WordPress plugins are a great way to spruce up your blog, get more contacts, and encourage sharing. Slogging through the directory can be a bit of a drag though (why, oh why is there no listing by category or function).
With a bit of searching, and some help from my friends, I’ve put together a short list of resources and plugins just for bloggers.
WordPress Beginner page on Google Plus– Circle this page for helpful tips on getting started using WordPress
Widgets on Pages – Turns any part of your site into a widget (not just the side columns). It generates a short piece of code (cleverly called a shortcode), which you can drop in to your site for ads, sharing buttons, contact forms,etc. (thanks to Lynda Royal of Clarity Themes for pointing this out.
Image Slider– A slide gallery plugin that lets you add captions, links, and thumbnail images (of upcoming slides). This would be great for photographers, artists, web designers, or graphic designers to help show off your portfolio, and add links to hire you or buy prints.
Show Recent Posts – Shows your recent posts – with titles, thumbnails, and a short description. Making your older posts more visible, and appealing, should encourage visitors to spend more time on your site.
Digg Digg – This plugin adds a floating social sharing button bar to the side of your blog. It also displays the number of times your post has been shared on each network.