Optimization Tools for the Blogpreneur

I only recommend tools and online platforms that I use to manage and grow my own and my client’s Blogging Businesses. There’s no hype or fluff here—just the stuff we’ve found essential to delivering a fast and secure website to our readers.

There’s a ton of WordPress Plugins & Software for Bloggers out there claiming to help. Choosing the wrong ones can slow your site drastically to the point of falling-off-the-cliff that’s Google, choosing the right ones can accelerate your growth!

Over the years, I’ve worked hard testing dozens of blogging and optimization tools to find the ones that can be real game-changers. Here are the critical few I believe in so much that I use them on every personal & client site I build.

IMPORTANT DISCLOSURE: PLEASE READ BEFORE PROCEEDING

Blog Jolt is an affiliate for some of these tools, meaning if you click the link and make a purchase, we earn a commission at no extra cost to you. Our recommendations are based on deep experience with these tools and recommend them because they are genuinely helpful and useful, not because of the affiliate commission.

Most Recommended Optimization Tools

Create/Upgrade your site with these tools as your foundation for blazing-fast speed!

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NameHero Hosting

NameHero is our go-to FAST hosting for all of our sites

NameHero is a proven powerhouse in the website hosting industry. They offer exceptional customer service. They allow you to host multiple domains under one account, which is super convenient. They’re as reliable as they come and FAST!

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GeneratePress Pro Theme

GeneratePress is our #1 go-to FAST theme for all of our sites

GeneratePress is a lean mean fighting machine. The theme has close to perfect Google PageSpeed Insight scores, including Core Web Vitals! Add their Gutenberg Blocks GenerateBlocks plugin for all possible layouts and designs. It’s blazing FAST! It tested #1 on our Fastest WordPress Theme test.

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GenerateBlocks Pro Gutenberg Block Library

GenerateBlocks PRO is the FASTEST block plugin around

GenerateBlocks is like the Gutenberg version of a page builder, but better because it’s lightweight in code and delivers high-speed performance. It’s theme agnostic, so you can use it with any WordPress theme. This is the FASTEST Gutenberg blocks library made, and reduces CLS issues.

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Astra 3.0 Pro Theme

Astra is our #2 go-to FAST WordPress theme

Astra is a high-performer. Nearly perfect! Not as lightweight as GeneratePress, but still super Fast. There’s not a layout you can’t accomplish with Astra Pro and their Gutenberg Blocks add-on plugin. It’s ridiculously easy to customize Astra. It tested #2 on our Fastest WordPress Theme test.

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WP Rocket Cache Plugin

WP Rocket is our preferred DIY-friendly Cache plugin

WP Rocket is a premium caching plugin. It’s hands-down the easiest to use and configure for the non-techie. Supports WebP, Lazy Loading, CDNs, Script Minification and more strategies to achieve FAST site speeds.

View my WP Rocket Settings tutorial >>

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Perfmatters Plugin

Take control over abusive Javascript

Many plugins load their speed-killing javascript on every page of your website even though it’s only used on one page or just a couple. Now you can take back control and stop that abuse. Notorious offenders are Membership plugins, Contact forms, page builders, Galleries, pop-ups, and more.

Cloudflare CDN & Security

Cloudflare is the CDN of choice for fast & secure sites

I recommend Cloudflare’s FREE plan for every blogger that cares about Site speed and Security. Cloudflare adds another layer of security to your domain to protect against hackers, while delivering cache copies of your website files for super FAST sites anywhere in the globe.

View my Cloudflare CDN Settings tutorial >>

ShortPixel Image Optimization Plugin

ShortPixel is a modern and robust Image Compression plugin

ShortPixel is a free/premium image compression plugin. It gives you 100 free images a month, or there’s one-time add-on image packs. Offers the best compression rate in our head-to-head tests. Supports WebP, Lazy Loading, and CDNs for FAST sites.

View my ShortPixel Image Optimizer Settings tutorial >>

Canva – Online Design Software

Canva is a DIY-friendly graphic editing & creation tool

Canva is free/premium. Gain access to free templates for social media, marketing and easily create images to use on your blog too, all without the steep learning curve of Photoshop.

View my Canva Image Optimization tutorial >>

WP YouTube Lyte Video Optimization Plugin

YouTube Lyte lets you add videos without sacrificing site speed

Using WP YouTube Lyte instead of the standard normal YouTube embeds results in less files to download, less data to transport, the page being ready for interaction quicker and having everything loaded a whole lot faster.

View my WP YouTube Lyte Settings tutorial >>

AntiSpam Bee Plugin

AntiSpam Bee is FREE and lightweight yet feature-robust

Antispam Bee blocks spam comments and trackbacks effectively, without captchas and without sending personal information to third party services. It is free of charge, ad-free and 100% GDPR compliant. Say Goodbye to comment spam on your site.

View my Antispam Bee Settings tutorial >>

Login LockDown Plugin

Login LockDown stops Brute Force Hacker Attacks!

Login LockDown FREE plugin records the IP address of every failed login attempt. If more than a certain number of attempts occur within a short period of time from the same IP range, then login ability is disabled for that range. This helps to prevent brute force password discovery by bad bots and hackers.

View our Login LockDown Settings tutorial >>

UpdraftPlus Backups Plugin

UpdraftPlus is my go-to Backups & Site Migration plugin

UpdraftPlus is a free/premium feature-rich WordPress backup plugin. Combine this with offsite secure Amazon S3 Storage for automated backups and you’ll be protected against Hacking, Server crashes, Dodgy updates or simple user error.