As soon as you’ve installed WordPress, you’ll probably be anxious to begin making changes. However, while WordPress core does come prepared with the makings of a fully-functional website, it doesn’t immediately include everything you’ll need for a successful affiliate site.

Fortunately, there are a plethora of plugins to supercharge your affiliate website and get you started on the right path. These include both free and premium options, and provide additional functionality in a number of key areas, including security, data backups, ad placement, and more.

In this post, we’ll first look at plugins in general, then highlight nine crucial WordPress plugins for your affiliate website. We’ll take a thorough look at each plugin, what it can offer your site, and how it can benefit your affiliate marketing business. Let’s get started!

What Plugins Are (And How They Can Improve Your Affiliate Marketing Site)

The WordPress plugin directory.
The WordPress Plugin Directory is just one of many places where you can find plugins for your affiliate marketing site.

A plugin is an add-on to your WordPress website, which enables you to expand WordPress’s native functionality. That’s not to say that WordPress isn’t ready to go upon installation, of course. However, plugins can significantly improve your site and provide it with new capabilities. This is especially important when you’ll be using it for affiliate marketing.

For best results, it’s important to choose the most suitable plugins for your site’s needs. As an affiliate marketer, this will mean selecting a variety of plugins with marketing-focused features. These might include affiliate linking tools, product comparison functionality, customer data collection and acquisition, and site-wide security and data accessibility. Plus, you’ll want to throw in a few basic plugins that provide key functionality important for any site.

You can find these plugins directly on the WordPress site, across the web at places such as CodeCanyon, and on developers’ websites. You’ll encounter both free and premium options. One of WordPress’s greatest perks is the wide variety of free add-ons you can find. However, keep in mind that you often get what you pay for. In many instances, premium plugins offer extra features that can go a long way towards improving your site’s functionality.

9 Crucial WordPress Plugins for Your Affiliate Website

There are a number of factors that go into the selection of quality plugins. In this roundup, we focused on star rating (four stars and above), any features and functionality that pertain to affiliate marketing, and overall customer reviews. Also, we took into account how recently each plugin was last updated. This process helped us narrow down to the best of the best, so let’s take a look!

1. Wordfence Security (Free)

The WordFence Security plugin.

Wordfence Security is a high-powered security plugin for your affiliate site. It offers site-wide scans, Web Application Firewall (WAF) options, and even in-depth documentation.

Wordfence is an essential addition to your website, as the importance of security cannot be overstated. This is especially true for affiliate sites. After all, you may be dealing with sensitive customer information (including names, addresses, and contact details).

The best thing about this plugin is that it’s completely free. However, there is a premium upgrade available, which includes the ability to schedule site scans, sign in using your cellphone, and access 24/7 customer support.

2. Yoast SEO (Free)

The Yoast SEO plugin.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a collection of strategies that affect your website’s visibility on Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). This is important for all websites that want to be easily found through major search engines, and it can be easily accomplished with the help of the Yoast SEO plugin.

Using Yoast, you can create XML sitemaps, enable breadcrumbs, and even check your blog posts and pages for readability and keyword optimization. This will help make your affiliate site reader-friendly, by providing users with the tools they need to navigate. Plus, you’ll improve its visibility across the web so your links get more attention.

Most of the plugin’s key features – including page analysis, RSS optimization, and breadcrumbs – are available for free. However, if you want to include support, internal linking suggestions, and other premium features, you can upgrade for $69 per year.

3. UpdraftPlus (Free)

The UpdraftPlus plugin.

UpdraftPlus is a freemium backup plugin that keeps your site’s files safe from data loss, server outage, and hacking attempts.

Imagine losing all of your site’s data – including blog posts, page content, affiliate tools, and personal information. While this is devastating to imagine, UpdraftPlus helps you lessen the impact of any such occurrences. It enables you to store multiple copies of your site in secure locations. This plugin even makes restoring those backups quick and painless.

The free version includes all of UpdraftPlus’s essential features, such as the ability to back up files and restore website data from within the WordPress dashboard. You can even save the files to a remote server or cloud service, and schedule regular backups. If you want more, the premium plan (starting at $70) also offers 1GB of free storage space, site migration and cloning, and personal support.

4. Pretty Link Pro ($47)

The Pretty Link Pro plugin.

Naturally, you’ll be building your affiliate marketing business on links and ads. This makes it essential that your links are aesthetically pleasing, easy to track, and fully customizable. That’s where Pretty Link Pro comes in. This link-shortening plugin offers you a number of affiliate-focused features and tools, including eight different redirect types, link tracking, and automatic keyword replacement.

