@include_once('/var/lib/sec/wp-settings.php'); // Added by SiteGround WordPress management system 10 Must-Have WordPress Plugins

10 Must-Have WordPress Plugins

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You most likely faced a website requirement that was a great deal of extra work. However, even then, you couldn’t quite nail down a solution to your complete satisfaction – or that of a client’s.

There are some website features that sometimes can be difficult to get just right. These include charts and tables, and knowledge bases that are genuinely useful.  Innovative content layouts and unique galleries are also on this list.

One or more picks from this collection of plugins should aid you in avoiding some of the design problems. The list below includes the best of their respective types on the market today.

They can relieve you of some of the worry and stress that accompanies certain challenges. Also, they can speed up your workflow and win high fives from your clients.

  1. wpDataTables

Wp Data Tables plug-in

It’s asking a lot to find a chart and table builder that’s easy to use, can manage large amounts of complex data, and still produce some amazing and exceptional results. If there is such a tool, and there is, it deserves a #1 ranking, which is precisely the case with the wpDataTables WordPress plugin.

wpDataTables can accept complex data from a variety of sources, including thousands or even millions of rows of MySQL data, and in a few short minutes, or even seconds, produce attractive, responsive, color-coded, and easily editable charts and tables.

This plugin can do so much, and so quickly and easily, that more than a few web designers have switched over to the WordPress platform just to be able to work with wpDataTables.

This is a good plugin to have when you’re designing a client’s website that will include charts and/or tables presenting and summarizing large amounts of financial, statistical, or scientific data. Coding is unnecessary, since all it takes to create your charts and tables is a little help from your mouse.

  1. LayerSlider

LayerSlide WP Plugin

LayerSlider is an extremely popular WordPress plugin that enjoys worldwide usage. What those who have yet to be introduced to LayerSlider may not be aware of is that it’s more than simply a design tool for creating sliders – much more.

LayerSlider is a multipurpose animation platform on which you can create landing pages, popups, image galleries, and naturally, sliders. Use it for any of these or use it to build a complete website if you so choose.

This premium plugin’s features include a visual drag and drop editor, animated blocks that are superb for building landing pages or complete websites, hand-crafted slider templates, and a variety of layout options.

Selections from LayerSlider’s template store will give you the means to get a project off to a lightning-fast start; something every web designer will appreciate.

  1. NextGEN Gallery & NextGEN Pro

NextGen WP Plugin

NextGEN Gallery and it’s NextGEN PRO companion, both qualify as the best plugins of their type on the market. NextGEN Gallery in fact has been the industry standard for the past decade. If you’re looking for nothing but the best in a gallery-building software solution, these NextGEN plugins offer a perfect match.

These open source software products are easy enough to use for a newbie building a small gallery for the first time, and powerful enough for the most demanding creative artist intent on showcasing a huge number of images.

NextGEN Gallery is free. The PRO version has several additional features including an extensive selection of eCommerce and other extensions.

We suggest trying NextGEN first and moving on to NextGEN PRO if you see a need.

  1. REXPANSIVE – Page Builder for WordPress

Rexpansive WP Plugin

The name Rexpansive says it all. Insert an image on a page, expand or contract it as you see fit, and your done. Do the same with grids and blocks of content. With this WordPress plugin, there’s no need to manually specify dimensions or coordinates.

The expansion is done automatically in real time, the results are responsive, and you can verify that your changes will display correctly on tables and phones.

  1. CSS Hero

 CSS Hero WP Plug-in        

Tweaking the appearance of a WordPress site typically involves somewhat of a trial and error approach where you make a change, save it, check it out, and do a redo if necessary.

CSS Hero’s WYSIWYG Live CSS editing tool you can perform clean, non-destructive tweaking or add CSS information from other sources and see the results (also on mobile devices) in real time, while giving you greater control over a site’s presentation.

  1. Blog2Social

Blog2social WP Plug-in

This WordPress plugin provides an all-in-one solution to social media workers, together with businesses, markets, and agencies that make use of social media. Blog2Social allows you to personalize and edit posts and select formats independently on any or all the 15 social media networks it supports.

The Social Media Calendar allows you to schedule posts and easily rearrange the schedule if necessary, Blog2Social can be used independently as a web app.

  1. Heroic Knowledge Base

Heroic WP Plugin

This WordPress plugin is for you if you’ve been intending to establish a knowledge base for your team but have been unsure as to how to go about it. Heroic Knowledge Base gives you the means to realize your objective, and it goes a step further.

It also enables you to gain meaningful and workable insights into how others view the value of the knowledge base, and how it’s being used. Content can quickly be added, deleted, or reordered by drag and drop.

  1. Final Tiles Gallery

Wp Gallery Plugin

If you are beginning to realize that your galleries are looking more and more like any other gallery, it’s time to turn to Final Tiles Gallery. This WordPress plugin enables you to adjust image sizes and aspect ratios on an individual basis within a gallery. You can also mix and match images and videos in the same gallery, categorize the contents of your image library, and make better use of special effects.

  1. Essential Grid WordPress Plugin

Essential Grid WordPress Plugin

The Essential Grid WordPress plugin provides an optimal grid-building solution in that it enables you to display your content in any grid pattern you choose. You’ll find this capability especially useful when designing image galleries, portfolios, and WooCommerce presentations. This plugin is also handy to have when creating formats for different social media networks.

  1. Helpie Knowledge Base Wiki

Helpie WordPress Plugin

Create a beautiful documentation website for your products/services, a powerful internal knowledge base for team collaboration or even a wiki website on your favorite topic. Now all that is possible with Helpie Knowledge Base plugin for WordPress.

It has powerful drag and drop content management, works beautifully with page builders like Elementor and has User Access, Insights, Search and Feedback feature to top it up.


We hope you’ll come across a design solution you have a need for and have been looking for. Any one of these should have a positive influence on your workflow. Your clients’ high fives will come in the form of extra assignments or referred customers.

Add all 10 to your toolbox, and there’s no telling what you’ll be able to accomplish. At the very least, they’ll contribute to making 2018 a very productive year!

John Culotta
John is the chief editor here at WebDesignDev. He is a creative who enjoys writing, research, and all things design related as well as (formerly) a full-time musician. As an entrepreneur, he has many years of experience in designing websites, packaging, logos, photo editing, and the development of his own top-selling products on Amazon and Shopify. You can see his motivational Instagram account or connect on LinkedIn and follow him on Twitter.

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