Have you ever encountered difficulties installing development plugins or extensions? In this article, we will see why, how to create and install a WordPress plugin. Above all, let’s see what benefits you could derive from it …
Why create a WordPress plugin?
Before installing WordPress plugins, it is good to remember what a plugin is. A WordPress plugin, which in French is called an extension, is a specific feature that you will add to your WordPress.
Plugins can be completely free, partially free or paid.
Be careful, do not install any free plugin, especially if it is not present in the WordPress directory.
However, it is important to create them for several reasons:
Reason n ° 1: Lighten the functions.php child theme
Generally, it is good practice to create a child theme when you want to add some code to modify certain actions of WordPress or the theme and add new features (or remove some).
When many functions follow one another, the file functions.php can become difficult to maintain. That is why it might be well thought out move some functions in a plugin .
Reason 2: Forward the code
For the same reason mentioned before, if you think about the future, it could be that one day you or your client suddenly wants to change the theme.
What will happen then? The code entered in the file functions.php of the child theme will disappear like snow in the sun! Goodbye those hours spent testing and coding, unless you forward it.
Here then is a good reason to create a WordPress plugin , when you change the theme, your features will still be present in your site.
Reason 3: Reuse the code
If you maintain multiple WordPress sites or create one for your customers, you’ll find that there are often one or two features that you need consistently.
In this case nothing like a plugin for reuse code wisely with each new project .
Reason n ° 4: Prevent conflicts and incompatibilities
Above all, one of the advantages of create a WordPress plugin rather than adding the code directly in the child theme is that you will be able to prevent conflicts quickly.
In this case, it will be easy for you to check if the conflict comes from your homemade extension : you just have to deactivate it to get to the bottom of it.
This will prevent you, at the same time, from checking each of the functions added in the child theme. In short, it is very practical and above all, it saves time.
How to create a simple WordPress plugin?
We’re fine here distinguish between creating a simple plugin from a complex plugin . If in the first case you don’t have to be an experienced developer, you will even find it easy. In the second case, you will need some background and good knowledge of PHP and how WordPress works.
The prerequisites for creating a WordPress plugin
You don’t need big things to create a WordPress plugin , here are some prerequisites:
- Have a test environment like Local by FlyWheel , Mamp, Xamp, etc.
- Have an up-to-date WordPress installation: if possible identical to the production version to see if your plugin does not conflict with other plugins or themes
- Have a text editor like Brachet or SublimText
How plugins work
Note that a plugin cannot work alone. It is entirely dependent on its host software. There are countless numbers, with various and varied functions. They are often integrated to facilitate the use of the Internet user. In operating systems, in this case. Whether it’s Chrome or Firefox, you can find extensions to check your spelling. Also, to remain anonymous while browsing or to remove all unwanted advertisements (pop-up).
Regarding WordPress, you have the option of integrating the Yoast plugin. This will allow you to check the SEO optimization of your articles. If you have an online store, you won’t be able to miss out on WooCommerce. This will turn your blog into a virtual store. Whatever you want to do, there is a high probability that there is a plugin to help you with it.
The most popular WordPress plugins
Indeed, there are a multitude of plugins or extensions; but here we will list the most recognized plugins:
Yoast SEO is probably the most popular SEO plugin among WordPress plugins. It allows you to benefit from various indicators intended to help you optimize the SEO of your site.
As its name suggests, Woocommerce is an extension allowing you to build your e-commerce store.
To optimize your website as well as possible, one of the imperatives is that it is very fast when loading its pages.
In the same vein as Smush Image Compression and Optimization, Imagify optimizes the quality of images while reducing their weight.
Akismet compares your comments and contact forms to the global spam database of Automatics, the parent company of WordPress, to prevent your site from posting malicious content.
MailPoet is a newsletter plugin for managing subscribers, configuring and sending the newsletter without leaving WordPress.
- Contact Form 7
- Classic Editor
- Wordfence Security – Firewall & Malware Scan
- Elementor Page Builder
- Divi Builder
- Google XML Sitemaps
- Duplicator – WordPress migration plugin
- WPS Hide Login
Installation of plugins
Typically, the plugin comes in the form of a JAR file that needs to be downloaded. Then, all you have to do is drop this file in the extension / plugins / directory of the Sonar server. Server that we have previously stopped, then restart the server. However, this rule may differ slightly from one plugin to another (especially integration plugins). Before installing a plugin, it is best to check its compatibility with the versions of Sonar. This can be done either by consulting the plugin page. Also on the compatibility matrix page. It should be noted that the installation of plugins is done in the extension directory of the Sona server. When updating Sonar, it is important to make a backup of this directory.
Reduces the core of secondary functions. This reduces maintenance and reduces the surface area of vulnerability to security attacks. Modularize the development of ancillary functions in independent teams. Provide access for the same function, to different solutions (each in a different plugin). For example: different implementations or algorithms. Different audiences, different degrees of complexity. Also, Different costs (free or paid), etc. Get a concrete overview of a feature. This will then eventually be integrated into the main software in an improved version. There are also some drawbacks.
Plugins don’t work alone. The plugins are only intended to provide functionality to one or more software. These plugins are developed by people who do not necessarily have a relationship with the authors of the main software.
Ultimately plugins are tools for adding additional functions to a main software. It will also be called an extension module or add-on. A plugin cannot work on its own, it is entirely dependent on its host software.