As an open source program, WordPress has thousands of plugins for every conceivable problem, desire or need. Some of these problems, desires and needs are greater than others, and programmers have to be both creative and practical when it comes to designing plugins for these issues. Luckily, humanity has a habit of rising to the occasion, and this collection of useful and creative plugins definitely meet the challenges they were built to address with both style and substance.
Have you ever tried to source an image, only to realise you don’t know if it’s Creative Commons licenced or if you have to buy it? Of course, there are people out there who will simply steal an image, but for those who prefer not to set themselves up for a lawsuit, there’s PhotoDropper. It allows you to search over 253 million photos, allowing you to find, licence and publish gorgeous images, all without leaving WordPress.
If you feel like your site could be improved with some multimedia files, you might like this plugin. It is a music player that allows you to upload a single track or an entire playlist, and you can customise the look of the player to suit your tastes. And unlike many other audio plugins, it is compatible with PCs and Macs, it uses HMTL5 with Flash backup, it works on all major browsers and it can be played on mobile devices.
Imagine building a social network just for your friends, your business or your club. With BuddyPress, you can. It has its own plugins, so you can make it as simple or complex as you need. Most beneficially, it is completely open source, so the community of WordPress designers and programmers who use it are constantly updating and improving it.
Search Engine Optimisation, or SEO, can feel incredibly complicated, especially for WordPress users who don’t have a firm background in programming. There are thousands of tutorials on the internet, and there are thousands of SEO plugins for WordPress. Still, if you don’t have the time to build your SEO knowledge from the ground upor to sort the SEO plugin wheat from the chaff, Yoast is there for you. It is an SEO plugin company that builds some of the best SEO plugins out there. Whether you need a full-scale SEO plugin package or just want an eCommerce tracking plugin, you’ll find what you’re looking for here.
If you want a big brand name next to your private social media network, you want Facebook for WordPress. This plugin can turn your site into a mini-Facebook with just a few clicks. If you need much more selling on why your own Facebook is a good thing, you probably haven’t heard of the internet.
Creating a gallery on your Flickr photos on your WordPress site has never been easier. This plugin allows you to create private and public galleries, add a single photos or several at once, insert several independent galleries on a single page and more. Each gallery has its own customisation settings, so you don’t have to worry about choosing one style of gallery for all your photos. Even better, its CSS field allows for an almost infinite number of customisations.
Have you ever thought that, for usability, asthetic or whatever other reason, that it would be nice to have a distinct website for users accessing your site from their mobile devices? Sometimes, it just makes sense for your website to act differently on mobile phones or tablets than it does on desktops. WPtouch Pro is a plugin that has mobile phone and tablet-optimised themes that are served from your website, rather than your desktop theme. This means that just a single website and with little effort on your part, users can have a distinct experience that is designed specifically for mobile devices.
Everyone can agree that allowing your customers, readers or users to contact you quickly and reliably is important. Gravity Forms makes it quick and easy to create contact forms that can do whatever you need them to do. If you need multi-page forms, order forms or forms with conditional fields that respond to user selections, Gravity Forms can help you build exactly what you need.
Amie loves all things WordPress. She currently works at WhoIsHostingThis, a site focusing on reviews for different web hosts.