These days you can have a website with extra functionality that may set it about the competition – the plugin.
Most are free, but a few are worth the small cost of investing in. It is not an electric car, but pieces of code that many web developers share for free on the internet (open source).
Your website creator can suggest some for you that you didn’t know you needed or even existed. You could end up down a very dark path, though, if you keep adding more and more that you think will help your site but may end up actually ‘slowing it down’. The codes/plugins are written by a lot of talented souls for free, they are not regulated.
Here are 5 top tips when thinking about including plugins:
1. When was the plugin last updated? If it was many months ago, it could become a security issue as it may not be supported by the original developers if you get stuck;
2. How many uploads has it had? This will give you a good indication of how good it is.
3. Does it come with documentation and/or screenshots so you can see whether it meets your needs?
4. Too many plugins can start clashing with each other as different parts of codes cause conflict. This can take a while to spot and even longer to fix.
5. Be familiar with your website writing package as it may already have the functionality you are looking for and an unused plugin could slowly add to all the other things that are out of date on your website and cause problems down the line.
So what can they do then?
Here are some ideas of what they can do – but the list is as large as developers imagination so beware!
- Security plugins such as ‘recapture’;
- Limiting logins on your website to limit the chance of being plagued with spam mail or comments;
- How to add a gallery of pictures for your treasured images;
- Tools to help with SEO (Search Engine Optimisation);
- Font updates;
- Additional help with commenting on your blog or website by strangers;
- Plugins to help add more code but in the right place on your website;
- Newsletter generators;
- Contact forms;
- Designs to help link with your social media accounts.
That is just 10 for starters. There is a separate blog suggesting the top 5 plugins/functionality every website should have. Happy reading!