How many WordPress plugins to install on the site?
Whenever you think of a feature for your site, do you immediately run to install another plugin that can add it?
Don’t you think that burdening your site with too many elements could slow down its performance?
In this article we will see why it is wrong to behave this way and how many plugins you should install on your WordPress site to maintain high performance and an acceptable level of safety.
In short, the number of plugins to install should be less than 15, but there are cases where it is acceptable to have even more. In reality there is no perfect number, it depends on the cases.
The real question to ask is “Which plugins do I really need?”
The key is to identify quality plugins and possibly find alternatives that avoid the use of plugins.
How to understand how many plugins to install on your site
If you have installed many plugins on your site, it is likely that you have noticed a drop in performance or malfunctions on some pages.
In fact, plugins are pieces of code that must be interpreted and processed by the browser every time a page is opened. To do this, it takes some time, and therefore performance can drop.
Also, some plugins may come into conflict with each other and cause problems in certain features of your site.
Keep the number of installed plugins low reduces the likelihood of such episodes occurring. Let’s take a closer look at this aspect.
Plugins and Performance
Some plugins can increase the loading time of your site in the following ways:
- creating additional JS or CSS type codes;
- increasing the database of the site (eg: the “most read posts” or those of the type “you might also be interested in …”).
To overcome these situations I suggest you install the W3 Total Cache or WP Super Cache plugin .
Creation of additional JS or CSS type codes
In the case of creating additional code such as JS or CSS, you must have a minimum of knowledge in terms of coding .
There are two main ways to reduce the amount of code generated on pages:
- the first is uncheck those scripts or additional codes that are loaded by plugins, for combine them in the main js code or css. The plugins I recommended to you in the previous paragraph, among other things, help you combine and minify codes .
- The second method is to do load the plugin only on those pages where strictly necessary.
Clearly these methods are not for beginners, and to do this you need to get help from expert hands.
Are you looking for valid support?
Increase of the site database
Some plugins can increase the loading time of a site such as the YARPP plugin that allows you to view related posts, or those of the type “you might also be interested in …” .
In the case of very large sites, this could create some slowdowns: in this case it is necessary to upgrade your hosting plan or, look for a professional or a web designer who studies customized solutions.
Plugins and security
Low-level plugins help decrease the site or blog security However, this problem exists for any type of software on the market.
To minimize this problem, always rely on plugins that have:
- a large number of installations (ideally at least 10,000);
- excellent ratings from users (at least 4.5 stars out of 5);
- frequent updates (do not install plugins that have not been updated for more than 6 months);
- a fast and efficient support service (always consult the plugin support forum and avoid the ones where users don’t get a response).
Plugins and reliability
It is clear that you may be wondering: what would happen if Apple ceased to exist? No more iPhones? Or if there were no more Adobe we would no longer have Photoshop?
The case of WordPress is different: plugins or applications are constantly being improved thanks to services such as gitHUB , through which developers contribute to improve the versions of their plugins each other.
To find the best ones, as I explained earlier, always search for those with the highest ratings and feedback from users.
Therefore, it is not a question of not installing “too many” plugins, but of installing only quality ones : by comparing the number of downloads, ratings, user reviews, author credibility and customer support, you can manage to locate them.
A good rule of thumb is, however, not to install more than 15 plugins for your platform, maximum 20.