Just like making a run for the border for “bootleg fireworks” (YouTube it), we’re hauling a trunk full of potentially explosive WordPress Plugins that could either make you go “ooh and ahh”, or instead just blow up in your face. Make sure you test any new plugins on a staging site before going live. As you can see by the most recent posting yesterday, there are sometimes bad plugins that make it through the cracks for a day or so before the community watch takes over and removes the offender. Don’t take the risk of losing your hard work and data by installing a plugin that is untested with your unique installation and plugin set. Learn from MY past mistakes. Backup, test, repeat. The following plugins are not endorsements, recommendations or ratings but a mere spoon-sized taste of the latest plugins from the WordPress Plugin Repository. OK, let’s get plugged in!
WP Revisions Control helps to limit the revision versions that are stored within each WordPress post or page. When installed and activated, this plugin has settings available in the Settings>Writing configuration page. From that point you will set the maximum amount of revisions that are kept for each post type. Plugin author Erick Hitter foresaw a need for this plugin after revisions started being archived back in WordPress version 3.6. While the new post revision archive was a good advancement, there was no limitation as to how many revisions it capped in the database, which could increase load time and decrease overall site performance. By using an application such as this, you can limit the unwanted clutter that normally occurs when you are editing the same post on a frequent basis. From a personal perspective, I limit my post revision archive count to five. This allows me the opportunity to look back and alter without clogging up my entire database as a result.
Contact Us Page – Contact People is a very intense plugin by Steve Truman at A3 Revolution Software for displaying the contact information of people or fixed business locations from around the world. It does so with a very intuitive contact “blocks” like feature that is displayed on a grid overlay. Both individuals and departments can be featured as well as overall companies. Google maps are optional add-ins that can be enabled to show the main location and pins of each individual profile location on a map. You have the option to show as little or as much as you’d like in each individual profile. Another nice feature is that the plugin allows for direct e-mail submission from site visitors to each contact profile. It does so without displaying an e-mail address online, helping to prevent spam. It is also mobile optimized and can be design modified from a single column to a five column layout.
Date Tool helps to insert date based shortcodes into your content. It’s great for posts where you frequently have to edit and change the date within the content month after month or year after year. This plugin allows you to set it and forget it, self updating your content by inserting the current chronological variable for you. For example, Shortcode: [datetool_current format=”Y”] Output: 2013 (or what the current year is). It works on dates, day of the month and a lot of other fields to help you prevent the monthly update grind where you have to change dates or months. Remember though, this only changes the content, not the meta data or post titles. You’ll still have to manually change those items.
Colored Admin Post List is a simple yet effective method to visually separate post statuses simply by looking at the color. When enabled, you can select a custom color background for draft, future, pending, private and published posts. Once you have your colors set, your posts will all be color-coded for easy sorting or to bring to your attention any older content items that you may have forgotten to finish that are still in draft or private mode. I love coloring the most important cells of my Excel spreadsheets, so this plugin is the next best thing for me in WordPress posts list form!
Related Articles by Tag may help to fill a particular gap in the site that I own simply based on its namesake. Often when you run a website that is heavily based on the locations and the subsequent location tags, you often find a very large hole when it comes to displaying any sort of related posts functionality. For this particular site I have common tags only when it comes to city name variants. Using a plugin like this would allow me to insert a short code at the bottom of my city-based (or any subject) article that would reference other matching tags in the series without having to try and create categories for every city in the process to get the same functionality. This is a nice plugin for those who use the tag functionality in organized ways.
Join us again tomorrow as we give you another fine set of plugins to check out. As always you can follow me on Twitter @marcuscouch or leave your feedback here on WPTavern. For those of you in the United States about to partake in the extended Independence Day weekend, remember there is no VaultPress for your life. Be safe and have fun out there!