The biggest advantage that Google Chrome has over other browsers is the extensive library of extensions available on the Chrome Web Store. Of course, popular extensions are available for other browsers too, but the sheer number and the quality of extensions which are available for Chrome is unmatched. However, since the number of extensions available on the Chrome Web Store are so extensive, it is difficult to find out the best extensions which are really useful to a user. That’s the reason we have created this list of the best Google Chrome Extensions you should get in the year 2018:
Best Google Chrome Extensions for 2018
Chrome Extensions For Privacy and Security
1. HTTPS Everywhere
The best way to know if you are visiting a secure website or not is to look for the HTTPS in your browser’s URL window. However, there are sometimes when you need to visit a website which is not secured using the HTTPS protocol. In such cases, HTTPS Everywhere extension can come to your rescue. The extension has been created by EFF and the Tor Project and automatically switches thousands of sites from insecure “HTTP” to secure “HTTPS”. Thus, it protects your privacy and removes any concern relating to surveillance, account hijacking, and any other such privacy concerning activity.
Install: HTTPS Everywhere
2. Privacy Badger
Privacy Badger is a great extensions which protects your online privacy while you are browsing the internet. It blocks spying ads and invisible trackers and ensures that companies can’t track your browsing without your consent. One of the biggest problems with online browsing today is the trackers that follow you across websites and generate information about you to deliver targeted ads. Privacy Badger protects you from such kind of invisible trackers.
Install: Privacy Badger
ScriptSafe is an all in one tool which not only provides you with a secure browsing experience but also makes it faster by not allowing unwanted scripts to load on websites. ScriptSafe’s features include whitelisting/blacklisting of websites, protection against fingerprinting, protection against WebRTC leaks, unwanted content blocking, Malware Domain Blocklist integration, and more.
4. Web of Trust
While extensions which use automatic scripts to protect our privacy across the internet are important, there is always a possibility that they can miss security issues on some websites. That’s where Web of Trust or WOT differentiate itself from other extensions. WOT is a community of millions of internet users like you and me who report on the status of a security of websites. When you use the extension, it will show you the WOT status of a website next to its URL. A green WOT symbol means the website is secure, yellow means its sketchy, and red means that you should avoid that website at all costs.
Install: Web of Trust
5. uBlock Origin
While you might think that most of the information available on the web is available for free, you are actually paying for it with your privacy. Invisible trackers track you across sites and deliver you targeted ads. While the extensions mentioned above stop invisible trackers from tracking your browsing data, uBlock Origin blocks those persistent ads from showing on the websites. uBlock also allows you to whitelist the websites of your favorite creators so that you can browse the internet ad-free without keeping a guilty conscience.
Install: uBlock Origin
Ghostery is one of those few extensions on the web which gives power back to consumers. The extension not only blocks the cross-website invisible trackers but also gives you a way to watch what kind of trackers are present on the website that you are visiting. Thus you can view and block trackers on websites you browse, and anonymizes your data with its enhanced anti-tracking technology. Apart from that it also blocks annoying ads and helps speed up the internet by automatically blocking and allowing trackers to meet page quality criteria.
7. TunnelBear VPN
A good way to protect your browsing history from being tracked not only by the automatic scripts present on websites but also from your ISPs (internet service providers) is by using a VPN. A VPN allows you to browse internet by using a virtual or proxy IP address and saves your browsing data from getting tracked. VPN also had added benefits of unblocking the region-locked content. While there are tons of good VPN service providers, if you are looking for one which provides the best connectivity and speed, TunnelBear is the way to go. Although its a paid VPN service (the free version comes with 500MB of data), if you value your privacy and want the best VPN service out there, TunnelBear is what you need. The service cost $9.99/month (billed monthly) or $4.99/month (billed annually) and gives you unlimited data.
Install: TunnelBear VPN
DuckDuckGo became popular as an alternative search engine to Google (Bing was never in picture) as it promised users that it doesn’t track any of their data. Now, the service has also launched its Chrome extension which helps users in protecting their privacy across internet. Just like Web of Trust, DuckDuckGO provides a privacy score to each website and even has the ability to forcibly improve a website’s privacy grade by using its own encryption. It also has a tracker blocker which stops advertisers from tracking you on the sites you visit. Lastly, the extension itself doesn’t store any user data keeping your online presence safe and secure.
