If you host your blog on Wordpress you know that plugins are king. There are OVER 46,000 of them to choose from. Guys, that’s crazy. I can barely choose what I want to order for dinner from Seamless. So, let's declutter and come to some decisions together. I’m here to give you the five plugins that you should definitely have running on your site that'll give the most valuable experience to your readers. 

Subscribe Bar

Personally, I am not a fan of the large pop up “subscribe now” feature. It distracts the reader from the content they came to see. And if someone can't dive straight into your content, how will they know they'll want to subscribe to get more of it? Before you say "NEXT" I wouldn’t suggest getting rid of this feature all together. Building your email list is key to long-term success.

SumoMe is an awesome plugin, which (among other things) places a thin bar at the top of your site with a subscribe CTA. As your readers scroll, it sticks at the top of the page and encourages them to enter their information right into that bar to receive updates about your site delivered to their inbox. 

We like this one because the SumoMe plugin is well-maintained (so long site crashes when Wordpress releases a new update!) and makes subscribing painless and obvious, but is far less intrusive than a pop-up.

Actionable Recipes

Chicory. I mean, DUH! Your readers are on your site looking for some cooking inspiration and even more importantly, they are looking to get cooking. Make your recipes shoppable, so that your readers can get the exact ingredients they need next day delivered to their doorstep (and you can earn some $$$$). 

Social Buttons

Get those double taps! If your readers value your site, they are probably interested in what you do outside of blogging, which most people share on their social channels. For your readers who are always on the go, they may not have time to check your site every day, but may have a few minutes to scroll thru your Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter feeds. Make sure they know how to figure out how to find you, by using a plugin like Simple Follow Me Social Buttons Widget.

Also, don't forget to make your posts shareable with social share buttons embedded right on your posts. SumoMe also has one for that.

Social Widgets

Just in case your followers don't see those little "follow me" buttons on the sidebar of your site, try adding social widgets! These allow your readers to quickly see your recent photos at a glance and even scroll through your posts right from your site. There is a "follow me" button right before the feed in the widget, so there is still an option to convert your readers.

It makes sense to use this tool for your visual social channels, so check out the Instagram and Pinterest widgets for Wordpress.

Recipe Card

There are a ton of reasons for using a recipe card (or recipe plugin) on your site, including major SEO benefits. If you're not marking up your ingredient lines, name of recipe, and photo, not only can you not work with Chicory, but you may be actually hurting your site when it comes to Google's expectations. 

We recommend going with Wordpress Ultimate Recipe, not only do they make sure they're playing nice with Google constantly they are also compatible with JSON-LD, the latest preferred standard as stated by Google. Plus, the developer is hands-on and always keeping his stuff ahead of the curve!

***BONUS: there is an easy Chicory integration that you can turn on right within the exclusive WPUR plugin settings!

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