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The Best WordPress Plugins for Web Design Agencies

July 12th

Andy

Offsprout is the only WordPress website builder for freelancers and agencies.

Having run a web design agency for many years, we’ve worked with hundreds of websites.

Many clients were starting their first website from scratch. Others had existing websites that needed to be completely rebuilt.

Working with a website that had been built by another agency gives you insight into how other agencies build websites. Sometimes it gives you good ideas for the future. Sometimes it gives you tips on what to avoid.

If your web design agency is building websites for clients, there are some standard plugins you should absolutely have on every website.

Here are our recommendations.

For SEO – Yoast WordPress SEO

This plugin does most everything you will ever need for your website’s SEO.

It handles:

  • Setting meta descriptions
  • Reviewing your text’s readability
  • Reviewing your keyword density and SEO of on-page SEO for specific keywords
  • Sitemap creation
  • Rich snippets

As you’d obviously want it to, Yoast can set SEO titles and meta descriptions. It helps with sitemaps, rich snippets, content analysis, managing duplicate content, and more.

One particularly impressive feature is that it will audit your webpages for readability and SEO best-practices compliance.

We used Yoast on all of our client websites because of how simple and helpful it can be for novices. Even if you are not an SEO expert, you can understand its recommendations for how to optimize blog posts and pages.

For Contact Forms – Gravity Forms

I have tried out a lot of different contact form plugins.

Gravity Forms is my favorite.

It is easy to use and extremely versatile.

Here are some of the highlights for Gravity Forms:

  • Easy to use drag and drop interface
  • Multi-page forms
  • Anti-spam mechanisms
  • Third-party add-ons and integrations
  • Versatile conditional logic
  • Many field types

It can mess with advanced logic, calculations, surveys, polls, questionnaires, file uploads, and more.

It has tons of field types to choose from.

Its conditional logic is fantastic. With conditional logic, you can display specific questions only if a user has filled out a specific response to a previous question. For example, if you only want to ask “Why did you write ‘Yes’?” to a “Yes” answer in a previous question, you can do that. You can obviously also do much more complicated conditional logic, only having questions show up when people provide specific answers to other questions.

Importantly, it integrates well with every other app you might use. It has add-ons to integrate with most every marketing application. It also integrates with Zapier, so you can easily create your own custom integrations.

It is not free. Some people avoid Gravity Forms because it costs money, but it is worth it.

Overall, Gravity Forms can do everything you would want with a contact form. Though it is extremely full-featured, it is also simple to use. You will not be overwhelmed by the options, even though there is a lot you can do with Gravity Forms. It is the last form plugin you will ever need.

For a more thorough, complete review of Gravity Forms, this post by WinningWP does a great job.

For Call Tracking – CallRail

Though it is not something every business thinks about as essential for their website, call tracking is something I would recommend for every business’s website.

Call tracking lets you know where your customers are coming from, whether it’s paid search, organic SEO, or referrals. And, you can get granular details on what paid keywords are driving your customers, what social media channels are the most effective, and more.

CallRail is my favorite call tracking app. Aside from the fact that it works extremely well, it integrates seamlessly into WordPress and with other third-party apps as well.

CallRail is the leader in call tracking. Though it will cost your customers to use CallRail ongoing, it is a worthwhile investment for any business. The CallRail WordPress plugin easily connects your CallRail account to your website, swapping out your website phone number with call tracking numbers.

For E-Commerce – WooCommerce

If you are looking to sell products online, you will need an E-Commerce plugin for your WordPress website

Of all the many ecommerce plugins out there, WooCommerce is definitely the most popular.. And for good reason. It is incredibly robust and full-featured, and has a full ecosystem of extensions, integrations, and compatible themes that play well with WooCommerce. Here are some of the best aspects of WooCommerce:

  • Inventory management
  • Ability to sell digital or physical goods
  • Payment and shipping options
  • Integrations with many third-party apps
  • Works with all major payment gateways
  • Sign up for recurring payments

WooCommerce was acquired in 2015 by Automattic, the company that created WordPress.

To give you an idea of how popular WooCommerce is, it reportedly powers 30% of all online stores.

Extensions let you further customize WooCommerce to do even more than sell your products. WooCommerce has a full library of different extensions – everything from marketing add-ons to store management, shipping, payments, and more.

For Digital Product Sales – Easy Digital Downloads

WooCommerce may be great for selling physical products, but when it comes to selling things like WordPress plugins, eBooks, and PDFs, we have another recommendation.

Easy Digital Downloads is a plugin built specifically for digital products. It can take care of:

  • File access control
  • File download logs
  • Affiliate system integration
  • Integrations with many third-party apps
  • Works with all major payment gateways
  • Different payment and delivery options include recurring, license keys, all-access passes

Full disclosure: At Offsprout we use Easy Digital Downloads. But, we recommend it because we use it and it is developer-friendly.

One important feature is that if you want to sell products through EDD, you can create unique license keys for each individual download

Like any good ecommerce platform, EDD works well with every major payment gateway. Whether you want to accept payment through Paypal, Stripe,  Authorize.net, or others, EDD can work with it.

To give you an idea of how much the EDD team has built out their service – one neat add-on is that you can offer special discounts to buyers who share your products on social networks.

For Building Websites – Offsprout

If you are looking to build websites more quickly and easily, in particular if you are a web designer, Offsprout is our top recommendation. Since we created Offsprout, we obviously have some bias. But also, having built it, we are confident it is the best website builder out there.

So, what can it do?

Offsprout turns your regular WordPress CMS into a drag-and-drop builder. It lets you build sites in as little five minutes.

Offsprout helps you quickly build websites with:

  • Easy-to-use drag-and-drop interface
  • Page and site-wide templates so you don’t have to “reinvent the wheel” with each new site
  • Centralized management of your design
  • White label ability 
  • Header and footer creation
  • Ability to build any kind of site you can imagine using the Offsprout interface

The main draws of Offsprout are the fact that web design agencies can save time and effort by quickly building new sites that look amazing. WordPress inherently has limitations on what you can do quickly, without having to know how to code. Offsprout saves you from having to get lost in code trying to effectively make what should be simple changes.

Conclusion

This selection of plugins for web design agencies should be a good place to get started to help you more easily build new websites for your clients.

It was a bit of a journey for us to figure out what the best tools were, so hopefully we can now save you some time.

if there are any tools or plugins in particular that you love that we did not mention, feel free to share in the comments below.

 

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