WordPress is an open source blogging and content management system that utilizes MySQL and PHP. In my opinion, it is the number one blogging platform.
In fact, Blogger comes in at a far, far second place that there is really no contest. Aside from being free, the same is also popular because of the many functionalities made available to the user. First and foremost is its “plug-in architecture”. This allows users to modify/upgrade the features of WordPress to suit their particular needs. For newbie bloggers out there, the template system is a nifty tool that allows quality blog site set up even for newbies. Below are some of the Plugins I personally recommend. My selection puts emphasis on increasing user interaction above all else.
Google Friend Connect
The common misconception is that this is only a blogger widget. In reality, it is a useful tool to allow you to structure and standardize user interface/experience. I particular find appealing the algorithm employed by this plug in to randomly group pictures as well as viewer profile pictures and turn it into a random collage to be displayed on your Connect Box.
I encourage you to permit bloggers to publicly follow your site. This allows you to build on their existing connections in order to increase your following. The more bloggers that publicly follow you the more your site becomes visible and trusted. Another nifty feature or bug is the fact that your blog site will regularly pop up on their Google homepage even if they have already deleted feeds from RSS reader.
Thank Me Later
Simply put it is an automatic email sender and/or auto-responder. For example, a netizen reads your blog and decides to comment on the same. You can set up this plugin to automatically send an e-mail thanking the netizen for the comment and encouraging more comments. Heck you can even modify this plug in to send specific type of e-mails depending on the interaction made. This will create a sense of belonging resulting in the same site visitor becoming a regular site visitor or follower of your blog.
WPtouch iPhone Theme Plugin
This is an optimization plug in for smart devices, particularly iPhones. Think about, it most netizens nowadays use their mobile phones to surf the net, check blogs, social network, etc. The last thing you want is a blog that is not reformatted to read well in mobile phones as well as certain tablet pc’s. The basic functionality of this plug in allows the reader to leaf thru your with that convenient right side falling text effect.
This plug in allows your readers to determine just how many people are reading a particular post of the blog or the blog site in general. In my personal experience the user feels more connected when they feel that what they are reading is also being read by others. A nifty function also allows you to see more than just the number of readers or site visitors. You actually get a statistical survey about the demographics of the same i.e. location, who they are, what they like to read. This allows you to respond to the readers interest.