Chrome Extensions For Better Reading and Video Experience
9. Invideo For YouTube
Invideo is a very nifty little extension which can enhance your YouTube browsing experience. Remember, when you are rewatching a video and want to skip to your favorite part but don’t know where it begins. Well, Invideo can help you in such situations. The extension, believe it or not, lets you search inside a YouTube video. It basically uses the subtitles used in the YouTube videos and makes the whole text searchable. The extension also comes in really handy when you are watching a long tutorial and just want to skip to the part you don’t understand.
Install: Invideo For YouTube
10.Turn Off the Lights
Turn off the Lights is another extension which is a must for users who watch a lot of videos on places like YouTube. The extension basically fades the entire page while highlighting the video you are watching, giving you an immersive experience. The best part about using this extension is that it works for all known video sites such as YouTube, Vimeo, Dailymotion, Hulu, Netflix, Metacafe, YouKu, and more.
Install: Turn Off the Lights
11. Dark Reader
Dark Reader is an extension which brings dark theme to the whole of internet. Whenever you are on a website, all you need to is click on the Dark Reader extension icon and it will apply the dark theme to that website. It also provides you with a more granule control over the applied dark theme as the user can control brightness, contrast, make sepia filters adjustment, change font settings, and more. If you love dark theme, do give this one a try.
Install: Dark Reader
Stylish, as its name suggests, is a Chrome Plugin which lets you stylize the internet. It does that by allowing users to install different themes on the websites that it supports. It supports most of the popular websites including Reddit, Facebook, Google, Quora, Twitter, and more. Some of my favorite themes include dark theme for Quora, minimalist theme for Facebook, and Game of Thrones theme for Reddit. If you want to add color to otherwise bland looking internet, Stylish is the extension to use.
Pocket is a read it later service which allows users to save articles offline for a later reading. Apart from having a Chrome extension, Pocket also has its own Android and iOS app, allowing users to read articles on-the-go. It’s one of those services which you never realize you needed until you use it once. If you like to read a lot of articles on the web, Pocket will be an extremely valuable service to you.
Just like Pocket, InstaPaper is a read it later service which helps you in saving web pages to read later on your iPhone, iPad, Android, computer, or Kindle. Although Pocket was the first read-it-later service to hit the market, I personally prefer InstaPaper over it because it offers a far better, minimalistic, and eye-pleasing UI.
15. Evernote Web Clipper
Evernote Web Clipper is a great extension if you are already using Evernote’s service. While the web clipper can act as a read it later service, as it not only can save the offline version of an article but the entire article itself, I mainly use it as a researching tool. As you all know, Evernote is already one of the best note-taking apps out there, and having a web clipper which can save articles, bookmarks, and take quick screenshots, is just a boon. If you are using Evernote, its web clipper extension for Chrome is a must-have.
Install: Evernote Web Clipper
HoverZoom is a nifty little Chrome extension which makes it really easy to preview videos, images, and thumbnails on the web. As its name suggests, when you hover your cursor over any of the aforementioned objects on the web, the extension will instantly show you a preview. So you can easily browse galleries without opening every single photo at a time, watch video previews to decide if you want to watch them or not, and more. Believe me, the extension will save you a lot of time once you start using it.
17. Magic Actions for YouTube
This one is for people who spend most of their time watching videos on YouTube cannot escape its vortex. I am one of those people and the Magic Actions extension for YouTube has been a great partner in crime for me. The extension brings a ton of features like Auto HD (always play videos in HD), instant control over volume by scrolling mouse wheel, Cinema Mode, 1-click snapshot, day/night toggle switch, managing watch history, and more. If you spend a lot of time on YouTube, you should definitely give this one a try.
