You might want to add plugins to your website for many different reasons, whether for functionality, to enhance security, or to improve the user experience. The number of plugins currently available is overwhelming, but they’re not all made the same. Not all of them will have the exact qualities you are searching for, and not all will be compatible with your website.
This article will discuss why you should research plugins before adding them to your website and how adding too many plugins can negatively impact overall performance.
What are plugins?
You might be unfamiliar with this term, so let’s first understand what plugins are.
A plugin is a piece of software added to a content management system (CMS) or website to increase its capabilities. No software can have every function for every possible user, no matter how powerful it is. That’s when the plugins come into play.
There are many different types of plugins: SEO plugins, security plugins, e-commerce plugins, social media plugins, and so on. Contact forms, picture galleries, and SEO tools are examples of plugins frequently used to add certain features or functionality to a website.
Third-party developers often create plugins that are accessible for various CMS systems. There are hundreds of plugins available, each with its capabilities and features. Some plugins are free, while others need a membership or one-time payment.
Why should you research plugins?
With all these excellent capabilities that plugins can add to your website comes a risk. It is critical to select and install plugins properly for several reasons. Let’s discuss some of them:
1. Installing too many plugins can slow down your website
One of the primary reasons you should research plugins is to minimize performance difficulties on your website. Too many plugins are essentially more code to be processed, which might cause your website to slow down, which can be annoying for users and harm your search engine results, which are critical indicators of your website’s performance. Decreasing your rank in search results can negatively impact your business. One more problem that a slow-loading website cause is a high bounce rate. Users are less inclined to wait for a slow-loading website. Once they get tired, they will exit your website, and you will lose a potential customer.
2. Compatibility Issues
Another reason you would want to research plugins before installing them is compatibility issues. You have to ensure that it is compatible with your website’s content management system and any other themes or plugins you are using. When you install an incompatible plugin, you might cause problems with your website’s operation, requiring you to debug or look for a replacement, which defeats the whole purpose of adding a plugin. Doing your homework correctly and conducting preliminary research on the plugin may prevent these concerns and ensure that it will function properly on your website.
3. Security problems
You want to avoid security issues because they can make your life a living hell. These issues might lead to a leak of sensitive and critical data, which can harm your brand’s reputation. When the website is experiencing security issues, hackers can exploit it and even install malware on your website. That will lead to more severe problems you don’t want to deal with. Taking the effort to investigate a plugin’s security can help secure your website and critical data.
4. Support system
If you have any problems with a plugin, it’s reassuring to know that there is a support staff ready to help. Choosing a plugin used by many websites and with a helpful support team that can assist you if you encounter any problems is a huge advantage. And research can help you evaluate all these factors. This not only includes the dedicated support team to whom you can reach out but also can include forums and well-structured manuals.
5. Finding the right functionalities
As we already mentioned, plugins help add extra functionality to your website. But some of them are overly complicated, with many functions that might not even be useful for your website. You don’t want to confuse your visitors with too many complex, extra, and not very helpful functionalities. Investigating the plugin can help you grasp its capabilities and assess whether it has an appropriate feature balance for your requirements.
How do you research plugins?
There are a few ways you can research plugins:
- Check reviews: Reading reviews and checking the ranking of the plugin will give you a decent understanding of its performance, dependability, and usability.
- Test them first: if you can, test the plugin before installing it on your website. This will allow you to see how it works and whether it causes any problems with your website.
- Visit the official website: Most plugin creators will have a website containing information about the plugin. This helps you understand what the plugin does and whether it suits you.
- Keep an eye out for updates: Check for updates frequently since plugin developers may issue updates to correct bugs or provide new features.
- Consider the budget: Plugins can be both free and paid. Consider the budget you’re working with and decide whether the plugin is worth your money.
Finally, researching plugins before adding them to your website is a critical step that will save you time, stress, and potential security concerns in the long run. By researching a plugin, you can check that it is compatible with your website, runs effectively, is safe, has the functionality you want, and has an active support network. Installing too many plugins on your website may negatively influence its speed, security, and usability. You may prevent these difficulties and get the most out of your website by carefully selecting plugins and frequently evaluating and deleting unwanted ones. Like everything else, the key to getting the most benefits out of plugins is to use them in moderation. Keep in mind that you don’t need too many of them. If you need assistance choosing and adding plugins to your website, reach out to Internet Marketing Geeks today. Our developers will bring your website to a new level with the right plugins and other valuable digital assets.