To effectively use WordPress plugins, learn how to update them, remove deactivated ones, deactivate backend plugins, and use the right number of plugins.
WordPress is a very popular tool for managing websites. Although there are many other tools and interfaces that can be used to manage complex websites, WordPress has some unique features that set it apart.
Originally, WordPress was developed to maintain personal websites or blogs. But as time went on, WordPress tools became more advanced, and now it maintains larger and more complex websites. One such unique feature is WordPress plugins.
What are WordPress Plugins?
A plugin is software within the WordPress tool. This software enhances the performance of a website managed by WordPress. This tool can enhance the functionality of the WordPress website and will even add new features.
These plugins are made with Hypertext Preprocessor or PHP. PHP is a scripting language usually used for web development. This language is perfect for WordPress plugins because plugins are used for web development as well.
So this language makes it easier for WordPress plugin users to understand what features they want to add, even if they have no coding knowledge.
This means no matter what feature you want to add to your website, there will definitely be a corresponding plugin. For instance, you can even change or add themes by Templatic on your website.
Things to Know About Plugins
Now before you download some plugins to develop your website and make it easier to use, you need to know a few things. This information will allow you to better use plugins and utilize them in the right way.
1. Use the Right Number of Plugins
Because plugins help make the website much more unique and provide helpful features, many web users feel that the more plugins they have, the more improved their website will be. But that is not necessarily the case, because more does not mean better.
On the other hand, using the minimum amount of plugins is also not the right decision. You need to think about what plugins you are using rather than how many.
If you have too many plugins, chances are some plugins will have the same coding, meaning they will have similar features. Having additional plugins with the same code might bog down your website. On the other hand, having two or three simple plugins rather than a complex and resource-intensive plugin will make operating your website much easier.
2. Regularly Update Your Plugins
Keep in mind that you need to regularly update your plugins. Updated plugins provide better security and efficiency. Older versions of your WordPress plugins are much weaker and prone to online hackers.
So if you wish to keep your website safe, you need to check your plugins regularly. If you see that there is a newer version available, update it immediately.
3. Get Rid of the Plugins You Will Not be Using
After downloading a good amount of plugins, you will notice that there are some you do not use. You can do two things with them. You can either keep them deactivated but update them regularly, or you can get rid of them together.
But there is a problem with keeping them deactivated. You might forget about them completely. Deactivated plugins are technically still live, so they will pose a security threat if they are not updated. Therefore, it is safer to get rid of any plugins that you are not using.
4. Deactivate Backend Plugins
Backend plugins are those you will use occasionally. For example, look at the WordPress Database Reset plugin. This plugin resets WordPress data to its original form. You do not need to keep this plugin active all the time.
You only need to use it when you are going to reset the WordPress data. This is a backend plugin. Keeping these plugins active will put a strain on your site’s resources and make your site feel sluggish. So keep them deactivated and only activate them when you are going to use them.
5. You Need to Emphasize the Quality of a Plugin
The quality of the plugin is very important and this should be a no-brainer to you. A poorly coded plugin might jeopardize your website and make it vulnerable to online attackers. There are a few key ways to understand which plugin is of high quality.
You should check how much they have been downloaded, the rating of these plugins, user reviews, and the background of the developers. You should use popular, well-reviewed plugins.
6. Use a Plugin That Best Suits Your Website
Sometimes, your website determines the type of plugin you need. For example, if you are using a WordPress website that needs a lot of visitors, then you need a Search Engine Optimization plugin.
If you have sensitive data on your website, then you need a security and firewall plugin.
If you are running a website where a lot of communication is held between a group of people, then plugins that help enable communication features should be your go-to choice.
7. Non-Premium Plugins can be Just as Effective
Many people might be under the impression that only premium plugins are of high quality and automatically better than non-premium plugins. This misconception is completely wrong.
There are some non-premium plugins that can be just as effective as premium ones. You will eventually find a plugin that is better coded than a premium plugin. So check how well the plugin is coded instead of assuming quality through its premium status.
If you run a large business or an enterprise, then your website might become complex and hard to maintain. To make things easier, you obviously need the help of plugins, and WordPress happens to have the best plugins available. So choose the right ones that are properly coded and well-reviewed.