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Which plugins should you use?
There are so many how do you know the plugin will work? You don’t until you use the plugin. Some plugins will crash your website. This is because they are in conflict with the theme.
How do you avoid this problem?
This article will give you information about plugins based on my experience of using plugins with WordPress since I started using WordPress in 2006. The links to purchase the plugins are my Affiliate links. I constantly use these plugins on my websites. They do specific functions I couldn’t do without them. They’re so good they’re worth recommending.
WordPress gives you the advantage to add specific functions into WordPress known as a Plugin. A Plugin is a package of code and is developed by a team of developers. For a Plugin to work sucessfully, it has to be compatible with WordPress and the WordPress Theme. All you would need to do is add the Plugin to your website and activate the settings, and the plugin does the work intended.
There are over forty-four thousand Plugins in the WordPress Plugin Repository. That’s a whole lot of plugins! All plugins are required to go through testing before being allowed to be offered in the WordPress Repository. The Plugin Repository is accessed from your website Dashboard in the Plugins area. The Plugin Repository is linked to your WordPress website. When adding a plugin, go to the Plugins section, select Add New, or Upload a Plugin.
How are Plugins Made?
Plugins are created by developers, the people that know how to code. Plugin Developers are problem solvers. Many of the things you want to do in a website aren’t simple to implement. The Plugin Developer creates the plugin code package to add specific functions to the website.
Before you add a plugin to your website you do need to research the plugin beyond the sales copy, which by the way is just advertising. The Plugin will appear to be the perfect solution for what you want. Is it? Always do some research. Read the reviews about the plugin. Who is the Developer? When was the plugin last updated? Is it compatible with the latest version of WordPress (which is updated frequently). Is there tech support available if something goes wrong with the Plugin? Sometimes the Plugin is offered free, but tech support requires an upgrade.
Because there are so many which one should you use? This depends on the WordPress Theme you’re using. Not all Plugins in the WordPress Repository are compatible with all themes.
The question to ask; does this plugin work with the Theme you’re using?
Today, technology updates faster and there are more people using the software. You want a smooth integration with Plugins and this isn’t always possible. There will be problems along the way. The key to less Plugin issues is to use Plugins specifically made for the Theme you’re using.
Plugins I Use
The plugins I use are compatible and specifically developed for the Divi Theme. It’s no secret I use the Divi Theme and love using it. I also don’t know how to code with HTML but I can copy and paste a CSS style into the appropriate field (following a video tutorial, which anyone can do). The Divi Theme is produced by Elegant Themes in 2013, since it came out I haven’t needed to use any other theme.
I will only add a plugin to a website if it’s necessary and it has a specific feature. For example; the ability to add more information to the main navigation menu with images and text. This is something I could not do without a plugin.
At some point there will be a problem even with the most perfect plugin specifically built for the Divi Theme. When that happens the test is; the developers tech team fixes the problem, with no extra charge asap.
This may or may not happen depending on the Developer. Some Plugins are developed but not kept up and the Developer goes out of business and the Plugin is no longer available. Other times the Plugin becomes obsolete and is discontinued. Usually another Plugin better than the first Plugin will come in it’s place.
Why You Should Be Prepared to Buy a Plugin
It’s great when it’s free, but as you’ve most probably come to know by now, free means upgrade for a fee. Any Plugin might have conflict even if you paid for the plugin. Plugin Developers are a 3rd party development team and not part of the Theme Development Team. Remember, there’s three sets of code that work together, the Plugin code package, the Theme code package and the existing WordPress core code. If the Plugin Developer is good, their Plugins will work well for what they’re designed to do.
Plugins Included with The Divi Theme
Bloom Email Opt-In
This plugin has premade layouts and time settings to popup. The module after set up can be placed in a sidebar, the footer wherever you think is suitable for someone to easily opt-in to sign up for your Newsletter.
Developer: Elegant Themes
The Monarch Plugin comes with your purchase of the Divi Theme. It is a Social Media plugin that you can place anywhere on a page. Below a Post, or on the side of the post.
Developer: Elegant Themes
Plugins Worth Considering for your Divi Website
Divi Post Extended
Blog posts are an essential part of a website. This plugin lets you style a blog post giving you several styles to choose from. You do not need to know any code to use this plugin.
Developer: Elicus Technologies, Inc.
Divi Blog Extended
With this plugin you can display your blog posts on the Blog Page in various styles.
The ability to lay out blog posts gives your blog posts an attractive layout inviting readers to read the posts.
Developers: Divi Extended
Divi Modal Popup
This plugin allows you to place a link in a text, a button, or an icon. When you click on the link another screen pops up with information in that screen.
This is very effective when you do not want the visitor to have to go to another page.
Developer: Divi Extended
The Divi Community
The Divi Theme changed the way we build websites. It’s for anyone to use. Even if you’re a beginner and have no experience with WordPress you can use the Divi Theme.
The popularity of Divi gave rise to the Divi Community. People who use the Divi Theme, Designers, Developers, and Users share their knowledge and products about Divi.
How Many Plugins Can You Add?
As many as you want. But if you add too many you could bloat the website and weigh it down causing the site to load slowly.
Some plugins will work for a while and then suddenly stop working. Not all developers keep their plugins updated. The plugins recommended in this article are all updated and in use.
If you wanted to sell products on your website you can add the WooCommerce Plugin. The WooCommerce is free to use initially but it is adequate for a start up business. As your business increases you add specific features you need. If you wanted to add courses to your website you could add LearnDash. Almost any function you can think of you can find a plugin for it.
Questions to Ask About Plugins
Find out as much information about the plugin as you can. Do others use it? What is their feedback?
Is the Plugin updated regularly?
Avoid Plugins that haven’t been updated in a while.
Is there tech support and tutorial documents?
Is the Plugin compatible with the WordPress version you’re using (you should be using most current one).
Is the Plugin compatible with the Theme you’re using?
Is the Plugin necessary?
Sometimes you might purchase a Plugin and some time later the Theme updates and adds the feature the Plugin provided. Developers know this and it’s part of their work. They might discontinue that Plugin or develop it further with additional features. You can continue to use the Plugin, but if you’re not going to continue to use the Plugin you should delete it from the website.
Plugins Are Essential
This is one of the most outstanding features of the WordPress software, being able to add a specific function to a website to enhance the website even further.
A WordPress website can expand to a membership site, an information portal, an online store. Anything you want to expand into with your idea can be accommodated and added to a WordPress website with Plugins.
All Plugins should come with sufficient documentation to help you set it up. If you get stuck on the settings you can always contact the Developer, they’ll be more than glad to help. They want you to be satisfied using their Plugin.
Your plugin adventure is about to begin as you start to develop the idea behind your website. Research the options and always be prepared to ask questions.
If you have more questions contact me, I’m always willing to answer questions.
Purchase the Divi Theme
To use the Divi Theme you must be a member of Elegant Themes. This is one Theme Company you don’t have to worry about whether or not they’ll be going out of business or discontinuing their Theme.
The Divi Theme is the world’s most popular Theme for a simple reason; it’s the ideal WordPress Theme that accommodates all types of users, even beginners.
The Divi Theme is the Theme I have used since it came out in 2013. It’s that good! This is my affiliate link.