20 Highly Useful Google Chrome Extensions

When it comes to extensions and add-ons, Firefox has been far ahead of other browsers for quite some time. But as Google Chrome has taken an increasing share of the market over the past year or two we have seen a significant increase in the number of Chrome extensions that are available.

Many users have been impressed with Chrome’s speed but have been hesitant make the switch from Firefox because of add-ons that they use regularly. In this post we’ll take a look at 20 Chrome extensions that are available. This is just a sampling of what’s out there, and more extensions are being released all the time, especially with Chrome’s growing user base.

Mail Checker Plus for Google Mail

This extension allows you to easily manage your Gmail accounts. Features include:

  • Mail preview window, read mail without leaving the current tab
  • Delete, archive, spam, star and mark as read functionality
  • Desktop and sound notifications when new mail arrives
  • Support for multiple Google and Google Apps accounts
  • Mailto-links open in your Gmail or Google Apps Mail account
  • Monitor all your labels or priority inbox

Mail Checker Plus for Google Mail

WOT (Web of Trust)

WOT can help you to identify sites and pages that are security threats. WOT ratings are powered by a global community of millions of trustworthy users who have rated millions of websites based on their experiences. The WOT add-on shows reputation ratings next to search results when you use Google, Yahoo!, Bing, and many other search engines.


WOT

Clip to Evernote

Evernote is used by many designers for storing inspiration and other types of bookmarks. The Clip to Evernote extension makes it easy for Chrome users to save content to Evernote. You can also easily find content that you have already saved to Evernote, search through your Evernote account, and more.

Clip to Evernote

Feedly xt

Feedly transforms Google Reader into your own personalized magazine, resulting in a fast and stylish way to enjoy and share the content of your favorite websites.

Feedly xt

Shareholic for Google Chrome

Share links from within the browser, from any webpage, with anyone, using the same services you already know and love like Facebook, Twitter, Gmail, Evernote, Delicious, Digg, and more from one simple all-in-one browser extension.

Shareholic for Google Chrome

LastPass

LastPass is a free online password manager and Form Filler that makes your web browsing easier and more secure.

LastPass

StayFocusd

StayFocusd is a productivity extension for Google Chrome that helps you stay focused on work by restricting the amount of time you can spend on time-wasting websites. Once your allotted time has been used up, the sites you have blocked will be inaccessible for the rest of the day.

StayFocusd

Google Chrome to Phone Extension

This extension adds a button to Chrome that lets you seamlessly push links, maps, and currently selected text and phone numbers to your Android device.

Google Chrome to Phone Extension

goo.gl URL Shortener

goo.gl url shortener is an extension which allows you to shorten the current website URL with the Google URL Shortener service.

goo.gl URL Shortener

Google Tasks

Easily add and manage your tasks from Chrome in one of three ways:

  • Simply type “t Your new task” into the Chrome Omnibar to easily add a task from whatever web page you’re on.
  • Click the Tasks icon to add a task, see your tasks and task lists and mark a task as completed
  • Highlight text on any web page, right click and add that text to a new task.

Google Tasks

Google Similar Pages

Enjoying the page you’re looking at and interested in other similar pages?  Trying to find more pages about a topic you’re researching, but having a hard time coming up with the right query on Google?  Google Similar Pages can help. Now you can quickly preview and explore other pages that are similar to the one you are browsing — on the fly.

Google Similar Pages

Diigo Bookmark, Archive, Highlight & Sticky-Note

Diigo is the #1 extension for annotating, archiving and bookmarking webpages.  With this easy-to-use tool, you can

  • Bookmark links to archive webpages or to read later
  • Attach highlights & stickies to a webpage as a reminder
  • Share pages with annotation via Twitter, Facebook, Google Buzz
  • Access anywhere, via iPhone, iPad, Android.
  • Create groups to pool findings, share resources or curate content
  • Automatically cross-post to social bookmarking site Delicious (optional)

Diigo Bookmark, Archive, Highlight & Sticky-Note

Tweet Button for Chrome

Twitter for Google Chrome is the easiest way to share links on Twitter right from your web browser. It functions just like Twitter’s official Tweet Button. Simply click the button, and a pop-up opens with a tweetbox pre-populated with the URL you were at and the page’s title.

Tweet Button for Chrome

Awesome Screenshot

Capture the whole page or any portion, annotate it with rectangles, circles, arrows, lines and text, one-click upload to share.

Awesome Screenshot

iMacros for Chrome

iMacros was designed to automate the most repetitious tasks on the web. If there’s an activity you have to do repeatedly, just record it in iMacros. The next time you need to do it, the entire macro will run at the click of a button. With iMacros, you can quickly and easily fill out web forms, remember passwords, create a webmail notifier, and more.

iMacros for Chrome

YSlow

YSlow analyzes web pages and suggests ways to improve their performance based on a set of rules for high performance web pages. YSlow grades web page based on one of three predefined ruleset or a user-defined ruleset. It offers suggestions for improving the page’s performance, summarizes the page’s components, displays statistics about the page.

