It’s no secret that one of the reasons for the great success of WordPress is its extensibility via plugins.
WordPress.org hosts over 57,000 plugins alone. You could get lost down the rabbit hole if you are not careful.
This post will highlight three great WordPress utility plugins that I’ve found to be extra useful.
Let's take a look.
Have you ever wanted to add floating action buttons to your WordPress site to boost conversion rates? Perhaps you’d like a call to action button for people to phone you or visit your social media sites.
If so, Buttonizer is a fantastic and super easy plugin to accomplish adding floating action buttons on your site.
Find out how!
When I started my career as a web developer, we would use a text editor to write HTML in local files, and then use File Transfer Protocol to copy them to a web server on the internet, and then refresh the browser and wait for the changes to be visible.
We’ve come a long way since then. These days it’s becoming more and more common to run a web server right on your own computer, and not upload anything until the entire site is complete. I recently did a video series for OSTraining, "An Introduction To Local WordPress Development With LocalWP", which not only sets up a local web server, but also helps get WordPress itself setup and configured, as well as providing a number of other tools. Here’s some of what I covered.
One of the fastest ways your WordPress site will get hacked is if you don't pay attention. Well ,how do you know when stuff needs attention?
In this video, I want to talk to you about a really simple plugin called Update Notifier that helps to keep your WordPress site up to date. This Is going to let you know when parts of your wordpress website need to be updated. Now WordPress updates itself in minor releases but not major releases, and your plugins and themes don't automatically update, so you need to maintain those well.
If you don't regularly log into your WordPress site, how do you know?
Let's find out!
Blog owners and owners of news sites like to keep their readers engaged. That is, they try to keep the user focused on the content, so they do not leave the site.
Many blogs make use of an infinite scroll effect, to display posts and articles (custom post types) on their WordPress sites. This technique is used to generate clicks from the reader. It resembles the feed of all known social networks, maybe that is the reason why it is so popular.
The Ajax Load More plugin for WordPress provides this functionality. You can then enhance it to your liking, through the configuration options available.
Keep reading to learn how to use this plugin!
In this video, I'm going to show you how you to enforce strong passwords in your WordPress site.
Weak passwords are probably the number one way your site is gonna get hacked, and you've no control of that once you hand that account over to a user.
Well not anymore. Let's go.
in this episode, I'm gonna help you make creating your WordPress posts and pages go even faster. If you're like me, you love the new Gutenberg editor. Being able to drag and drop all of those different elements into a post or a page is really really easy, but if I'm creating the same kind of content over and over again like a blog with the same layout - say an image, then a paragraph, then a heading, another paragraph, and then maybe a quote or however you want to basically always create your posts or pages, all that dragging and dropping is really a hassle.
I'm gonna show you two really simple ways to make that go a whole lot faster: 1) reusable blocks, or 2) a simple plugin.
People tend to express and understand things better by using pictures and images. Sharing pictures through social networks like Instagram has become an everyday part of our lives.
The Smash Balloon Social Photo Feed allows you to embed the feeds of your own Instagram accounts in your WordPress site. The plugin provides multiple display options.
Keep reading to learn how to use this plugin!
Long articles often discourage users from reading the whole text. As a matter of fact, we are all used to scanning over text instead of reading it, when navigating over the web.
This generally happens because you are searching for some punctual information when you access the internet.
A table of contents at the beginning of the article proves to be useful in these cases. The LuckyWP Table of Contents plugin for WordPress provides this type of functionality.
Keep reading to learn how to use this plugin!
Gone are the days when an individual needed to knoq coding to make a working website. Just your enthusiasm, along with the availability of plugins in WordPress, has made it super-easy to develop a fully-functional website.
Let us explore one of the best WordPress event management plugins: WP Event Manager. It is a plugin that will help you design, edit and manage any kind of events on your website. And guess what? No need for coding skills.
One of the most significant turning points in the history of WordPress is when version 3.0 came out in 2010. It included Custom Post Types, which allowed a developer to create entirely new kinds of content, manage how the administrative interface looked, and create unique templates for rendering the content on the front of the website.
A great, albeit simple, example of this is a Staff Listing. If you think about what a staff listing needs, it includes:
A page listing all of the staff (or a page with pagination if there are too many)
A single page for each staff person, with relevant data like phone number, office location, email address, etc.
