The reason WordPress is the post popular content management system is that it makes it easy for anyone to build a basic website. However, using it to create a fully functional, business website is often a different story, especially when it comes to picking the right plugins. Without the help of an expert, you may find yourself in trouble.
That said, not everyone has access to a WordPress expert when they are selecting plugins. So, many people learn simply through the process of trial and error. Regardless, there are steps you can take to help make more reasonable judgments. The last thing you want is to have your website crash because of a plugin.
Choosing WordPress Plugin
1. Create a Feature List – Make a list of the functions that are most important to you. List them all but also highlight those that you just can’t live without. Essential functions like security and website backup should be at the top of your list.
2. Begin Your Search – Some plugins are free, some are free with paid premium features, and others are paid only. The WordPress Plugin Repository is the best, most trusted source for free plugins. While some lemons slip through, these plugins are held to very high coding standards for WordPress compatibility.
3. Avoid Poorly Maintained Plugins – When choosing a plugin, pay very close attention to things like the date the plugin was last updated, version compatibility, reviews, and the support forum. Abandoned plugin projects tend to be easy to spot. It is often a good idea to avoid otherwise good plugins that provide poor support.
4. Test Performance – While you can and should test a new plugin on a dummy website first, this does not provide 100 percent certainty under real world conditions. Make sure to speed test your website before and after installing a new plugin. If there is a significant slowdown, it is best to choose another plugin.
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