YSlow

Chrome Stylist

User styles are applied to any website.

Chrome Stylist

Pastebin

With this extension you can quickly paste any type of text to the website http://pastebin.com. The extension installs a small icon in your browser. When you highlight any text in Google Chrome and press the ‘Pastebin’ button, it will automatically paste the selected text into the textarea. When you press submit you will be presented with a unique URL where you can find your pasted text. You can customize the extension via the Options panel.

Pastebin

For more resources please see:

Looking for hosting? WPEngine offers secure managed WordPress hosting. You’ll get expert WordPress support, automatic backups, and caching for fast page loads.

18 Responses

Comments are now closed on this post.

  • Tommy, August 1, 2011

    Thanks for collection. I’m using lastPass and Feedly. Wish you could add this ultimate tool for tumblr bloggers https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/jhpglodopijgbpepfjnioinlccijjngb

  • hee, August 1, 2011

    Google browser really very good!!!!!

  • Michael, August 1, 2011

    So, I don’t think most of them are at all useful for what I do. Especially as the only Google services I use are search and maps, and I run Linux (Ubuntu).

    Firefox plugins I do find useful include (but are by no means limited to):
    NoScript and CookieMonster (making things safer, and protecting privacy);
    Brief, my RSS reader;
    WebDeveloper Toolbar (also allows editing CSS of a page)
    UserAgent Switcher

    Zotero, a simply awesome tool that bills itself as a next generation research tool. It is a bibliographic database, that is a must have if you are any sort of researcher, or required to have citations for research. (Cf. Endnote, which isn’t free, and doesn’t run on Linux anyway.) Actually, re-reading the description for Diigo, it seems similar.

    So, I’ll keep Firefox, but thanks for the heads up. Maybe you could also have a look at the extensions available for web developers. For whatever browser actually.

  • Vandelay Website Design, August 1, 2011

    Michael,
    If definitely depends on what you need in your daily work. As far as your suggestion about a post listing web developer extensions, it’s a possibility but there are already a number of good lists (although most are browser specific). For Chrome extensions see http://webdesignledger.com/tools/13-useful-google-chrome-extensions-for-web-developers

    For Firefox add-ons for web developers there are countless blog posts, but here is one – http://speckyboy.com/2008/11/02/27-indispensable-web-design-and-development-firefox-extensions/

  • Michael, August 1, 2011

    Cheers, that’s actually a really good list. Thanks.

  • howie d, August 1, 2011

    Great content, I love Chrome. I really did not use until early last year, and got hooked quick. Speed is of course #1, but I could not do without “inspect element” now.

  • Mel Lifshitz, August 1, 2011

    Thanks for that mail checker plus…been looking for a chrome extension that would notify me if I have a new email in my Gmail inbox without opening its tab on my browser. Similar extensions are not working properly. Will try if this works.

  • Chris Thelwell, August 2, 2011

    Check out: http://tinyurl.com/3qftru3 Ruul is a fantastically simple on-screen ruler for lining up and measuring type, line height, strokes and just about anything on the web.

  • Chad Jasper, August 2, 2011

    The Google Tasks extension is my absolute favorite. It’s incredibly useful in regards to getting the work done for my clients.

  • Alasdair, August 3, 2011

    The Template extension provides quick and easy access to lots of information about the current page and environment;

    cookies, browser version, directory, encoded, favicon URL, file, fragment, host name, operating system, options, parameters, path, port, protocol, query string, relative, segments, selected text, shortened URL, and title

    Just to name a few…

    Better yet, using a unique template system it allows users to easily create their own templates making the possibilities endless and includes a built-in step-by-step guide to help you write your own.

    Check it out!

    https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/dcjnfaoifoefmnbhhlbppaebgnccfddf

  • wordpress slideshow, August 4, 2011

    There are some very useful things. I have used Lastpass for many days. It is very helpful and preserve password and other information very easily.

  • Mike Harding, August 5, 2011

    This collection is awesome! Thank you very much. I’m thinking about making the switch to Chrome. What about extensions for developers?

  • Asif Khan, August 20, 2011

    Well, I use 3 of those extensions – Mail Checker Plus, WOT, Shareholic. They are all very useful in their own section. Good Article BTW.

  • shirish, January 17, 2013

    Hi,
    Thanks for compiling the list given. I prefer wastenotime extension over stayfocussed as it shows a nice graph /bar chart of the websites which you had browsed by time.

  • Alien Bob, February 27, 2013

    Page need updating, as Picnik has been bought by Google, I think. Closed down, anyway.

Close