How Many Plugins Are Too Many
Is there such a thing as too many plugins?
Do you have TOO many plugins on your site?
As a developer, when I log in to a client’s WordPress site, one of the first thing I look at is the plugin list. I want to know what they are using and how many plugins they have. The information that I gather comes in handy. For several reasons, but the biggest being if there is an issue on the site. If there is an issue, the plugins are the first thing I’m going to investigate. 99% of the time a plugin is the culprit. Yes, your hosting company or code on the site can be an issue. It’s probably the plugins. Plugins are made by everyone, so chances are there are a few out there that don’t work together or maybe they did, but an update to one caused your site to crash. This happens.
Plugins also get outdated. Have you ever looked at a plugin that has the warning, “This plugin has not been tested with the latest version of WordPress?” (Are you shaking your head) 😒 You know the warning because it is out there quite a bit. Those plugins were fine on version 3.9.1, but you’ve updated WordPress a few times now we are on 4.9.4. That developer that made the plugin let the plugin go. It might have been 5 or 6 releases ago; who knows why, but they are no longer updating it. After an update is another way that can cause your site to see errors.
I’ve worked on a few sites where both have happened. It’s not a huge deal if you have thought it through before an update. Here is a list of some recommendations:
First! – Make sure your site is backed up before doing anything
- Make sure you have access to the backup in case you need to use it.
- Don’t assume it’s there because it is supposed to be.
- Monitor your plugins list – This doesn’t mean write them down weekly or monthly, just know what you have and where you are using them.
- Do you have a deactivated plugin you don’t use – Delete it (no point in worrying about it)
- Do you have an active plugin that you don’t like but never did anything with – (This happens) – Delete it
- Don’t know what a plugin is doing, investigate. Look at the plugin documentation – click on the link under the plugin to see screenshots, videos, an
- If a plugin needs to be updated look at the version you have versus the new version and look at the documentation (this documentation can be found under the plugin it typically states “View version information”) to see what changed.
- Don’t go down the full list of your plugins and update all at once. Go one or two at a time depending on the function of the plugin and risk. Monitor your site after each update is completed. Don’t wait until you’ve done them all and then try to figure out which plugin took your site down.
- Things didn’t go well – Use that backup and note the plugin that caused the issue.
Do you want to spend more time working with your clients than trying to figure out what needs updated or reviewed on your site? Technology is finicky; this is where I can come in.
I offer services to monitor your site. I want to make sure your plugins, website, backups, and much more are where they are supposed to be, so you don’t have to. This service frees up you to concentrate on your clients, and I will focus on your site. So we can both do what we do best!
Certified Online Business Manager | Virtual Operations & Technology Specialist