A complete guide to WordPress plugins in 2021

With Work from Home becoming the new normal, there has been a rise in unconventional career paths, including freelancers such as independent writers and bloggers and others. The virtual world currently is stormed with the online feeding of independent content developers and creators.

Among the several options, WordPress is a go-to for freelancers. The WordPress web design service is profound and thrives on being easy to use and user friendly. Today, WordPress has grown into a powerful tool and Content Management System (CMS) that renders considerable flexibility in creating and hosting any website.

What makes WordPress a cut-above-the-rest is the open-source CMS allows you to maintain and build websites without prior coding know-how. It comprises an extensive repository of plugins allowing prospects to add custom features for enhanced and seamless functionality. Plugins are the white knight for freelancers that help with varied aspects such as loading speed and enhancing SEO.

Ways in which plugins come to the rescue –

Loading Time

In today’s age of constant stimulation and gratification, we desire things or results in the quickest possible time. The same applies to websites. The low attention spans of surfers and browsers can lead to an abandonment of your website if the load time exceeds a couple of seconds. Make it three, if you may, on the safe side.

So when contemplating WordPress plugins, make sure not to activate and download too many of them. Every plugin that you download and activate sends a request to the server, and this adds to the load of the overall website, eventually slowing it down.

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Among the performance-enhancing plugins, WP Rocket is currently a top-ranking caching plugin. A standout factor is it automatically turns on caching settings such as gzip compression and cache pre-loading. More so, it can activate other features such as lazy loading images, CDN support and others.

Convenience and User-friendliness

Especially for business websites, a contact us page is paramount. If your webpage is not easy or accessible, it will stand to lose the battle of organic rankings. The reason is that prospects and customers authenticate your goodwill based on the accessibility. Hence, your website should render users and visitors with easy and seamless access and connection. Among the several options, WPForms is known for its user-friendliness.

A stand out feature of WPForms is its drag-and-drop online form building mechanism that enables creating contact forms, email subscription forms, online order and payment forms and survey polls in a few clicks. The plugin includes augmented functionalities such as conversational forms, form landing pages, user journey tracking, geolocation tracking and user registration and login forms.

Safety and Security

Being an open-source code Content Management System, WordPress stands to be vulnerable to hackers. Hackers can manoeuvre it for breaching websites or entering malicious codes or trojans.

Every plugin available can fall prey to hackers, and taking from the previous section, one should stick to activating a few but robust plugins. However, one way out of this is to work with a website security specialist. The specialist helps monitor the website and identify cyberattacks and threats.

Featuring among the top contenders for a website security specialist is Code83, an NYC development company launched by Jeff Burroughs in 2015. It is an advanced and sophisticated Cloud-based proactive security specialist that renders backups to combat hacking, attacks and other malicious activities. The Code83 website security provides a myriad of services such as website plus database backup, security monitoring, malware detection and cleanup and performance optimization.

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Ongoing Support

Although free plugins are functional, they do not last for long. If you are a business currently using free plugins, then you should look for the extent and duration of support that it renders. Moreover, one should look for signs such as lack of response regarding inquiries or an update in the code. An outdated code or plugin will create compatibility issues, design errors and even the primary functionalities.

A good starting point to make sure you get optimum support would be to re-examine your free plugins. More the free plugins, the more complications in identifying the troublesome plugin. Hence, it is worthwhile to either hire a web development company or opt for premium WordPress plugins.

Language and Linguistics

Several content creators and developers across the board are focused on providing regional and language-specific content. Tapping into linguistics can be a challenge. However, WPML or WordPress Multilingual Plugin comes to the rescue. It is especially suited for creators and developers having an extensive customer base spread across geographic locations. Also, it is SEO-friendly and helps curate content in several languages. When comparing language-based WordPress plugins, look for the cost, support, compatibility and other services rendered.

Final Comments

The new ongoing norm of Work from Home, coupled with increased internet access and penetration, has spurted a growth trajectory for unconventional and freelance career paths such as writers, bloggers and other content creators and developers. When putting oneself out there, one needs to be accessible, and WordPress comes to the rescue. It is simple, flexible and user-friendly.

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Several factors need to be considered when building your website. Chief among them are plugins. Plugins are the holy grail and hallmark for online presence. They help with varied areas such as loading time, support, safety, convenience and even language-based content. The key takeaways are that plugins should undergo examination, and not too many of them should be activated.

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