The ability to organize staff into groups, like departments, locations, etc.
A combination of a custom post type, meta fields, and custom taxonomies can create these pages, plus the administrative interface, in 30 minutes or less. Here’s how I did it.
Over the years, we've relied on RSS feeds for many different tasks.
Ten years ago, we used RSS feeds to create news sites, pulling in articles from multiple different sources.
Five years ago, we set up RSS feeds to automatically send our updates to social media.
Now we still use RSS feeds. In 2020, we use RSS for some of our software projects. Github provides RSS feeds for our plugin releases. We take the release information from Github and import it to our sites to show our changelogs.
Several years ago I suddenly got an automated message from my web host telling me that my account was using too many resources, and I would soon have to upgrade. This surprised me quite a lot, since the only thing on there was my blog, which was small, and I never wrote, so no-one ever visited.
I contacted support and asked them what had caused the error message to send. As it turns out, a bot was trying to break into my WordPress login form. It was simply trying usernames and passwords in a classic brute force attempt to guess a username and password combination. The problem was that it was trying over 100 times per second. This means that my login page was loading 200 times per second, once for the form, and once for the failed login notice. My server was melting.
Page builders, page builders … you’re all pretty. Can’t we all just get along?
Say you have limited web design experience, you need a website, and you’re on a budget. You’ve decided a WordPress page builder is right for you. Congratulations! You’ve just stepped into a hornet’s nest of "mine is better than yours because …"
Much like the tribe wars between Mac and PC devotees, page builders have their tribe wars too. People like what they like, and they’re comfortable staying with what they know. And let’s face it, learning something new is time-consuming, and sometimes hard, depending on your experience. But time moves on, technology advances, and what worked really well before might not work well anymore, and so you have to look for new solutions—better solutions. This is where I am.
You need a web site. You’re not a coder. You’ve dabbled in Wordpress enough to know that the blog you created years ago when it was all the rage doesn’t make you a webmaster.
Enter page builders. A page builder is not to be confused with a SaaS site (Software as a Service) like Wix or Square Space. SaaS sites are fine for the complete beginner, but you know how Wordpress works, and you know just enough about site building to be dangerous, but not enough to build without a little visual guidance. You’re creative, by golly, and you will not be constrained! Much.
If this is you, then page builders can be the answer.
The Bridge theme is a highly customizable, creative multi-purpose theme for WordPress and as of November 2019, it includes Elementor and WPBakery, two of the best page builders for WordPress.
- Bridge currently costs $59.00 and comes with 6 months of support and lifetime updates.
- Bridge is versatile and very flexible.
- There are almost 500 "demos", or pre-built site templates that come with Bridge and Elementor that can be mixed and matched for almost unlimited design combinations.
- Documentation is exceptional.
Most people agree, that sliders or carousels give your WordPress site a professional and fresh look. The Metaslider Plugin adds this functionality and provides some interesting customization features to give each slider a unique look.
Keep reading to learn how to integrate this useful plugin into your site!
Tables are very useful to present data, especially data related to numerical values. People find it easier to read and interpret the data (identify patterns and establish comparisons) when it is presented in a table layout so that relative complex information can be presented concisely.
The TablePress WordPress plugin allows you to create and manage tables within your site. Keep reading to learn more about this module.
Finding the best WordPress event calendar for event management can be a challenging task.
If you are a website owner and plan to create events for conferences, meetings, webinars, online classes and so on, there is a lot to do. Publishing the created event in an informative way, registering the participants, managing the different time zones, prices, and venues can all make everything much more complicated.
This is where you need the best WordPress event calendar possible. Whatever website you run, you need a modern and versatile event management system.
If you’re here, you probably have a sound backup strategy in place to protect your data from any loss or outages. But, do you have a strategy in place to test the efficiency of your stored backups? Just like any other website file, your backup could turn bad for several reasons, including:
- Missing or corrupted files
- Lack of storage space
- Incomplete backups
- Virus or malware infections
- Incompatibility with an installed plugin/theme after an update.
In this blog post, I'll show you how to test your WordPress backup before restoring it.
