Plugins are nothing new to WordPress site owners, but only a few have taken advantage of the perks that a custom plugin can offer. A WordPress plugin is defined as an element of software that’s integrated into your site for added functionality. Virtually all WordPress based websites run at least one plugin for its added functionality. The most common types of plugins are ones for contact forms, analytics and integrations with other programs, like MailChimp. Developers, site hobbyists, and small business owners alike love them, as it means it’s one less portion of development they will have to do themselves. It’s an attractive option for saving money and leveraging the functionality of your site. Read on to see why a custom plugin could benefit your company’s site and what options you have for creating one.
Something for Every Business
If your business has a website, there is certainly a custom plugin option that would benefit your business. It’s up to you to decide if you’d like to take it in a functional direction or offer something entertaining and different for web customers to enjoy.
Fun and Entertaining Custom Plugins
Plugins are typically viewed as boring, functional pieces to a site. There’s nothing exciting about a contact form or a little box that magically collects and adds email addresses to your database. It’s time to rethink this! Custom plugins that focus on the “all play” side of your site can lead to higher user engagement and more sales. Here are some examples of entertainment based plugins that users will enjoy:
- A Quizzed Based Plugin – Fashion, accessory, retail and home improvement brands love these types of plugins and for good reason. Customers start with answering a series of questions or go through set prompts on your site and set their preferences and desires. The results present the best products for them and eliminates your having to depend on them scrolling through your inventory. For a picky shopper or someone searching for a gift, these plugins perform especially well.
- Personal Touches Plugin – Seeing is believing! It’s natural to want to inspect every element of a product or service before signing up for it yourself. Custom plugins could be the perfect way to give buyers that security without having to do the work for free up front. A wonderful example of this is for an engraving company to have a plugin that generated the user’s product with their customizations.
Functional Custom Plugins
Sometimes a fun plugin doesn’t fit the bill of a site. That’s more than okay, and there are a wealth of custom options available that offer a valuable resource to your end user. Here are some examples of functional custom plugins that a web development firm could create:
- Gather and Displays for Data – Create aggregated feeds of content and display it flawlessly within your website. This type of plugin is ideal for businesses that have a large social media fan base or work closely with a larger organization, like the New York Stock Exchange. Integrating the data into your own site keeps customers engaged and prevents them from drifting elsewhere.
- One That “Does the Math” – The best example of this type of plugin is as follows: A restaurant lists its menu online and uses a custom plugin to allow diners to count calories. Foodies build their own meal and the site automatically adds calories and other nutritional information for them in a flash. This type of plugin is also ideal for sites in the financial sector.
Using a WordPress Development Firm
WordPress as a whole is a giant entity with many working parts. While there are many user friendly elements, plugins are notorious for not being one of those aspects. For businesses who have tried the available plugins and are just not quite getting what they need, it could be time to consider custom development. Choosing a firm that specializes in WordPress design and development as a whole will ultimately get you to your end goal faster. These experts understand the need to be on top of new trends and best practices, and the result is a plugin that is optimized and flawlessly functional. Take the time to do your research and investigate each firm with care. Look specifically at their WordPress project history, plugin development skills and to see if they have any certifications or endorsements from major industry leaders. Cost can vary significantly based off of the complexity of your plugin. Scheduling a consult with a firm would be the best way to learn more and to see how they can bring your plugin to life.