A WordPress plugin is a software package that contains a group of functions that can be included on a WordPress site. These plugins can expand the functionality of, or add new features to, your WordPress websites.

WordPress plugins are written using the PHP programming language. These integrate effortlessly with WordPress. In the WordPress community, there is a maxim which goes something like this: “There’s a plugin for that”. If the theme that you choose for your site doesn’t have a particular function, have a look at the list of plugins which are available and there will probably be one which does what you want it to. This makes it simpler for users to add features to their website without knowing a single line of code.

What type of functionality can WordPress plugins add to your site?

There a great deal of plugins for WordPress plugins that are available for free on the official WordPress plugin directory.  Some of the available plugins can effect big changes to your WordPress website and turn it into a fully operational eCommerce store, social network or, alternatively, a forum which invites members’ commentary.

Alternatively, WordPress plugins can also add features, which are smaller, to your site such as an Instagram social feed which is good news for the digital marketing fraternity. A number of WordPress plugins don’t have front-facing effects. For example, it is possible to install plugins in order to improve your site’s performance or assist it to rank better in search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo.

Why would you want to pay for WordPress plugins?

As we’ve said previously in this article, there are tonnes of WordPress plugins available for free download. There are also premium, or paid-for, WordPress plugins. With so many of these software packages available for free, why would you want to pay for a plugin? There are several motives why you’d want to do this:

  • Paid-for plugins usually offer a full-time support staff as well as developers who work on preserving the security as well as compatibility of plugins with the latest version of WordPress in addition to other themes and plugins.
  • Much of the time, plugins work nicely with the core of WordPress in addition to other plugins. However, sometimes a plugin’s code will interfere with another plugin so causing compatibility issues. With a paid-for plugin, it’s just good to know that there is support staff who can help you out if anything doesn’t go as planned.

Must-knows about WordPress plugins

If you do decide to install WordPress plugins onto your site, there are a number of issues that you need to keep in mind:

Keep your plugins updated

Keeping your plugins up to date is essential to the security as well as functionality of your blog. If your plugins are out of date plugins, you’re a prime target for those who are in search of security weaknesses which could put your site at risk. Additionally, if your plug in is not working your website digital marketing objectives may not be achieved.

 In addition, periodically check your plugins to make sure that they have been updated recently. Strongly consider removing plugins which haven’t been updated for a prolonged period of time. As a rule of thumb, set this period as a year.

Keep deactivated plugins updated or uninstall them

Even if a plugin is not in use on your website make sure that it is still up to date. A deactivated plugin remains to be “live” on your website because it could be exploited as a security weakness. If a plugin isn’t active on your website, and you have no intention of making use of it in the future, remove it. Most plugins cause a strain on your website’s resources. This means that you should only activate backend plugins when you need them.

Plugins are, without hesitation, one of the greatest things about making use of WordPress. It can be challenging to know which plugins to select, how to keep an eye on them for conflicts as well as how to manage them once you’ve built up a sizable collection. This being said, making use of plugins to get the most out of your WordPress site doesn’t have to be difficult. Follow a few simple guidelines for example downloading plugins from sources which are reliable, keeping them up to date, and removing the ones you don’t need.

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