Here are the posts pertaining to: Plugins

Adding functions to the Wordpress website with plugins.
Covering installation and settings for several as used in the sample wpstudent.net website.

The Hidden Power of Widgets

Widgets are one of the basic building blocks of a WordPress website. Traditionally they’ve been relegated to the sidebar and footer areas, but in recent years many themes are designating areas within the page content section and even in the header.

Widgets are for the most part underutilized on most WordPress websites. There seems to be a basic misunderstanding of how they can be utilized. I believe that through a better understanding of how to organize and customize the widget content blocks, we can tap into their hidden power.

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What do Plugins do?

Time to do the do

Plugins do just about anything you’d want to do with your WordPress site. If you want your site to perform a task or change in appearance which your theme or the default WordPress platform cannot accomplish, chances are there is a plugin that will do the deed. And chances are there will be several to choose from.

Your website is a kitchen.

Think of how we do things in a kitchen.  A kitchen is a place where we prepare food and while there is plenty we can do by hand, if we want to do something more efficiently or some specialized food preparation we utilize tools that plugin. If you want toast, your kitchen can’t just make toast on its own, you need to plug in a toaster. The toaster is a plugin. A toaster, blender, refrigerator, microwave, etc. all have one thing in common (besides plugging in), they add functionality to your kitchen. Likewise, WordPress plugins provide needed, sometimes essential, functionality to your website.

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Plugins used in the Owls website

Our test site Our Maine Owls which we are replicating has a variety of plugins installed to provide functionality to the site. We will be installing and activating all or most of these plugins to give you a feel for the potential that can bring to your site, and to give you a feel for setting up a plugin. For reference I’ve listed all of these below.

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A few little code tips

There is a lot that can be done to fine tune your theme with careful application of some CSS styles.  You don’t need to be a CSS expert to know enough just to make small changes and we will basically be cutting and pasting code snippets to get the job done.

The beginner tips I’ll show you are just for minor tweaks, we’ll be just hiding and slightly augmenting a few elements I would not recommend that beginners make any structural changes, as you can potentially break your theme.

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Plugins by Category

I’ve tried to come up with some function categories of plugins in order to focus the search for what you would want for your website.  If you are looking for a plugin to provide a specific function for your site, chances are a search of the WordPress Plugin Repository will turn up dozens if not hundreds of  potential candidates.  I’ve tried to create a handful of useful umbrella function categories and give a short list of plugins i have found useful and or have gotten rave reviews. For the most part I’ve limited my selections to the free plugins but there are a few exceptions where a premium plugin is clearly superior, so I will list those as well.

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