What is a WordPress Plugin?

What is a WordPress plugin, how do they function and what are the benefits of using WordPress plugins? These are frequently asked questions by WordPress beginners. In this article you will find the answers.

WordPress plugins are pieces of software thad add extra functionality to your WordPress website. For example, plugins can help you make galleries, slideshows or improve your SEO. These additional functions and features enable users to customize their site to specific wants and needs. For this example, let’s have a look at the Yoast SEO plugin. The Yoast SEO plugin adds SEO related functionality to your WordPress website, including XML sitemap and OpenGraph info. It enables WordPress users to write better content and optimize their website.

Yoast SEO plugin

Plugin repositories

The vast majority of plugins are free but usually don’t offer technical support. Therefore, you should carefully select which plugin matches your needs. It is recommended to check “the WordPress.org plugin repository“. If you can’t find the required plugin there, search the web on keywords that match the functionality you are looking for.

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Default plugins

When you install WordPress, a bunch of files is automatically included. These files can be divided into “core files” and “content files“, and belong to “the WordPress core“. There are two default plugins embedded in the WordPress core: Akismet and Hello Dolly. Akismet is a useful plugin to prevent spam comments on your WordPress blog whereas Hello Dolly has no practical purpose. Any plugin that is not activated on your WordPress website should be removed since hackers tend to hide malicious codes in old default themes and plugins. Either way, both plugins are installed automatically and are free to use.

How to install a WordPress Plugin

Do you want to know how to install a WordPress plugin, There are various ways to easily install a WordPress plugin. Check out our blog post: “How to install WordPress plugins” if you want to read everything about installing, uploading and transferring plugins into WordPress.

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