Generally speaking, a plugin is a module that adds some specific/additional feature to a larger system. WordPress plugins function in same way, offering custom features and services to extend the functionality of your WordPress blog.
WordPress core installation comes with two default plug-ins, namely Akismet (checks whether received comments are spam or not) and Hello Dolly (shows random lyrics from Hello Dolly, sung by Louis Armstrong).
For the beginner, here are a couple of plugins that will help increase WordPress blog efficiency:
- Contact Form 7 | As the name says, it makes the job very easy to manage and customize multiple contact forms flexibly.
- WooCommerce | An eCommerce plugin that helps you to manage your shop with some premium eCommerce themes and extensions.
- Google Analytics Dashboard for WP | It displays analytics data on your WordPress dashboard, i.e, number of sessions, visitors, page views, etc.
- NextGen Gallery | The most popular gallery plugin to upload and manage images, grouping them into albums, sorting or editing thumbnails, and much more.
- BuddyPress | It will help you run social networking on your WordPress website, enabling you to build your own home for various communities, e.g., school, company, etc.
You can download WordPress plugins from the WordPress plugin directory.