WordPress Multisite vs Multiple Sites - that is the question. Are you running a global business offering customized products to individual countries or regions? Do you have multiple brands catering to different customer needs and users? If the answer to these questions is yes, then multiple WordPress websites for your business makes practical sense.
Multiple sites can help you customize your website content uniquely for a particular brand, product, or for geographical region. This enables your potential customers to access relevant content or post queries on the right website.
Edit Flow is a WordPress plugin used by many blogs, newspapers and magazine sites.
A few years ago, Edit Flow was acquired by Automattic, the parent company behind WordPress.com.
Automattic have now confirmed that Edit Flow is not part of their future plans.
As a web developer or a site builder, you know that there is always something that could go wrong with your site. As an example, here are some scenarios:
- the site crashes after a core or a plugin update
- the site got hacked and all information is lost
- the server crashed and it is not possible to restore the database of your site
Those are all external circumstances and you do not have influence over them. However, making a periodic backup of the codebase and database of your site and sending it to a cloud storage service like Dropbox can help to minimize the impact of such incidents.
The UpdraftPlus WP plugin provides this functionality.
Keep reading to learn how to use this plugin!
Revisionary is a WordPress plugin that has been around for nearly 10 years.
Revisionary allowed you to moderate or schedule changes to published posts.
The plugin was first launched in 2009 and had been starting to show its age in recent year. Fortunately, the plugin just had a major new update and it now looks ready for WordPress in 2019.
Revisionary is now called "PublishPress Revisions" but you can still find it at the same place on WordPress.org.
One OSTraining user asked us this week if it was possible to schedule a revision to go live in the future. This would be very helpful if you need to automatically update a Post on a future date.
This is possible in WordPress thanks to a plugin called "PublishPress Revisions".
PublishPress Revisions is the plugin for managing WordPress revisions and this is one of its most useful features.
- Install PublishPress Revisions from WordPress.org.
- Go to Revisions > Settings.
- On this screen, make sure that the “Scheduled Revisions” box is checked.
Now that's done, you're ready to create a scheduled revision. Please note that you can only do this with content that is marked as “Published” status.
WordPress has one of the most powerful revision systems available on any blogging platform.
When you start writing in WordPress, your changes will be automatically and safely saved. And, if you want to compare your current version of a post to an old version, WordPress gives you an easy side-by-side comparison. The image below shows a revision comparison in WordPress - the old content is marked in red and the new content is in green.
All deployments of WordPress require an installation of PHP for running WordPress Core and associated extensions, along with a MySQL database for backing storage of your content and configurations. While configuration of these services is well documented, it can create confusion for the uninitiated and could impact the time required to stand up your site instance. With the advent of Docker, many Content Management Systems like WordPress can now be shipped with environmental dependencies and software prerequisites pre-configured, allowing you to create a new site instance rapidly that is completely isolated from the host environment.
Microsoft Azure offers the ability to deploy Azure Resource Manager (ARM) Templates that leverage Docker-Compose to stand up containerized applications in just a few clicks. Using Docker allows us to create an isolated user environment that fulfills the PHP + MySQL requirement and is portable across any VM for which the container’s source architecture matches the target. While Wordpress can run directly on an Azure VM or deployed as a standalone Azure App Service, a Docker container is portable across any host capable of running a Docker compatible OS. Due to this capability, you could lift and shift your containerized application between various cloud providers provided access to a host environment that is compatible with you containerized app.
If you already have a WordPress deployment and are interested in moving your instance to run in a container, you are in luck! Migrating an existing WordPress instance to an Azure VM running Docker can be done in five easy steps!
Here is exactly how I did it for my personal blog.
The Easy Image Collage plugin for WordPress allows you to create image collages within your WordPress site and use them everywhere, either on a post, page, or custom post type.
The plugin is compatible with both the Classic WP Editor and the Gutenberg Editor. Furthermore, it is possible to embed unlimited collages to any post or page, drag the images to accommodate them within their spot in the collage, and to add a Pinterest button to share the collage.
In this tutorial, we will explain the functioning of this module. Let’s get started!
WordPress is an excellent platform for writing, editing and publishing content. So it’s important to know who has permission to do that on your WordPress site.
I’m going to explain the editing permissions for your WordPress posts.
This tutorial starts by explaining the default permissions and in the next two sections we'll see how to customize those permissions.