A plugin is a program that encompasses a set of functions that can be added to a WordPress website. They permit developers to introduce new features and increase the functionality of a WordPress website. The PHP programming language is utilized to create the WordPress plugins.
The utilization of plugins in order to grow the features and functionalities of a website is a general practice followed by website owners. You can install plugins to accomplish a number of site management tasks including enhancing SEO, maintaining the backups, minimizing spams, and so on. However, in addition to being so useful, sometimes they can break your site as well when not used cautiously.
WordPress plugins are an important part of the Content Management System (CMS). They enable you to mold it in your desired way and you can even adjust them on and off on the basis of your requirements. However extreme utilization of plugins can sometimes produce an inaccuracy in the functionality of your website. The factors causing such errors may comprise poor coding, disagreement with WordPress, disagreement with a theme, or some other plugin.
Advantages of utilizing custom WordPress plugins during development
The advantages of using WordPress plugins in development are many. Few of them can be seen as under
- They assist in raising the overall performance of the site in a budget-friendly way.
- They aid in preventing the security concerns associated with a site to a great extent.
- They help in creating backlinks for the site.
- They aid in enhancing the features and functionalities of a website with ease.
Before moving ahead, you should upgrade your WordPress Version. Know what’s new in WordPress 5.4
Factors to be taken care of while installing a plugin
The factors that need to be considered while installing a plugin to prevent the site from breaking are as under
1. Utilization of a solid theme
Every WordPress site owns a downloaded theme and conflicts between the plugin and your theme often causes an error. Hence, the selection of a solid theme is one of the most important factors to be considered while making the utilization of a plugin.
However, making a choice for the same may be a tough chore due to the fact that every theme is different and better than the other one.
2. Making use of Content Delivering System
3. Optimizing the WordPress database
When the WordPress database crosses a specific number, it contributes to decreasing the speed of the website and open the doors for possible errors. Hence, proper optimization of database should be ensured. It is also necessary to have it rectified by disabling or restricting post revisions and removing older versions. This will lessen the stress on your site and enable it to consider added plugins.
4. Ensure to caching
Same as with the database, caching ensures that you are emptying as many undesired data as possible. This process saves your pages & posts as static files that can later be provided to the visitors by lowering the processing pressure on the server. This ultimately lessens the pressure on all new plugins.
5. Taking backups on a regular basis
Taking regular backups for the site allows you to move back to the point where you were prior to introducing the plugin. Hence, you can easily recover the previous state of your site in case the plugin breaks your site. This also aids in boosting the speed of the site and smoothness of the operations.
6. Emptying the spam comments on a regular basis
Although spams hold no importance at its own but they take the space in the server and as soon as the space is completely filled, they start contributing to reducing the speed of the website. Hence, it is crucial to eliminate spam comments on a consistent basis. This also aids in avoiding the potential errors caused by plugins.
7. Limit the number of plugins
Ensure to keep the number of installed plugins in a limit as the use of too many plugins can lead to breaking the site. Extreme use of plugins may hinder the functionality of your website. A badly drafted code from a plugin may clash with the source code of WordPress, your chosen theme, or even some other plugin resulting in breaking the site.
8. Installation of a trustworthy plugin
Keep an eye on the number of engaged users, check the last update date, and go through some of the feedbacks to recognize any general or frequent issues associated with the plugin before doing the installation. A plugin having a large number of active users and fresh updates is an excellent sign of a trustworthy and maintained plugin.
9. Selection of a trustworthy host
A hosting service is largely responsible for your website’s good or bad performance. A quick, safe, and strong host is likely to contribute a lot towards the good performance of your website. Hence, it is suggested to stay away from a cheaper and shared hosting as the traffic of other websites may hinder your website’s performance. Selecting a dedicated hosting and restricting outside factors from affecting your capability to present a delightful web experience is highly recommended.
A dedicated hosting service grants a whole server. It allows the company to have a complete authority on the server, its software, and its safety arrangements. A dedicated server can even prove to be less costly in a few situations.
Following the above-mentioned steps prior to introducing a new plugin will diminish the risk of your site breaking. However, nothing ensures 100% safety hence establishing a staging site before performing any modifications is strongly suggested.
Vaibhav Pandya is the Chief Operating Officer (COO) and Senior Contributing Editor at IndyLogix - Digital Marketing Agency, where he has spent 9+ years growing the organization and establishing it as a credible market leader. An operational executive by day and an avid writer by night, he loves to read, write, and speak about Digital Marketing, SEO, NFT, Blockchain, AI, Web 3.0, and more. Catch up with him at @pandyavaibh
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