6 Things to Check Before Choosing a Free WP Plugin

WordPress Security 11 min read
Last Update on November 28, 2022

How to choose the best plugin for WordPress? Will this WordPress plugin really help you reach the goals it says it will? How will this WordPress plugin change the time it takes for a website to load? What will this WordPress plugin do to the security of a website?

These are just a few questions we will look into and answer in detail. We will set up rules for choosing WordPress plugins. Before adding a plugin to a website, you should check how fast it loads. Before you install the plugin, you can use a site checker or dotcom tools to see how fast your website loads. These tools also suggest ways to make websites load faster.

Verify The Number of Current Active Installations

The number of people using a certain plugin is the number of active installs. When you click on a plugin, the main page for that plugin will open. You can view the current installation count in the top right corner of the homepage. Installation won’t be possible until a website admin can’t log in to WP securely. If a plugin has a lot of installations, it’s usually a good sign that it works well. Each day, new plugins are developed. Not every plugin is made with the goal of staying around for a long time.

This factor must be considered along with the other things on this list. A plugin with a huge number of installs is very popular and has a handy set of features. Kathy Burris from Premium Jackets said, “I was surprised to see that my website had more active installations of a plugin than actual visitors.” You should be careful with plugins installed a few hundred times. This is a sign that the plugin might not do what it says it will do.

When was the Plugin Last Updated Successfully?

In addition to a plugin’s current install count, the successful update date will be displayed. A frequently used car must be washed, lubricated, and maintained. In the same way, a plugin that a lot of people use needs to be updated often. Some plugins that do simple things, like converting meters to feet, might not need to be updated as often. In this case, it may be the other way around. A plugin that only handles basic functionality and needs to be updated every once in a while could mean that it doesn’t handle functionality well.

One of the best things you can do to keep your website safe is to keep it up-to-date. The same is true for popular plugins used often in various situations. The plugin could run into a problem that the developers didn’t anticipate.

In this case, the only way to fix the problem would be to get an update. “We tried everything we could think of to figure out what was wrong with our website. We finally figured out that one of the plugins was causing the problem, and there was nothing we could do about it,” Sarah Kirkpatrick from MHR Writer said.

Understanding Plugin Rating & Reviews

Each plugin will have a star rating, with 5 stars being the highest rating. All WordPress users can leave comments and a star rating about how well the plugin works. Sometimes, the person who made a plugin will say certain things about it.

Users may disagree with the developer’s statement. Some low ratings will be fair, but others will be irrational and make no sense. For example, someone might say that I keep falling off my bike after I sit on it. Nothing is wrong with the bicycle. The rider could be new. Caroline Williams from Academist Help says, “It’s best to be careful with any plugin with less than a 3.5 rating.”

Compatible With Installed Plugins

There’s no reason to install another plugin that will do the same thing as one that’s already there. There are many plugins out there that say they will speed up the time it takes to load the website. If a website already has one of these plugins, adding more of the same kind shouldn’t be necessary. This is like a student who buys an assignment online even though they have already done it. The demand is just not there.

It is always best to simultaneously have as few plugins as possible on a single website. Try not to have too many plugins on your site. This will only make the website take longer to load as a whole. Another problem that can happen is that two plugins that do the same thing can cancel each other out. The way the two plugins work cancels each other, making it very slow for a website to load.

Paid or Free WordPress Plugin?

WP is a flexible tool for building websites. It has plugins that you can get for free or paid. Is it always true that paid plugins are better than free ones? Most of the time, 90% of the time, this is true. Some developers take on too much. These developers get money from users and think it will be easy to handle customer support. The reverse is true, and there are numerous dissatisfied customers.

Most plugins come in both free and paid versions. Before you buy a plugin, try out the free version to get a good idea of how it works. Paid users usually get more features, better support, a promise to stick around for a long time, and even user manuals when they buy a plugin.

Examining Questions & Support Replies

The WordPress forum is an online community where people who use the plugin can talk about their thoughts, ideas, and problems. WP gives developers a reason to answer, even though they are not required to. It is up to the developer to address a user’s problem. The forum is a collection of information about the plugin that is useful.

Users can see what other people have said about problems that are still happening with the plugin.
Do the programmers handle technical support?
Do they answer quickly?
Do they only respond to paid users, or do they reply to all users?
Does the plugin have other problems that might not be clear at first?
Are most people who use the plugin happy with how it works?

The forum can give answers to all of these questions.

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