Keeping up with my recent series of WordPress tutorials, today I bring a very simple tutorial on how to install a WordPress Plugin. I get asked this question a lot by my clients that I have built a custom WordPress site for when they may want to add something else after we have finished the build and design.
There are multiple ways in which you can install a WordPress plugin, and in this tutorial I cover the two most common ways. The first is by visiting the WordPress plugin directory search while logged into your site. This way is probably the easiest way and quickest. You simply find the plugin you want and click install. After installing and a quick click of the activate button, you are off to the races of setting up the specifics of the plugin.
The second way I talk about is if you find a plugin somewhere outside the directory, or have already downloaded it from the WordPress plugin directory. When you do this, you will have a .zip file of the plugin saved to your hard drive. In this instance, you need to go to your plugin screen and click the upload. You will actually upload the .zip file, so don’t open the zip file and try installing that. If you do, it will not work.
Here’s a simple screencast that walks you through how to install a WordPress plugin either of these ways:
Two Important Reminders
Always remember before you start installing any new plugins to your site to first backup your custom WordPress Site! The last thing you want to do is have your entire site go down because of a bad plugin that you install that destroys everything. If you have a backup done before installation, you just need to restore to the older version. The second thing to remember, is the importance of keeping all of your WordPress plugins up to date on your custom WordPress site. By not keeping these up to date you can open yourself to a whole lot of other problems and issues.
If you have questions about how to install a WordPress plugin onto your custom WordPress site, feel free to ask in the comments below!