If you’re already using WordPress for your site or have recently developed a site powered by WordPress, you would have come across the term ‘Plugin’ on your dashboard. Its plugins are one of the key features that makes WordPress such a popular web publishing platform.
WordPress offers thousands of plugins to its users. There’s a plugin for almost anything. All these plugins introduce some new feature or function to your website, making it smarter than before. There are hundreds of free as well as paid plugins, and the number of plugins available keeps increasing with each day.
Whoever is new to WordPress is usually overwhelmed by the number of plugin options available. Also, since installing a plugin gives your website an additional function/feature, you don’t want to make a mistake. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to install free and paid plugins on your website.
Installing a Free Plugin
As I mentioned before, there are hundreds of free plugins available in the WordPress Plugin Directory. To install a free plugin, you can use the Search Plugin Method.
On your dashboard, hover on ‘Plugins’, and click on ‘Add New’.
Now enter the plugin that you’re looking for in the search bar as shown in the picture below.
In this case, I am looking for an SEO plugin for my website. WordPress will display all the SEO plugins that are available. It can be confusing to choose a plugin out of the numerous options. So, it’s always better to do your homework and have an idea of the best plugins in the market.
Once you’ve decided which plugin to install, simply click on ‘Install Now’.
Now WordPress will install the plugin for you. Once installed, you will receive a notification that you’ve successfully installed the plugin.
Please note that even after installing a plugin, you can only start using it when it’s active. Click on ‘Activate’, and there you go.
Uploading a Paid Plugin
Using the Search Plugin method works best for free plugins as you can easily choose the best plugins from the Plugin Directory. However, sometimes your website requires some added features and attributes that might not be available in the free plugins.
In that case you might have to download a plugin from an external source in a zip file format and then upload it on to your website. Here’s how you can do it.
On your dashboard, go to ‘Plugins’, and click on ‘Add New’.
Now click on ‘Upload Plugin’.
Now click on ‘Choose File’ and upload the plugin that you’ve saved on your computer.
Remember, WordPress supports plugins in a .zip format. Make sure your plugin is in the appropriate format before you upload it.
Once installed, click on ‘Activate’, and start using your plugin.
Plugins are the soul of a website powered by WordPress. An ordinary website can be transformed into a well-performing website if you install the right plugins and make the most of it. Installing a WordPress plugin is as easy as I explained above. Now, why don’t you go out there and install your first plugin.