What are Wordpress plugins and how do they work exactly?
Plugins are important, they help you add new features and functionalities to your WordPress site.
This post is a beginner’s guide to WordPress plugins. I guarantee you that when you finish reading this, the idea of WordPress plugins will be quite clear to you.
What Are WordPress Plugins?
Think of them as apps you install on your phone. Plugins are apps for your website.
Whenever you want to add a new item, such as a form, a pop-up notification, your Instagram feed on your site, you need a plugin to do all that.
Just as you would need to install a calculator on your smartphone if you want to make some calculations.
Some of the plugins are free while some are paid.
You can either install them right from your WordPress dashboard or import them from your system after downloading them for another site.
Explanation: What do they do exactly?
Each time that you download and activate a WordPress plugin, a code is added to your site and the plugins runs on WordPress software.
One of the best things about WordPress is actually plugins themselves.
Because WordPress plugins offer so much flexibility and possibilities for a website, WordPress is a popular choice for building a website.
Some examples of the type of sites you can build on WordPress are:
- Online store
- Business Directory
- Coupon website
- Photography website
- Podcast website
- Business website & more
For every little thing that you want to do on your WordPress site, there is a plugin.
Make your site load faster by boosting its performance, improve SEO, add Google Maps, social share buttons, Instagram feed, etc.
Each plugin can be activated and deactivated by you as your wish.
Also Read: How To Create A Custom Homepage In WordPress | GarimaShares
How do I search for Plugins?
Go to your WordPress dashboard.
Go to plugins > add new. Type the name of a plugin in the search bar or a feature you want to add on your WordPress site.
Now as there are many plugins available, you can find it a bit overwhelming at first to choose one out of the many.
Here are a few things you should consider before selecting a plugin to install:
- When was the plugin last updated
- Kind of reviews the plugin has
- If the plugin is compatible with your version of WordPress
- Number of installations
- Support Overview
How to test if the plugin slows down your site
You should check if the plugin is coded according to the WordPress coding standards.
Because if it is not it will effect the performance of your site.
Go to Pingdom or any other site speed checking service. Check your website’s page speed before activating the plugin. Note it down.
After that, go back to your WordPress website and activate the plugin. Now test your website speed again.
If the page takes a lot longer after activating the plugin, try looking for alternative option.
Also Read: How many WordPress plugins should you use?
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