6 WordPress Plugins for Better Navigation and User Experience

This post may seem little late in this wordpress plugins series. But if you remember we already discussed some best comment plugins, and if you really care about your users then you should check them out first.

Listed below are plugins, which will improve your blogs navigation and thus will result in higher page-views.

1. Similar Post Plugin

This plugin as name suggests, displays contextually related posts. I strongly feel one should use related post kind of plugin, replacing wordpress default next & previous post links, that many themes show on single post pages.

Most of our visitors come from search engines and related posts list can get them engaged for more time on your site compared to probably unrelated next & previous posts. Also this way your old posts may get some exposure to visitors as well as search engines.

There are plenty of plugins which offers this kind of functionality. They differ is their logic to calculate related posts, customization options, etc. I use Similar Post Plugin by Rob Marsh, which also takes care of similar posts in feed items.

Link: Similar Post Plugin by Rob Marsh

2. Sensitive Tag Cloud Plugin

If you have like hundreds of tags and you blog on many different topics, then wordpress’s default tag cloud may not be a good option to you. But tag clouds is web 2.0 way of navigating a site.

This plugin makes your tag cloud more relevant to the context of the page being displayed. Actually relevance turned out to be much lesser than I expected, but better than wordpress default tag cloud widget. I just wish this plugin get more sensitive!

Link: Sensitive Tag Cloud by René Ade

3. Breadcrumb Navigation Plugin

If breadcrumb is not familiar word, then recall some site/forum which always display on every page something like “You are here: Home >> WordPress >> Plugins”.

This is very old but still cool way to make your blog easily navigable as it gives users a way to keep track of their location within your blog. As of now I do not use this plugin, but the reason is, this blog is highly unorganized. I would love to use this plugin in future for sure.

Link: Breadcrumb Navigation Plugin by  mtekk & hakre

4. Paged Navigation Plugin

This plugin affects categories, archive type pages. Many themes by default show previous and next link on such pages.

This plugin allows you to show paged navigation links like “Go to page: 2, 3, 4, .., Last” as shown in forums. This is better approach as this gives user many alternatives to browse a particular archive. Check this screenshot, to get better idea about this plugin.

Link: WP-PageNavi Plugin by Lester ‘GaMerZ’ Chan

5. Navigation Tree Plugin

This plugin can generate navigation trees for your posts, pages, links and categories which you can add in your blogs sidebar.

The final effect is similar to windows explorer files & folder tree on left. If you blog heavily about Windows OS, then this type of navigation can grab your users attention!

If your are still confused, what I am talking about, check these screenshots.

Link: WP-dTree plugin by ulfben

6. In-Series Plugin

This plugin is good for series writing. If you want to write a series like this, then its better to have a plugin link all posts in the series automatically. Using this plugin saves a lot of time and generated series listings are highly accurate and consistent.

Use this plugin only if you plan to write a series of articles. Its not necessary, that you write articles in a series on daily basis. You can also bundle some of your old articles into series using this plugin.

The Table of Contents you see on this post page, is because of In-Series plugin.

Link: In-Series Plugin by Travis Snoozy

That’s all for navigation! Look at these plugins as your helper. Your blogs navigation and user experience is highly dependent on your choice of theme. Also it depends on your motive. If you are blogging just for money then eventually you will end up putting so many ads on your site that it will become hard for your visitors to find real content

Tomorrow we will move to back-end of a wordpress blog. So that you can turn your self-hosted wordpress blog into self-administered blog… ;-)

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  • http://webabout.org web about money

    good post ! I like it!

  • Pingback: Page Navigation Hack for Blogger (Blogspot)()

  • http://www.adityavyas.com Aditya

    Thank you very much. I like that tree plugin. I havent tried that yet all other I have tried already.

  • http://www.solidblogger.com Bapun

    Cool list of plugins there.

  • http://techcrunchies.com Anand

    Great list there. By the way, the text at the bottom of your blog, ‘People who read this also read’ – is this by the use of related posts plugin or is this something else?

    • Rahul Bansal

      @Anand
      It is by related post plugin! :-)

  • sandrar

    Hi! I was surfing and found your blog post… nice! I love your blog. :) Cheers! Sandra. R.

  • http://labnium.org Digital Imagination

    Great thing…

    nice reviews…..

  • http://www.pcdiy.com Terry

    I may try those wordpress plugin, Nice article! Thank you.