. You can also display Mortgage Calculators, Walkscore, and Yelp Business information.

“Package of real estate tools and widgets designed specifically for real estate industry blogs and sites”

COST: $0

7 WordPress Plugins For Real Estate That Are For Looks

1. Soliloquy

Research tells us that our landing pages should not have sliders but real estate agents sure do love them. Soliloquy is my favorite. Not because it does the most, but because it does the least. That means that it is easy to use, easy to set up and just works.

“The best responsive WordPress slider plugin. Made lite and free”

Don’t get me wrong it is still a good-looking slider it just does not have all the parallax and transition effects that some of the others do.

2. Tabby Responsive Tabs

Many themes have a built-in Tabbed shortcode, but if not, and you want to display content in a Responsive Tabbed way then Tabby looks great, works great, and is easy to use.

“Create responsive tabs inside your posts, pages or custom post content by adding simple shortcode inside the post editor.”

We often use a tabbed feature to display different types of real estate for sale in a community.

COST: $0

3. Collapse O Matic

Have you seen a feature where you click on an arrow, text, or icon and a box full of content slides open? This is called jquery and can be a pain to develop. If you are looking for a simple sliding container that works well and looks nice this is it.

“Remove clutter, save space: display and hide additional content in a SEO friendly way by wrapping content in an [expand] shortcode.”

You have to be careful with jquery and javascript based plugins. They can do some really powerful and cool things but they can also break your website. Often times there will be a conflict in coding, but this plugin works with all the plugins I have mentioned.

COST: $0

4. WordPress Visual Slide Box Builder

With this plugin you can add some cool hover effects to images, icons, and widgets. This plugin is fairly easy to use but does require a little thought. No coding.

“Fancy jQuery and CSS3 driven animations to display inside a box. No coding experience needed — WYSIWYG.”

I recently used this plugin to create 4 animated boxes with local images directing visitors to Buy, Sell, Communities, or Contact.

WordPress Visual Slide Box Builder

COST: $0

WordPress Visual Slide Box Builder Responsive Pack

COST: $9

5. LayerSlider or 6. Slider Revolution

2 Popular and pretty much equally powerful fully featured slider plugins. The possibilities are endless with sliders like these but they are not free and they are not simple to use. Both require a little getting used to.

“Slider Revolution is an innovative, responsive WordPress Slider Plugin that displays your content the beautiful way. Whether it’s a Slider, Carousel, Hero Scene or even a whole Front Page, the visual, drag & drop editor will let you tell your own stories in no time!”
“LayerSlider WP is a premium multi-purpose slider for creating image galleries, content sliders, and mind-blowing slideshows with must-see effects, even from your WordPress posts and pages.”

If you are looking to wow your visitors you can do it with either one of these.

Some features of both:

  • Responsive
  • Parallax
  • Carousel
  • 100’s Of Slide Transition Styles
  • Drag n Drop Styling
  • Multiple Slider Skins
  • Import Content
  • Run Video
  • Link to Content
  • Unlimited Slides and Layers
  • Custom Fonts
  • Etc.

The Slider Revolution plugin does offer the popular Ken Burns Effect that the Layer Slider does not.

Slider Revolution

COST: $19

7. Uber Menu

If you want a customized menu bar Uber Menu offers about any feature you could want from your website menu bar. Like the 2 sliders mentioned above, along with great power comes a great learning curve. This is not just a simple plugin it in and things happen plugin. It will take you some time to learn what it can do and to set it up to work the way you were hoping.

“UberMenu™ is a user-friendly, highly customizable, responsive Mega Menu WordPress plugin. It works out of the box with the WordPress 3 Menu System, making it simple to get started but powerful enough to create highly customized and creative mega menu configurations”

Ubermenu offers more features than you would ever need, but a few are:

  • Responsive
  • Mobile
  • Add Images, Shortcode, Google Maps, Icons, or Contact Forms To Menu
  • Multiple pre-designed skins or customize your own look
  • Custom Fonts
  • Import Content
  • Multiple Menu Transitions
  • Vertical or Horizontal Menus
  • Display Submenu Items multiple different ways

COST: $19

8 Plugins We Don’t Use Because They Are Baked Into Our Premium Hosting

We use and our clients use WP Engine Premium WordPress Hosting. We recommend that you use it as well. If you are using this hosting or something similar you will not need any of the popular plugins listed below.

Sign up for WP ENGINE

Use Our Promo: FOX20

1. W3 Total Cache

Downloaded over a million times for a reason. If you do not have a Premium WordPress hosted website then you need some type of caching plugin. If you are using one of the Big Named shared hosting providers you absolutely need a caching plugin.

