Every Joomla! developer has a toolkit of extension they can’t live without that usually includes solutions for content, images, forms, caching, security and adding other improvements that build on CMS core.

That’s the great thing about Joomla! – in the Joomla! Extenstion Directory alone there are more than 8,600 components, modules and plugins that build on core, allowing you to bend the software to your will.

But with so many free and premium components available, how do you sort the good from the bad? Below is my collection of essential components, all chosen based on their usefulness, quality and sometimes also popularity of course. Check out this list of top  10 Joomla! 3.x components and find out which extension you should be using to improve your CMS efficiency.

  1. SP Page Builder (joomshaper.com) - it's quite new extension, but it may change our old habits about Joomla web design.  It's a drag and drop page builder that aims to help you build custom sites in minutes not hours or even days. As well as the intuitive interface, one of the highlights of this components is the selection of 38+ add-ons and 5 pre-built page layouts (templates in Pro version).
  2. JCE (joomlacontenteditor.net) - it's very popular and powerful WYSIWYG editor for Joomla since its beginning. It has more features than built-in TinyMCE. And if you'd decide to buy a Pro licence you will get access to add-ons which allows you to insert media files or files too download and much more etc. 
  3. EasyBlog (stackideas.com/easyblog) - if you're going to allow many people write a blog on your website, this component can help you manage this topic. For example here - where I write this blog post I'm using this extension.
    easy-blog joomla 3.4
  4. Phoca Commander (phoca.cz) - free and powerful File and Folder Manager for Joomla 3+ only that features side-by-side file-browsing panels (like Total Commander was). It provides almost all the file management features you could possibly want:  copy, move, rename and delete files etc.
    file-manager jooml 3.4
  5. RS Firewall! (rsjoomla.com) - the All In One Joomla security and Firewall is the ultimate security plugin that will take your CMS site’s security to a whole new level. This commercial component offers website security protection against: XSS, RFI, CRLF, CSRF, Base64, Code Injection and SQL Injection.
    firewall-joomlaIf you don't have money or missed discounts - just use free alternative jHackGuard from jhackguard.com.
  6. AcyMailing (acyba.com) - If you think that newsletters still have power to notice customers about promotions or new items in shop or just articles on your magazine website.
  7. Quick Add to Menu (extend-cms.com) - simple but extreme useful plugin In most cases your clients don't understand how to "create a page" because they first create an article, and then a menu item, and then display them in a module - it is just too much for them. Use this plugin and create a menu item for your articles upon creation, seamless integration within the Joomla article manager. It adds a menu selection to the article creation form. By selecting a menu and saving the article it will be added to the selected menu either as the first or the last item (option). Only commercial version is aviable.menu quick for jooml back-end

  8. Akeeba Backup (akeebabackup.com) - one tool many backups, it will back up your entire site including your database and all your files on a schedule that suits you.
    backup-tool-joomla 34
  9. Advanced Module Manager (nonumber.nl) - with AMM you can easily change the behavior of modules, mostly publishing assignments. It's an extension that changes the way your Module manager works. On author website you will find Free and Pro version as well.
  10. K2 (getk2.org) - few years ago it was very popular CCK, right now it's still but it has very big competition - also because Joomla 3.x have more features. But two interestings things still remained buit-in comment system and custom fields. Soon will be published v3 of this component which will get also better design more similar to default J! article system. 

Is your favorite extension on the list? What other extension would you recommend? Tell us in the comments below.