WordPress has become the platform it is today because of its ability to extend to a lot more than just being a blogging platform using those plugins. The way it has been built is so easy to manage that a none tech person can install and manage different new features through it. You can easily make your WordPress site a robust commerce site with an easy installation of a plugin that handles everything for you. In fact WordPress WooCommerce plugin powers over 30% of online stores.
How to find a WordPress plugin
It is as easy as following the path of Dashboard >> Plugins >> Add New. Your imagination what can stop you of what you can search for. If you can think of it, you would be able to find something already built as a plugin. You can also visit WordPress.org plugins page which is the same exact page that you access through your dashboard. You can filter your view by featured or popular plugins. The popular filter is very useful as it tells you what are the most used plugins and makes it easier for you to choose.
Installing the plugin is as simple as searching it as well. It is as simple as clicking the install button that is next to the plugin title once you find the one you are looking for. Although it is very easy to do so, it is recommended that you do go through the plugin description and reviews. Clicking on the more details link will allow you to see few screenshots of the plugin as well as read user reviews who have used the plugin and gave their thoughts on it.
Once the plugin is installed, you will need to activate it to be able to use it. Once activated, some plugins give you few options to play with and tweak the plugin to the way you want it to work on your site.
What are the essential plugins?
Once you start a search for the best plugins available for you to use, you will dive into a vast number of recommendations from different enthusiasts. I feel that you do not have to follow anyone on what you need to install on your site. It is you who understand what you require for the website, and you will only be able to know if that plugin is for you. The best way for you to know is by trial. So do not be shy of playing around with different plugins to do the review yourself rather than having to rely on other people views.
Do not get me wrong, there are experts in the market who can tell you which are the good ones. However not every plugin that has positive reviews might fit you or your site. As of today, Jan 21st, 2016, I am running this site with only one plugin, Yoast SEO, which helps your make the site search engine friendly.