WordPress Tips For Developers: Part 1 – Plugins

For most programmers it’s hard to switch gears to something that isn’t programming related, like building a blog site. For iDevBlogADay readers and authors I’m creating a 3-part series on how developers can use WordPress, in combination with their current knowledge, to help them with their blogging/website workflow.

WordPress Tips For Developers: Part 2 – Version Control
WordPress Tips For Developers: Part 3 – Backup

Plugin List

I don’t want to list every plugin I use, but I will cover the ones I find the most useful. As always, if there is one you think I should have listed, share it in the comments below!

Comment Reply Notification

• WordPress Plugin Info Page
• Official Page

Comments are one of those things that make blogs interesting. Most blogs don’t require an account to comment, which is great!

The problem is that many blogs out there don’t have a way for a commenter to know when there is a reply to their comment without re-visiting the page. (Actually, if it’s WordPress, there is an RSS feed for each blog post you can subscribe to for comments, but it’s usually not advertised.)

Notice the checkbox next to the reply button?

Adding the ability to send e-mail responses will add more interaction to your posts.

Secure WordPress & WP Security Scan

• Secure WordPress – WordPress Plugin Info Page
• Secure WordPress – Official Page

• WP Security Scan – WordPress Plugin Info Page
• WP Security Scan – Official Page

Far too often I hear about people complaining about how their web site got hacked and lost everything. This is because WordPress is not super secure out of the box, but with the help of a couple security plugins, we can add some extra armor.

WP Security Scan

Both of these plugins are made by the same company and work well together. It won’t solve all hacker issues, but it will make you feel safer having it installed. The best defense? BACKUPS! (Coming soon in part 3 of this series!) ;)

Jetpack

• WordPress Plugin Info Page
• Official Page

This is a plugin created by WordPress themselves and it’s actually a collection of plugins.

Jetpack

My personal favorites are the WordPress Stats and Gravatar Hovercards. WordPress Stats will give you a “more-live” version of traffic (which I use to complement Google Analytics).

Gravatar Hovercards will show more detail about commenter when the mouse goes over the avatar image.

Gravatar Hovercards

upPrev

• WordPress Plugin Info Page
• Official Page

The first time I saw this was on the New York Times’s web site. It was such a good idea that most blogs have borrowed it.

upPrev

This plugin will have a box appear with info when the viewer scrolls down towards the comment of a blog posting. You can customize what goes in the box as well!

WordPress Editorial Calendar

• WordPress Plugin Info Page
• Official Page

Depending on how much you blog, organizing posts can be challenging. I try to space my posts appropriately and sometimes I’ll end up swapping a topic with another one.

Built-In GUI Calendar

The Editorial Calendar plugin makes it as easy as dragging and dropping to schedule your posts.

Category Icons & Category Order

• Category Icons – WordPress Plugin Info Page
• Category Icons – Official Page

• Category Order – WordPress Plugin Info Page
• Category Order – Official Page

By default, WordPress categories are in alphabetical order. They’re also kinda boring looking.

Category Order and Icons

With these two plugins you can order them however you choose and give them an icon.

Public Post Preview

• WordPress Plugin Info Page

In order to view postings in are still have the “Draft” status, you need to be a valid user on the site. What if you just want to send it to someone really quick to proofread or view for comments?

Public Preview Link

This plugin will give you a URL to copy to anyone without having the post “live” on your site.

Yet Another Related Posts Plugin (YARPP)

• WordPress Plugin Info Page
• Official Page

A funny name for a plugin, but it seems to be the most popular for what it does; which is simply find posts related to the current post.

Related Post List

It can be tweaked somewhat to show more or less related posts and can be implemented at the bottom of a post and/or as a widget.

Your Turn

What plugins do you use that I missed here? Many of these plugins include widgets to complement them as well so you can include them in your sidebars.

Thanks again for reading and come back in 2 weeks to see part 2 where I talk about how to use version control with your WordPress site.

WordPress Tips For Developers: Part 2 – Version Control
WordPress Tips For Developers: Part 3 – Backup


7 Comments → “WordPress Tips For Developers: Part 1 – Plugins”


  1. Kyle Newsome

    3 years ago

    I’d add the Disqus commenting system plugin to this list, although it may not be quite on theme.
    Personally, I find the native WordPress commenting functionality a little bit dry and limited in power, while Disqus better embraces all the little things we expect now like Social Network Sharing, Twitter reactions, a LIKE system, thread ordering and better more reliable email notifications. Also, if someone is already signed up, it is even easier for them to leave a comment with no fields required slowing them down. Personally I’m a big fan and I think it makes getting discussion started easier.

    Reply

    • Josh Jones

      3 years ago

      I’ve seen Disqus used mostly on Tumblr blogs but I have seen a few ways Disqus has been used as a great comment tool.

      Thanks again for the comment! I’ll give myself a reminder to look into Disqus in more detail for future reference.

      Reply

  2. Marcio Andrey Oliveira

    3 years ago

    Hi. Following the plugins I recommend:

    PJW Mime Config – “Allows you to extend the list of mime-types supported by the builtin uploader.”

    Pretty Link Lite – “Shrink, track and share any URL on the Internet from your WordPress website!”

    WPtouch – “A plugin which formats your site with a mobile theme for visitors on Apple iPhone / iPod touch, Google Android, Blackberry Storm and Torch, Palm Pre and other touch-based smartphones.”

    Regards

    Reply

  3. Alex Kuznetsof

    2 years ago

    Thanks for the list:

    Here`s what i use for almost every project: Gravity forms, Vslider, WordPress SEO, TB testimonials, WP Super Cache to name a few. I think it`s a very good practice to pre-package plugins for wordpress designers.

    Reply

    • Josh Jones

      2 years ago

      Thanks for that list! I’ve been searching for a good testimonial plug in for this site so i’ll give TB testimonials a try.

      Reply

  4. Gyle

    1 year ago

    nice info dude! well done

    Reply

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