“Easy Web Performance Optimization (WPO) using caching: browser, page, object, database, minify and content delivery network support.”

Real estate WordPress websites are resource heavy and often image heavy. This puts a strain on your hosts server. Caching plugins reduce the stress put on those servers by Caching or storing content that gets loaded often. This helps your site to load quicker for your viewers.

Quicker loading times are important for 2 reasons.

  1. Your visitor does not want to wait for your site to load
  2. Google uses load speed as an important SEO factor

W3 Total Cache is the best caching plugin available. That being said it is also a bit confusing. There are many tutorials available to teach you how to set it up.

If you are not interested in learning how to set up your Caching plugin there are easier to use caching plugins:

2. WP Super Cache

A trusted Free Caching Plugin

“A very fast caching engine for WordPress that produces static html files.”

3. WP Rocket

A slightly more powerful paid Caching Plugin.

“Simplicity & Speed. Don’t waste your time struggling with complex plugin settings. WP Rocket launches upon activation — minimal configuration, immediate results.”

*If you are going to pay to make your hosting better why not just upgrade your hosting.

4. iThemes Security (formerly Better WP Security) or 5. WordFence

When my partner and I first started building websites many years ago we used the popular Big Named shared hosting providers. Over the years it is hard to believe how many of those real estate websites were hacked or compromised. Including my partners personal site, that was hacked by someone who left a terrible virus and a splash screen saying that he was a terrorist.

Yes every day real estate agents get hacked. You can not just have a, “that will never happen to me approach” because it can and it will.

Now that I have scared the bejeezers out of you… you can protect yourself. Again if you have a Premium WordPress Hosting Provider like WP Engine then you are already protected. But if not.

“iThemes Security (formerly Better WP Security) gives you over 30+ ways to secure and protect your WordPress site.”
“The Wordfence WordPress security plugin provides free enterprise-class WordPress security, protecting your website from hacks and malware.”

Either one of these popular security plugins should keep your website safe and sound.

iThemes Security

COST: $0

iThemes Security Pro

COST: $80 year

WordFence Premium

COST: $39 year

*If you are going to pay to make your hosting secure why not just upgrade your hosting.

6. Force Strong Passwords

As mentioned above, even real estate agent websites get hacked. The easiest way to do this is with a weak password, or an easy to guess password. This plugin forces you to choose a strong password, or one that is not easy to hack.

“Forces privileged users to set a strong password.”

COST: $0

*You can also just force yourself to use strong passwords.

7. VaultPress or 8. Backup Buddy

In the beginning of this post I talked about taking some precautions before trying plugins; before you install or activate your first plugin make sure that you have a complete (wordpress and database) back up of your site. This is important because sometimes uploading plugins or even updating a current plugin can break your site. If that happens you will want to be able to switch it back quickly.

If you have a Premium WordPress Hosting service your site will be auto saved. That may not be good enough. You should do a backup right before you upload or update your plugin. With WP Engine you can do this with a push of a button. Otherwise you will want to use a plugin.

I like VautPress a bit better because it is run by the engineers at WordPress.com and that makes me feel a bit safer. However, iThemes has been building plugins and themes for a long time and has a proven product.

“VaultPress is a subscription service offering realtime backup, automated security scanning, and support from WordPress experts.”
“The best way to back up (and move) a WordPress site.”

VaultPress

COST: $99 year

BackUp Buddy

COST: $80 year

Real Estate WordPress Plugins We Don’t Recommend

8 Because you can get similar functionality elsewhere without loading your WordPress website full of resource hogging and oft trouble making plugins.

1. Disqus

A commenting plugin like Disqus seems like a great idea. The problem is that they are mining our sites to sell ads and if you are not careful when setting them up they will post ads on your site.

The Disqus comment system replaces your WordPress comment system with your comments hosted and powered by Disqus.

I use the JetPack Commenting feature.

COST: $0

2. Yet Another Related Posts Plugin / 3. Related Posts For WordPress

These plugins offer a cool feature, but they are database resource hogs.

Display a list of related posts on your site based on a powerful unique algorithm. Earn money by including sponsored content!

I use the JetPack Related Content feature, Shareaholics also has a related content feature.

COST: $0

4. Easy Testimonials

This is a great plugin and would still be using it if JetPack had not released a Testimonials feature. The JetPack Testimonials does not come with many features, so you may still want to indulge in this plugin.