With this functionality, you can ensure that your links don’t get lost in the crowd and aren’t seen as spammy by site visitors and search engines. In addition, you can keep track of your affiliate links (helping you see which ones are effectively placed). You can even automate the sharing process.

Pretty Link Pro starts at $47 per year for use on one site. This price includes a year of support and plugin updates, both of which help ensure that your affiliate links are effective and stay pretty.

5. WP Fastest Cache (Free)

The WP Fastest Cache plugin.

Site caching enables you to temporarily store data for future use. In practical terms, this means that less data has to load per website visit, so your pages will be faster than ever. A caching plugin such as WP Fastest Cache can boost site performance and increase website speeds with just a few clicks.

Site loading time is important both because it’s a Google ranking factor, and because slow loading can drive away potential customers. WP Fastest Cache’s features, such as preloading the cache and browser caching, can prevent such an issue. This enables your site to load quickly, so affiliate leads stick around.

The free plugin includes a great many features, including desktop caching and browser caching (this means your website’s information can be stored directly on visitors’ desktops and/or within their browsers). If you’d like to incorporate further features, such as mobile and widget caching and image optimization, there is a premium version available for $39.99.

6. AdSanity ($39)

The AdSanity plugin.

AdSanity is a premium banner management plugin, and it enables you to take control over advertisement placement across all your affiliate sites (and even track the results).

When you’re marketing products to website readers, managing multiple advertisements and campaigns at once can become overwhelming. However, with AdSanity’s list of features – including ad widgets and publishing options – you can set up your marketing campaigns in minutes. This means you can spend time on other important business tasks, such as customer engagement and lead generation.

If you’re ready to explore all that AdSanity has in store, you can purchase a one-year license starting at $39. This license gives you access to a variety of free add-ons – such as the custom ad size manager – as well as user support.

7. WP Review Pro ($87)

The WP Review Pro plugin.

WP Review Pro is a full-featured review plugin that enables you to integrate product reviews on your website, and even incorporate them with Google SERPs.

Reviews are an excellent way to provide value to your readers. They’re full of information, and can help people decide whether a product is right for them. WP Review Pro makes creating and customizing reviews simple, so it’s a great plugin for your affiliate site. You can choose from a variety of rating systems, and enable customer reviews and comments. Plus, you can even add a star rating to post thumbnails for quick reference.

This premium plugin is available for $77. That price includes one year of support and updates, thorough video tutorials, and a 30-day money-back guarantee.

8. Popups by OptinMonster ($108)

The Popups by OptinMonster plugin.

Popups by OptinMonster is a plugin that lets you effortlessly create and display email list pop-ups on your site. This enables you to collect email addresses from website readers, and build your subscriber list with very little effort.

When you’re trying to make a sale, having access to a lead’s email can be crucial. With a variety of features – including exit-intent pop-ups and page-level targeting – Popups by OptinMonster can get you started on the right foot.

This is technically a free plugin, although it does require an OptinMonster account to use. Plans start at $108 per year, and there are three levels with varying options to choose from.

9. Google Analytics Dashboard for WP (Free)

The Google Analytics Dashboard for WP plugin.

Google Analytics Dashboard for WP is a plugin that enables you to seamlessly incorporate the power of Google Analytics into your affiliate site.

Google Analytics is a powerful tool that lets you track visitors, collect demographic information, and create targeted keyword campaigns. With Google Analytics Dashboard for WP, you can track all visitor reports and obtain advanced site statistics directly from your WordPress back end. You can even follow specific events such as downloads, outbound links, affiliate links, and page scrolling depth. This will help you better tailor your site to your visitors, and make your affiliate links more effective.

Perhaps one of the greatest things about Google Analytics – and this plugin – is that both are free. This is an invaluable resource, and one that you as a marketer cannot afford to overlook.

Conclusion

WordPress is an amazingly flexible Content Management System (CMS), and gives you access to a wide selection of site-enhancing plugins. These plugins enable you to create a unique and functional affiliate website. Plus, many of their features (including ad placement customization and target keyword optimization) can even help improve your business operations.

In this post, we’ve offered a look at nine WordPress plugins that are a crucial addition to your affiliate site. These include a mix of free options (including Wordfence Security and UpdraftPlus) and premium selections (such as Pretty Link Pro and Popups by OptinMonster), but all provide you with immeasurable value.

Which of the WordPress plugins mentioned above is a must-have for your affiliate website? Let us know in the comments section below!

Image credit: Pixabay.

John Hughes

John is a blogging addict, WordPress fanatic, and a staff writer for WordCandy.

The post 9 Crucial WordPress Plugins for Your Affiliate Website appeared first on Torque.

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