Install: Magic Actions for YouTube
18. Google Scholar Button
As you all know, Google Scholar is Google’s search engine arm which indexes and search only the scholarly articles. It’s a great tool for students who want to find the source of the article they are citing. Google Scholar Button allows students to do that, without having to open a new tab every time. The extension adds a browser button for easy access to Google Scholar from any web page. Users can just search inside the box which appears when they click on the extension icon and get the results right there. It’s a really good tool for cross-referencing articles without having to go back and forth in different tabs.
Install: Google Scholar Button
Chrome Extensions For General Productivity
Everyone opens their laptops swearing that they will be productive this time. However, internet is a big fat distracting place which has its own agenda. That’s why a few hours later you find that you have watched a couple of hours of video, ranted on Twitter, got jealous of your Facebook friend’s statuses, and did pretty much everything else other than being productive. If that sounds familiar, stop everything right now and download StayFocusd extension for your Chrome. 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.
Want to be productive but getting distracted by all the noise around you, then check out Noisli. Noisli is the one of the best and most beautifully designed productivity companion. No matter if you are in an environment where it is too loud or too quiet, with Noisli you can create and listen to your favorite background sounds in order to focus and concentrate on your tasks. The extension gives a lot of option to choose from. You can choose the background noise depending on your preference, or let Noisli do it for you depending on what you are working on. It’s one of the best productivity tools you will ever have.
Another great way to improve your productivity is by using the Pomodoro technique. If you are not familiar with the term, it basically states that you should work in a cycle of deep work and rest. The basic cycle is 25 minutes of work followed by 5 minutes of rest, however, you can change the time as per your personal capacity. Marniara helps you in using this Pomodoro method by bringing a Pomodoro clock to Chrome. The extension not only times your work and breaks but also keeps a record of it. The record is a great way to say how productive you have been in say last week or last month.
If you are really productive on the web, a good chunk of your time is being spent on writing things. Whether you are replying to emails or drafting your next article on Google Docs, Grammarly is an extension which can help you write better. It uses its underlying technology to identify grammatical errors in your writing, which are otherwise missed by any other word processor. The best part is that Grammarly does this automatically and also suggests you the corrections in real-time.
While there are a lot of password managers which can help you secure your passwords, LastPass is probably my favorite as it is truly cross-platform, offers more features with its free-tier, and is cheaper than most of the password managers out there. That’s why when it came to choosing a password manager extension, I went with LastPass. We all know the benefits using a password manager, but my favorite feature is the generation of secure and random passwords whenever you are signing up for a new service. Other than that the auto-login feature is deeply appreciated. If somehow you are still not using a password manager, I would suggest that you should do it right now.
I have always loved the convenience that comes with owning an iOS and macOS device. The way every service is synced across the devices is just beautiful. However, there is no such thing for an Android device. That is why Pushbullet is such a powerful service as it brings the same iOS and macOS synergy to your Android device with the help of its Chrome extension. With Pushbullet, you can reply to messages, chat on services like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger, share links and files, see all the notifications, and do so much more. PushBullet is like having your Android device on your desktop. If you use Android, Pushbullet is a must-have extension.
Sometimes to become productive all you need is a constant reminder and motivation that you need to work. Momentum is an extension which helps in creating a configurable new tab, which gives you a moment of calm and inspires you to be more productive. The extension automatically updates the new tab’s background with a new soothing picture and an inspiring quote every day. It also allows you to add your daily focus and to-dos which are also visible on the new tab. It’s the best way to remind of what needs to be done.
Honey is a little bit different from other productive extensions on this list as it doesn’t help you in getting more work done, rather it helps you save time in the work you are already doing. If you are a thrifter by nature, you must be spending a lot of time searching for coupons before you make an online purchase and since most of our shopping is done online these days, that time adds up pretty quickly. Honey saves you the time you spend searching for coupons by automatically applying the best available coupon while you are making a purchase. Honey is a great way to not only save money but also your precious time.
Chrome Extensions For Gmail Productivity
One of the things that made WhatsApp really popular was the double-green check marks which helped users in seeing if their messages were read or not. MailTrack brings that same double-green checkmark feature to your Gmail account. The extension has been developed by MailTrack.io, and it lets you know if the emails you’ve sent have been read or not. The best part is that the service is free to use forever.
