What’s that you said? Oh, you say you like WordPress, but it doesn’t do exactly what you want it to do?
If that is the case, no problem, use WordPress!
What? You say it doesn’t do exactly what you want?
Like I said, use WordPress! Did you realize that WordPress uses something called a “Plugin” that will make WordPress do almost anything you could desire? Yep, it’s true!
You can find WordPress Plugins at the WordPress Plugin Repository. Actually, going to the repository is kind of the “old way” of finding the plugins that you want. The more newfangled way is to search for a plugin from right inside your WordPress installation! Yes, you can just go to the Plugin tab on your WordPress site, then there is a sub-tab that says “add new.” That is what you want to do, add a new plugin! When you click on the “add new” link, you will be taken to a page where you can search for a plugin based on the plugin’s name, or what the plugin will do.
Want to find plugins that will change the way that comments work on your site? Just type in “comments” in the search box on the add plugins page, and dozens and dozens of plugins will be shown, all of which will do something to the commenting on your WordPress site!
As of the time of this writing, there are 23,303 available for you to choose from! This number represents only free plugins. There are also some paid plugins out there that you could add too, although there are not too many paid plugins available. But, can you imagine, 23,000 different plugins! Imagine the things you could do on your site, and the changes you could make with that many plugins available.
What plugins do I use?
Well, to be honest, what plugins I use depends on which site you are referring to. But, here is a list of plugins that I use pretty broadly on almost all of my sites, and what those plugins do:
- Akismet – This plugin comes standard with your WordPress Installation. Almost everybody uses Akismet. Akismet helps control the Spam comments on your blog.
- Contact Form 7 – There are lots of plugins out there that create contact forms. A contact form is a page on your blog where people can type in a message to you and it will be sent to you by e-mail. I like Contact Form 7, and that is why it is the one that I use on my sites.
- Genesis Slider – I am a big fan of Genesis Themes from Studiopress, and Genesis Slider is a plugin that Genesis makes available to create the sliding images on the home page of many of my sites.
- Get Social – This is a plugin that adds buttons on my sites so that people can share my posts via their social media networks.
- Mail Chimp – I use a company called Mail Chimp to handle my Newsletter subscriptions. When people want to subscribe to my newsletter, they can do so through this plugin.
- Maintenance Mode – This allows me to “shut down” my site for a short time while I am working on it for some reason. It puts up a splash screen that tells visitors that the site is undergoing maintenance, and will be back shortly.
- Search & Replace – Be careful if you use this plugin. Stay away if you don’t know what you are doing. This plugin allows the administrator of the site to modify the database. This is not something to play around with, as you can really mess up your site if you don’t know what you are doing.
- Text Hover – This allows me to use abbreviations or other “unknown” text on my site, and if somebody hovers the mouse over the word, they will get a little box that tells the meaning of the word.
- W3 Total Cache – A caching plugin that let’s my blog run a lot smoother without using so many server resources.
- Wordbooker – Allows for integration between my blog and my Facebook account for things like auto-posting of my blogs on Facebook, etc.
- WP-JQuery-Lightbox – Allows me to show images in a little fancier way than the native WordPress image handling methods.
- WP-Optimize – Allows for optimization of my WordPress site, including the database.
- WP-Useronline – Lets me see how many people are looking at my site at any given time.
- WP Missed Schedule – Makes sure that scheduled posts get posted on the blog when they should.
- WP S3 Backups – Automatically backs up my entire site to my Amazon S3 account.
So, these are plugins that I commonly use. Some of my sites have other plugins, and some don’t have these at all. But, in general, most of my sites use some combination of these plugins.
So, as you see, there really are plugins to do almost anything you might want to do with your site. So, if you want to really customize your site, give WordPress plugins a look, and I am sure you can find one to do just about anything you might wish to do!