There is a list of plugins that enumerates the various functionality that users feel are must-have for their success with ClassicPress. Please take a look at the list if you haven’t already. The list isn’t prioritized, so, I’m asking if you will use this post to list out 3-5 functionalities that are most important to your business and your clients. There’s no need to reference plugins by name – just succinctly note the functionality (ie, seo, forms, security, slider, optimization, caching, etc)…and, feel free to include any type of functionality, whether it’s on the must-have list or not.
Please list your needs in order of preference, with the first item being the most important and the last item being the least important (and with the understanding that I realize they’re all important to your and your clients.)
Update: There’s no need to explain or justify your choices; a bulleted list of 3-5 items without extra discussion would be ideal to keep this thread quickly skimmable. The first 2 replies are perfect.
There is no way I won’t reference by name, some people might need it asap
Plugin Organizer - A plugin to disable plugins on individual pages and change the order that they are loaded in. (This helps with Pagespeed, for example you might have some unnecesaary plugins you don’t want to load in a specific page)
Asset CleanUp - Works superbly if combined with the above plugin, Additionally, you might wanna use a plugin on a script/styles bases (It reduces HTTP request)
Fast Velocity Minify - And if this is combined with the above two, it’s gonna make your page speed as light as possible (Use with caution, you might destroy a lot of stuff )
Google Analytics - An alternative to Jetpack - view visitor reports right in your Wordpress admin dashboard, and or Analytics Dashboard
Lazy Loader - Lazy loading plugin that supports images, iFrames, video and audio elements and uses lazysizes.js. With a manual modification of the markup, it is also possible to lazy load background images, scripts, and styles.
It’s hard to narrow it down to just 5! So i’m trying to think, what would be a deal-breaker for staying on ClassicPress. If i didn’t have these capabilities, i would have to go back to WP … or something … Am also giving plugin names, so people can check out real implementations.
Advanced Custom Fields - Make custom fields for everything.
MainWP - Manage all sites in one place. Host it on your own server.
CMS Tree Page View - Collapsible/expandable tree of all pages, you can see entire site structure at once. View, edit, rearrange, delete, add pages. Indispensable for sites with many pages and subpages.
Contact Form 7 - Make forms. There are others, i work with this one the best.
WPML - Manage multi-lingual websites. There are others, but this one has the capabilities i need.
The list of “needs” differs by goal of the site.
For a hobby site, probably nothing additional is “needed”.
For a membership site, definitely need something to control roles and access associated with payment.
For ecommerce, definitely need a payment interface and product management.
For affiliate marketing, definitely need redirection and cookie management.
For news, need an ad manager, site maps, and maybe RSS enclosures.
For a forum, definitely need a forum and user management.
There are more…
If the site is dynamic, some sort of firewall or security is needed. Otherwise, something like WP2Static.
Not all sites need SEO (membership sites), but most do.
I answer this way because I’m still trying to figure out what my own personal site should contain… But my client sites are all different, with different needs.
It’s always interesting to see what functionality other people want from plugins. For example, I personally have no use for a plugin to help create custom fields. While I create many custom fields on most sites, I actually find it much easier to do that with my own code than with a plugin – and sites work much faster that way. The plugins I really value are the ones that perform a task that I couldn’t easily code myself.
Top of that list are logging plugins. So I currently install Simple History, Query Monitor, Email Log, and REST API Log – I am a heavy user of the REST API – on every site I use.
I also install several mu-plugins on every site. Several of them are designed to disable or remove things like emoji, embeds, attachment pages and jQuery Migrate. The other two do the following:
Use bcrypt as the password hashing algorithm. (Maybe I should look into using argon.)
Enable proper nonces instead of the tokens that WP/CP misleadingly calls nonces, but which aren’t.
The value of Advanced Custom Fields, for me, is not the ability to create custom fields, but the ability to quickly and easily organize complex sets of custom fields (including fields that appear conditionally) into a usable UI for editors and authors.
Interesting question. As other have mentioned, it varies with different websites. And, if possible, I always prefer to code something rather than use a plugin. I can only think of four (there are others, but they are specific to only one site):
e-commerce - this is the big one that would seriously stop me from moving to CP (and you could include here the extra plugins like Stripe and Paypal gateways - I won’t list them separately)
security (currently using Shield on all my sites)
contact form - I’m using Contact 7, but have started looking at Very Simple Contact Form
mail logging - in conjunction with woocommerce
[Edit: Actually I could add a fifth. An image slider. I hate the things but clients still want them.]
I’ve looked at the must-haves list and see a few that inspire me more than others. Since the list isn’t prioritized, it’s not clear which of those functionalities are the most needed/desired.The intent of this thread is to get an idea about that. Granted, this is a small sample size, but, I’m hoping that trends will emerge here, allowing myself (or any other plugin developer who happens along the thread) to say, “hey, it looks like there’s more interest in a plugin for ________ and I can totally do that!”
P.S. This isn’t a time-limited thread – please don’t be shy to add your top 5 functionalities to help plugin developers better plan to meet the greatest needs. And, if you have any ideas on how to get this post out to more people, please don’t hesitate.
Yes, I thought that might be your thinking. Where to go next?
Here’s a crazy idea… what about if CP focuses on paid plugins? Forget all this freebie stuff that everyone expects (demands?) with WordPress. Just put out business-grade, premium plugins that are well supported and give people like you, John, some incentive to actually maintain them and get a basic income for your troubles. Surely people who want a '“business-grade CMS” should be willing to pay a small amount to support that?
I certainly wouldn’t complain if paid plugins were dominant, though I suspect it might stifle or otherwise slow growth. I’m fine with the free MVP model and offering paid extensions to keep inline with legacy expectations. However, because ClassicPress is a business-focused CMS, I am working toward a target market who make a living building websites. Still, I’ll always have a good deal of free plugins, too, so even those who are operating on minimal or no budget can have some Code Potent under the hood.
Oh, and…just to clarify: at least for me, anything that has my name or brand on it… is incentive enough to maintain it.
Speed accelerators and feature removing tweaks (Disable rest API etc)
Cyrillic support (multiple languages, Filenames to latin etc)
Frontend stuff (lightboxes etc - time saving)
P.S. If you are looking for needs and opportunities, think about region-depending features. Most of the top plugins have issues in this area. Supporting local search engines, local social networks, language-specific settings etc. It’s a common case when plugin offers share links for Twitter and Facebook but knows nothing about VK (~100 millions active users per month, 77% of local mobile traffic) or Viber (~ 1billion of registered, ~100 millions active users per month). I guess, there are plenty of alternatives in different regions. Considering this may be a nice benefit, probably the most realistic way to compete old players.
For the type of website that I need the most essential plugins are those who improve the functionality of my galleries.
Then it comes the safety but then again I don’t rely that much on plugins for this.
I make the SEO manually so I’m not that much interested in the related plugins either.
I’ve just been thinking about this again and looking through all my sites to see what I am using. It occurs to me that “must-have” plugins have two levels of “must-haveness” (I’m thinking about this from the business-focused angle).
There are plugins that are vital to your business - if the plugin breaks or goes haywire then you will immediately start losing business, and therefore losing money. So the obvious example is e-commerce… you don’t want your online shop to stop working, ever. Another example is a contact form. You don’t want business enquiries to not reach you for some reason - you might miss a deal and it could lose you money.
But the second level is plugins that are not critical to your business. A slider on the home page for example. If it stops sliding, probably no-one will notice. If it shows an image-not-found icon it’s no big deal. People can still do business with you.
So when looking at which “must-have” plugins to work on, it may be worth thinking about this and starting with the ones that are more “business-critical”.