28. Checker Plus
Checker Plus is a great way to manage multiple email accounts from Chrome. It basically brings Android style notifications to your Chrome allowing you to mark emails as read and delete them. It even shows an iOS-style badge on the extension icon allowing you to see how many unread emails you have. Using the extension you can also easily switch between your accounts without having to open a new window or tab. Lastly, it also gives you an option to run in this notifier in the background when Google Chrome is closed and can still show new email alert.
Install: Checker Plus
29. Sortd For Gmail
Sortd For Gmail is a great extension which turns your simple Gmail account into a full-fledged sales tracking system. When installed the extension creates a sales pipeline board which is just a click away. You can easily drag and drop emails in the different areas to easily sort potential clients according to the stage they are in. It also allows you to easily add actionable items, so next time you open your mail, you know what to say to which customer. It’s one of the best free sales tool (has paid options too) for any professional out there.
Install: Sortd For Gmail
30. MailButler For Gmail
MailButler is your own personal assistant for Gmail. It offers a plethora of features like send later, mail tracker, reminders, signatures, notes, message and email templates, and many more. I especially love the snooze features which removes the emails from the front for a predefined time so that I can deal with them later. Another handy feature is that it creates a handy opt-out button on top of every newsletter, so you don’t have to search for that pesky unsubscribe button. There are a ton of features and it will take an article of its own to describe everything that MailButler has to offer. That’s why just install the extensions and see for yourself how much more productive an extension can make you.
Install: MailButler For Gmail
Chrome Extensions For Tab Management
Have you ever lost in the open tabs of your browser? I know I have, as at any given time I have more than twenty tabs open in my Chrome. If you also have tab addiction like I do, SuperTab will help you a lot. SuperTabs is an extension which allows you to list and search current open tabs and switch to them quickly. You can search for tabs based on their titles. The extension icon also shows you the number of open tabs as a badge counter. It also supports keyboard shortcuts to allow users to quickly switch between different tabs.
32. Panda 5
Ever wanted to visit multiple websites from the same tab? I know I did, as it is really easy to cross reference things when you can browse them together. Well, that’s where Panda 5 comes to our help. The extension allows you to browse multiple websites at the same time. I have especially found this extension useful when dealing with my social media stuff. I open Facebook, Twitter, and Reddit in the same tab and just blitz through everything that I need to do. The extension also allows you to personalize your new tabs and has built-in reader mode available. It’s perfect for people who love to multitask.
Install: Panda 5
33. The Great Suspender
The only problem with using Chrome is that the browser hogs system memory, especially when you are like me and have tens of tabs open at any time. That’s why I love The Great Suspender so much as it allows me to open as many tabs as I want without using up all the resources on my laptop. The Great Suspender automatically suspends tabs after a predefined time of non-usage. You can also manually suspend a tab you want to and even create whitelist for websites you never wanted to get suspended. The best part is that suspended tabs are retained after closing and reopening browser, preventing all the tabs from reloading at the same time.
Install: The Great Suspender
Chrome Extensions For Media Creation
34. Awesome Screenshots
One of my favorite features of Firefox Quantum, is the built-in screenshot tool that comes with it. It makes taking and sharing screenshots of your browser a really easy task. While Chrome has no such feature, if you really need it, download the Awesome Screenshots extension. It not only lets you capture a screenshot on your web but also lets you record videos if you need to. The extension allows you to capture all or part of any web page, add annotations, comments, blur sensitive info, and share with one-click uploads.
Install: Awesome Screenshots
Loom is easy to use screen recorder software for Chrome. The extension allows you to record your Chrome’s window with just a single click and also gives you an easy to share link once you finish recording. It’s the best way to record Chrome and share the recording with others without having to upload the file somewhere.
SEE ALSO: 8 Cool Chrome Tricks You Do Not Know About
The Best Chrome Extensions You Can Use
That ends our list of the 35 best Chrome extensions which you can use in the year 2018 to become more productive. I have personally installed and tested every extension that I mentioned on the list so that you are sure that they work as advertised. So use them and let us know which are your favorite Chrome extensions.