“Easy Testimonials is a simple-to-use plugin for adding Testimonials to your WordPress Theme, using a shortcode or a widget.”

This plugin will let you add sliding testimonial widgets, gives more testimonial customizations, includes different skins, and gives you the ability to display your testimonials pretty much any way you would like with their shortcode generator.

Easy Testimonials

COST: $0

Easy Testimonials Pro

COST: $59

5. Display Widgets / 6. Custom Sidebar

You may want your visitors to see different sidebar widgets when they visit different pages.

For Example:

You may want a Contact Us form to show in your widgets on most pages, but that seems redundant on your Contact Us page. You can use these plugins to tell your site you would want to hide the Contact Us widget on the Contact Us Page.

Both these plugins work well and you may like them better but I like to use the JetPack Widget Visibility option.

“Simply hide widgets on specified pages. Adds check boxes to each widget to either show or hide it on every site page.”
“Create your own widgetized areas and choose on which pages they show up — “Easy to use. Even with complex themes. Made my work much easier.”

Custom Sidebars Pro

COST: $19 year

7. Google XML Sitemaps

This plugin is both resource heavy, and if you use the Yoast WordPress SEO plugin I mentioned above it has XML Sitemaps included.

“This plugin will generate a special XML sitemap which will help search engines to better index your blog.”

COST: $0

8. Any Plugin That Sends Emails From Your WordPress Website

It may seem like a cool idea to send your email marketing from your WordPress website, but it is not. I tried it years ago and my site came to a screeching halt. In addition most of your mail will go to your clients spam folder. Plus you just don’t have as many features as you can get from MailChimp.

Just use Mailchimp. Or AWeber Email Marketing. Or even Constant Contact, Happy Grasshopper, Emma, or iContact.

1 Plugin We Don’t Recommend Because you should have a Responsive design that adapts to mobile screens and not a plugin that creates a different site.

1. WPtouch Mobile Plugin

I hope that you are not looking for a plugin to make your Real Estate website mobile friendly. Most WordPress Themes and ultimately websites that are built today are Responsive. Meaning they respond to different size screens and give a seamless mobile experience for all screens. But if your site is not responsive then plugin will help you get it mobile-friendly.

“Make your WordPress website mobile-friendly with just a few clicks.”

COST: $0

2 Plugins We Don’t Recommend Because the Equity Framework that we build on has them baked in.

If you are not on the Equity Framework… maybe you should be. Your theme may have similar features baked in, if not these plugins are good to use.

1. Simple Custom CSS

If you are going to style your website using the Styles.css then you can not use the master file. If you upgrade your theme all your custom CSS with disappear. Many themes come with a Custom CSS section… but they are usually a small box somewhere obscure with no line items.

This plugin creates a CSS Page that will not disappear when you update and is a full screen with line items. Even gives you warnings if your code is not right.

“Add Custom CSS to your WordPress site without any hassles.”

JetPack has a custom CSS setting, but I do not use it because the jetpack plugin disconnects every once in a while. If it does you do not want people to see your site without the proper styling.

COST: $0

2.WordPress Button Plugin MaxButtons

Buttons play a big part in lead capture and user experience. Contact Us, Sign Up Here, Download This, Read More, etc. If you’re not sure how to make nice looking buttons on your site this plugin is easy to use and works well.

“A CSS3 button generator for WordPress that’s powerful and so easy to use that anyone can create beautiful buttons.”

Most themes come with built-in short code for building buttons, I just make them with html and CSS, if that sounds foreign to you this plugin is great.

MaxButtons Pro

COST: $19 or $99 if want all their button skins

5 Plugins We Don’t Recommend Because they put too much strain on your database.

1.Broken Link Checker

You can check your broken links here: http://www.brokenlinkcheck.com/

2. Yet Another Related Posts Plugin

Use JetPack Related Posts or Linkwithin

3. Any Plugin That Sends An Email From Your Website

Explained Above. Use MailChimp.

4. WordPress Popular Posts

Explained Above. Use JetPack Related Posts or Linkwithin

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Summary

I am sure we have all wanted our WordPress website to do something that is above and beyond what is offered by the core product. Having a developer write the code for us can get real pricey real fast… and it still has to be maintained.

That is where plugins come in. They are bits of software that fill a demand and “plugin” to your WordPress website with little trouble.

Be careful, not all plugins are created equally, and there are some big problems that may arise if you choose poorly.

We hope that this guide will help you fill a need and do it quickly, and safely.

Originally published at www.jasonfox.me on October 26, 2015.

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