There are two types of people when it comes to using browser extensions. You have them all or you have them none. The adventure starts with just one install button. Then, you're lost in the extension world. You’re adding a new one to your browser week by week. But what are the best Google Chrome extensions that you need to have?
The Productivity Fair - 13 Chrome Extensions Everyone Has Already Installed
Chrome Web Store is 8 years-old. It's offering us around 188k extensions to istall. Yet, only 13 of them have crossed the 10 million user count (that is the highest on Chrome Web Store). What are these extensions?
Cisco Webex Extension, Google Translate, Avast Online Security, Adobe Acrobat, Grammarly, Adblock Plus, Pinterest Save Button, Skype, AdBlock, Avast SafePrice, uBlock Origin, Honey, Tampermonkey.
Fun fact #1: all of them are categorized as productivity tools.
We see productivity and we want it all. We’re obsessed about being productive. In fact, I’ve dedicated my very first article to this obsession - a silent killer nobody’s noticing (you can read more here).
Let’s focus on the extensions.
Curse of Abundance on Chrome Store?
After installing and working with the very first extension you start to appreciate it. It is really useful, letting you do stuff much quicker. So, now you’re lost. You’re going to be looking for more.
And there is much more, believe me.
But what apart from the golden 13 of the best-seller of Chrome store is worth installing? You can get pretty lost just scrolling through the Chrome Store or doing any research on the Web.
There are many rankings, threads on some Social Media channels aiming to present the very best of chrome extensions. I got the feeling that they overlap - focusing on the exact same tools or their alternatives, not bringing anything fresh and new.
I mean, Grammarly for Chrome, Loom, Last Pass - everyone is writing about them in their articules/suggestions.
Fun fact #2 when going through just one question asked on Quora, Grammarly was mentioned by users 78 times. Wow.
The Underrated Ones
That is why I would like to present to you my list of the chrome extensions. But, to warn you - they are not the top-ranked ones. They’ve attracted quite a user base, but comparing to the 13 they may be invisible.
But there is this thing with good stuff. You don’t know how much you need them until you hear about them.
Ever wondered how great would it be to read online without any distraction? Imagine a plain article or blog text - no pop-ups, no ads. Mercury Reader does this magic!
And after one click: tada!
Thanks to Mercury Reader you can get rid of all the distractive things you while reading. My personal favorite feature is the ability to send the plain-mercury-version straight to Kindle. If you’re reading online I think this extension is a game-changer, making the Internet publications eye-friendly again.
Yet - this reader view extension is not designed for each and every content. As it deletes pictures, some articles may get truly harmed. Take a look at anything that is a case study or a how-to, like 10 Most Useful IDE hotkeys. GIFS removal will have a significant effect on the content's value.
I’m getting easily distracted when working - by social media, news and - the whole Internet. I know, there is a name for this - FOMO, Fear of Missing Out.
It’s like the generation weakness, being committed to the Online live. We have to admit, we suffer from Social Media addiction. Everyone’s impulsively checking Facebook, Instagram, Twitter feed and mail inbox each 5 minutes.
How can you truly focus on your work when with every single look at them is interruption? And every interruption’s messing with your ability to focus more and more.
The Net is, by design, an interruption system, a machine geared for dividing attention.
(taken from Shallows by Nicholas Carr).
Without self control you will end up loosing plenty of your time and, what is worse, lacking the ability to focus.
That’s why, there is many distraction blockers avaiable - for your mobile or any other device. My favorite one is Freedom - made up of desktop app, web UI and a browser extension. It has one outstanding feature: integration - allowing you to block particular pages on multiple devices.
Speaking of distractions - while for some music is one of them, for others it's a must te get more focused. Lstening to country, rap, techno or classical music when working? There is this one genre that makes nearly all of us more productive and more focused - ambient sounds.
Nosili is a Chrome extension and UI that provides customized background noises, so you can create the right environment for your work. Once you choose your perfect combos, you can play it anytime with just two clicks.
This Chrome extension simply enlarges thumbnails, showing images/gifs/videos with a mouse hover. It’s really useful especially when you’re going through a lot of e-commerce sites or Social Media channels, like Intagram, Twitter or Reddit.
This one is designed mainly for web developers, product teams and digital agencies. Marker.io allows you to report visual bugs directly into your communication tool or task manager. It can be integrated with Trello, Jira, GitHub, Asana, GitLab, Bitbucket and Slack. Bugs may be marked up by either your team member or a client (as long as they have Marker.io installed).
I mean - feedback from your clients, any idea from the brainstorm won’t be lost along the way. With just one click it can be communicated to the whole team on any app that you’re using.
We all sometimes have trouble with finding the right person to contact when going through a company website. With this tool you can find the one you’re looking for with just one click, along with the position, e-mail adress, job title and social networks when available.
All the information is collected from the public sources which are detailed below the contact info. Thanks to this, we can not only be sure that the information we got is valid and official, but… also check from which sources marketers take our contacts (just use Hunter.io on the website of your business). Of course, it won’t give us all the sources, but we can partially track it.
So, that’s it. My selection of 6 must-have Chrome extensions. I dare to say, they are just as good as the most popular 13. Give them a try - there is quite big possibility that one of them will be a game-changer for you.
What is your all-time favorite chrome extension? Share your secrets! Of course as long as they are not Grammarly or Adblock…