Web Marketing Lesson 5: Adding and setting up important Plugins
This article is an easy to use, step-by-step method to enhance your WordPress website with some extremely powerful plugins in the easiest, best and fastest way possible.
Got your WordPress website installed and want to make it rock … but you don’t know how?
Never fear. This page will show you what to do to make sure your site is safe, solid and super. And you can do this for practically any WordPress website you install.
All right, so let’s quickly recap what you should have done by now.
Step 1: Register your domain.
Step 2: Setup Your Web Hosting Account
Step 3: Install WordPress
In case you skipped straight to this page, and still don’t have a domain or website host, here are some quick shortcuts for you to catch up.
OK, so we’re all on the same page now. Great. Now we can begin the procedure for setting up your site with important settings and poweful plugins that will make your site so powerful, it just might be able to help you single-handedly crush even the mightiest evil forces in the world.
Here’s the quick list of plugins and things you may learn to install and configure on this page:
CRITICAL – for security
POWERFUL – for site functionality & search engine friendliness
Setting Your Permalinks
Customizing Your Website Title, Subtitle, and other key WP Settings
AWESOME – for website content development, flexibility, reach and social proof
SWEET – for maintaining your website without having to waste your time
Keeping your WordPress core site code and WP plugins up-to-date
All right. Now let’s go over how to install Plugins. The following set of instructions is fairly standardized for most, if not all, WordPress plugins.
Here’s what to do in your WordPress Admin area:
The procedure is standard on any WordPress site.
Step 1: In the Admin area, go to the Plugins page from the Admin toolbar. That’s the vertical menu bar seen on the Left on WP installations in English and other Latin languages.
Step 2: Keep in mind that most plugins are not installed by default. However, some may be, especially if you installed it via a version customized by your web hosting provider. If any plugin on this list is pre-installed, then you just need to check the Read the Instructions, make sure you setup the Settings with your specific details for each one (when required), and make sure any pre-installed plugin is activated by clicking the word Activate in the Plugin’s summary on the Plugins page.
Step 3: For all other plugins, which are not pre-installed for you, click on the “Add New” button which is at the top of the Plugins Page.
Step 4: In the Search field, enter the name of a plugin you wish to install and hit the “Search” button.
Step 5: Look for the plugin on the search results page. You can verify it with the plugin’s name, Version (if you know it), Rating, and Description. The plugin should be at or near the top of the list of related plugins that come up in the results of your search.
Step 6: Beneath the Plugin’s name, you can see a link to read the plugin’s Details, and another link to Install the plugin.
Step 7: Click on Details to make sure the plugin is compatible with your version of WordPress (Some fall out of date from time to time, until they update their software).
Step 8: If the plugin is out of date, do not install it. Instead, search for a similar plugin with a high rating and many downloads, and that is compatible with your version.
Step 9: Once you have verified that the plugin you wish to install is compatibile with your version of WordPress, click on Install either from the Plugins page, or from the Details page of the specific plugin.
Step 10: WordPress will then ask you to verify the installation instruction, by asking you “Are you sure you want to install this plugin?” in a popover window. If you do not wish to install the plugin, click “Cancel”. If you wish to install the plugin, Click “OK” to proceed.
Step 11: Once you have clicked OK, you will see the progress of the installation in a page that reads something similar to this:
Installing Plugin: CaptionPix 1.4.1
Downloading install package from https://downloads.wordpress.org/plugin/captionpix.1.4.1.zip…
Unpacking the package…
Installing the plugin…
Successfully installed the plugin CaptionPix 1.4.1.
Activate Plugin | Return to Plugin Installer
The last line contains two links, which allow you to immediately activate the plugin, or to return to the Plugins page.
Step 12: If you installed the correct plugin, click on Activate Plugin. The plugin should then be activated.
Step 13: Go to the plugin’s Settings page (most plugins have one, but not all do), and set the details specific to your site and use of the plugin. Some plugins have just one page of settings, others have multiple pages. Be sure you go through all of the settings for each plugin, to optimize its use for your needs and your site’s performance. Examples of plugins with multiple Settings pages include: WordPress SEO by Yoast, GD Star Rating, Pretty Link, WordPress Backup 2 DropBox.
Step 14: Click on the Save button or link, usually found at the bottom of the Settings page.
Step 15: In most cases, you’re done installing the plugin at this point, and you may proceed to installing the next plugin, or go on to other matters.
Step 16: If you made an error and installed the wrong Plugin somehow, you can go the Plugin Installer page, and click on the “Delete” link which is beneath the short description of the Plugin in question.
Step 17: If you click on Delete, you will see a page with text similar to the following, except of course for the Plugin’s name and its Author’s name, which will depend on the plugin.
You are about to remove the following plugin:
Caption Pix by Russell Jamieson
Are you sure you wish to delete these files?
Click to view entire list of files which will be deleted
Step 18: Click Cancel to cancel the deletion, or click OK / Delete the Plugin.
Step 19: If you clicked on Cancel, you should be returned to the Plugin page.
Step 20: If you clicked on Delete WordPress should delete the plugin and its related files, and return you to the Plugins page.
Step 21: Proceed installing, setting up and activating further plugins that you need.
Congratulations! Once you have installed all of the plugins on this page’s list, you have installed the critical plugins for your WordPress website. Your site is now strong, flexible, and has massive potential for creating, distributing and monetizing unique, high quality content to enormous audiences around the world … and beyond! And why not? Astronauts like Chris Hadfield use the Internet in space, too.
Step 22: Now be sure to keep your plugins up-to-date. This you do by looking at the Admin Dashboard of column of administrative tools in the Admin area of the site. If there are any plugins to update, you will see a highlighted number (representing the number of plugin updates available) located next to the Plugins word of your Admin area’s vertical toolbar.
Step 23: On the Plugins or WordPress Updates page, you may update your plugins one at a time, or more than simultaneously, or even all of them at once.
Step 24: If any of your plugins fail to install properly, you will see a WordPress note about the error in most cases. Usually this is not a big deal, as you can often leave the plugin as-is until a better update becomes available. Or, you may deactivate the plugin, or even delete it, just as you would do in the steps written above. In some cases, a plugin update may actually temporarily cause your website not to function properly. In this case, the easiest thing to do is to delete the plugin. The next easiest thing to do is to Restore your website from your backup. Fortunately, if you installed the plugins on this page, then you have also installed a great, easy-to-use backup plugin, which allows you to quickly restore the site to its latest backup. Simply follow the instructions to restore your backup, and Presto! Your site is restored, and you may proceed.
Step 25: Keeping your overall WordPress core up-to-date is also vital. Fortunately, WordPress recently implemented an auto-updating technology. What this means is that since WordPress released version 3.8.1, standard installations (and even some customized ones) now have the ability to automatically update the WP Core, so that your website will always remain up-to-date with the main code that powers your wordpress website.
If you prefer watching a video tutorial about installing your site and various key plugins included on this page, checkout this highly useful clip by a fellow online content marketer, Matthew Woodward, who created and maintains his own great website about creating real value and earnings through web publishing.
In the next lesson, we will cover how to add high quality content, leading to the use of the best practices of SEO and Social Media.
As usual, if you like this article and care to help us in our efforts to put Google’s quality content claims to the test, then I beseech you, please share this page with your peers and colleagues on your social networks or any place where web publishers may find it beneficial.
Follow us: @yashaharari on Twitter
Previous Lesson: Web Marketing Lesson 4: Building A Site After Domain Name Registration
Next Lesson: Web Marketing Lesson 6: Secret Sauce. Adding the power of High quality content, SEO, Email Newsletter updates and Social Media to your site.